The Art of Hiding by Amanda Prowse

“When Nina’s husband dies, she looses everything. Torn between the past and the future, she must learn what it means to stand on her own.”

 

 

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OUT NOW


in paperback

 

Description

Nina’s husband, Finn, dies in a car crash. Nina is devastated at this sudden loss but thinks that having to tell Connor and Declan, their two sons, that their father is dead will be the hardest thing she will ever have to do….

And then Nina’s world really comes crashing down around her. Finn has gone but his business was bankrupt, he had mortgaged their home and stopped paying the school fees. There was £8 million of debt and Nine hadn’t a clue.

Finn had always dealt with their finances, had encouraged her to give up on having a career, discouraged her from getting too close to others because, after all, they were enough for each other – their happy, idyllic family. now it had allcome tumbling down and the one person she needed was dead and, perhaps, even the cause of all this pain.

Review

Nina finds herself without a home, no money, no job, no skills she is in mourning and  floundering. She and the boys are grieving, in shock, devastated, confused, angry and still clinging on to Finn as they knew him, or thought they did. Tiggy, her sister, reaches out. Tiggy is a terrific character in the book. With her support Nina starts to sort her and the boys lives out. There is quite a bit of guilt from Nina and frankly a lot of readers will agree – she had lived in a cocooned world of luxury giving little heed to the realities of life. Perhaps the angst is a bit overdone at times. Nevertheless, Nina needs to pull herself together and build a new life for her, Connor and Declan. Indeed had she really had a happy life with Finn, was it as perfect as she had thought?

This is a well written story of loss, what really matters in life and rebuilding lives from heartbreak and devastation. I would certainly recommend this book.

Rating:  4*

Information

I would like to thank Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley for a pre-approved copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

http://www.NetGalley.com

http://www.amandaprowse.org

Published by: Lake Union Publishing

Published in Paperback: 22 August 2017

ISBN: 9781611099553

The Seagull by Anne Cleaves

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OUT SOON

“The Seagull is a searing new novel by Sunday Times bestselling author Ann Cleeves, about corruption deep in the heart of a community, and fragile, and fracturing, family relationships.”

Description
From Ann Cleeves, winner of the CWA Diamond Dagger Award, comes The Seagull.

A visit to her local prison brings DI Vera Stanhope face to face with an old enemy: former detective superintendent, and now inmate, John Brace. Brace was convicted of corruption and involvement in the death of a gamekeeper – and Vera played a key part in his downfall.

Now, Brace promises Vera information about the disappearance of Robbie Marshall, a notorious wheeler-dealer who disappeared in the mid-nineties, if she will look out for his daughter and grandchildren. He tells her that Marshall is dead, and that his body is buried close to St Mary’s Island in Whitley Bay. However, when a search team investigates, officers find not one skeleton, but two.

This cold case case takes Vera back in time, and very close to home, as Brace and Marshall, along with a mysterious stranger known only as ‘the Prof’, were close friends of Hector, her father. Together, they were the ‘Gang of Four’, regulars at a glamorous nightclub called The Seagull. Hector had been one of the last people to see Marshall alive. As the past begins to collide dangerously with the present, Vera confronts her prejudices and unwanted memories to dig out the truth . . .

Review

This is the eighth book in the DI Vera Stanhope mysteries from Ann Cleeves.  I have read several of the series and, for me, The Seagull is the most engrossing and the one I have most enjoyed reading. It flows well and brings back all the characters we have come to know alongside Vera.

Whilst this is a story in which Vera and her team are trying to resolve more than one murder it is not gory but a well told tale of detection.  It brings with it the human side of life lived in the shady areas of prostitution, drugs and organised crime rather than the gritty side but nor does it allow you to bury your head in the ground of how difficult and dangerous these worlds can be. Rather this is a book that concentrates on resolving the crimes through solid police work and detection.

