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June 2021

***BLOG TOUR*** The Rule by David Jackson

Chaos ensues when Daniel, not realising his own strength, unwittingly kills a man. His parents know that if the murder is discovered, their vulnerable son will be taken away and will be unable to cope away from everything he knows. Disposing of the body, they hope that it is all done and dusted but little do they know that this is only the beginning. With the police closing in and others with less than honourable intentions looking for them, just how far will they go to protect Daniel?

David Jackson is one of my favourite authors and his previous book, The Resident, was one of my favourite books of last year. The Rule is another standalone, filled with the great writing and dark humour that I have grown to expect from this author.

Daniel is an absolute delight and, although there are other people we see more of, he is the character that, in my opinion, has the most impact. I spent the book willing him to be safe and hoping that his father could do whatever he had to do to protect him.

Daniel’s father, Scott, is another fantastic character. A good man who would do anything for his family, we see how one unfortunate event can change everything you once believed in. He is far from being a criminal mastermind, his naivety showing throughout the book as he gets himself into some terrifying situations. This is where David Jackson’s wonderful writing comes to the fore, turning some genuinely tense moments into humour in the blink of an eye.

It is always a pleasure to read a David Jackson book and The Rule is no exception. Fast paced and exciting with a plethora of well-written, believable characters, this deserves to be a huge hit!

With thanks to Sahina Bibi for organising the blog tour and to viper Books and Net Galley for my ARC.

Take a look at my reviews of some of David Jackson’s other books:

A Tapping at My Door

Hope to Die

Don’t Make a Sound

Your Deepest Fear

The Resident

Killing for Company: The Case of Dennis Nilsen by Brian Masters

When Dennis Nilsen was arrested at his Muswell Hill home, little did the police know that the proverbial can of worms was about to be opened. Within days, the civil servant had admitted to killing fifteen men and the name of Dennis Nilsen was about to be added to the list of Britain’s most notorious murderers. Here, with the assistance of Nilsen himself, Brian Masters tells the detailed story of the ‘Muswell Hill Murderer’.

Ever since watching the TV series, Des, which starred David Tennant as Nilsen, Killing for Company has been a book I have wanted to read. This review is based on the audiobook which is superbly read by Jason Watkins, the actor who played Brian Masters, the author of this book.

This is a very in depth look at the life of Nilsen and I particularly enjoyed the earlier chapters which chronicled his childhood in Scotland. The research into his family life was very detailed, and it was fascinating learning about the history of his family and how certain events could have, possibly, played a pivotal role in what was to happen in the future.

The details of his crimes are not for the faint of heart although I do not feel that the descriptions are too graphic. For me, the most chilling part of this case is Nilsen’s ability to carry on with life as normal, knowing that there were the remains of several young men at his home. While Masters makes it clear that some of Nilsen’s stories may not be 100% true, he certainly provides a valuable insight into what became one of the murder cases of the century.

This is a well-written, superbly-researched book that provides a fascinating look into the life and crimes of one of Britain’s most infamous killers.

The Weeping Lady Conspiracy by Alexandra Walsh

Perdita and Piper Rivers are now settled into their new life at Marquess House, but a violent storm threatens to uncover more secrets. In this short story, following on from the previous three books, what new mysteries are about to be revealed?

I really enjoyed reading the Marquess House trilogy and so, while I was pre-ordering Alexandra Walsh’s next book, The Wind Chime, I was thrilled to see that there was also a short story about Perdita and Piper that I hadn’t yet read. This does contain some spoilers, so if this sounds like your sort of book, it would definitely be worthwhile reading the others first.

Told in two time frames, we learn of a convent in 1486 where the bones of a suspected saint have been discovered. Before a sacred shrine can be erected, Mother Superior, Sister Non, knows she has to intervene to prevent her secret from being revealed. Just who do the bones belong to? This story is taken up in the present day by the Rivers sisters, as they aim to uncover the truth behind a centuries-old ghost story.

The Weeping Lady Conspiracy moves on at a good pace and is a perfect read for anyone who enjoys dual time frame novels. I am also pleased to see that the trilogy has now become a saga and I am eagerly awaiting the, as yet, unnamed fourth book in the series.

Take a look at my reviews of the rest of the series:

The Catherine Howard Conspiracy

The Elizabeth Tudor Conspiracy

The Arbella Stuart Conspiracy

The Family Tree by Steph Mullin and Nicole Mabry

After taking a DNA test, Liz Catalano is shocked to discover that she is adopted. Feeling that her whole life has been a lie, she is determined to find her biological family in order to discover where she actually came from. What starts as a family search soon turns into something more sinister – her DNA is connected to a notorious serial killer who has been operating for decades. The Tri-State killer abducts pairs of young women, keeping them hostage before killing them and it would seem that time is running out for his latest victims. With Liz desperate to get to know her new family, is she walking straight into a trap that will see her becoming the next victim?

