Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Blog Tour: After The Texans by Declan Milling

After The Texans Blurb

Having exposed the corrupt government in Papua New Guinea, the UN’s carbon market watchdog is riding high. But Emil Pfeffer, its head of market integrity, is in meltdown. The UN investigation has been shelved and his girlfriend, Johanna, has been kidnapped as insurance that his inquiries will go no further.

Wracked by guilt and desperate to find her, Emil finds himself thrust into the high-stakes battle being waged for control of the world’s remaining fossil fuel resources.

It's economic war for hegemony over the future of global energy, being played out against a backdrop of Australian domestic politics, where coal mining and the Great Barrier Reef are locked in a fight to the death.

After The Texans is the second novel in the Carbon Black series

Purchase from Amazon

About Declan Milling

Declan Milling has over thirty years experience as an environmental lawyer. Born in Australia,he holds degrees in science and law and a masters degree in environmental law. Currently based in the United Kingdom, Milling divides his time between London and Edinburgh. His first novel, Carbon Black, was released in 2014.

Learn more about the Carbon Black series: 

Carbon Black, the first book in the series, is set at the end of this decade. It introduces Emil Pfeffer, an UN bureaucrat with the body charged with making the global carbon market work. He’s a pretty self-contained sort of guy who is on top of things until one of his staff is killed while on assignment in PNG. He goes there to look into what happened and things just don’t add up. Then something else happens: he meets Dr Johanna Dorn, a researcher working in Port Moresby, and is smitten. Trying to get to the bottom of what happened to his colleague, Emil finds himself fighting on three sides – with the shady characters standing behind the PNG government, with the anti-market environmental protesters, and with his own colleagues – while trying to get Johanna interested. It all builds to a crescendo with a twist that leads into ‘After the Texans…’ 

This second book in the series finds Emil running off the rails: Johanna has been kidnapped and he blames himself. He is torn between doing what he can to find her and just getting on with his work and leaving that job to the police. Events take him to Hong Kong and then on to Australia, where there are a number of twists and turns, as he pursues evaporating leads and ghosts from the events in PNG, before circumstances take some even more unexpected spins that fling Emil and the other characters towards the third, as yet unwritten, book in the series.

Blog Tour: The Lafayette Sword by Eric Giacometti and Jacques Ravenne

The Lafayette Sword by Eric Giacometti
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Lafayette Sword

by Eric Giacometti, Jacques Ravenne, Anne Trager

on Tour October 24 - December 3, 2016


The Lafayette Sword by Eric Giacometti, Jacques Ravenne, Anne Trager

Gold. Obsession. Secrets.

Following the murder of a Freemason brother, Antoine Marcas uncovers unsettling truths about gold and its power to fascinate and corrupt. A priceless sword is stolen and deaths ensue setting the Freemason detective on a case of Masons turned bad. A clue points to mysteries and conspiracy about elusive pure gold, launching a frantic, deadly race between two symbolic places—the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower.

A captivating plot weaves alchemy and the Middle Ages into a modern-day thriller. Part of an internationally best-selling series that has sold 2 million copies worldwide, with “vivid characters, an evocative international setting and history darker than midnight.”
For readers who love ancient myths, secret societies, chilling narrative and modern speed.

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller
Published by: Le French Book
Publication Date: August 15, 2015
Number of Pages: 266
ISBN: 1943998043 (ISBN13: 9781943998043)
Series: Antoine Marcas Freemason Thrillers Book 2

Purchase your copy of The Lafayette Sword on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple iTunes, and Add it to your Goodreads TBR list!


I read the previous book, Shadow Ritual last year and I was thrilled to get the chance to read the sequel to it. If I understand the translation order is this book 4 and the previous book translated is book 2. But, it doesn't matter, this book was easy to get into and you don't have to have read Shadow Ritual before you read The Lafayette Sword.

So how was this book? I do admit that I was a bit less charmed by this book than the previous. It's still an interesting and fast-paced book and the mystery with the Lafayette sword was fascinating. And the historical angle with Nicolas Flamel's POV which gives the reader the clues to the present story was fascinating. However, I found that the story lacked the intensity from the previous book and I missed Jade that Antoine Marcas was teamed up with. I liked their chemistry and just having Marcas, well it felt like something important was missing. However, I did find the alchemy angle fascinating and Flamel POV really intrigued me.  

The Lafayette Sword may not have intrigued me as much as the Shadow Ritual did. However, I think that this series is definitely something you should read if you like adventurous treasure seeking books with a deranged killer.

I want to thank Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for providing me with a free copy for an honest review! 

