Friday 26 May 2017

Top Ten Thriller Reads for Summer 2017...

Summer is upon us at last, so grab your beach towels and sun creams and dive into some of my favourite upcoming thrillers for 2017!

The Child by Fiona Barton
Release Date: 27/7/2017

When a paragraph in an evening newspaper reveals a decades-old tragedy, most readers barely give it a glance. But for three strangers it’s impossible to ignore.

For one woman, it’s a reminder of the worst thing that ever happened to her.

For another, it reveals the dangerous possibility that her darkest secret is about to be discovered.

And for the third, a journalist, it’s the first clue in a hunt to uncover the truth.

The Child’s story will be told.

Bestselling author of 'The Widow'

Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell
Release Date: 27/7/2017

She was fifteen, her mother's golden girl. She had her whole life ahead of her. And then, in the blink of an eye, Ellie was gone. 

It’s been ten years since Ellie disappeared, but Laurel has never given up hope of finding her daughter.
And then one day a charming and charismatic stranger called Floyd walks into a cafĂ© and sweeps Laurel off her feet. 

Before too long she’s staying the night at this house and being introduced to his nine year old daughter. 
Poppy is precocious and pretty - and meeting her completely takes Laurel's breath away. 

Because Poppy is the spitting image of Ellie when she was that age.
And now all those unanswered questions that have haunted Laurel come flooding back. 

What happened to Ellie? Where did she go? 
Who still has secrets to hide?

Little Boy Found by LK Fox
Release Date: 6/7/2017



One rainy morning, just after Nick drops off his young son Gabriel outside the crowded school gates, he has a minor collision with another car. The driver won't surrender his insurance details, so Nick photographs the licence plate. When he gets home, he enlarges the shot on his phone and spots something odd about the picture - Gabriel in the back seat, being driven away by a stranger. Nick needs to know what happened to his boy, but losing Gabriel turns out to be far less terrible than the shock of finding him. Now, to discover the truth, he must relive the nightmare all over again...Be warned, this is not another missing child story: what happened to Nick and his son is far more shocking.

The Lucky Ones by Mark Edwards
Release Date: 15/6/2017
It was the happiest day of her life. Little did she know it was also the last.

When a woman’s body is found in the grounds of a ruined priory, Detective Imogen Evans realises she is dealing with a serial killer—a killer whose victims appear to die in a state of bliss, eyes open, smiles forever frozen on their faces.

A few miles away, single dad Ben Hofland believes his fortunes are changing at last. Forced to move back to the sleepy village where he grew up following the breakdown of his marriage, Ben finally finds work. What’s more, the bullies who have been terrorising his son, Ollie, disappear. For the first time in months, Ben feels lucky.

But he is unaware that someone is watching him and Ollie. Someone who wants nothing but happiness for Ben.

Happiness…and death.

Bestselling author of Follow You Home and The Devil's Work

I Am Missing by Tim Weaver
Release Date: 27/7/2017

When a young man wakes up bruised, beaten and with no memory of who he is or where he came from, the press immediately dub him 'The Lost Man'.

Ten months later, Richard Kite - if that is even his real name - remains as desperate as ever. Despite appeals and the efforts of the police, no one knows this man.

Kite's last hope may be private investigator David Raker - a seasoned locator of missing people. But Raker has more questions than answers.

Who is Richard Kite?

Why does no one know him?

And what links him to the body of a woman found beside a London railway line two years ago?

Liar by K L Slater
Release Date: 16/6/2017
How far would you go to protect your family?

Single dad Ben is doing his best to raise his children, with the help of his devoted mother Judi. And then Ben meets Amber. Everyone thinks this is a perfect match for Ben but Judi isn’t so sure… 

There’s just something about Amber that doesn’t add up. Ben can’t see why his mother dislikes his new girlfriend. And Amber doesn’t want Judi anywhere near her new family. Amber just wants Ben and the children. 

The further Judi delves into Amber’s personal life, the closer she gets to shocking secrets that could change everything. And Judi must make a decision that could lead to the most disastrous consequences.

