Dead To Her by Sarah Pinborough – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

Something old…

When Marcie met Jason Maddox, she couldn’t believe her luck. Becoming Jason’s second wife catapulted her into the elite world of high society. But underneath the polite, old money manners, she knows she’ll always be an outsider, and her hard-won life hangs by a thread.
 

Something new…

Then Jason’s widowed boss brings back a new wife from his trip to London. Young, beautiful, reckless – nobody can take their eyes off Keisha. Including Jason.
 

Something you can never, ever undo…

Marcie refuses to be replaced so easily. People would kill for her life of luxury. What will Marcie do to keep it?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. I had read books by Sarah Pinborough before so knew I’d be reading something clever and slightly different. But this book is more than that, I have rarely cringed at so many repulsive characters. There are many phrases used throughout the novel but if I just select a few you will get the general idea. Entitled, judgemental, devious and atrocious. And these were people who were thought by many to be the great and good.

This book is about wealth, power, greed and obsession. There was only character in the novel, amongst the ‘great and the good’ who seemed to be genuine. I won’t say who, will leave it to your own judgement, it did take me a while to find them. 

I did have some sympathy for Keisha, she was upfront from the start about what she wanted but she was completely out of her depth with the people she was up against. I really appreciated how she was manipulated by her fear of voodoo and her past. I found the voodoo part of the story to be quite creepy and intimidating. 

There are not many characters in the novel and I had a very clear vision of what they were like. Greedy, spiteful and dangerous with their power. It showed a completely different life to what most have. My jaw dropped at one point, when a large sum of money was described as not very much. 

Many years ago I enjoyed watching American TV shows such as Dallas and Dynasty. If you watched them you would appreciate how the characters in this book made me remember those shows and laugh. 

The Silent Wife by Karin Slaughter – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

He watches.

A woman runs alone in the woods. She convinces herself she has no reason to be afraid, but she’s wrong. A predator is stalking the women of Grant County. He lingers in the shadows, until the time is just right to snatch his victim.

He waits.

A decade later, the case has been closed. The killer is behind bars. But then another young woman is brutally attacked and left for dead, and the MO is identical.

He takes.

Although the original trail has gone cold – memories have faded, witnesses have disappeared – agent Will Trent and forensic pathologist Sara Linton must re-open the cold case. But the clock is ticking, and the killer is determined to find his perfect silent wife….

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. The Silent Wife is only the second book that I have read that features the amazing set of characters that came from two series of books. Even though I had no problems following the storyline I did prefer the the one that featured Sara with Will rather than the one that features her with Jeffery. Although I accept that this could be with not knowing anything about their relationship. 

The cold cases they are investigating after the information they have been given by the man who is serving time for them are brutal. Much of the detail comes from the forensic examinations but when you read about what the survivors are going through years later you can clearly see the trauma they have experienced. And the different ways in which they cope.

Some of the characters who feature in this book were Jeffrey’s colleagues at the time the crimes they were committed. One of these in particular I detested with a passion, even after reading their back story via google I still had little sympathy. There are not many, out of all the books I have read, who I disliked as much. Happily, there was another who I adored and I could read an entire series featuring her alone. That character was Faith I found her to be honest, cynical, funny and loyal. And I had a feeling she felt exactly the same about the character I disliked.

I really need to catch up on Karin Slaughter’s books, whilst I haven’t read that many I do enjoy them. 

The Guest List by Lucy Foley – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

On an island off the windswept Irish coast, guests gather for the wedding of the year – the marriage of Jules Keegan and Will Slater.
 
Old friends.
Past grudges.
 
Happy families.
Hidden jealousies.
 
Thirteen guests.
One body.
 
The wedding cake has barely been cut when one of the guests is found dead. And as a storm unleashes its fury on the island, everyone is trapped.

All have a secret. All have a motive.
One guest won’t leave this wedding alive . . .

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. The Guest List was a book that once I started I struggled to put down. Because the chapters are very short and each one features a different character I was always encouraged to read a little longer. 

The multiple narrators include the bride, bridesmaid, plus- one, wedding planner, best man and groom. A couple of these I had sympathy for immediately,  a few others I had to get to know more and a few I didn’t like at all. I can’t name any, for much of this novel you don’t know who the victim or the killer is. All I can say is it was a bit of a surprise for both. 

There are also the characters who you don’t get to know that well but learn enough just from their brief appearances. There were a few times when I felt outrage at the behaviour of the ushers and other guests. 

There is almost a Christie feel to this novel. The way that all that events from the past are revealed, and how those connected feel about it. The bleak setting, with the ancient burial site, peat bogs and the threat from the sea. The feeling that Aiofe, the wedding planner, has that she would always be an outsider and never fully accepted by the locals.