Read an excerpt:


A thick layer of fog shrouded the capital. It wasn’t bad enough to keep people inside, but it was still vaguely unsettling. Teens on scooters, who usually slalomed with ease along the narrow streets, took their time, unsure of what lay ahead. The few high points of the city, including the dome of Sacré Coeur, had vanished altogether. Only the revolving light of the Eiffel Tower managed, more or less, to pierce the opaque surroundings.
Léo, an independent taxi driver in Paris for twenty years, dropped off his customer on the Avenue de La Bourdonnais. The damned pea soup was making it impossible to find another fare. Everyone was taking the metro. He parked his dark blue Mercedes on the Rue du Général Lambert and listened to the weather forecast. More precipitation. He grumbled and turned off the radio. Until today, the spring weather had been pleasant. Feeling sullen, Léo got out and stretched his legs. The damp cold hit him right away. He shivered, pulled up his collar, and headed toward the Eiffel Tower. The atmosphere, enchanting on any other night, was unreal and ghostly.
A second later, he heard a scream rise up from tourists gathered under the Iron Lady.
“Damned tourists,” Léo muttered. “Always getting pickpocketed.”
As he got closer he could see thirty or so Japanese sight- seers in red plastic ponchos staring up at the tower. Next to them, two young women in black T-shirts and ripped jeans were pointing at something. No, the commotion wasn’t about someone getting her purse nabbed.
Leo followed their fingers. Three meters above them, a dark figure was appearing and disappearing in the fog, like a string puppet, its head tied to a rope—a life-sized toy gracefully oscillating in the white cloud.
The tourists applauded.
“Nothing serious,” Leo said to himself, ready to turn away.
“Just another street artist.”
But as the sway of the rope began to slow, the figure’s face came into full view. The two young women were the first to realize the terrible error they had all made. They cried out in shock.
Léo felt bile rising in his throat.
The puppet was a man, red in the face, tongue hanging out, arms slack.
The crowd stepped back in unison and let out a wave of shrieks.


Antoine Marcas was sipping a sweet brandy on the terrace of Le Régent café. The night before, he had celebrated his forty-second birthday. It was nothing like the shock of forty—a mere step away from a half a century. In the two years following that disaster, the affronts of time had been minor.
Sure, life had sucked after the breakup with Jade. The idyllic love had turned to vinegar after a few months of living together. She was too independent, too loud, too different—and yes, even too beautiful. Too much for Marcas. The relationship had gotten stuck in mounds of pettiness, and they were both saved at the last minute by separation. She accepted a position at the French embassy in Washington, leaving him alone one night in his vast apartment on the Rue Muller in Paris.
For a while, resentment and doubt ate away at him. His doctor, a Freemason brother, suggested some rest. Marcas thought he might try therapy. Would he have to choose a Freemason shrink? The question seemed both strange and meaningful. Only a brother could understand the personal development offered by regular temple attendance. If he had to explain the transformation of uncut stone into polished cubes to a profane, he’d never get better. Did Freemason-specific therapy even exist? He had considered asking his worshipful master. Then the need passed.
He examined himself in the mirror just inside the café. His hair was beginning to gray at the temples. His son, Pierre, had recommended the new style, which made him look younger and less serious. Or at least that’s what Marcas told himself. There were a few wrinkles around his brown eyes, but his natural expression was always pleasant. His smile became more pronounced when he was feeling sure of himself. Those who didn’t know him sometimes interpreted it as mockery.
Marcas straightened in his chair and checked his leather briefcase, making sure he had brought his master’s apron. The Masonic meeting was scheduled to begin in a half hour at the Grand Orient Masonic Hall. He’d never have time to go home and come back. He grinned. He hadn’t been forced to let out his belt by a single notch in the four years he’d been wearing the apron. He had maintained a steady seventy-seven kilos, the ideal weight for his size, according to his doctor. Not an easy task, considering the feasts that followed their meetings every second Thursday.
The hubbub in the café rose as new customers arrived for happy hour. Marcas gestured to the waiter. He want- ed to pay his tab. Just then, two thirtyish men in suits, their ties loosened, plopped down in chairs at the next table.The older one, who had carefully groomed blond hair, ordered two beers.
“Did you hear the news?”
The other one shook his head and grabbed a fistful of peanuts.
“ISIS is making something like eighty million euros a month on the oil wells it’s seized, and now it’s bragging that it can get its hands on nuclear weapons from Pakistan. We’ll never be able to get the better of these guys. They’ll be riding into Paris in the back of their pickups the same way the German troops came marching in.”
Marcas leaned in a little closer. He loved café talk, especially when it was laced with paranoia. Yeah, ISIS was a threat. But France had seen worse—the Gestapo and the storm troopers, for example. And France had prevailed.
The younger man, who had brown hair, nodded while giving the waitress a visual once-over.
“TV news is full of crap,” he said. “It’s all controlled by the establishment. If you want the truth, you’ve gotta go to the Internet and find the right sites. I’m following a great blog now that claims the Freemasons are behind a lot of the havoc we’re seeing now.”
“Come on. In with the terrorists? You’ve got to be kidding. I’m all for conspiracy theories, but that’s too much. Look around Paris, and you can see all the good work they’ve done.”
“Just go to the blog,” the blond-haired man said. “You’ll understand. The newspapers and TV stations are full of liars. But they’re all Freemasons anyway. What do you expect?”
Marcas sighed. So many assholes and so little time. When would everyone just drop the Masonic conspiracy thing? It was one conspiracy after another—for centuries now. Every year, he and some brothers from his Freemason lodge would get together over dinner to discuss the latest and craziest conspiracy theories. The brother who told the most off-the-wall story would win twelve bottles of Haut Brion. Last year, his friend Jean-Marc had taken the prize with a story that claimed the Freemasons were descendants of extra-terrestrials that had abducted Jesus in a flying saucer.
The blond-haired man continued. “Listen, those guys control the European Union and our French elections. You have no idea.”
Marcas couldn’t take it any longer. “Excuse me,” he said, leaning over. “I couldn’t help but overhear. And I have to say that I agree. The Antichrist is among us, and guess what. He’s a Freemason.”
Marcas smirked and stood up. The two men glared as he tossed a bill on the table, gathered his things, and walked away.
If only they knew that his oddly shaped briefcase held a ceremonial sword.
Marcas looked at his watch. It was nearly eight. The meeting would begin in exactly twenty minutes. He hurried up the Rue Lafayette and turned right on the Rue Cadet.
Delicious aromas wafted from the rôtisserie on the left, and the Detrad Bookstore next to the lodge headquarters was still open. He had just enough time to take a look. Three customers—brothers, he assumed—were leafing through books in the central aisle. He nodded to the affable-looking man and the smiling blonde behind the counter and glanced at the new releases. The huge number of books about Freemasonry published every year always impressed him. One would think that everything had been written already, but no, there were always new books.
And there it was. The book he was looking for: La Chevalerie Maçonnique by the French historian Pierre Mollier.
His brothers had spoken highly of it. He picked it up and headed to the back of the store, which had a showcase of Masonic objects, including aprons, canes, glasses, and plates. A rectangular box adorned with a mother-of-pearl eye in a triangle caught his attention. Another Masonic cigarette lighter for his collection. He had more than twenty of them now. His ex-wife, son, and friends teased him about this hob- by of his. Even after he quit smoking, he always carried one. They reminded him of his childhood, when he spent much of his time in his father’s woodworking shop on the Rue Saint Antoine.
The cashier rang up the sale and handed him his purchases in a plastic bag. They exchanged a few words about upcoming events at the lodge and said good-bye.
Marcas hurried over to the lodge headquarters, a Spartan and somewhat unsightly building that hid a fascinating secret. Behind its modernistic metal and glass façade, elaborate and mysterious ceremonies were routinely orchestrated in any number of magnificent Masonic temples.


