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**BLOG TOUR** Little Bones by Patricia Gibney

Detective Lottie Parker finds herself investigating a particularly harrowing case when Isabel Gallagher is found brutally murdered on the floor of her baby’s nursery, her hand clutching a razor blade. When another young mother goes missing, Lottie fears that the cases are connected and that more lives may be put in danger. With little evidence to go on, the Ragmullin detectives have a race against time to find out just what links the women and find the person responsible.

Patricia Gibney’s Lottie Parker series is one that I have enjoyed since the first book and Little Bones, the tenth instalment, is no exception. It is always nice to reacquaint myself with Lottie and the rest of her team and the author has excelled herself with this exciting and fast-paced plot.

As always, the plot grabs you straight away, with a mysterious incident that occurred some time in the past. I love a prologue that makes you think and this definitely worked for me as I spent the rest of the book trying to work out how this event linked to what was happening in the present day. This was followed by a particularly horrible murder that really pulled on the heart strings, setting the scene for what is a very gripping story, at times tense and emotional.

Lottie is a great character who also feels real to me. Her family take more of a back seat in this book than in some of the others, although it is always nice to spend some time with Lottie’s mum, Rose, a character who always has some of the best lines! Lottie is clearly still feeling the impact of previous events and, judging by a revelation in Little Bones, there is still more to come in the future.

If you’ve never read any of these books then this could be read as a standalone although I would advise starting from the beginning as it is such a good series.

With thanks to Bookouture and Net Galley for my ARC and to Sarah Hardy for organising the blog tour.

Twisted Lies by Angela Marsons

Detective Kim Stone has visited some horrific crime scenes throughout her career but nothing could prepare her for what she was about to see. The body of a man has been found at an industrial estate, death being a release after suffering unimaginable torture. When the news of his death is shared with his wife, Kim realises that something is amiss, a theory which appears correct when the family go missing. When another body is found in similar disturbing circumstances, Kim and her team need to discover what connects the victims before others suffer the same fate.

When you pick up an Angela Marsons book, you know you are going to be in for a good read and Twisted Lies is no exception. This is a series that is still just as fresh as it was at the start and, fourteen books in, the author is showing no sign of losing her touch!

The plot is a particularly gruesome one and tests the skills of Kim and her team. Like in previous books, one of the main strengths of this series is the characterisation and over the course of the previous books, I have begun to see Kim, Bryant et al as old friends. This is a series where the characters feel very real and even off-topic conversations between them are a joy to read.

For me, I have always enjoyed any scene between Kim and her journalistic adversary, Tracy Frost. The relationship between these two strong women has always been tumultuous, each of them secretly admiring the other. In Twisted Lies, we see this relationship ramp up to provide some truly comical moments but, at the same time, showing a thaw in the frostiness (if you pardon the pun!) between them. Frost’s tenacity has never been in doubt, but here we see her using her journalistic skills to the max, and she has certainly gone up in my estimation after reading this.

With an engrossing plot and likable, well-written characters, Twisted Lies promises to be yet another hit for Angela Marsons. Keep them coming!

With thanks to Bookouture and Net Galley for my copy.

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

Silent Scream

Evil Games

Lost Girls

Play Dead

Blood Lines

Dead Souls

Broken Bones

Dying Truth

Fatal Promise

Dead Memories

Child’s Play

First Blood

Killing Mind

Deadly Cry

**BLOG TOUR** The Lost Girls of Foxfield Hall by Jessica Thorne

Grief-stricken gardener Megan Taylor, tries to put thoughts of her missing in action brother out of her mind by taking a job at Foxfield Hall, restoring the maze in the overgrown gardens. She soon becomes interested in the mystery of the hall’s most famous resident, Lady Eleanor Fairfax, who disappeared in 1939 during the harvest festival. Although no body was ever found, Megan begins to wonder if she could have been murdered. There is also the possibility that she ran away in order to avoid a marriage to someone she didn’t love or could it even have something to do with her father’s war work? Megan finds the maze drawing her in, feeling that the truth could lie inside. Will she discover what happened to Eleanor or will she become the next woman to simply disappear without a trace?

If you had the opportunity to prevent a past tragedy from happening, not knowing how your actions would affect the future, would you do it? This is the dilemma faced by Megan when she is somehow transported back to 1939, days before the disappearance of Lady Eleanor Fairfax. Ellie, as she is known, is about to find her world turned upside down due to the outbreak of World War Two, her fiancé’s involvement in the armed services and her father’s secret war work meaning that she is left in the care of Ava Seaborne, her father’s new secretary. Ava was a mysterious character, this feeling of forebording becoming stronger when Megan encountered a Dr Faye Seaborne. A familial connection or something else entirely?

