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Review: The Silent Children by Carol Wyer

The Silent Children (DI Robyn Carter, #4)The Silent Children by Carol Wyer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Robyn Carter series continues to be among the best out there for fans of taut mysteries with great plots and even better characters.

I stayed up late into the night (AGAIN) to finish it!

This time, DI Carter is handed one case, then another – and both stall. Then she notices a thin connection between the two people. Are the killings related? As more bodies are found, Robyn and her team must figure it out before they let a killer slip through their hands.

The book is part of a series, but could be read as a stand-alone, although some of the main characters’ have storylines that carry over. But the central mystery is self-contained.

I love how multifaceted the plot was; there was so much going on, there’s no time to be bored or figure things out before the moment the book reveals them. But not too much – things were smooth and wrapped up nicely.

Plus, the subplots involving the Carter team remain good as well. I’m already anticipating the next book so I can see what happens next (there’s a bit of a cliffhanger there!)

Overall, I continue to highly recommend this series to all mystery/thriller fans!

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Author Q&A: Regina Timothy (@gina_wann)

Welcome to the Author Q&A with Regina Timothy, author of Full Circle, an emotional powerhouse which chronicles various women’s lives following the 9/11 terror attacks.

In this Q&A, Ms. Timothy talks about writing emotional situations and what’s up next (maybe a sequel!).

Where did the idea for this story come from?

I’ve always loved books and movies with a strong female leads, especially books that highlight on the place of women in society. I wanted to be one of the million voices in the world that gives a voice to these remarkable characters.

When I began writing the book, I wanted it to be about three different women living in three different continents, and influenced by different cultures and beliefs. The idea was to bring the three women together later in the book and have them discover that despite their circumstances, they face the same trials imposed by society. Samia was the first character I invented. The more I wrote about her the more her story became complex and I felt she needed a lot more space than a few chapters to tell her story. So I decided to dedicate the entire book to her and follow her journey. I brought in Melisa and Susan, to help Samia tell her story and bring out the original idea of the book that despite their different circumstances, they faced the same demons.

Why did you decide to tell the story from such varied multiple perspectives?

I wanted to cover a variety of issues and felt it would be overwhelming and unrealistic to Samia if she encompassed all these issues. So instead I decided to bring in two other women with similar concerns to show despite the circumstances they were facing the same demons in the long run.

There were several very emotional scenes in the book. How do you approach them?

The book contains some difficult scenes that were hard for me to write because of the raw emotion experienced by the characters.  In order to portray strong characters to the reader, the characters need to feel real – they need to live and breathe on the page. When I write, I sometimes get carried away.  If my character is smiling, I smile. If my character is in pain you’ll find me wincing or worse. At times the emotions are too raw and I have to remind myself that I made the characters and the situations up. Occasionally when things are so intense, I take a break from writing to get into the right head space.

The book does end on a positive note – why was that important to you?

For me the book was all about hope. I needed to show that Samia did not suffer most of her adult life in vain. There is always a ray of hope even in the darkest of clouds. The book also centers on forgiveness, which was important to achieve before the book ended. It was important for all the Samia and the other women to resolve all the issues plaguing them by the time the book was ending to signify new beginning for all of them.

What do you want people to take away from this story?

Hope that no matter how bad things get there’s always hope for a better tomorrow. The world is becoming more multicultural with each day. People have very different views, beliefs and backgrounds. We need to find a way to be more accommodating despite our varied beliefs.

What are you working on next?

I’m currently toying with the idea of writing a sequel to Full Circle. I felt that we needed to get closure for both Adham and Jeremy who were missing when the book ended. I’m also working on a book centered on a young African woman who has been scarred by war and hopelessness. She was supposed to appear in Full circle but now she gets to have an entire book dedicated to her story.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

Don’t talk about your writing, just write. Keep on writing. It’s the only way to improve and get to your goals – writing is a constant work in progress – you are always learning. Also, be patient and persevere. The road may be long and dreary but with hard work and perseverance you’ll get to your destination. Also take some time to learn the craft and the industry, and be willing to adapt accordingly.

For more information about Full Circle or Regina Timothy, please visit her website at https://reginatimothy.wordpress.com/

Posted in Reviews

Review: Full Circle by Regina Timothy

Today I’m posting my review of Full Circle by Regina Timothy – make sure to check back tomorrow for a special Q&A with Ms. Timothy!

4.5/5 ⭐️

If there’s one word I’d use to describe this book, it’s “journey.” The story chronicles relationships and various issues spanning several years and has so many emotional moments, you’ll feel like you’ve been on a rollercoaster when you finish it.

I mean all of this in a good way, of course. I really enjoyed all the characters’ perspectives, seeing their lives and struggles and ultimately witnessing their various choices and how it impacted the lives around them.

The book is told from multiple perspectives, including three women, all of whom have been touched in various ways by the 9/11 attacks. The main character is Samia, an Iraqi immigrant who escaped a terrible situation at home, only to find that the American dream isn’t all she thought it would be. Over the course of the novel, Samia is forced to confront prejudice, her son’s troubles and her harrowing past.

The emotion in the book is palpable, I could feel the characters coming through the pages and I really enjoyed all three main women’s characters, which were diverse and strong in all different ways. I was rooting for each one of them.

The story was so packed with action and suspense, I found myself really turning pages toward the end, excited/anxious to know how it worked out. The stories all came together expertly, which I really appreciated.

I also greatly enjoyed that the novel ends on a positive note, with hope for the future. Today, more than ever, I feel like we need that.

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Review: The Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen

The Vanishing SeasonThe Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked this book, I really did. But there are some caveats there.