Nicolas Flamel heard the clamor rising from the banks of the Seine River and decided to shut his shop. People were already running toward the water. Shouts and the sound of horse hooves hitting cobblestones filled the air. The wind was picking up, too, carrying the acrid smell of resin. All of Paris seemed electrified.
As Flamel closed his shutters, he saw that other bourgeois were doing the same thing. One could never be too careful. The English were encamped a few leagues from the city and could attack at any time. And then there were the common people, the poor who lived in the faubourgs, whose fever of revolt, exacerbated by famine and taxes, always ended in pillages and blood baths.
Flamel took down the parchments displayed in front of his shop and put each fine work away. He had something for everyone: war chronicles, prayer books, and stories of chival- ry, all illustrated in fine gold powder. Every day, his workers plumbed their imaginations to create angelic Virgins, warriors with bloody weapons, and dragons spitting fire in the shadowy depths of caverns.
“Neighbor, do you fear for your paintings?”
Flamel turned around. Master Maillard, a furrier, was staring at him with mockery in his eyes.
“My kind neighbor, I don’t like the air we breathe tonight. And I certainly don’t like to take any risks. There are rumors of a riot.”
“True, true. They lit the fires a little too early tonight,” the furrier answered. “But one must keep the people entertained even before the show begins.”
“My neighbor and friend, I fail to understand. Your language is as obscure as a tree in a pitch-black night.”
“What? You haven’t heard what’s happened? What world do you live in, with your nose always in your books? For that matter, you should…”
Master Maillard lowered his voice. “It’s not good to spend too much time with books these days. One doesn’t know what could be hidden in them. Our Holy Mother Church cannot check everything. Who knows? An apprentice could be copying one of the Devil’s gospels in your very own shop.”
“Master Maillard!”
“Lower your voice, my neighbor. I was just giving you some advice, that’s all. Books are under suspicion these days. Too many heretics are spreading their doctrines on parchment. Too many witches are writing down their accursed rites. You’ll see. Soon we’ll be burning books, along with their authors.”
“Yet, my dear Master Maillard, none of that explains what’s happening at the moment.”
The furrier looked at him with incomprehension written all over his face. “So you really don’t know?”
“No, I don’t. I spent all week with my aids recopying a volume of Aristotle’s Physics for the university. The illustrations were very costly, and not only in man hours. I had to import a special blue powder from the Orient. There—”
Master Maillard made the sign of the cross. “Don’t talk to me about those monsters. Those black-skinned Saracens are damned to hell. Don’t you know they worship a goat- headed god named Baphomet? The Templars, cursed as they are, adored that impious idol and paid for it with their lives.”


