Showing posts with label Crime/Thriller/Mystery/Suspense. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Crime/Thriller/Mystery/Suspense. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Manos: Talons of Fate book

A shocking new chiller from the Winner of the 2016 Scribe Award!

What starts as a much-needed vacation for Mike, Margaret, daughter Debbie, and their dog, Pepe, escalates into a nightmare of fear and madness. Trapped by the wicked Master, his demonic brides, and the half-human Torgo, the family must endure the horrors of the night-dark desert to escape the vile coven. Once the terror starts, it never lets up in this new, deadly serious novel based on the classic cult film.

Manos: Talons of Fate book by s tephen d.sullivan

“In this version of Manos, the characters are revealed to be complex, believable people with reasons (no matter how misguided) for their fateful choices. The dark and twisted methods of the Manos cult are described in gruesome detail. This is a novel that lovers of horror will truly enjoy.” —Jackey Neyman Jones (Debbie from Manos) from her Foreword.
Read more

Monday, December 25, 2017

White is the Coldest Colour by John Nicholl

This is quite a book. It focusses on a very unpleasant and highly distressing subject…or rather, crime…and I confess I was a little apprehensive about how the story was going to unfold and if I really wanted to know, even. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book in which I’ve loathed one of the main characters right from the get-go—as in, the very first page. I should add that this is the author’s intention; he (the character, that is!) is quite simply a loathsome, evil person. Strangely, this makes the story very compelling.

What we have here is a novel with paedophilia as its core. Please don’t rush off with a ‘Sorry, not a subject I want to read about’. This is a story in the very capable hands of an experienced police officer and child-protection social worker who has seen things he very probably wishes he hadn’t. In his own words, it’s ‘dedicated to survivors everywhere’.

White is the Coldest Colour by John Nicholl

Dr David Galbraith is a child psychiatrist, upheld as an expert and talented man in his field. But the exterior hides a sadistic, murderous predator, a vile and controlling human being. Seven-year-old Anthony isn’t handling his parents’ break-up too well, so he is referred to the best: Galbraith. A dangerous, potentially tragic move.

I really couldn’t tear myself away from this book. You’re committed to finding out how disgusting and heinous this man wants to be. All the characters were brilliantly conceived: from the villains to the victims. Galbraith’s wife is one who makes quite an impression.

The topic is harsh and hard-hitting, but the story was very well executed. It was powerful, and I can highly recommend it…but beware of the lack of editing. Apart from the ‘usual suspects’, there was a rather annoying overuse of the ellipsis (I did a search and discovered it was used 558 times. Good grief!). And then there was the characters’ irritating habit of calling each other by name in most of their dialogues. So if you simply can’t overlook under-editing, perhaps it might be worth waiting (and hoping) that a more polished version is eventually uploaded.

Hot Pursuit by Susanne O'Leary

Read more

The Green Room by Faith Mortimer

The psychological thriller genre is probably my favourite. That, combined with one of my favourite authors and I’m in reading heaven. This was undoubtedly another winner in Faith’s ‘Dark Minds’ novels. 

In this third book of the series, a serial killer is sweeping Surrey, raping and strangling his victims. Ella, a competent nurse, has a policeman boyfriend, who, with inside knowledge of the case, instructs her to stay safe at all times. She believes she is perfectly safe; she lives in an apartment in a block owned and lived in by her parents and the tenant of one in particular is rather mysterious, but…very appealing...and as eager as her boyfriend to ensure her safety. The killer, however, cunningly manages to continue to evade the police, and with the information Ella’s boyfriend leaks to her confidentially, the finger seems to be pointing to one person. But she doesn’t find out until too late how far off the mark she is.

Had I been reading an actual book, I would have created a gale from the speed I was turning the pages. Every time, I thought I’d figured out who the killer was, I bumped into another red herring, resulting in another metaphoric breeze-making page-turning session. Not to mention when I finally—correctly, at last—realised who it was: it was a positive hurricane.

What I also liked about this novel was Faith’s commitment to the murder plot. Ella’s romantic…let’s call it ‘predicament’…takes a back seat to ensure this very definitely isn’t a romantic suspense story. The ending I thought…without giving too much away…was rather sophisticated. Who knows, we could well be seeing Ella again.

Another golden string to this author’s bow.

Read more

Monday, November 27, 2017

The Last Deception by DV Berkom

I’ve read a number of good books since my last encounter with ex assassin Leine Basso, and with each (most of them by new-to-me authors), I had to hope they’d all be worth my time investment. I never have to 'hope' with a Basso adventure. You all know the sort of book: one that comes with an unwritten guarantee of excellence.