The books follows Ellery Hathaway, who, as a young girl, was the only survivor of a sadistic serial killer. Fourteen years later, as applied officer in a small town, she begins noticing a pattern: every year around her birthday (also the anniversary of the day she was kidnapped), someone goes missing. But no one believes Ellery’s theory. Is it in her head – or is someone after her to finish what started all those years ago?

That’s some set-up, right? I mean, it’s really a great storyline that just pulled me in. I was hooked pretty early on. The action moves pretty quickly and there’s enough clues to keep you on your toes as the book goes on.

Maybe too many clues, though. I completely guessed each “twist,” one of which I guessed because I’d actually seen something similar before. Which isn’t to say that that’s automatically makes it a bad book – but past the big reveals, there wasn’t much else in terms of the motives or explanation. Which means the book’s ending fell flat for me.

But I did really like Ellery and Reed as characters, and would really like to see them again in future books. I would completely read something else from this author and more if this becomes a series.

Hopefully, the author just works the bumps out next time!

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Review: Nightblind by Ragnar Jónasson

Nightblind (Dark Iceland #2)Nightblind by Ragnar Jónasson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a quick, great read that continues the Siglufjördur series – but I need to note before I begin that series order is different from chronological order. If you want to read in chronological order, there’s a different configuration, as this book takes place five years after the events in Nightblind, and many thing have changed (as noted in an author’s note preceding the book.)

So. This book was very good and also very intense – it deals with themes of domestic violence and features a character who had a suicide attempt, so it’s a very intense storyline.

But I greatly enjoyed it. It was a quick read which seemed to fly by, since I was so hooked.

The book begins with the shooting of a police officer and follows Ari Thor as he works to figure out who committed this rare act of violence. Meanwhile, everyone in town seems to be dealing with issues, and it’s up to Ari Thor to navigate it all.

I love how everyone in Siglufjördur has a story. It adds such great layers to the story. I like that complexity as you try to unravel the mystery.

I also really enjoy how Jónasson handles such intense themes. It doesn’t seem gratuitous or overly graphic, and that’s important. It’s key to depict realistic situations with respect.

Overall, I love this series and will continue to read it – mystery fans will love it as well.

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Review: The Lullaby Girl by Loreth Anne White

The Lullaby Girl (Angie Pallorino, #2)The Lullaby Girl by Loreth Anne White

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I can’t wait for the next book in this series. That’s how good it is: I’m already looking forward to reading more. This book combines romance, thrills and a healthy dose of suspense to bring readers an amazing new chapter in the Angie Pallorino saga.

This book takes place shortly after the events of the first book and Angie is facing the consequences of that investigation both at work and in her personal life. As Angie digs deeper into her past and Maddocks follows up on the Amanda Rose girls, they find the cases colliding and their lives in danger.

I really enjoyed the dynamic between Angie and Maddocks. They’re definitely a couple to root for and Maddocks is a great male lead, in particular. I also liked getting to see more of Holgersen, and I can’t wait to see where his character goes.

The central mysteries were also very intriguing, and actually quite scary – it’s very realistic and very intense. I wish we got to see a little more of the girls themselves, but I understand that there’s only so much room in a book.

I’m honestly a huge fan of this series, and really enjoyed catching up with these characters. If you’re a fan of romance, suspense, or both, I’d highly recommend checking it out.

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Blog Tour: Past Echoes by Graham Smith (Jake Boulder series!)

Book Description

Jake Boulder is back and he’s tasked with tracking down a man due to inherit a small fortune. Not only that, he must also reveal the secret which forced a young woman to flee New York some forty years ago. The evidence he needs is hidden in a safety deposit box and while Boulder has the key, the only clue he has for box’s location is a series of numbers etched onto the key and a mysterious list of names.

Boulder has his work cut out since he must also locate his estranged father, Cameron MacDonald, so that Cameron can donate bone marrow to Boulder’s half-brother John.

In a game of cat and mouse, he must solve the case and find the two men without alerting those who control New York’s underworld.

Can Boulder survive against both the mafia and a professional hitman, in what is his toughest case yet?

My Review

5/5 ⭐️

O.M.G.

If it’s possible, the Jake Boulder series is getting even better. This book just grabbed me and didn’t let go until the very end (Oh that ending scene!)

But first: This book could be read as a stand-alone, but it might be helpful to read the other books first to understand why Jake feels such an obligation to help with the completion of the will (the character is in the previous books).

Anyway, this book is a little different from the previous two in that it’s more action-focused, like a “Mission Impossible” movie, rather than a traditional mystery. But it’s so good and it retains the signature Boulder style and humor we’ve come to love. There are a few puzzles in there, however, just to keep things interesting.

And the book’s action begins right away and doesn’t let up until the very end. OH that ending scene! I’m so mad at you, Graham! (Just kidding! But really, it did hurt.)

There are actually a couple scenes that will pull at your heartstrings, which just shows how vivid a writer Graham Smith is. You’re really in the middle of everything.

Honestly, just start this series. Or continue it. It’s really worth it, as this is a great addition to the series.

Highly recommended.

Author Bio

Graham Smith is a time served joiner who has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. Since Christmas 2000, he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.<

e is an internationally best-selling Kindle author and has four books featuring DI Harry Evans and the Cumbrian Major Crimes Team, and two novels, featuring Utah doorman, Jake Boulder.<

018 will be a busy year for Graham as he has the third Jake Boulder being published and a Harry Evans novel and novella.<

n avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer and interviewer for the well-respected website Crimesquad.com since 2009<

raham is the founder of Crime and Publishment, a weekend of crime-writing classes which includes the chance for attendees to pitch their novels to agents and publishers. Since the first weekend in 2013, eight attendees have gone on to sign publishing contracts.

Graham can be found at