Thursday, 28 September 2017

#Wishlist September: Lady in Red

This month's wishlist is all about Women in Red. Which makes a very interesting list, with 5 very different kinds of historical fiction books. Any book that you fancy? 

A general’s daughter…

Coming of age on the perilous frontier of revolutionary New York, Elizabeth Schuyler champions the fight for independence. And when she meets Alexander Hamilton, Washington’s penniless but passionate aide-de-camp, she’s captivated by the young officer’s charisma and brilliance. They fall in love, despite Hamilton’s bastard birth and the uncertainties of war.

A founding father’s wife...

But the union they create—in their marriage and the new nation—is far from perfect. From glittering inaugural balls to bloody street riots, the Hamiltons are at the center of it all—including the political treachery of America’s first sex scandal, which forces Eliza to struggle through heartbreak and betrayal to find forgiveness.

The last surviving light of the Revolution…

When a duel destroys Eliza’s hard-won peace, the grieving widow fights her husband’s enemies to preserve Alexander’s legacy. But long-buried secrets threaten everything Eliza believes about her marriage and her own legacy. Questioning her tireless devotion to the man and country that have broken her heart, she’s left with one last battle—to understand the flawed man she married and imperfect union he could never have created without her…

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With her inquisitive mind, Charlotte Holmes has never felt comfortable with the demureness expected of the fairer sex in upper class society. But even she never thought that she would become a social pariah, an outcast fending for herself on the mean streets of London. 

When the city is struck by a trio of unexpected deaths and suspicion falls on her sister and her father, Charlotte is desperate to find the true culprits and clear the family name. She’ll have help from friends new and old—a kind-hearted widow, a police inspector, and a man who has long loved her.

But in the end, it will be up to Charlotte, under the assumed name Sherlock Holmes, to challenge society’s expectations and match wits against an unseen mastermind.

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Growing up in the shadow of her dead mother, the infamous Anne Boleyn, young Princess Elizabeth has learnt to be continuously on the watch for the political games played out around her. It is never certain when one might rise, or precariously fall, out of royal favor. When her distant father, Henry VIII, dies, the future brightens for Elizabeth. She is able to set up a home with Henry s last wife, Katherine Parr who now has a new husband, Tom Seymour. Tom, however, is playing a risky game. Marrying a widowed queen is one thing, flirting with the King s daughter and second in line to the throne is another. As the adolescent Elizabeth finds herself dangerously attracted to him, danger encroaches upon herself and the kingdom "

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Discover the real-life mystery centered on the queen of crime herself: Agatha Christie. In this tantalizing new novel, Christie’s mysterious ten-day disappearance serves as the starting point for a gripping novel, in which Christie herself is pulled into a case of blackmail and murder.

“I wouldn’t scream if I were you. Unless you want the whole world to learn about your husband and his mistress.”

Agatha Christie, in London to visit her literary agent, is boarding a train, preoccupied with the devastating knowledge that her husband is having an affair. She feels a light touch on her back, causing her to lose her balance, then a sense of someone pulling her to safety from the rush of the incoming train. So begins a terrifying sequence of events—for her rescuer is no guardian angel, rather he is a blackmailer of the most insidious, manipulative kind.

“You, Mrs. Christie, are going to commit a murder. But, before then, you are going to disappear.”

Writing about murder is a far cry from committing a crime, and Agatha must use every ounce of her cleverness and resourcefulness to thwart an adversary determined to exploit her expertise and knowledge about the act of murder to kill on his behalf.

In A Talent for Murder, Andrew Wilson ingeniously explores Agatha Christie’s odd ten-day disappearance in 1926 and weaves an utterly compelling and convincing story around this still unsolved mystery involving the world’s bestselling novelist.

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For fans of The Paris Wife, a sparkling glimpse into the life of Edith Wharton and the scandalous love affair that threatened her closest friendship

They say behind every great man is a woman. Behind Edith Wharton, there was Anna Bahlmann—her governess turned literary secretary, and her mothering, nurturing friend.

When at the age of forty-five, Edith falls passionately in love with a dashing younger journalist, Morton Fullerton, and is at last opened to the world of the sensual, it threatens everything certain in her life but especially her abiding friendship with Anna. As Edith’s marriage crumbles and Anna’s disapproval threatens to shatter their lifelong bond, the women must face the fragility at the heart of all friendships.

Told through the points of view of both women, The Age of Desiretakes us on a vivid journey through Wharton’s early Gilded Age world: Paris with its glamorous literary salons and dark secret cafés, the Whartons’ elegant house in Lenox, Massachusetts, and Henry James’s manse in Rye, England.

Edith’s real letters and intimate diary entries are woven throughout the book. The Age of Desire brings to life one of literature’s most beloved writers, whose own story was as complex and nuanced as that of any of the heroines she created.

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Want to see more wishlist?
Check out these that my friends have posted:

Stephanie at Layered Pages
Heather at The Maiden's Court
Colleen at A Literary Vacation
Holly at 2 Kids and Tired

#CoverCrush Strange Weather by Joe Hill

For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!


Four short novels from the author of THE FIREMAN and HORNS, ranging from creepy horror to powerful explorations of our modern society.

One autumnal day in Boulder, Colorado, the clouds open up in a downpour of nails, splinters of bright crystal that tear apart anyone who isn't safely under cover. 'Rain' explores this escalating apocalyptic event, as clouds of nails spread out across the country and the world. Amidst the chaos, a girl studying law enforcement takes it upon herself to resolve a series of almost trivial mysteries . . . apparently harmless puzzles that turn out to have lethal answers.