Antoine Marcas smoothed his apron and made sure his double-edged sword was secure at his side.
Next to the elevator, a display system similar to the ones at airports informed him that the meeting would be in Lafayette Temple. The 9 p.m. initiation ceremony was the only gathering scheduled for the night. The seventeen other temples in the building were closed. Marcas checked his watch. Only five more minutes.
“Well, my brother, I see you’re a fan of modern technology. So what’s next? Skyped initiation ceremonies?”
Startled, Marcas turned around. A man in a wheelchair was smiling at him.
“Paul! I didn’t hear you.”
Paul de Lambre, a physician who had lost the use of his legs in a car accident, was a descendant of the illustrious Marquis de Lafayette and a high-ranking Freemason.
“You wouldn’t believe what they’re doing with wheelchairs these days,” Paul said, tapping one of the wheels. “This one’s made of carbon fiber: strong, flexible, and darned-near silent. Four detachable components, and the footrests even have LED lights. That means I can see you in the dark, but you can’t hear me coming.”
“As long as you’re being sarcastic, that’s a good sign, my brother.”
A shadow seemed to cross the man’s face, and his eyes became serious. “The signs are not very good right now. I have something on my mind, Antoine, and since you’re a police detective and a brother, I think you’re the person I should be talking with.”
Marcas studied the man. “Of course. The ceremony is about to begin. Why don’t we get together afterward? Right now it’s time to go to the temple of your glorious ancestor. That must be quite an experience for you.”
Paul de Lambre’s jaw stiffened. “You could put it that way,” he said as he spinning his wheelchair around.
The hooded man wearing the Masonic apron waited in the darkness of the closet. He fiddled nervously with the ceremonial sword as he ticked off the minutes. Finally, he took a deep breath, opened the closet door, and made sure the hallway was empty. He stepped out of the shadows.
“I am the Sword of Light. I march in the night,” he chanted in a low monotone.
He advanced noiselessly. Slipping through the dark corridors was child’s play. Tricking the security system had been a joke. It was even intoxicating. He’d been exploring this prodigious labyrinth for at least a dozen nights. Each time he’d stop just before reaching the chamber of reflection. Then he’d leave. Only one time had he crossed paths with a brother, and that hadn’t caused any problems. He knew the building’s strange topography by heart, and now he could make his way over it blindfolded. The tangle of hallways, the crooked floors, and the myriad temples in this vast structure made him feel like he was moving on a gigantic movie set.
But this would be the last night he’d go unnoticed. His quest would begin with sacrifices.
He could hear the voice again. Perhaps it was his. “I kill, and I die. I kill, and I am born again.”
He took the stairs two by two and reached the next floor in a matter of seconds. He smiled in the darkness.
“I am the chosen one.”
He was on pins and needles as he recited the ritual words.
The taste of blood filled his dry mouth.

Author Bio:

Eric Giacometti & Jacques RavenneJacques Ravenne is a literary scholar who has also written a biography of the Marquis de Sade and edited his letters. He loves to explore the hidden side of major historical events. Eric Giacometti was an investigative reporter for a major French newspaper. He has covered a number of high-profile scandals and has done exhaustive research in the area of freemasonry. Translator Anne Trager has a passion for crime fiction that equals her love of France. After years working in translation, publishing and communications, she founded Le French Book.

Learn More at: 


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This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Eric Giacometti, Jacques Ravenne, and Anne Trager. There will be 5 US winners of one (1) eBook copy of The Lafayette Sword by Eric Giacometti, Jacques Ravenne, Anne Trager. The giveaway begins on October 22nd and runs through December 4th, 2016.
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Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Wishlist October: Most wanted mystery books of 2017

It's soon 2017 and that means new books are coming! Here I list 5 mystery books that I'm looking forward to reading. Criterium is that the book has a cover so more post like this may show up in the future...

Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd (Flavia de Luce #8)

Hailed as “a combination of Eloise and Sherlock Holmes” by The Boston Globe, Flavia de Luce returns in a much anticipated new Christmas mystery from award-winning and New York Times bestselling author Alan Bradley.

In spite of being ejected from Miss Bodycote’s Female Academy in Canada, twelve-year-old Flavia de Luce is excited to be sailing home to England. But instead of a joyous homecoming, she is greeted on the docks with unfortunate news: Her father has fallen ill, and a hospital visit will have to wait while he rests. But with Flavia’s blasted sisters and insufferable cousin underfoot, Buckshaw now seems both too empty—and not empty enough. Only too eager to run an errand for the vicar’s wife, Flavia hops on her trusty bicycle, Gladys, to deliver a message to a reclusive wood-carver. Finding the front door ajar, Flavia enters and stumbles upon the poor man’s body hanging upside down on the back of his bedroom door. The only living creature in the house is a feline that shows little interest in the disturbing scene. Curiosity may not kill this cat, but Flavia is energized at the prospect of a new investigation. It’s amazing what the discovery of a corpse can do for one’s spirits. But what awaits Flavia will shake her to the very core.


Where the Dead Lie (Sebastian St. Cyr #12) by C.S. Harris 

The gruesome murder of a young boy takes Sebastian St. Cyr from the gritty streets of London to the glittering pleasure haunts of the aristocracy . . .

London, 1813.

Sebastian St. Cyr, Viscount Devlin, is no stranger to the dark side of the city, but he's never seen anything like this: the brutalized body of a fifteen-year-old boy dumped into a makeshift grave on the grounds of an abandoned factory.