The Lost Girls of Foxfield Hall packs in an awful lot, switching genres effectively throughout. Part mystery, science-fiction, history and romance, it was the time travel element that fascinated me the most. The two lead characters, Megan and Ellie, were both strong women, Ellie in particular showing great tenacity when faced with her future. Knowing the fate that was about to befall her, yet not knowing exactly how it was to happen, I admired Ellie’s determination to get to the truth, not letting the aforementioned Ava Seaborne stop her in her tracks.

Jessica Thorne managed to blindside me numerous times, leaving me wondering which characters were on the side of Ellie and Megan and which ones were not. This definitely kept me on my toes throughout! In such a complex plot, I was pleased that there were no loose ends left at the end, the story reaching a satisfying conclusion.

With thanks to Bookouture and Netgalley for my ARC and to Noelle Holten for orgainsing the blog tour.

Buy  Link:         

Amazon: https://geni.us/B08WPZDM5GCover

Apple: http://ow.ly/Hg8l50DDmJl 

Kobo: http://ow.ly/fiuJ50DDmI2

Google: http://ow.ly/iqP350DDmPK

**BLOG TOUR** Silent Voices by Patricia Gibney

Beth Mullen returns home expecting to find her twin sister, Rachel, at the house they share but she is not prepared for what she does find – Rachel is dead in her bed, seemingly poisoned in what looks like a horrifically painful death. Detective Lottie Parker realises that Ragmullin has another serial killer when a second woman is found dead in similar circumstances, a shard of glass having been found in both of their throats. When Lottie’s fiancé, Boyd, goes missing before their wedding, she knows it is something to do with the case. Can she find him before he suffers the same fate as the women?

This is the ninth book in Patricia Gibney’s Lottie Parker series and I am enjoying reading them just as much as ever. Over the course of the series, we have got to know Lottie, her family and her colleagues really well and each new book is like catching up with old friends. In Silent Voices, we see Lottie finally about to put her troubled past behind her by marrying her fiancé and colleague, Boyd. After everything that has happened to Lottie since the death of her first husband, we cannot begrudge her a little happiness but, in true Detective Parker style, you just know that things would not run smoothly!

This is probably one of the most complex plots of this series with numerous characters making you wonder how they were all going to connect. The author manages to do this with ease as the book progresses and, by the end, I felt I had a complete picture of who everyone was and how they became involved in such a heinous crime. This is a book very much about secrets and although we are given a hint quite early on in the book as to the event that triggered the murders, we do not know who the person is that it is referring to, leaving you guessing right until the end.

I think what I liked most in Silent Voices was how there were numerous, seemingly unconnected plots, each one tying together neatly by the end. I found myself connecting most with the character of Maddy, someone who Boyd encounters and becomes concerned about. I willed everything to work out well for Maddy and hoped that whatever it was that she had experienced in her past would be able to be resolved.

Silent Voices is another great book in the Lottie Parker series and, without giving too much away, I hope that the detective finds her happiness in book 10!

With thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for my copy and to Sarah Hardy for organising the blog tour.

Deadly Cry by Angela Marsons

A little girl is found in a busy shopping centre all alone, her mother, Katrina, having seemingly disappeared. When Katrina’s body is found in an abandoned building, DI Kim Stone is perplexed – why would anyone want to kill a mother out shopping with her young daughter? When a second body of a woman is found, killed in the same way, her young son missing, Stone fears that she has a serial killer on her patch. A letter purporting to be from the murderer addressed to Kim worries her even more – he needs to be found before something happens to the missing boy.

I think I am running out of words to say about the Kim Stone series as we are now thirteen books in and I am loving these books just as much as I did when it first started. From the first book, we have seen Kim’s team develop to the point where they are now like old friends to the reader, each person bringing their own skills to a close-knit group of detectives. I love how Kim trusts her team, letting them work on cases without too much interference, knowing that they can be relied upon to bring in the results.

The story has multiple plots, each one contributing towards a fascinating case for Kim. In addition to the murders, Stacey finds herself re-investigating two rapes where she wonders whether the right man has been convicted. Over the course of this series, we have seen Stacey’s character grow in confidence to the point where she now feels strong enough to question the work of other detectives. I found the end of the book intriguing and I can’t wait to see what plans Kim (and Angela!) has for Stacey in forthcoming books.