In 'Loaded' a mall security guard heroically stops a mass shooting and becomes a hero to the modern gun movement. Under the hot glare of the spotlights, though, his story begins to unravel, taking his sanity with it...

'Snapshot, 1988' tells the story of an kid in Silicon Valley who finds himself threatened by The Phoenician, a tattooed thug who possesses a Polaroid that can steal memories...

And in 'Aloft' a young man takes to the skies to experience parachuting for the first time . . . and winds up a castaway on an impossibly solid cloud, a Prospero's island of roiling vapour that seems animated by a mind of its own.

Some thoughts about the cover:

This is the second cover I've seen for this book and the one cover I fancy the most. I mean look at it? Doesn't it look like it positively is sparkling with energy? ;)

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages

Heather @ The Maiden’s Court





indieBRAG

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

#Bookreview Shattered by Allison Brennan (@Allison_Brennan) @FreshFiction

Shattered by Allison Brennan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Over a span of twenty years, four boys have been kidnapped from their bedrooms, suffocated, and buried nearby in a shallow grave. Serial killer or coincidence?

That’s the question investigative reporter Maxine Revere sets out to answer when an old friend begs her to help exonerate his wife, who has been charged with their son’s recent murder. But Max can do little to help because the police and D.A. won’t talk to her―they think they have the right woman. Instead, Max turns her attention to three similar cold cases. If she can solve them, she might be able to help her friend.

Justin Stanton was killed twenty years ago, and his father wants closure―so he is willing to help Max with her investigation on one condition: that she work with his former sister-in-law― Justin’s aunt, FBI Agent Lucy Kincaid. Trouble is, Max works alone, and she’s livid that her only access to the case files, lead detective and witnesses depends on her partnering with a federal agent on vacation. She wants the career-making story almost as much as the truth―but if she gets this wrong, she could lose everything.

Haunted by Justin’s death for years, Lucy yearns to give her family―and herself―the closure they need. More important, she wants to catch a killer. Lucy finds Max’s theory on all three cases compelling―with Max's research added to Lucy’s training and experience, Lucy believes they can find the killer so justice can finally be served. But the very private Lucy doesn’t trust the reporter any more than Max trusts her.

Max and Lucy must find a way to work together to untangle lies, misinformation, and evidence to develop a profile of the killer. But the biggest question is: why were these boys targeted? As they team up to find out what really happened the night Justin was killed, they make a shocking discovery: Justin’s killer is still out there … stalking another victim … and they already may be too late.


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I did know before I started to read this book that it was the latest book in the Max Revere series. What I did not know that this was a crossover with Allison Brennan's series about Lucy Kincaid. So, this was not a book in one series I haven't read before, it was a new book in two series that I had never read before. That was new for me (at least I think so). But, to be honest, I didn't worry so much about that. Most series are often easy to get into. As long as one starts to get the hang of who is who. And, the only real problem I had was in the beginning when the Kincaid family was introduced, and boy, they were many. But, after a while, I did get the whole picture thanks to Max Revere learning more herself about the Kincaids.

READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION!

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

#BookReview Don't Let Go by Harlan Coben @Arrowpublishing

Don't Let Go by Harlan Coben
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Suburban New Jersey Detective Napoleon “Nap” Dumas hasn't been the same since senior year of high school, when his twin brother Leo and Leo’s girlfriend Diana were found dead on the railroad tracks—and Maura, the girl Nap considered the love of his life, broke up with him and disappeared without explanation. For fifteen years, Nap has been searching, both for Maura and for the real reason behind his brother's death. And now, it looks as though he may finally find what he's been looking for.

When Maura's fingerprints turn up in the rental car of a suspected murderer, Nap embarks on a quest for answers that only leads to more questions—about the woman he loved, about the childhood friends he thought he knew, about the abandoned military base near where he grew up, and mostly about Leo and Diana—whose deaths are darker and far more sinister than Nap ever dared imagine.

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It's been years since I read my first Harlan Coben book, and every time I see that he is releasing a new book do I rejoice. He's such a fabulous writer and his books are the kinds that I often can't put down until I finished reading.

Now Don't Let Go, to be honest, isn't among the best I read, but it's still a good book, with the Coben's usual writing style. I just think that I expect too much from Coben and this book just didn't have the usual story with lots of twists and turns. I love how Coben usually pulls the rug out from beneath your feet several times during the story, but I lacked some seriously shocking twist. Now even the last twist towards the end felt really surprising. Also, Napoleon “Nap” Dumas was not a bad character, but having Myron Bolitar showing up for a short cameo just made me miss Myron (and Win) and Nap is just not as interesting to read about. His losses in life, twin brother, and Maura never really got to me and here lies one of the big problems with this book. I just didn't feel that Nap's sad story gripped me.

Don't Let Go is a book that was OK to read, not among the best Coben books I have read, but pleasant enough. A decent thriller that could have been better if it had had a more surprising storyline. 

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

#BookReview A Casualty of War by Charles Todd (@CharlesToddBks) @WmMorrowBooks

Casualty of War by Charles Todd
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

From New York Times bestselling author Charles Todd comes a haunting tale that explores the impact of World War I on all who witnessed it—officers, soldiers, doctors, and battlefield nurses like Bess Crawford.

Though the Great War is nearing its end, the fighting rages on. While waiting for transport back to her post, Bess Crawford meets Captain Alan Travis from the island of Barbados. Later, when he’s brought into her forward aid station disoriented from a head wound, Bess is alarmed that he believes his distant English cousin, Lieutenant James Travis, shot him. Then the Captain is brought back to the aid station with a more severe wound, once more angrily denouncing the Lieutenant as a killer. But when it appears that James Travis couldn’t have shot him, the Captain’s sanity is questioned. Still, Bess wonders how such an experienced officer could be so wrong.