One of London's many homeless children, Benji Thatcher was abducted and tortured before his murder—and his younger sister is still missing. Few in authority care about a street urchin's fate, but Sebastian refuses to let this killer go unpunished.

Uncovering a disturbing pattern of missing children, Sebastian is drawn into a shadowy, sadistic world. As he follows a grim trail that leads from the writings of the debauched Marquis de Sade to the city's most notorious brothels, he comes to a horrifying realization: someone from society's upper echelon is preying upon the city's most vulnerable. And though dark, powerful forces are moving against him, Sebastian will risk his reputation and his life to keep more innocents from harm . .


Racing the Devil (Inspector Ian Rutledge #19) by Charles Todd

Scotland Yard’s Ian Rutledge finds himself caught in a twisted web of vengeance, old grievances, and secrets that lead back to World War I in the nineteenth installment of the acclaimed bestselling series.

On the eve of the bloody Battle of the Somme, a group of English officers having a last drink before returning to the Front make a promise to each other: if they survive the battle ahead—and make it through the war—they will meet in Paris a year after the fighting ends. They will celebrate their good fortune by racing motorcars they beg, borrow, or own from Paris to Nice.

In November 1919, the officers all meet as planned, and though their motorcars are not designed for racing, they set out for Nice. But a serious mishap mars the reunion. In the mountains just north of their destination, two vehicles are nearly run off the road, and one man is badly injured. No one knows—or will admit to knowing—which driver was at the wheel of the rogue motorcar.


The Chalk Pit (Ruth Galloway #9) by Elly Griffiths

Boiled human bones have been found in Norwich's web of underground tunnels. When Dr Ruth Galloway discovers they are recent - the boiling not the medieval curiosity she thought - DCI Nelson has a murder enquiry on his hands.

Meanwhile, DS Judy Johnson is investigating the disappearance of a local rough sleeper. The only trace of her is the rumour that she's gone 'underground'. This might be a figure of speech, but with the discovery of the bones and the rumours both Ruth and the police have heard of a vast network of old chalk-mining tunnels under King's Lynn, home to a vast community of rough sleepers, the clues point in only one direction. Local academic Martin Kellerman knows all about the tunnels and their history - but can his assertions of cannibalism and ritual killing possibly be true?

As the weather gets hotter, tensions rise. A local woman goes missing and the police are under attack. Ruth and Nelson must unravel the dark secrets of The Underground and discover just what gruesome secrets lurk at its heart - before it claims another victim.


The Trapped Girl (Tracy Crosswhite #4) by Robert Dugoni 

When a woman’s body is discovered submerged in a crab pot in the chilly waters of Puget Sound, Detective Tracy Crosswhite finds herself with a tough case to untangle. Before they can identify the killer, Tracy and her colleagues on the Seattle PD’s Violent Crimes Section must figure out who the victim is. Her autopsy, however, reveals she may have gone to great lengths to conceal her identity. So who was she running from? 

After evidence surfaces that their Jane Doe may be a woman who suspiciously disappeared months earlier, Tracy is once again haunted by the memory of her sister’s unsolved murder. Dredging up details from the woman’s past leads to conflicting clues that only seem to muddy the investigation. As Tracy begins to uncover a twisted tale of brutal betrayal and desperate greed, she’ll find herself risking everything to confront a killer who won’t go down without a deadly fight. 

Once again, New York Times bestselling author Robert Dugoni delivers a taut, riveting thriller in the fourth installment of his acclaimed Tracy Crosswhite series.

Check out my friends October Wishlists:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages

Colleen @ Literary Vacation 

Heather @ The Maiden's Court

Holly @ 2 Kids and Tired

Night Watch by Iris Johansen

Quinn Night Watch by Iris Johansen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Born blind, Kendra Michaels spent the first twenty years of her life living in the darkness. Then, thanks to a revolutionary medical procedure developed by England’s Night Watch Project, she was given the gift of sight. Her highly-developed senses (honed during her years in the dark), combined with her new found vision, have made her a remarkable investigator, sought after by law-enforcement agencies all over the country. But her newest case finds her uncovering a deadly truth about the shadowy organization that has given her so much.

Kendra is surprised when she is visited by Dr. Charles Waldridge, the researcher who gave her sight. But all is not well with the brilliant surgeon; he’s troubled by something he can’t discuss with Kendra. When Waldridge disappears that very night, Kendra is on the case, recruiting government agent-for-hire Adam Lynch to join her on a trail that leads to the snow-packed California mountains. There they make a gruesome discovery: the corpse of one of Dr. Waldridge’s associates, brutally murdered in the freezing snow. But it’s only the first casualty in a white-knuckle confrontation with a deadly enemy who will push Kendra to the limits of her abilities. Soon she must fight for her very survival as she tries to stop the killing… and unearth the deadly secret of Night Watch.


Night Watch is book four in the Kendra Michaels series, and this is the first book I have read from the series. However, I have read several other Iris Johansen books from her Eve Duncan series. So, I was looking forward to reading Night Watch to see of I would fancy the series as much as I love the Eve Duncan series.