Vera is a wonderful character and is most certainly central to unravelling the mystery, especially as this one involved her father Hector, and solving the crimes but the rest of the team – Joe, Holly and Charlie – play their part. It brings us more of Vera’s history, touching so much on the past – her mother, neighbours old and new and Hector who, despite his criminal activities, Vera staunchly protects the memory of. Is she right to now that he may be linked to murder?

Well written and engaging I am happy to recommend this book.

Rating ****

Information

This book, in the form of an e-galley, was made available via NetGalley from St Martins Press for an honest review. My thanks to them both.

http://www.NetGalley.com

https://us.macmillan.com/author/anncleeves

http://www.anncleeves.com

https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781427291653
Minotaur Books
St. Martin’s Press
ISBN: 9781250124869
416 Pages

Publish date: 05 Sept 2017 (US and UK)
Available Editions: Hardcover

10 books of Summer 2017 Review – Last Bus to Woodstock (Morse #1), Colin Dexter

At last I am starting my reviews of my 10 books of Summer 2017.

 

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Last Bus to Woodstock

‘The death of Syvia Kaye featured dramatically in Thursday afternoon’s edition of the Oxford Mail.

By Friday evening Inspector Morse had informed the nation that the police were looking for a dangerous man – facing charges of wilful muder, sexual assault and rape.

But as the obvious leads fade into twilight and darkness, Morse must follow his instincts if he is to unearth the culprit of this heinous crime.”

Review

Rating: ****

This is the first in the series of the Morse books, it is also the first book by Colin Dexter that I have read.  I am so pleased that I added this to my ten books because as a fan of the TV Morse, Lewis and Endeavour I often wondered what the Morse books were like and I have not been disappointed.  I do like books were the detective figures it out, uses the clues and finds the answer. This is a wonderful example of that English detective novel and I would recommend it to all.

The book was published in 1975. It is the first in a series of thirteen ending with The Remorseful Day.

Information

Colin Dexter lived in Oxford from 1966. Amongst the many awards for his novels he won CWA Gold Daggers for The Wench is Dead  and  The Way Through the Woods in 1997 he was presented with the CWA Diamond Dagger for outstanding services to crime literature, and in 2000 was awarded the OBE.

Publisher: Pan Books

http://www.panmacmillan.com

The Last Bus to Woodstock

ISBN: 978-1-4472-9907-3

10 books of Summer 2017

My 10 books of Summer

Read:

The Last Bus to Woodstock (Morse 1) by Colin Dexter

A Great Reckoning (Gamache 12) by Louise Penny

I See You by Claire MacIntosh

Wire in the Blood (Hill & Jordan 2) by Val McDermid

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millenium 1) by Steig Larson

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemmingway

Cold Kill (Monkeewrench 7) by P J Tracy

Cop Town by Karin Slaughter

The Mother by Yvette Edwards

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

The Breakdown by B A Paris

Not yet read

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

More Books: if I find the time or decide one of the above is not for me then I will choose one, or more, of the following (in no particular order):
The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer
Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
Love from Boy by Roald Dahl
The Goldfish Box by Lisa Thompson
The Teacher by Katrina Diamond
Poems to Make Grown Women Cry Ed. Anthony and Ben Holden

Summer reads 2017 Update

My 10 books of Summer 

Read:

The Last Bus to Woodstock (Morse 1) by Colin Dexter

A Great Reckoning (Gamache 12) by Louise Penny

I See You by Claire MacIntosh

Wire in the Blood (Hill & Jordan 2) by Val McDermid

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millenium 1) by Steig Larson

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemmingway

Cold Kill (Monkeewrench 7) by P J Tracy

Cop Town by Karin Slaughter

The Mother by Yvette Edwards

Not Yet Read:

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

The Breakdown by B A Paris

More Books: if I find the time or decide one of the above is not for me then I will choose one, or more, of the following (in no particular order):

Go Set a Watchman by Haper Lee
The Mother by Yvette Edwards
The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer
Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
Love from Boy by Roald Dahl
The Goldfish Box by Lisa Thompson
Cop Town by Karin Slaughter
The Teacher by Katrina Diamond
Poems to Make Grown Women Cry Ed. Anthony and Ben Holden

As you can see I am well on my way to finishing my 10 books and so will continue you on to see just how many I will be able to read by the end of September.  Two books, Cop Town and The Mother, were brought forward simply because I felt like reading them at the time.