On leave in England, Bess finds the Captain strapped to his bed in a clinic for brain injuries. Horrified by his condition, Bess and Sergeant Major Simon Brandon travel to James Travis’s home in Suffolk, to learn more about the baffling relationship between these two cousins.

Her search will lead this smart, capable, and compassionate young woman into unexpected danger, and bring her face to face with the visible and invisible wounds of war that not even the much-longed for peace can heal.


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I'm a big fan of the Bess Crawford series and I have read almost all the books so far. A Casualty of War shows just what a wonderful mother and son writing team Caroline Todd and Charles Todd are when it comes to writing books.

In A Casualty of War must Bess help Captain Alan Travis who is convinced that his cousin shot him, but it's impossible since his cousin couldn't have been the one to do that so now his sanity is questioned. Bess together with Sergeant-Major Simon Brandon travels to the cousin, James Travis's hometown to try to find out more about the cousins and why their families are estranged.

Without giving too much of the plot away do I want to say that this is one of the strongest books in the series. Once again Bess is confronted with a strange mystery with a lot of suspicious and distrustful people in a small village. Bess herself is thinking about her future now that the war is going towards the end. What is she going to do next, she has been a nurse for so long that it has become her whole life, living with fear and the prospect of death any minute. If you have read any my previous review do you know that I'm a big fan of Sergeant Lassiter and I was thrilled that he showed up for ... just a small cameo. Bah! I wanted more of him, not just a small part. Although it was a sweet moment, that Bess kind of destroyed (for me).

A Casualty of War is a great book. You can read this book without having read any of the previous books. It's easy to get to know the characters and the stories in the books are stand-alone.

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through Edelweiss for an honest review!

Sunday, 24 September 2017

#BookReview The Good Daughter (Den goda dottern) by Karin Slaughter (@SlaughterKarin) (SWE/ENG)

The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

SWEDISH REVIEW

För tjugoåtta år sedan slogs Charlotte och Samantha Quinns familj i spillror. Attacken mot deras hem dödade inte bara deras mamma, utan krossade också deras pappa - stadens ökända försvarsadvokat - och ödelade deras familj för alltid.

Nu är systrarna vuxna, och Charlie är den perfekta dottern som har gått i sin pappas fotspår. När det brutala våldet återigen drabbar staden, kastas Charlie rakt in i en mardröm. Hon är inte bara det första vittnet på plats. Dessutom märker hon snart att fallet mot hennes vilja lockar fram de mörka minnen som hon har lyckats förtränga i så många år. Och sanningen om det som hände för tjugoåtta år sedan går inte längre att dölja.


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Den goda dottern börjar spännande med en flashback till Charlie och Samantha när de var unga och deras sista stund med deras mamma. Sedan förflyttas handlingen 28 år framåt i tiden till Charlie som bevittnar ett brott som kommer att få  henne att minnas saker från det förflutna hon helst hade fortsatt att glömma. 

Karin Slaughter är en lysnade författare och jag såg verkligen fram emot att läsa denna bok. Det finns en kort novel man kan läsa (ej översatt till svenska) som heter The Last Breath där man för första gången möter Charlie, flera år innan denna bok, när hon är nygift. Det kan vara värt att läsa den innan man läser Den goda dottern, men det är inte nödvändigt. Boken är mycket bra och jag gillar verkligen karaktärerna från de olika systrarna, deras pappa och Charlies man Ben som älskar Star Trek. Charlie var den av systrarna jag gillade bäst, men så hade jag redan läst om henne i novellen samt att det dröjde ett tag innan den vuxna Samantha kom in i handlingen. Handlingen är spännnade och även om jag misstänkte vissa saker så fanns det överraskande ögonblick, speciallt mot slutet av boken.

Jag älskar thrillers som utspelas i småstäder, med bitterhet, motsättningar och hemligheter. Denna bok har verkligen det. En sak som verkligen gjorde intryck på mig var hur levande karaktärerna blev i denna bok, jag brydde mig verkligen om deras liv och öden. Den goda dottern är gripande, tragiskt och fängslande att läsa. Det är synd att det är en fristående bok då jag gärna hade läst mer om systrarna.  

Tack HarperCollins Nordic för recensionsexemplaret!


ENGLISH REVIEW

Two girls are forced into the woods at gunpoint. One runs for her life. One is left behind…

Twenty-eight years ago, Charlotte and Samantha Quinn's happy small-town family life was torn apart by a terrifying attack on their family home. It left their mother dead. It left their father — Pikeville's notorious defense attorney — devastated. And it left the family fractured beyond repair, consumed by secrets from that terrible night.

Twenty-eight years later, and Charlie has followed in her father's footsteps to become a lawyer herself — the ideal good daughter. But when violence comes to Pikeville again — and a shocking tragedy leaves the whole town traumatized — Charlie is plunged into a nightmare. Not only is she the first witness on the scene, but it's a case that unleashes the terrible memories she's spent so long trying to suppress. Because the shocking truth about the crime that destroyed her family nearly thirty years ago won't stay buried forever…

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The Good Daughter begins with a flashback to Charlie and Samantha when they were young and their last moments with their mom. Then, the story moves 28 years ahead in time to Charlie who witnesses a crime that will make her remember things from the past she rather forgets.