Bestselling author of Safe With Me and Blink

The Breakdown by B A Paris
Release Date (Paperback): 18/7/2017

If you can’t trust yourself, who can you trust?

It all started that night in the woods.

Cass Anderson didn’t stop to help the woman in the car, and now she’s dead.

Ever since, silent calls have been plaguing Cass and she’s sure someone is watching her.

Consumed by guilt, she’s also starting to forget things. Whether she took her pills, what her house alarm code is – and if the knife in the kitchen really had blood on it.

Bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware
Release Date: 15/6/2017

Four friends. One promise. But someone isn't telling the truth. The twisting new mystery from bestselling phenomenon Ruth Ware.

The text message arrives in the small hours of the night. It’s just three words: I need you.
Isa drops everything, takes her baby daughter and heads straight to Salten. She spent the most significant days of her life at boarding school on the marshes there, days which still cast their shadow over her.

At school Isa and her three best friends used to play the Lying Game. They competed to convince people of the most outrageous stories. Now, after seventeen years of secrets, something terrible has been found on the beach. Something which will force Isa to confront her past, together with the three women she hasn't seen for years, but has never forgotten. 

Theirs is no cosy reunion: Salten isn't a safe place for them, not after what they did. It’s time for the women to get their story straight…

Bestselling author of In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10

Trust Me by Angela Clarke
Release Date: 15/6/2017


What do you do if you witness a murder…but no-one believes you?

When Kate sees a horrific murder streamed live on her laptop, she calls the police in a state of shock. But when they arrive, the video has disappeared – and she can’t prove anything. Desperate to be believed, Kate tries to find out who the girl in the video could be – and who her killer is.
Freddie and Nas are working on a missing persons case, but tensions in the police force are running high and time is ticking. When Kate contacts them, they are the only ones to listen and they start to wonder – are the two cases connected?

Dark, gripping, and flawlessly paced, Trust Me is the brilliant third novel in the hugely popular social media murderer series.

Friend Request by Laura Marshall
Release Date: 27/7/2017

Maria wants to be friends.
But Maria is dead.
Isn't she?

When Louise Williams receives a message from someone left long in the past, her heart nearly stops.

Maria Weston wants to be friends on Facebook.

Maria Weston has been missing for over twenty-five years. She was last seen the night of a school leavers' party, and the world believes her to be dead. Particularly Louise, who has lived her adult life with a terrible secret.

As Maria's messages start to escalate, Louise forces herself to reconnect with the old friends she once tried so hard to impress. Trying to piece together exactly what happened that night, she soon discovers there's much she didn't know. The only certainty is that Maria Weston disappeared that night, never to be heard from again - until now. . .

I hope you enjoy reading some of these as much as I did! The David Raker series has to be one of my favourites. Friend Request is an amazing debut and Ruth Ware never fails to produce a page-turner!

*Affiliate links are used in this post and throughout my blog. This brings me a small percentage of the profit, at no cost to you, which enables me to keep the blog going. Thank you.*

Thursday 25 May 2017

Book Review: Out of Reach by Elizabeth McGregor (Cooke)

This book was one of the first ever books I was approved for on NetGalley. It has sat on my 'to-read' shelf for nearly 7 months. Having read it today, all I can say is, why did I wait so long? I am a huge fan of the relatively recent 'psychological thriller' genre and despite Out of Reach originally being published in 1997, it is as fresh and as current as its modern counterparts.

The truth is always just out of reach…

Kate McCaulay thinks she has rebuilt her life. She has a job as a local newspaper reporter, a flat above an antiques shop in a village by the sea, and a close group of friends.

But one day her carefully erected existence collapses when tragedy explodes back into her life.

Ten years ago Kate’s eight-week-old baby, Jamie, was stolen.

The loss destroyed her marriage and still haunts her dreams with guilt and longing.

And now letters have started arriving on her doormat, anonymous letters that read, ‘I know where he is…’

Tragedy strikes again when her colleague and close friend, Maggie, is found, dead.

Kate is torn between running once again or finding out who sent the letters so she can finally have some answers.