As well as the humour throughout the book, mainly in the interactions between Kim and Bryant, Angela Marsons is incredibly adept at pulling at the heartstrings. There is a very touching scene between Penn and his brother, Jasper, who are trying to come to terms with the death of their mother. Although a minor character, I have great affection for Jasper and enjoy the relationship he has with Penn and hope that he becomes a regular feature in later books.

The Kim Stone series is going from strength to strength and I am already looking forward to the next one. I’ve said it before but would a TV company please make this into a series?! It would be a sure-fire ratings winner!

With thanks to Bookouture and Net Galley for my ARC.

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

Silent Scream

Evil Games

Lost Girls

Play Dead

Blood Lines

Dead Souls

Broken Bones

Dying Truth

Fatal Promise

Dead Memories

Child’s Play

First Blood

Killing Mind

**BLOG TOUR** Close to the Bone by Susan Wilkins

When the bludgeoned body of local businessman Greg Porter is found at the apartments he was developing, the case becomes personal for DS Megan Thomas. Her sister, Debbie, had been working for Porter as a cleaner and she was not expecting to find herself so embroiled in a murder investigation. Megan faces a huge dilemma: which should she put first – family or her job?

Close to the Bone is the second in the Megan Thomas series and while I definitely enjoyed the first, Buried Deep, this one is even better. You do not need to have read the previous book as there are no spoilers in this one, but I feel that by doing so, I had acquired a good understanding of what makes Megan tick and a knowledge of her backstory is definitely beneficial.

We discover quite early on that the murdered man is not exactly a paragon of virtue and as the book develops, we realise that there are many people who may have wanted him dead. Due to the connection her sister has with the case, Megan is sidelined and is, instead, asked to work with the National Crime Agency as part of their investigation into human trafficking. With events that have been going on recently, this is a very topical plot and really brings home the plight of these people who are preyed upon by unscrupulous traffickers, their only ‘crime’ being to want a better life for their families.

Megan is showing herself to be a very competent detective, but events from her past are clearly affecting her mental well-being and preventing her from moving further up the promotional ladder. One name from her previous post keeps getting mentioned and I wonder if this is a person who we may meet in a forthcoming book.

This is turning into a very promising series with great plots and a range of believable characters. I’m already looking forward to seeing what Susan Wilkins gives us next!

With thanks to Bookouture and Net Galley for my ARC and to Noelle Holten for organising the blog tour.

 

 

**COVER REVEAL** Who’s Next? by Chris Merritt

I’m really please to be taking part in the cover reveal for Chris Merrit’s latest book, Who’s Next?, which will be published by Bookouture on September 11th. If this looks like your sort of book, it can be pre-ordered here: Pre-order link

About the Author

Hello! I’m a British author whose crime thrillers combine psychology, suspense, and characters you care about.

All my novels are set in London, where I live. My first trilogy starred Zac Boateng and Kat Jones, two detectives motivated by family, who tackle organised crime and police corruption. LAST WITNESS, the second Boateng and Jones book, reached #13 in the UK Kindle chart in 2019.

My second series features detective Dan Lockhart – an ex-soldier with a missing wife – and psychologist Dr Lexi Green, an American living in London. These novels are darker, more psychological serial-killer cases, with romantic relationships as a central theme.

I began writing fiction in 2014, after previous careers as a diplomat, based in Iraq and Jerusalem, and later as a psychologist working with victims and perpetrators of crime. I specialised in treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which sparked my interest in telling stories about how people cope when faced with extreme adversity.

Now, I spend most of my time writing novels and drinking coffee while *thinking* about writing novels. When I’m not writing, I love climbing and playing basketball.

You can find out more about my work at www.cjmerritt.co.uk or follow me on Twitter @DrCJMerritt

About the Book

Stumbling to the ground, he claws at the earth around him, trying to stabilise himself, but his attacker is on him in seconds. As he stares at the lights of the bustling streets on the other side of the park gates, he doesn’t even have time to yell for help before everything goes black.

When the body of wealthy businessman Charles Stott is found dead on Wimbledon Common, covered in bruises just feet away from his luxury home, Detective Dan Lockhart is called to investigate the shocking scene. Examining the sickeningly disfigured body before him, Lockhart knows he’s dealing with a brutal killer and, as he bends down to take a closer look, he notices something on the victim’s neck: a small, crudely drawn symbol in black ink. It seems the murderer has marked his victim, but why? Dan needs to get inside the perpetrator’s mind, so he contacts psychologist Dr Lexi Green.