Karin Slaughter is a fabulous author and I really looked forward to reading this book. There is a short novella that you can read (not translated into Swedish) called Last Breath, where you first meet Charlie, several years before this book when she is newly married. It may be worth reading it before reading The Good Daughter, but it is not necessary. The book is very good and I really like the characters, from the very different sisters, their dad and Charlie's husband Ben who loves Star Trek. Charlie was the sister I liked best, but I'd already read about her in the short story and it took a while before the adult Samantha to be introduced in the book. The action is tight and although I suspected some things, there were surprising moments, especially towards the end of the book.

I love thrillers set in small towns, with resentments, disagreements, and secrets. This book really has it all. One thing that really impressed me was how the characters came to life in this book, I really cared about their lives and fate. The Good Daughter is engaging, tragic and captivating to read. It's a shame that it's a stand-alone book since I'd love to read more about the sisters.

Thanks HarperCollins Nordic for the review copy!

Saturday, 23 September 2017

#BookReview Harley Quinn, Volume 3: Red Meat by Amanda Conner @DCComics

Harley Quinn, Volume 3: Red Meat by Jimmy Palmiotti
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

The Suicide Squad's deadliest member continues to wreak havoc all across the DC Universe in the latest installment of her best-selling graphic novel series in HARLEY QUINN VOL. 3!

Harley's managed to carve out a kind of peace with New York's corrupt mayor...but once she gets wind of his plans for the city's homeless population, the deal is most definitely off! She'll have to take the fight to City Hall--but who will be her ally in her most desperate hour?

The writing team of Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti join artists Chad Hardin and John Timms in their New York Times best-selling run with HARLEY QUINN VOL. 3! Collects HARLEY QUINN #14-16 Full issues, and issues #17-21 (main story only).


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Harley Quinn is BACK! And, this time she has to deal with a megalomaniac alien that she set free after opening a door underground (see the previous volume), cannibals, a bat-fan from the future, and old foe, and her parents! Well, the parents not so much, she was busy trying to keep bat-fan off her back.

Anyway, it's a lot of things going on in this graphic novel. I was a bit doubtful at the beginning when the alien got free, but the story turned out to be better than I had anticipated. Still, I found this volume to just above-average, with now and then some funny bits. The action sequences were good and as usual is my favorite crazy chick wreaking havoc wherever she goes. On the plus side is the art straight through lovely! Favorite part? Hm, nothing really comes to mind, no story that really shined more than the others. Perhaps Red Tools part in the bat-fan story, it was a good twist.





I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

Friday, 22 September 2017

#BookReview Gone (Försvunnen) by Mo Hayder (SWE/ENG) @ModernistaRed

Gone by Mo Hayder
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

SWEDISH REVIEW

Mörkret sänker sig över West Country när kriminalinspektör Jack Caffery anländer för att intervjua offret för en bilstöld. Han har utrett bilstölder tidigare, men det här är annorlunda. I det här fallet har bilen tagits med våld. Och i baksätet fanns en passagerare - en elvaårig flicka - som fortfarande saknas.

Snart börjar förövaren kommunicera med polisen: "Det har börjat", säger han. "Och det kommer inte bara plötsligt att ta slut, eller hur?" Caffery vet att det kommer att hända igen. Kidnapparen kommer att välja ut en annan bil, med ett annat barn i baksätet.

Jack Caffery är en skicklig polis med skarpa instinkter; den bästa, enligt vissa. Men den här gången inser han att något är allvarligt fel: Kidnapparen verkar hela tiden vara precis ett steg före polisen...


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Om det är något Mo Hayder kan så är det att skriva böcker som går under skinnet på en. Precis som Dennis Lehane så vågar hon ta ut svängarna och det är med isande fasa man läser varje sida.

Försvunnen är inget undantag. Att läsa om kidnappade barn är hemskt och man vet inte om Jack Caffery kommer att lyckas rädda situationen. Caffery är en lysande polis, men i denna bok så verkar det som om kidnapparen kan förutse polisen nästa drag och ju mer tiden går desto mer lutar det åt att det är försent, att flickan inte kommer att räddas.

Sedan har vi polisdykaren Flea Marley, som lever med konsekvenserna från föregående bok, vilket stör henne i jobbet. Hon vet inte om att Jack misstänker henne för ett brott som hon faktiskt är oskyldig till men som i och med det Jack vet om det ter sig logiskt att han misstänker henne. Nu ger hon sig in kampen för att rädda den kidnappade flickan. Men är hon verkligen i form att ta sig an fallet? Kommer hon istället bara att riskera sitt eget liv?

Försvunnen är en ruggig thriller där den okände förövaren hela tiden lurar i bakgrunden och man sitter på helspänd på slutet när Caffery konfronterar förövaren. Frågan är kommer allting att sluta lyckligt?


Tack till Modernista för recensionsexemplaret!


ENGLISH REVIEW

November in the West Country.

Evening is closing in as murder detective Jack Caffery arrives to interview the victim of a car-jacking.

He's dealt with routine car-thefts before, but this one is different. This car was taken by force. And on the back seat was a passenger. An eleven-year-old girl. Who is still missing.

Before long the jacker starts to communicate with the police: 'It's started,' he tells them. 'And it ain't going to stop just sudden, is it?'

And Caffery knows that he's going to do it again. Soon the jacker will choose another car with another child on the back seat.

Caffery's a good and instinctive cop; the best in the business, some say. But this time he knows something's badly wrong. Because the jacker seems to be ahead of the police - every step of the way...