She enlists the help of Johnathon Reeve, a psychiatrist, to help her work through her issues.

He seems to be exactly what she needs – someone who listens, understands, and is willing to help.

Kate soon comes to the realisation that she must put her fear to one side and find the truth behind her son’s disappearance.

Even if the child will always remain just Out of Reach...

Out of ReachOut of Reach by Elizabeth McGregor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Outstanding. Well written, beautiful descriptive language. With this originally published in 1997, McGregor was way ahead of her time and Out of Reach should be topping the charts with the likes of Gone Girl and Behind Closed Doors.

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Wednesday 24 May 2017

Book Review: Persons Unknown by Susie Steiner

Persons Unknown (DS Manon, #2)Persons Unknown by Susie Steiner
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'Manon Bradshaw is back.

As dusk falls a young man staggers through a park, far from home, bleeding from a stab wound. He dies where he falls; cradled by a stranger, a woman’s name on his lips in his last seconds of life.

DI Manon Bradshaw can’t help taking an interest – these days she only handles cold cases, but the man died just yards from the police station where she works.

She’s horrified to discover that both victim and prime suspect are more closely linked to her than she could have imagined. And as the Cambridgeshire police force closes ranks against her, she is forced to contemplate the unthinkable.

How well does she know her loved ones, and are they capable of murder?'

It has been a while since I read the first in the DS Manon series. I remembered Missing Presumed as a great read, but had forgotten Manon to a large extent. It didn't take many chapters for her witty character to come flooding back to me. Persons Unknown is a fantastic follow up to Missing Presumed. Having gone back to her old job with her old force and a whole set of different personal circumstances, Manon's personal life is focused on more intently here than previously.

A gripping thriller. A real page-turner. Steiner has great strength in character development and the story unfolds by way of different narratives. Despite it's core plot, I found myself smiling, sometimes even laughing out loud at the hilarious one-liners planted throughout, such as one character's opinion of perhaps moving to Spain, "It'll just feel disappointing and also irritating because you won't know the Spanish for pile cream."

Missing Presumed was one of the bestselling books of 2016, a Richard & Judy Book Club pick and was named a New York Times 'Must-read thriller of the Summer.' I believe Persons Unknown will follow in the footsteps of it's older sibling and top the charts this summer.

Pre-order your copy today.

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With thanks to NetGalley UK for the advance reader copy.

Tuesday 23 May 2017


Manchester Terror Attack, May 2017
Today has been a mix of sadness and shock. Waking up this morning to the news that we, as a country, have been expecting but praying to avoid. The senseless terrorist attack on the Manchester Arena is being described as the worst to hit the UK since 2005.

My heart truly goes out to the families of those affected. Such a tragic loss of precious life. These mindless acts of terrorism are not only devastating to our country but also to others, particularly those of Muslim majority. I have heard too many racist comments over the past few years and it pains me that innocent people are being persecuted for their faith.

I do not pretend to understand Islam or the Muslim faith. Aside from learning the basics in high school during our Religious Education classes I have had very little exposure to them. Over the past few months I have found myself actively seeking out novels to read based around Islamic culture. I have grown to despise the tiny part of my brainwashed psyche that screams 'possible terrorist' every time a young Asian man with a backpack passes me by. 

Anyone that knows me well knows that I take mainstream media with a pinch of salt. My personality forces me to constantly question what we are shown. My hope is that by widening my reading to include literature from parts of society that I am unfamiliar with, I can develop a deeper understanding and have more empathy for those that are vilified by fellow members of my country. Being a mother of three I hope to pass on my empathy and my attitude towards others and to raise open-minded and tolerant young men and women.

#prayformanchester #endhatred #nomoreviolence 

Sunday 21 May 2017

Book Review: Western Fringes by Amer Anwar

Western Fringes: Winner of the CWA Debut DaggerWestern Fringes: Winner of the CWA Debut Dagger by Amer Anwar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Deserves every one of those stars! This is the Punjabi answer to Guy Ritchie's hit movie Snatch. Fast paced, violently thrilling with hints of humour throughout; a cracking read and more than worthy of its Dagger Award.

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