Kendra Michaels is an interesting character, she was born blind, but got her sight back nine years prior to this book thanks to an operation. And, she's a bit like Sherlock Holmes when it comes to noticing things, thanks to her years of focusing on other senses than sight when she was blind and then when she got her sight back did she unlike the rest of us that's used to it, train herself to see "everything". So, she makes a hell of an investigator.    

The story in this book started off interesting with Kendra being visited by Charles Waldridge the doctor who gave her the sight back. However, she can feel that something is wrong that he's not telling her everything. And, when he goes missing is she determent to find him. She even calls in an old friend Adam Lynch to help her find him.

The book is interesting, I like Kendra, and I liked Jessie a private detective that she meets in the book and I really liked Waldridge and I was worried that he would end up dead. It's interesting how you can care for a character that hardly in the book. However, there was something that just didn't work for me or rather a person, and that was Lynch, he feels like a carbon copy of Quinn from the Eve Duncan series, and I'm not even always that fond of Quinn so having a Quinn copy in this book just felt, well not that interesting. I think the whole, "I'm a badass guy, and a walking one person army kind of dude" just doesn't always work for me. And, when they started to do the whole "will they, or won't they dance" in the book did I feel my interest in the story cooled down. Seriously, I was thinking through the book that there are several interesting guys in this book, and she goes for the typical one? It just ruined the book a little bit for me.

Now, I don't say that the book was totally bad, I liked the story, but I felt I lost focus whenever Lynch showed up. Kendra is a smart cookie, and I liked reading about her past with Waldridge and her Sherlock Holmes tendency amused me. So, the book was in a way good, and in a way...less good than I had hoped it would be. I think that fans of this series will like this book, especially if they are fond of the idea of Kendra and Lynch together. Also, it was an easy book to get into so any newbies would probably enjoy the book as well.

I want to thank the S:t Martins Press for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

The Lost Ones by Ben Cheetham

The Lost Ones by Ben Cheetham
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Some secrets are better left undiscovered.

When a nine-year-old girl goes missing in Harwood Forest, the search for her brings back memories of an unsolved double murder some forty years earlier. Could the key to Erin Jackson’s disappearance lie in the bloody fate of Elijah and Joanna Ingham, bludgeoned to death while their young daughters slept? Were the Inghams really the victims of opportunistic burglars—or a more sinister fate?

The woods are combed for signs of the child, but Erin’s brother, Jake, mounts his own investigation, uncovering evidence that puts the Inghams’ daughters—vanished Rachel and ‘crazy’ Mary—in the frame. Meanwhile, Erin’s father suspects that the ragtag army of eco-warriors besieging his quarry development may have something to hide.

As devastating secrets and betrayals are revealed, the Jackson family is brought to a breaking point. But time is running out. Erin is still missing and Jake’s unorthodox enquiries have left him dangerously exposed. They must find Erin and lay the past to rest—before they become its latest victims.


The Lost Ones instantly caught my eyes with its wonderful cover and I thought the description of the book sounded very exciting. And, luckily, the book proved to be a real gem. I had never read anything by Ben Cheetham before I read this book, but now I must add his name to the list of authors to keep an eye out for.

The story is engrossing, a young girl goes missing, and since her father has a lot of enemies is there plenty of suspects. The town has once before been through an ordeal. Forty years before, Elijah and Joanna Ingham was brutally murdered in their house only their daughters survived. But, surely this murder of Elijah and Joanna Ingham couldn't have anything to do with the missing girl?

The Lost Ones is intense and heartbreaking to read. Little Erin is missing, and her parents are desperate to have her back, but has someone taken her or is she just lost? As the hours pass the situation becomes more and more desperate and secrets are revealed. The book is very good and I must admit that I was a bit surprised by the ending. I liked how Cheetham really demonstrated throughout story how devastating this is for the family and the toll it takes on them. You know from the beginning that Erin's mom has a secret, but what is she hiding? The murder at the Ingham house forty years ago, and the legend that the place is haunted gave the story an extras feeling of darkness.

I want to thank Thomas & Mercer for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!  

Monday, 24 October 2016

A Song for the Dying by Stuart MacBride (SWE/ENG)

A Song for the Dying by Stuart MacBride
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Åtta år har gått sedan den brutala mördaren satte skräck i Oldcastles befolkning. Fyra kvinnor kidnappades, lemlästades och lämnades att dö – alla med plastdockor insydda i sina magar. Sedan, utan någon förklaring, upphörde morden tvärt.

Då var det ​kriminalinspektör Ash Henderson som höll i utredningen. Nu är hans familj splittrad, karriären i spillror och han riskerar att få tillbringa resten av sitt liv i fängelse. Men när ytterligare en kvinna hittas död ser Ash äntligen en chans till återupprättelse. En chans att bli fri. En chans att hämnas.

En sång för de döda är andra boken om Ash Henderson. Den första, Hälsning från de döda, kom ut 2015.