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If there is one thing Mo Hayder knows is it to write a book that crawls under your skin. She dares, just like Dennis Lehane can she write in such a way that it's with terror you turn each page.

Gone is no exception. Reading about kidnapped children is always terrible and you do not know if Jack Caffery will be able to save the kidnapped girl. Caffery is a brilliant police, but in this book, the kidnapper seems to anticipate every single move the police do, and as more time goes by, the fear grows that they will be too late.

Then we have police diver Flea Marley, who lives with the consequences from the previous book, which has consequences for her at work. She does not know that Jack suspects her for a crime she's actually innocent of. Although it's quite logical that he suspects her since he doesn't have the whole picture. Now she decides to search for the kidnapped girl. But, is she really in shape to help out? Or will she only risk her own life?

Gone is a tough thriller where the unidentified perpetrator always lurks in the background, and at the end, when Caffery confronts the perpetrator will you still question if everything will end happily...

Thanks to Modernista for the review copy!

Thursday, 21 September 2017

#CoverCrush The Little Angel by Rosie Goodwin

For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!



1896, Nuneaton. Left on the doorstep of Treetops Children's Home, young Kitty captures the heart of her guardian, Sunday Branning, who has never been blessed with a child of her own.

Kitty brings sunshine and joy wherever she goes, and grows into a beguiling and favoured young girl. But then Kitty is summoned to live in London with her birth mother.

At first London offers Kitty excitement and adventure. With her delicate beauty and the voice of an angel, she attracts a promising singing career and the attention of a number of dashing suitors. But those now close to Kitty are not what they seem, and her comforting old home at Treetops starts to feel very far away.

If Kitty is to have any chance of happiness, this little angel must protect herself from devils in disguise . . . and before it's too late.

Some thoughts about the cover:

I get a Christmas feeling seeing this cover. The woman in bright red with the snow blowing around her and the house looming in the background. I really like this cover and this feels like the perfect book to read when winter arrives. 

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages






indieBRAG

#BlogBlitz Cold Blood by Robert Bryndza (@RobertBryndza) @bookouture

Cold Blood by Robert Bryndza
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

She fell in love with a killer, now she’s one too.

The suitcase was badly rusted, and took Erika several attempts, but it yielded and sagged open as she unzipped it. Nothing could prepare her for what she would find inside…

When a battered suitcase containing the dismembered body of a young man washes up on the shore of the river Thames, Detective Erika Foster is shocked. She’s worked on some terrifying cases but never seen anything like this before.

As Erika and her team set to work, she makes the link with another victim – the body of a young woman dumped in an identical suitcase two weeks ago.

Erika quickly realises she’s on the trail of a serial killer who’s already made their next move. Yet just as Erika starts to make headway with the investigation, she is the victim of a brutal attack.

But nothing will stop Erika. As the body count rises, the twin daughters of her colleague Commander Marsh are abducted, and the stakes are higher than ever before. Can Erika save the lives of two innocent children before it’s too late? She’s running out of time and about to make a disturbing discovery…there’s more than one killer.

Brilliantly gripping, Cold Blood will have you hooked from the first page and holding your breath to the heart-stopping and shocking ending. 

Book review 

I've had a blast the last couple of weeks devouring 3 Erika Foster books. I jumped at the chance to participate in this blog tour, but that meant that I had to read the previous two books before reading Cold Blood. Lucky me! Finishing this book also meant that now I have to wait for the next one. Which after this Erika Foster marathon feels a bit sad...

Cold Blood is the fifth and the latest book in the Erika Foster series and this time Erika has to stop a serial killer couple. Nina and Max are a modern-day Bonnie and Clyde couple whose love story pretty much starts off with a brutal murder. Nina is blinded by love for Max and right from the start is it pretty clear that he is using her blind devotion to him to make her do what he wants her to do. Should one feel sorry for her? Well, perhaps at the start, but as the story progressed is it hard to feel that much sympathy for her. To be honest, did I not feel that much sympathy for her at all, she didn't have a bad life, and the choices she made, well she made the bed....

Erika has her own problems in this book, besides the hunt for the serial killers is she faced with a betrayal that will danger her life and her relationship with Peterson seems to have come to a stop. Marsh is back, and that thrilled me as he is a character that I like and it will be interesting to see if he will be able to save his marriage. 


Cold Blood is an excellent book, with a story that thrilled me from the start. As always do I love reading about the characters personal life as well as the crimes that they have to solve and I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series!
     

Author Bio:


Robert Bryndza is the author of the international #1 bestseller The Girl in the Ice. The Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller is the first book in the Detective Erika Foster series. 

The Night Stalker, Dark Water and Last Breath are the second, third, and fourth books in the series, and the fifth book, Cold Blood is now available to pre-order.

Robert's books have sold over 2 million copies, and have been translated into 27 languages.

In addition to writing crime fiction, Robert has published a bestselling series of romantic comedy novels. He is British and lives in Slovakia.
 


Author Social Media Links:

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

#BookReview Bone Box by Faye Kellerman @FreshFiction

Bone Box by Faye Kellerman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In this thrilling chapter in Faye Kellerman’s bestselling series, Rina Lazarus makes a shocking discovery in the woods of her upstate New York community that leads her husband, police detective Peter Decker, through a series of gruesome, decades old, unsolved murders, pointing to a diabolical, serial killer who’s been hiding in plain sight.