I read most of this novel in one day, hooked on the storyline and wondering who would die. When it was revealed I had to cover the page so I wouldn’t accidentally see who it was. And the way the killer was revealed was wonderful, various accounts of lights failing had me sitting on the edge of my seat. 

This is a novel that will hook many, a brilliant read that is perfect for a day when bad weather stops you from leaving the house.

The Dilemma by B. A. Paris – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

It’s Livia’s 40th birthday and she’s having the party of a lifetime to make up for the wedding she never had. Everyone she loves will be there except her daughter Marnie, who’s studying abroad. But although Livia loves Marnie, she’s secretly glad she won’t be at the party. She needs to tell Adam something about their daughter but she’s waiting until the party is over so they can have this last happy time together.

Adam wants everything to be perfect for Livia so he’s secretly arranged for Marnie to come home and surprise her on her birthday. During the day, he hears some terrible news. He needs to tell Livia, because how can the party go on? But she’s so happy, so excited – and the guests are about to arrive.

The Dilemma – how far would you go to give someone you love a last few hours of happiness?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. The Dilemma was a book that I had to wait a few days before I tried to review it. I didn’t find it an easy book to get into, partly because I didn’t care for either of the characters at first but also because you find out very early what Adam is concerned about and you know that he is in for a very long night. I felt very tense at times, wondering how he would tell Livia and Josh about his fears.  But the way it started to develop was mesmerising and Adam was a character who I quickly changed my mind about. 

One of the strongest points of this novel were the differences between the characters. Some smarmy, most loyal, but there was an overwhelming feeling of true friendship from most. The relationship especially between Adam and his son Josh was one that showed a closeness that had been worked at over the years, rather than one that was instantaneous.

It was a novel where I couldn’t judge either for their actions. What would you do? If you faced with a similar dilemma to Livia and Adam. I honestly don’t know. 

The Room Mates by Rachel Sargeant – Extract – BlogTour.

About The Book

THEY LIVE IN YOUR HOUSE
University is supposed to be the best time of your life. But Imo’s first week is quickly going from bad to worse.

YOU SHARE EVERYTHING
A stalker is watching her flat, following her every move, and Imo suspects that her new roommates are hiding dark secrets…

BUT DO YOU TRUST THEM?
When one of them suddenly disappears, the trauma of Imo’s recent past comes hurtling back to haunt her. And she begins to realise just how little she knows about the people she lives with…

Extract

Prologue

Three Years Ago

A car horn blares and instinct makes her jump back. Male driver, early thirties. Mouth open in an oath as he speeds past, skidding on the bridge’s frosty tarmac. She can’t be bothered to gesture after him. Defiance gone.

Clutching her elbows for warmth, she makes it to the opposite side. Her jacket’s not much of a coat these days. Zip bust from straining. The barrier along the side of the bridge is tall – nearly her height – but she peers between its vertical railings. The river below looks benign. No boats are out in mid-winter to ruffle its grey-green surface. A few dog walkers and cyclists on the promenade. The café’s open but the air’s too bitter even for smokers to sit outside.

Wind picks up, making her stumble. For a moment she longs for the warmth of the bonfire under the bridge where the others will be. A few cans and a bit of weed. Where’s the harm? But she can’t go there because of Danno. Can’t bear to see her betrayal reflected in his eyes. To see how her lies have destroyed him.

With her back against the barrier, sheltering from the worst of the weather, she squats and watches the traffic. When a passing lorry causes the bridge to judder, a change of plan flits through her mind. It might be quicker, more certain. But she can’t do that to a driver. She’s damaged enough people. People she loves. Her eyes smart. She stands up.

Searching for places to climb, she walks close to the barrier and spots possible toeholds – welded joints on some of the metal posts that are fixed into the ground at regular intervals. There’s a lull in the traffic and she hears her heartbeat. Loud. A shiver passes through her. Can she do this? What else is there? No one wants her, can’t blame Mum and Jade.

In one swift movement, she grips two railings, wedges the side of her foot on a bolt and hauls herself up. An icy blast hits her head and neck. When she looks down, the river looms in and out of focus. Her head spins so much, she’s sure she’ll overbalance. Determination deserts her and the dizziness makes her afraid. Her hands clench the top rail and she ignores how much the cold metal burns.

As she stares down at the water, Leo’s face flashes across her mind. This isn’t because of Danno – or Mum or Jade. Most of all she’s failed Leo. Her breathing slows and the unsteadiness fades. Her doubts begin to disappear. She levers herself higher.

No more pain, no more loss, no more hurting those who care – used to care. The burden lifts. Limbs and belly light for the first time in months. All over. She smiles. Places a knee on the top of the barrier. One final breath.

“Amber!” A voice shrieks along the bridge before the wind swallows it whole.