Om det är en bok som jag har väntat på att få läsa i några månader så är det En sång för de döda. Jag läste första boken i serien i våras och älskade den. Tja, på det sätt som jag gillar att läsa brutala, hemska berättelser med fantastiska karaktärer. Jag hoppades att denna bok skulle vara lika bra som den föregående och speciellt hoppades jag på att Alice skulle vara med i denna bok också. Jag fullständigt älskade henne i den första boken. Hon var ljusstrålen i en annars mörk och dyster berättelse. Jag är glad att kunna säga att hon har även en stor roll i denna bok och att hon är lika knepig som i första boken. Ash är givetvis också tillbaka, men han är fortfarande i fängelse även om han har blivit frikänd från mordanklagelsen. Dock har Mrs. Kerrigan fixat så han är kvar där tills hon säger något annat. Men så fixas Ash ut från fängelset tack vare höga chefer som vill att han ska hjälpa till att fånga en mördare som han misslyckades med att fånga för åtta år sedan, en mördare som nu är tillbaka. Och visst, han hjälper gärna till med det, men hans huvudsakliga mål är att döda Mrs. Kerrigan, gärna väldigt sakta...

En sång för de döda är precis lika bra som den första boken i serien. Ash Henderson och Alice McDonald är tillbaka och arbetar för att stoppa Insidern, men Ash är också väldigt sugen på att stoppa Mrs. Kerrigan för gott. Men varken Insider fallet eller Mrs. Kerrigan bortgång kommer att bli enkla utmaningar. En sång för de döda är en bok där jag inte ville att berättelsen skulle ta slut, men på samma sätt så ville jag få reda på vad som skulle hända härnäst. Det var väldigt svårt att lägga ifrån sig boken då berättelsen hade några intressanta vändningar mellan varven. Jag var lite oroad att MacBride hade valt den mest logiska kandidaten för att vara bokens mördare, men jag hade inte alls behövt oro mig då MacBride hade helt andra planer än att göra det enkelt för Ash (och läsaren). Jag älskade slutet, det var väldigt tillfredsställande och det var skönt att det inte slutade med en cliffhanger som föregående boken gjorde. Men jag hoppas verkligen att detta inte är den sista Ash och Alice boken. Jag vill ha flera!

Tack till HarperCollins Nordic för recensionexemplaret!

He’s back...

Eight years ago, ‘The Inside Man’ murdered four women and left three more in critical condition—all of them with their stomachs slit open and a plastic doll stitched inside.

And then the killer just... disappeared.

Ash Henderson was a Detective Inspector on the initial investigation, but a lot can change in eight years. His family has been destroyed, his career is in tatters, and one of Oldcastle’s most vicious criminals is making sure he spends the rest of his life in prison.

Now a nurse has turned up dead on a patch of waste ground, a plastic doll buried beneath her skin, and it looks as if Ash might finally get a shot at redemption. At earning his freedom.

At revenge.


If there is one book that I've been waiting to read this year is it A Song for the Dying. I read the first book in the series this spring and I loved it. In the way, I love reading a brutal, horrifying story with great characters. I hoped that this book would be just as good and I really hoped that Alice would be back in this book. I loved her in the first book, she was the one thing that made a pretty dark and depressing story a bit brighter. And, I'm happy to say that she is in this book just as quirky as in the previous book. As for Ash himself, well, he is in prison, though, he has been cleared of the murder charge, but Mrs. Kerrigan is the one that has fixed it so that he will stay there until she says otherwise. However, now the powers to be has managed to get him out, to help with the investigation of a killer that he failed to catch eight years ago that is now back. And, sure he will do that, but his main plan is to kill Mrs. Kerrigan, preferably very slow... 

This book was just as good as the first book in the series. Ash Henderson and Alice McDonald are back together working and yes Ash wants to get the Insider caught, but he is also quite eager to kill Mrs. Kerrigan. However, neither catching the Insider or killing Mrs. Kerrigan will turn out to be so easy. A Song for the Dying is the kind of book when one just doesn't want the story to finish at the same time you want to know what will happen next. And, it was pretty hard to put the book down when I started to read it. There were some interesting twists to the story, I was a bit worried when it looked like MacBride had picked the most logical candidate to be the killer. However, it made sure to twist the story around. I loved the ending. It's the kind of ending that felt very satisfying, not the cliffhanger kind of ending that the last book had. However, I do hope this is not the last Ash and Alice book. I want more!

Thanks to HarperCollins Nordic for the review copy!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Cover Crush: Gwendolen by Diana Souhami

Erin over at Flashlight Commentary is the one that came up with the cover crush idea and I loved it so much that I decided that every Thursday would I post a cover that I really love. 

This week's Cover Crush is Gwendolen by Diana Souhami. I find the cover delightful and it's just the kind that makes me curious to read what the book is all about. I like how Gwendolen is the sole person on the cover and I love how she stands there ready to shot that arrow.It's just so striking and intruging! 


In an astonishing unsent love letter, a 19th-century Englishwoman looks back at her formative years, when she fell in love with one man but married another

Gwendolen Harleth, an exceptionally beautiful upper-class Englishwoman, is gambling boldly at a resort when she catches the eye of a handsome, pensive gentleman. His gaze unnerves her, and she loses her winnings. The next day, she learns that her widowed mother and younger sisters, for whom she is financially responsible, have lost their family's fortune. As a young woman in the 1860s with only her looks to serve her, Gwendolen's options are few, so when Henleigh Grandcourt, a wealthy aristocrat, proposes to her, she accepts, despite her discovery of an alarming secret about his past.