I will begin the process of short review/comments on the books I have read in the coming week or two and then post at least once a week.

The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter

image

I would like to thank Harpercollins via NetGalley for a free copy of this book to review.  Nevertheless, this review is fully my own thoughts and comments.

The Good Daughter

Gamma the mother of two girls, Charlie and Sam, is at home when two gunmen enter their house. A house that they have not long lived in since their home was burnt down, no one had been home but everything else had been lost. The girls are in the house too. Their father, a lawyer, is at work. The next few hours were to tragically, horrifically change their lives.

Twenty eight years later another tragic event happens. Two people killed in a school shooting one is the principal, the other a child Lucy Alexander.  This was a middle school, Lucy was eight years old. Charlie was at the school to see one of the teachers when the shooting takes place. They hear the shots, then a women screaming for help. The teacher calls it in as Charlie runs toward the scream, the shots. Charlie and Huck reach the hallway finding the dead headmaster, the screaming woman holding Lucy and Kelly Wilson.  Kelly is sitting against a wall holding a gun.

Review of The Good Daughter

Karin Slaughter so well known for her Georgia and Will Trent series has recently written some stand alone books – Cop Town and Pretty Girls and now The Good Daughter.

We read about what happened to both sisters, we read about how this leads to their estrangement, how twenty eight years later it is still impacting upon them and then how out of the second tragedy they are thrown back together and maybe how they can start truly come to terms with everything that happened. Their father has taken on the case of Kelly Wilson but then gets stabbed his life in the balance.  What will happen to Kelly now? Will the sisters be able to unravel what actually happened at the school? Or will it weigh them down even more and maybe be the last straw?

There are some terrific characters besides the sisters – Gamma, Rusty, Lenore, Ben even those with cameo roles such as the Judge and Jack.

As the stories unfold, that of the school shooting and those of Charlie and Sam from 28 years previously, Karin Slaughter weaves them into a wonderful whole. It is not an easy read at times, no surprise to anyone who has read other books by this author, but it is gripping, very well written and a captivating book. One that will live long in the memory. She writes of people who are very real, in situations that are appalling real with humanity, heart and grit. This book is well worth reading, highly recommended and is, perhaps, her best yet.

Rating: 5*

Information

Published: 8 Aug 2017

HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. http://www.harpercollins.co.uk

http://www.netgalley.com

Meet the Aithor: BBC interview with Karin Slaughter http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01rk58f

Summer Reads 2017 Challenge

SummerReads746books

 

I am joining the Summer Read 2017 Challenge.  This was originated in a terrific blog 746books please use the link above to find out all about the challenge.

This is actually the second year that I have taken the challenge but last year I tried for the full 20 books but found that it was really too much, although I did just about manage it!  So this year I have decided to take on the 10 books of Summer and have a reserve list should I find that I can manage a few more books.

My 10 books of Summer

The Last Bus to Woodstock (Morse 1) by Colin Dexter

A Great Reckoning (Gamache 12) by Louise Penny

I See You by Claire MacIntosh

Wire in the Blood (Hill & Jordan 2) by Val McDermid

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millenium 1) by Steig Larson

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemmingway

Cold Kill (Monkeewrench 7) by P J Tracy

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

The Breakdown by B A Paris

More Books: if I find the time or decide one of the above is not for me then I will choose one, or more, of the following (in no particular order):

  • Go Set a Watchman by Haper Lee
  • The Mother by Yvette Edwards
  • The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer
  • Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
  • Love from Boy by Roald Dahl
  • The Goldfish Box by Lisa Thompson
  • Cop Town by Karin Slaughter
  • The Teacher by Katrina Diamond
  • Poems to Make Grown Women Cry Ed. Anthony and Ben Holden

I will post a quick note on each of the books I read.