Berkom alternates books between two strong and bolshy female protagonists: Kate Jones and Leine Basso, whose turn it is in this, the sixth of her adventures. No less strong, no less bolshy, no less kick-arse, no less no-nonsense. Determined, sassy, independent and cunning. This time, she’s wading through the dark and murky waters of espionage and deception that casts a very heavy shadow over the relationship between two super-powers.

What do I say that I haven’t said before? I could dive into Mr Roget’s best seller to try and find some alternative words for 'captivating, page-turner, thrilling', but I’ll keep it simple: it’s another bloody good book by a bloody good author.

Read more

The Last Book by Michael Collins


Just as well this book was decent enough for me to overlook the under-editing; it's never good if one of the main characters has a momentary name-change...(to mention just one example).

Two books of a trilogy by a best-selling author have unwittingly caused public unrest of the worst kind. Mark Payne, the ruthless, greedy, power-mad head of a giant corporation, sees a way to increase profits (and his own wealth) with the third book. Not a good time for Payne for the author to get writer’s block. But that book must be written at all costs. He enlists the help of one of his rising stars, Ethan Cross, to find a ghostwriter to ensure the book is completed. It then becomes a race between Payne and the team put together to stop him. Payne is clever, determined, wealthy…the team has to work hard to get a step ahead.

The book is a bit busy at the start…every chapter features a new character with no obvious links to each other, punctuated with chapters for ‘The Boy’. It does all come together eventually…so perseverance is required…as well as the identity of The Boy (if you haven’t already guessed it), and everything falls into place quite neatly. However, there are a few loose ends at the end …they’re not game-changing loose ends, but I did fleetingly find myself wondering, 'oh, what happened to/what happened about...'

For all that, it’s a story that’s intriguing, keeps up a good pace and holds your interest to the end.

Read more

The Woman in the Wood by Lesley Pearse

I really can’t understand the 4/5 stars reviews for this book. For starters, this author must have bunked the lecture on show and tell, because there was no showing at all. This made for a one-dimensional plot and flat cardboard characters. There was a good deal of head-hopping and some glaring grammatical errors. The writing came over as a tad immature and had the subject matter not been quite so disturbing, it could easily have been written for a pre-adult audience.

The story is set in the early 1960s, but you’d never have guessed. The attitudes and dialogue were more Victorian than mid-twentieth century.

Fifteen-year-old twins, Duncan and Maisy, are sent to their cold and unfeeling grandmother after their equally cold and unfeeling father commits their unwell mother to an asylum. With no help from Grandmother, they have to settle into their new surroundings and find new friends. One of these is Grace Deville, a woman who lives alone in the woods and about whom some unkind things are said.

One day, Duncan goes missing…the prospect of his return is diminished when boys of his age are found dead in the area. With the police not being exactly proactive, it falls on Maisy to stay strong and believe her brother will be found. 

I was extremely irritated by Pearse’s constant reference to Duncan and Maisy as ‘the twins’. ‘The twins’ are not an entity, they are two people…they are Duncan and Maisy. Pearse wouldn’t have referred to two different aged siblings as ‘brother and sister’ all the time. Twins aren’t a unit (I have twins and twin grandchildren), they are two separate people and like to be known as such. Pearse obviously has no experience of twins or she wouldn’t have made this dreadfully annoying faux pas. 

The plot concept is sound enough, but Pearse doesn’t handle it very well and it all became a bit silly. 

My first read by this author and I’m afraid to say, my last.

Read more

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

Sunday Night. No, not the day before Monday, the name of the main character in this book. Yes, really. Too cheesy for me, but I tried to overlook this. However, Sunday…or Sunnie (who is anything but) is totally unengaging. She’s a war veteran and ex-cop with some serious issues. A traumatic past has moulded her somewhat, but it never actually becomes clear exactly what that was…the flashbacks are woolly and unclear. Present-day Sunday is a rather dour, personality-less, fun-less, passionless loner and is now a PI, partnered with her twin brother, Gus. (Two Nights...hmm.)  Although the ‘twin’ part of it seemed to raise a few eyebrows. Gus is quite a bit more likeable, thank goodness...I would have liked to see more of him.

So, Sunday is enlisted to find out who was responsible for a bombing that resulted in the death of two members of a family and the disappearance of another…Stella, the sister of one of the deceased. It’s certainly a case that needles Sunnie, making her determined to find all the answers.

The story moves at a reasonable pace, and if I’m honest, it held me enough to want to get to the end. However, I wanted to like Sunday, but she was just too colourless. The author adopts a clipped style…which I don’t like. I prefer verbs to have a subject…that style of writing just smacks of laziness. My copy was a pre-release copy, so I do hope the many, very irritating, editorial oversights were picked up. Hopefully, the editors spotted that the past tense of ‘must’ is very definitely not ‘must’.

I’m reluctant to recommend this if this author is new to you. If you’ve read previous books by her, you may be familiar enough with her to enjoy this.

Read more