On a bright and crisp September morning, while walking a bucolic woodland trail, Rina Decker stumbles upon human remains once buried deep beneath the forest grounds. Immediately, she calls her husband, Peter, a former detective lieutenant with LAPD, now working for the local Greenbury Police. Within hours, a vista of beauty and tranquility is transformed into a frenetic crime scene. The body has been interred for years and there is scant physical evidence at the gravesite: a youthful skeleton, a skull wound and long dark strands of hair surrounding the bony frame. As Decker and his partner, Tyler McAdams, further investigate, they realize that they’re most likely dealing with a missing student from the nearby Five Colleges of Upstate—a well-known and well-respected consortium of higher learning where Rina works.

And when more human remains are found in the same area, Decker and McAdams know this isn’t just a one-off murder case. Short-staffed and with no convenient entry into the colleges, Decker enlists Rina’s help to act as the eyes and ears of campus gossip. Winding their way through a dangerous labyrinth of steely suspects and untouchable academics, Decker, McAdams, and Rina race to protect their community from a psychopathic killer still in the area—and on the hunt for a fresh victim.


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The fabulous cover for BONE BOX was the first thing that caught my attention and I found the blurb fascinating. It all starts with Rina Lazarus out on a walk in the woods, taking in the scenery not at all expecting to find human remains. Someone has buried a body and her husband police detective Peter Decker, a former detective lieutenant with LAPD, now working for Greenbury Police has to figure out both the identity of the dead person and who's behind the murder. And, it gets worse another body is found. It seems that there is a serial killer loose.

READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION

#BookReview Det sista experimentet (The Last experiment) by Emma Ångström

Det sista experimentet by Emma Ångström
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A young woman wakes up locked in a dark and cold room. She does not know where she is. She does not remember how she got there. It feels like she is living buried, as though she walks around in a coffin far below the ground. Someone seems to have plans for her, and the horrible truth is discovered soon.

The summer of 1995 is the hottest summer for decades and fourteen-year-old Dante is going to spend promising in picturesque Sundborn with his eccentric grandfather. There is also Signe who has a penchant for the occult and Dante's charismatic childhood friend Freja.

But the summer idyll is soon broken and a new world opens when Freja draws Dante into a whirlwind of black art and unknown forces.

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I'm disappointed! Emma Ångström debut book was great, but this one started off promising, but as the story progressed did I find myself more and more dissatisfied with the way the story took. 

Thankfully did I listen to the audiobook and it was a short book so it didn't take much time (double the speed and the hours flew by)! I spoil the book a bit now, so don't read the rest of the review if you don't want to have an inkling about the ending!

First, nothing really happened for the first half the book and then the last part of the book was really bad. It felt like reading a YA book, and the author throws in a lot of paranormal history since the main characters are teenagers and didn't have so much beforehand knowledge. But, for the reader (for me at least) was the way author had incorporated all this history plain boring to listen to. Perhaps, it would have worked better if I had cared more for the characters. Then, we have the last part, IDIOTS! I mean the last 1/3 of the book made me seriously irritated and I mentally just wanted the kids to sit down and watch the movie flatliners and see how bad it is to wonder what happens after death. IDIOTS!

Also, there is a side story with a kidnapped woman (obviously in present time) and that part was even worst to listen to and the conclusion of that story, the connection this had to the Dante and Freja's story in the past was neither surprising nor especially interesting.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

#BookReview Caroline: Little House, Revisited by Sarah Miller @WmMorrowBooks

Caroline: Little House, Revisited by Sarah Miller
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In this novel authorized by the Little House estate, Sarah Miller vividly recreates the beauty, hardship, and joys of the frontier in a dazzling work of historical fiction, a captivating story that illuminates one courageous, resilient, and loving pioneer woman as never before—Caroline Ingalls, "Ma" in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s beloved Little House books.

In the frigid days of February, 1870, Caroline Ingalls and her family leave the familiar comforts of the Big Woods of Wisconsin and the warm bosom of her family, for a new life in Kansas Indian Territory. Packing what they can carry in their wagon, Caroline, her husband Charles, and their little girls, Mary and Laura, head west to settle in a beautiful, unpredictable land full of promise and peril.

The pioneer life is a hard one, especially for a pregnant woman with no friends or kin to turn to for comfort or help. The burden of work must be shouldered alone, sickness tended without the aid of doctors, and babies birthed without the accustomed hands of mothers or sisters. But Caroline’s new world is also full of tender joys. In adapting to this strange new place and transforming a rough log house built by Charles’ hands into a home, Caroline must draw on untapped wells of strength she does not know she possesses.

For more than eighty years, generations of readers have been enchanted by the adventures of the American frontier’s most famous child, Laura Ingalls Wilder, in the Little House books. Now, that familiar story is retold in this captivating tale of family, fidelity, hardship, love, and survival that vividly reimagines our past.


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OK, I just wanted to say that this book, I really wanted to love the story more than I did. I love the TV series and the books the show is also good. And, this book is one that I really, really looked forward to reading. However, I found that the story never really got to me.

I liked the whole idea of reading the book from Caroline's perspective, as a young wife and mother on her way to a new home. Her fears as she is pregnant and the whole idea of leaving everything and everyone behind got to me. It's just the everyday worries during the travel, well it felt a bit tedious to read about. Sure, it was interesting, but at the same time did I feel that it went on and one now and then. 

I liked the idea of the book, about reading about Charles, Caroline, and the children traveling to Kansas. If you have read the books and/or seen the TV series is this a must read. Sure, I found the story not perhaps living up to my expectations, but at the same time was it interesting to get Caroline's POV on leaving the old life behind. And, her worries about the baby was the thing that really got to me, just the thought of how worrisome everything would be, not even knowing if there would be someone in Kansas there to help her with the birthing. I just wish the story had been a bit more moving or in some way more engrossing. 