This novel is Gwendolen's passionate later-life letter to the handsome man who caught her eye at the gambling tables-the man she did not marry-and reveals what happened across the brutal and transformative years of her early twenties, after she married Grandcourt. That Gwendolen is also the heroine of George Eliot's novel Daniel Deronda (and is writing to Deronda) will intrigue and delight legions of Eliot fans, but debut novelist and award-winning biographer Souhami has brilliantly and movingly breathed fresh life into a classic story in ways that will appeal to readers entirely unfamiliar with Eliot's fictions.


Check out this week's cover crushes over at my friend's blogs:

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena (SWE/ENG)

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Anne och Marco Conti är ett par som tycks ha allt: ett kärleksfullt förhållande, ett vackert hem och en underbar bebis, Cora.

Nu säger deras granne att hon inte vill ha med deras sex månader gamla dotter på sin middagsbjudning. Inget personligt, hon står bara inte ut med gråten. Marco säger att det är okej. De bor ju trots allt bara i huset bredvid. De kommer att ha babyalarmet med sig och turas om att gå hem en gång i halvtimmen.

När Anne tittade till Cora för bara en stund sedan sov barnet djupt. Men nu, efter att hon rusat upp för trapporna i deras dödligt tysta hus, besannas hennes djupaste rädsla. Cora är borta!

Anne och Marco har aldrig tidigare behövt ringa polisen. Men nu är polisen i deras hem, i deras liv. Och vem vet vad de kommer att upptäcka där?

På andra sidan väggen är en psykologisk thriller som håller läsaren i ett järngrepp fram till sista sidan. En roman om svek, manipulation och dubbelspel – och om vad människor är kapabla till när de pressas till bristningsgränsen.


Wow, vilken bok. Jag måste erkänna att jag inte trodde att boken skulle fängsla mig så mycket att jag i slutändan skulle ge den en 5:a. Jag hoppas att den den skulle vara underhållande, men jag trodde aldrig att den skulle vara så underhållande att den skulle vara svår at lägga ifrån sig på kvällen. En riktig blandvändare med andra ord! Jag svär, om jag inte hade haft jobb dagen efter jag började läsa boken så skulle jag nog läst klart den troligtvis samma kväll. 

Vad jag verkligen älskade med boken var känslan av att alla dolde något, och det visade sig vara korrekt. Även när händelser avslöjades som kanske inte alls var så överraskande så kände jag aldrig att det var för lätt, utan det var snarare så att jag hade en misstanke och när den visade sig vara rätt så var det med belåtenhet jag insåg att jag hade gissat rätt. Självklart var det händelser som jag absolut inte hade räknat med. Som det briljanta slutet. Wow!

Jag vill inte avslöja något av handlingen, men jag måste bara få säga att jag är verkligen imponerad över hur mänskliga karaktärerna i boken är. Lapena har verkligen lyckats med att skapa karaktärer som jag kunde känna sympati för (tja de flesta människor, de fanns några vidriga som jag inte gillade speciellt mycket eller kände sympati för). Genom att karaktärerna blev så levande så kändes handlingen verkligen levande. Jag drog in i berättelsen och sedan släppte den inte taget om mig.

På andra sidan väggen var en fantastisk läsupplevelse. Shari Lapena är ett namn jag bara måste lägga på minnet och jag ser fram emot att läsa framtida böcker av henne!

Tack till Modernista och Louise Bäckelin Förlag för recensionsexemplaret!


You never know what's happening on the other side of the wall.

Your neighbour told you that she didn't want your six-month-old daughter at the dinner party. Nothing personal, she just couldn't stand her crying.

Your husband said it would be fine. After all, you only live next door. You'll have the baby monitor and you'll take it in turns to go back every half hour.

Your daughter was sleeping when you checked on her last. But now, as you race up the stairs in your deathly quiet house, your worst fears are realized. She's gone.

You've never had to call the police before. But now they're in your home, and who knows what they'll find there.

What would you be capable of, when pushed past your limit?


Wow, what a book. I have to admit that I did not think I would love it as much as I did. I was hoping to be entertained, but I never thought that I would find it so engrossing that it would be hard to put it down. I swear, if I hadn't had work the day after I started the book would I probably have read most of the book that evening that I started it.

What I really loved about the book was the sense that everyone is hiding something, and sure they did and even when things were revealed that perhaps was not so surprising did I never feel that it was too easy, it was more of a getting right when you are getting suspicious about something. Of course, there were events that I didn't expect at all. Like the brilliant ending. Wow.

I don't want to give the story away, all I want to say that I'm very impressed how Lapena managed to make the characters so real that I really could feel for them (well most of the people, some I did not like because they were quite frankly awful human beings). By making the characters feel alive did this story come alive. I was pulled into the story and it didn't let go for a minute.

The Couple Next Door was a fantastic reading experience. Shari Lapena is definitely a name that I need to keep track of for future books!

Thanks to Modernista and Louise Bäckelin Förlag for the review copy!