As a family historian who loves reading books about serial killers, the blurb for this book ticked all of the boxes for me. I have enjoyed reading genealogical fiction for many years but it is only recently that I have seen authors venture into the world of DNA, something that I feel opens up so many potential storylines. In The Family Tree, this is used with great effect as we see Liz dealing with not only the news of her adoption but that her biological family contains an active serial killer.

I really felt for Liz and although I felt her treatment of her adoptive family was, initially, very poor, I could understand her desire to seek out her roots. Even after she discovered the reality of her biological family, it was easy to see why she did not want to break this newly-found bond, even if it was with a serial killer.

The story moves on at a good pace, providing clues and red herrings about who the killer is. We do get to read about the unnamed killer in flashback chapters where we are introduced to his particularly sadistic crimes. This is one terrifying individual, the scenes made even more chilling with his captives’ realisation that others have gone before them.

The Family Tree is an easy to read book with a great plot that kept me more than entertained. Highly recommended.

With thanks to Avon Books UK and Net Galley for my copy.

The Redeemer by Jo Nesbo

When a Salvation Army singer is shot dead on the street, detective Harry Hole has very little to go on, leading him to think that this is a professional hit. When it emerges, however, that the wrong man has been killed, Harry finds himself investigating a case that leads him to the former Yugoslavia. With a case that takes in the homeless, drug addicts and people who want to stay hidden, Harry knows that he has his work cut out to bring the killer to justice befor he strikes again.

The sixth book in the Harry Hole series introduces us to a professional killer known as The Redeemer. Through flashbacks, we find out about his early life in the former Yugoslavia and how he has become the man he is today. I liked how the author gave us this information about the killer, a direct contrast to the chapters when we see him slowly unfolding after he realises that he has killed the wrong man.

Harry Hole, once again, shows how much of maverick he is by investigating areas that haven’t been thought of by his colleagues. Taking himself to Croatia to try to discover more about the killer, he soon realises that there is more to the story than meets the eye, leading him back to Norway to investigate a series of crimes involving the Salvation Army that have remained hidden for years.

The Harry Hole series is one that I like to dip into every now and then and my appetite has been whettted for the next one.

Monthly Round Up – May 2021

Slightly late this month – sorry! I’ve found it quite difficult to find the time to read this month as I’ve had little time to myself. I haven’t even managed to acquire many books either!

Books I Have Read


A Poison Tree by J E Mayhew

When a girl is found murdered, her shoes missing, DCI Blake discovers a link to a series of murders forty years previously. Is it a coincidence or is there a connection? With someone apparently on a murderous mission, will the Wirral detectives solve the case before they reach their goal. A great first book in the Will Blake series.



Henry VIII’s Secret Diary by Terry Deary

From the Horrible Histories series, a funny fictional account of Henry VIII’s life that children will love. Discussing all of the main events in his turbulent reign from his wives to the major religious issues, this has great illustrations to accompany the hilarious, yet accurate, text.


The Silent Suspect by Nell Pattison

The third in the Paige Northwood series sees that sign language interpreter trying to help a client who has been accused of murder. Did he do it or is he protecting someone? Paige, once again, puts herself in danger while trying to uncover the truth.


The Serial Killer’s Wife by Alice Hunter

A serial killer story told from the perspective of the wife of the perpetrator, but did she know all along what her husband had done? I really enjoyed this book and the different angle it took.



The Redeemer by Jo Nesbo

The sixth in the Harry Hole series sees the detective investigating the death of a Salvation Army officer. When it becomes clear that the wrong man has been killed, the race is on to find the killer before he strikes again. Review to follow.




Books I Have Acquired

The DNA results are back. And there’s a serial killer in her family tree…

Liz Catalano is shocked when an ancestry kit reveals she’s adopted. But she could never have imagined connecting with her unknown family would plunge her into an FBI investigation of a notorious serial killer…

The Tri-State Killer has been abducting pairs of women for forty years, leaving no clues behind – only bodies.

Can Liz figure out who the killer in her new family is? And can she save his newest victims before it’s too late?





So there you have it! Not a lot going on in May. I’m reading The Family Tree at the moment and am really enjoying trying to figure out the conclusion!

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