I almost forgot to bring up the best thing, Mr. Edwards. I was so thrilled when he showed up. He's my favorite character and he did bring much enjoyment to the book and I loved reading about how he saved Christmas for the children. I can't believe that I almost forgot this. So, there were some bright spots in this boo, like the presence of Mr. Edwards. 

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through Edelweiss for an honest review!

Monday, 18 September 2017

#CoverReveal Seven Seconds by Lisa Compton (@LisaCompton1210) @PerpetuityBooks


Seven Seconds by Lisa Compton marks the debut of a thrilling paranormal crime series.

Olivia Osborne, a forensic psychologist and former FBI agent, is blessed (or cursed depending on who you ask) with unique gifts. Olivia is able to sense what others cannot--the spiritual presence of those who have "crossed over," as well as the living who are influenced, or some cases possessed, by evil. The passing of her beloved Gran was the catalyst Olivia Osborn needed to leave the FBI behind and return to her native San Antonio. But a familiar evil has followed her home. 

When a series of brutal murders rock her hometown of San Antonio, Texas, Olivia is pulled into the investigation despite her plans to leave that part of her life behind. What if she isn’t supposed to run? What if she was always supposed to stand and fight?
  
Seven Seconds will launch in December 2017 through all major retailers in eBook, paperback, and hard cover formats. 

Additional information about the author can be found at www.Perpetuitybooks.com.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

#BookReview Close to Home by Robert Dugoni @AmazonPub

Close to Home by Robert Dugoni
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

While investigating the hit-and-run death of a young boy, Seattle homicide detective Tracy Crosswhite makes a startling discovery: the suspect is an active-duty serviceman at a local naval base. After a key piece of case evidence goes missing, he is cleared of charges in a military court. But Tracy knows she can’t turn her back on this kind of injustice.

When she uncovers the driver’s ties to a rash of recent heroin overdoses in the city, she realizes that this isn’t just a case of the military protecting its own. It runs much deeper than that, and the accused wasn’t acting alone. For Tracy, it’s all hitting very close to home.

As Tracy moves closer to uncovering the truth behind this insidious conspiracy, she’s putting herself in harm’s way. And the only people she can rely on to make it out alive might be those she can no longer trust.


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I was not sure that I would like this book or not. I have felt that the spark has gone out of this series while reading the last couple of books, and the one before this one was a real struggle to finish. However, I decided to give this series one more chance since I did like the first book very much.

So, how was it? To be honest, did I struggle at first with the book. The story did feel better than in the previous book, but I was several times mentally debating if I should stop reading or not since the story didn't offer any big surprises and it felt a bit sluggish. However, the story picked up when Dugoni decided to twist the story in a way that I did not foresee (thanks to not reading the blurb before starting the book) and then it got much better.

I'm not a big fan of reading about drugs, but one of the cops nieces overdosed before the events in this book, and for him did it get very personal to stop the deadly heroin from killing more people than it had already done by then. Then, we have the kid that was killed by a hit-and-run driver that case is also tragic. I was a bit surprised about how much of the story the blurb gives away. As I wrote before did I did not read the blurb before starting the book. I seldom do since they often give away too much information. And, here I was painstakingly trying to keep spoilers to the minimum and the blurb gives away several key factors. Why do I even bother? Anyway, I'm glad that I had not read the blurb before, that made some things more surprising and kept me interested in continuing reading the book.

Close to Home is an upswing from the book before. Not as interesting as the first book in the series, but interesting enough that I will read the next book in the series, especially because the way the book ended...

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

Friday, 15 September 2017

#BookReview Last Breath by Robert Bryndza (@RobertBryndza) @bookouture

Last Breath by Robert Bryndza
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

He’s your perfect date. You’re his next victim.

When the tortured body of a young woman is found in a dumpster, her eyes swollen shut and her clothes soaked with blood, Detective Erika Foster is one of the first at the crime scene. The trouble is, this time, it’s not her case.

While she fights to secure her place on the investigation team, Erika can’t help but get involved and quickly finds a link to the unsolved murder of a woman four months earlier. Dumped in a similar location, both women have identical wounds – a fatal incision to their femoral artery.

Stalking his victims online, the killer is preying on young pretty women using a fake identity. How will Erika catch a murderer who doesn’t seem to exist?

Then another girl is abducted while waiting for a date. Erika and her team must get to her before she becomes another dead victim, and, come face to face with a terrifyingly sadistic individual.

Gripping, tense and impossible to put down, Last Breath will have you on the edge of your seat, racing to the final dramatic page.


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First I want to say that this series is great and that you really should start to read them from the beginning. Sure, they are readable as stand alone, but I think it's worthwhile to read from the start, to get to know, Erika, Moss, Peterson and the rest of the characters from the very start.

One of the reasons that I like this series so much is that I enjoy reading about Erika Foster, who is still struggling to move on after her husband was killed in the line of duty. She's practically married to her work and, despite her cautious steps towards a new relationship is Mark still present in her life, despite him being dead for so many years now. I do like to see her taking steps towards a relationship, she has not many friends and, despite being a good cop does she deserve a happy home life as well.

Robert Bryndza is such a great writer and he really manages to write compelling stories that just makes you think one more chapter and suddenly you are halfway through the book. And, Last Breath is not an exception. I'm not always that fond of following the killers POV, when you know who he is from the start, name, and everything, but now and then it works. And, this time it did. And, let me tell you that is one sicko. A really creepy dude that appalled me. But, then again, his family, the milieu he has grown up in seemed not really have made it easier for him. Still, something must be seriously wrong in his head.

