Posted in Reviews

#BlogTour: Death on the Coast by Bernie Steadman

B LO G B L I T Z

About the Book

Can DCI Dan Hellier decipher the twisted mind behind the ritualised burning of homeless men on Devon’s beaches before more people are sacrificed?

When images from the burning appear all over social media, Hellier realises that he is dealing with a cult and a mystery that will leads back to the Irish Troubles.

Hellier will battle a bitter man who has plotted revenge for more than twenty years, without a care for the lives he will destroy.

death on the coast FINAL

My Review

4/5 Stars!

This book has everything needed to make a great mystery: cults, murder and plenty of juicy secrets – Oh My!

The set-up is great, with people participating in dangerous and violent rituals, in over their heads before they know it. From there, it’s anybody’s guess how everything works out, and there are plenty of good twists in there to keep readers on their toes.

I really enjoyed the level of detail in this book – nothing is insignificant and it all fits together perfectly to create an intense ending.I also really enjoyed the police team, and would absolutely read more with them as the main characters. (I am also really invested in Hellier’s personal life too, so I would like to see more of that too!)

Overall, fans of police procedurals will really enjoy this one. It’s creepy, twisty and has plenty of drama!

About the Author

IMG_1131Bernie taught English for many years but only dabbled in short fiction and poetry until a few years ago when she took to writing full-time.  She completed her debut novel, Death in the Woods when she escaped the classroom and could finally stop marking essays. This was the first in the West Country Mysteries series featuring DI Dan Hellier and his Exeter-based team. There are now three in the series, Death on Dartmoor and Death on the Coast completing the series.

Bernie lives in a small village in East Devon and her novels are set in and around the ancient Roman city of Exeter, which has seen its fair share of murder and mayhem over the centuries. The books explore the beauty of the area, but demonstrate that even in the most charming of settings, terrible events may occur.

When not glued to the laptop, Bernie is a keen yoga fan and enjoys walking and cycling in the Devon countryside with her husband. They share their home with two large, black cats which came from the animal sanctuary where she is a volunteer and trustee.

Links

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Posted in Reviews

Review: Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh

Let Me LieLet Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’m of two minds about this book: It really did keep my attention and I was totally invested in how it turned out, but there were some significant things that I didn’t really like about it.

The main character is Anna Johnson, who lost both parents to copycat suicides a year ago, and now lives with her partner and newborn daughter in her family home. On the anniversary of her mother’s death, she receives a card that implies that not everything about the deaths is what they seem. With the help of a retired police detective, Anna finds that what looks like straightforward suicides, might not be so straightforward after all.

The mystery itself is super intriguing, because at first it’s not entirely clear if something odd is going on or if Anna, in her grief, is losing her mind, so to speak. Then things get really intense, really quickly. I was excited to see how everything worked out. (I’m trying for no spoilers here). I wish some of the details had been adjusted somewhat.

Overall, I would say that I did enjoy this book. I was invested in it until the very end and have to say that the ending is very good. But I did have some problems with it, so read with caution. If you like things tied up nicely and paced evenly – maybe try another book.

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Tubing by K.A. McKeagney

TubingTubing by K.A. McKeagney

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First things first: If you can’t tell from the description, this book is an “erotic thriller” and contains adult situations. If you don’t like that type of material, this isn’t the book for you.

I, for one, really enjoyed this book and really just tore through it. It has great suspense and drama, along with some great twists.

Polly is in a stable, but boring, relationship when she boards the tube one night. Immediately, a man spots her and makes his way over to her, where they share a passionate hook-up. Then he disappears. That’s when Polly learns about “tubing,” where strangers meet up for no-strings-attached sex on the tube. When Polly runs into her mystery man again, he pulls her into a world of passion – and danger.

This book was full of suspense and I did not predict the direction this book would take. I really couldn’t put the book down once I was about halfway through it. It gets pretty creepy.

Although, I have to say, I didn’t love Polly. She could be frustrating at points, when she just wouldn’t come clean about everything that was happening – I’m trying to be intentionally vague so as not to spoil anything. But overall, I did like her, and felt sorry for her at parts when she was just in totally over her head.

I am looking forward to more from this author and would definitely recommend this to people who enjoy a good spicy thriller.

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Review: The Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll

The Favorite SisterThe Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was incredibly intense and filled with drama from the first pages to the very end. I loved the drama and suspense added to the Real Housewives-esque premise. I was turning pages late into the night on this one.

The book chronicles the filming of the latest season of the reality show “Goal Diggers,” which follows the lives and loves of five successful young businesswomen in New York City. Like on any “reality” show, the drama is ramped up and palpable on air – and it appears some of that has found its way off camera. The book opens with the fact that one of the show’s stars is dead – how and why are revealed as flashbacks show the events of that fateful season.

I loved the dark atmosphere that pervades the book – every single is hiding things and lying to each other and the outing of those secrets is pretty huge. There were several twists I didn’t see coming at all – I reread some passages to make sure I was understanding them correctly!

I also loved all the characters in their own way; they were each pretty terrible people, but fascinating and lovable in their own ways.

This book has a great mystery and some great twists, but its got as much drama and cat-fighting as it does thrills. As such, like “My Mother the Liar,” it’s not necessarily for people looking for a hardcore mystery/thriller. But if you love good, juicy dramas with a hint of mystery, this IS the book for you! This is the perfect book for a road trip or an airplane ride – a time when you just need to escape and be pulled into another world.

I gave it four stars because the revelations in the end came fast and furious – it left me with a couple follow-up questions.

Overall, this book is one of my favorites from one of my favorite new authors.

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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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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

Posted in Reviews

Review: Don’t Wake Up by Liz Lawler

Don't Wake UpDon’t Wake Up by Liz Lawler

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Suspense fans, this one’s for you!

The mystery begins on page one and doesn’t let up until the very last chapter. I was so hooked.

Before I get into it, read this description and see what I mean:

Alex Taylor wakes up tied to an operating table. The man who stands over her isn’t a doctor.

The choice he forces her to make is utterly unspeakable.

But when Alex re-awakens, she’s unharmed – and no one believes her horrifying story. Ostracised by her colleagues, her family and her partner, she begins to wonder if she really is losing her mind.

And then she meets the next victim.

Ok – so as you can tell one of the central mysteries is what happened, if anything happened at all! And I couldn’t even tell THAT until the end. Every time I thought I had it under control, something would make me question myself.

I really liked Alex, even if she was hard to get a grip on, and I was very much invested in her story from the beginning. It’s a nightmare everyone has, and she very possibly lived through it.

The author is very skilled at creating rich characters and a very complex plot without giving much away. There’s a lot of moving parts and they are very nicely tied together at the end.

I really enjoyed the ending. It was a fitting conclusion to a great novel. I don’t want to say too much because this book is so good, you’ll want to enjoy it yourself.

Just go get it. Seriously.

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