Luckily Erika manages to persuade Sparks to let her take on the case. I was a bit surprised over the fact that it did seem like Erika and Sparks were finally burying the hatchet. Although without giving away too much, did Bryndza manage to really surprise me here. You just have to read and find out for yourself.

A great book, just as the previous and a must read if you like this series!

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

#BookReview Angel: Out of the Past by Corinna Bechko

Angel: Out of the Past by Corinna Bechko
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Angel, a reformed vampire cursed with a soul, is tormented by a vision linking his shameful past to something very big—and very bad—that is coming. As Angel and his friend Fred begin trying to solve the mystery, the goddess Illyria gives Angel some insight and incentive. Then she really gets involved, and Angel discovers that it might be possible to change the future by changing the past.

Taken by Illyria, Angel and Fred find themselves in Illyria’s ancient past. The goddess claims it is a mistake, but when she discovers just when they are—in the middle of a battle between her past self and another god—she’s not ready to leave without attempting to change the battle’s outcome.

With no choice, Angel must help both past and present Illyria in a battle for their people and their land…

Collects Angel Season 11 issues #1-#4.


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Angel: Out of the Past was (thankfully) short so it didn't take much time reading it. The story isn't that memorable, with Angel and Fred going back in time to help Illyria destroy another god.   

Well, what to say other than this graphic novel really didn't turn out the way I expected it to do. I was charmed by the lovely cover and then I was seriously disappointed with both the art and the story. OK, the story was not totally bad, but at the same time was it not totally good. I have never been a big fan of Fred, and reading a whole graphic novel about her and Illyria was not really my cup of tea. 

I gave the graphic novel 3 stars at first, but as I was sitting down to write this review did I ask myself did I enjoy it enough to give it 3 stars? I mean the art was cringeworthy, they didn't even look like the characters from the TV series. And, neither was the art that appealing. It was just not the kind of art that I like, too sloppy. 


I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through Edelweiss for an honest review!

Thursday, 14 September 2017

#CoverCrush The Flicker of Old Dreams by Susan Henderson

For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!


With the quiet precision of Jane Smiley’s A Thousand Acres and the technical clarity of Mary Roach’s Stiff, this is a novel about a young woman who comes most alive while working in her father’s mortuary in a small, forgotten Midwestern town

“The dead come to me vulnerable, sharing their stories and secrets…

Mary Crampton has spent all of her thirty years in Petroleum, a small Midwestern town once supported by a powerful grain company. Living at home, she works as the embalmer in her father’s mortuary: an unlikely job that has long marked her as an outsider. Yet, to Mary there is a satisfying art to positioning and styling each body to capture the essence of a subject’s life.

Though some townsfolk pretend that the community is thriving, the truth is that Petroleum is crumbling away—a process that began twenty years ago when an accident in the grain elevator killed a beloved high school athlete. The mill closed for good, the train no longer stopped in town, and Robert Golden, the victim’s younger brother, was widely blamed for the tragedy and shipped off to live elsewhere. Now, out of the blue, Robert has returned to care for his terminally ill mother. After Mary—reserved, introspective, and deeply lonely—strikes up an unlikely friendship with him, shocking the locals, she finally begins to consider what might happen if she dared to leave Petroleum.

Set in America’s heartland, The Flicker of Old Dreams explores themes of resilience, redemption, and loyalty in prose as lyrical as it is powerful.

Some thoughts about the cover:

I love the open field and the blue sky. I get the sense of serenity when I see the cover and even though the cover doesn't show much more than that is it one that I find in all its simplicity, beautiful!    

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages






indieBRAG

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

#BookReview Taste of Marrow by Sarah Gailey (@gaileyfrey) (@torbooks)

Taste of Marrow by Sarah Gailey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A few months ago, Winslow Houndstooth put together the damnedest crew of outlaws, assassins, cons, and saboteurs on either side of the Harriet for a history-changing caper. Together they conspired to blow the damn that choked the Mississippi and funnel the hordes of feral hippos contained within downriver, to finally give America back its greatest waterway.

Songs are sung of their exploits, many with a haunting refrain: "And not a soul escaped alive."

In the aftermath of the Harriet catastrophe, that crew has scattered to the winds. Some hunt the missing lovers they refuse to believe have died. Others band together to protect a precious infant and a peaceful future. All of them struggle with who they've become after a long life of theft, murder, deception, and general disinterest in the strictures of the law.


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I'm seriously tempted to re-read the first novella in this series after finishing Taste of Marrow. This novella had everything that I hoped River of Teeth would have, a compelling story and characters that I cared for. I had some trouble getting to know and keep apart all the character (and hippos) when I read River of Teeth. But, this time it went fine. So, perhaps it was just me and not the story?

Anyway, this novella is a fast read, a what-if story about what would have happened if hippos was imported to the marshlands of Louisiana and the story takes place just a couple of month's after the ending of River of Teeth with Winslow Houndstooth's group split and he's now fearing that Hero is dead and desperately trying to find him/her. Hero (who is traveling with Adelia after she saved his life), on the other hand well, has a problem of his/her (he is mentioned as they during the book which trust me is confusing) own when Adelia's baby is being kidnapped and they have to get her back. And, that leads to new problems. A lot of action during this short novella, just the way I liked it! Btw, you just probably read River of Teeth before reading this one. Much easier to understand what happened and who they all are if one reads the first novella.

Taste of Marrow is great and I'm waiting eagerly for the next installment to be published!


I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through Netgalley for an honest review!