As the ensuing media circus puts pressure on Dan and Lexi’s investigation, another victim is found and the headlines are quick to report a serial killer is on the loose. The body of a successful lawyer has been discovered in a park with the same purple bruising and hand-drawn symbol on his neck. Dan fears that more victims will follow.

As the case intensifies, Dan uncovers a new lead on his missing wife, Jess, who disappeared eleven years ago. Determined to follow it up, he must choose between tracking down a serial murderer and finding Jess. Can he make the impossible decision before the killer strikes once more?

Fans of Angela Marsons, Rachel Abbott and Cara Hunter will love this thrilling new series from Chris Merritt. From an explosive start to a heart-stopping finale, you will not want to put this book down!

With thanks to Bookouture and Noelle Holten.

 

**BLOG TOUR** Buried Angels by Patricia Gibney

When part of a dismembered body is found near to the railway line, DI Lottie Parker is horrified to find that it belongs to a child. It soon becomes apparent that the torso had been frozen, leading the police to believe that this is not a recent death. Why has no one reported a missing child and where is the rest of the body? After a local woman discovers a small skull when renovating her house, connections are made, but are they the right ones? Why have these body parts started appearing and who else must die to protect the secret?

Well, Lottie certainly had her work cut out with this case and it has definitely confirmed for me that Ragmullin is fast becoming Ireland’s answer to Midsomer due to the amount of murders occurring in a relatively small place! As well as having to deal with possibly her most complex case to date, Lottie is having to contend with numerous problems in her personal and professional life. Finally engaged to her colleague, Boyd, she is having to support him through his recent cancer diagnosis whilst also helping him with his sister due to the death of his mother. Added to this, Lottie’s daughter is also looking to move away from Ragmullin to live in America with her young son and there is also someone at work desperate to bring the detective down. With all of this turmoil, it’s a wonder she manages to solve the crime!

Buried Angels has arguably the most complex plot so far in any of Patricia Gibney’s books with numerous characters and plots providing a complicated yet gripping story line. What initially starts off as a cold case soon becomes much more recent as more bodies are found. It was obvious that all of these deaths were linked, but how? As the book progressed, it became apparent that there was a link to something that took place many years before and we become privy to some of this by the way of flashbacks. I was genuinely horrified by what I read, shocked by the depravity of the individual who Lottie would go on to reveal towards the end of the book.

With such a complex plot, I was pleased that the ending tied up all loose ends beautifully, linking each seemingly unrelated event successfully. The turn taken in Lottie’s professional life is an interesting one, and I can’t wait to see how the relationship between herself and her superior develops in the next book. I always look forward to reading the next Lottie Parker book and Buried Angels has left me in a similar position. Bring it on!

With thanks to Sarah Hardy for organising the Books on Tour and to Bookouture and Net Galley for my ARC.

 

 

 

Killing Mind by Angela Marsons

When the body of a young woman is found with her throat cut and a knife in her hand and no evidence of forced entry into her flat, D I Kim Stone agrees with the initial findings – Samantha Brown has committed suicide. After visiting her family to give them the awful news, however, something doesn’t sit right and another look at the body confirms the worst – she was murdered. When a second body is found, also with his throat cut, it is not long before a link is made to a commune called Unity Farm as both murdered people were known to have spent some time there. With the commune residents refusing to speak and with no actual evidence that would enable her to get a search warrant, Kim knows that she must send in one of her team undercover, putting them in a potentially dangerous situation.

As soon as I pick up one of Angela Marson’s Kim Stone books, I know that I am in for a treat and Killing Mind is no exception. Over the years, I have almost come to regard Kim and her team as real people as I feel I know them so well, and it is the strength of the characters that makes this series so readable. I like how Angela takes her time to bed in new characters, giving you a chance to get to know them, first with Penn and now with Tiffany, or ‘Tink’ as Kim prefers to call her. Tink plays a huge part in this book and, after getting to know her in a previous installment, I was totally invested in her involvement in the case, hoping that no harm would come to her.

I found the setting of the book – inside a cult – fascinating and although on the surface, Unity Farm seemed almost like a countryside retreat, a place to get away from the problems engulfing your life, it was scary to see how these people target the vulnerable, manipulating them until they have a very skewed view of reality. As Kim and her team discover more about the history of Unity Farm, I began to fear for the safety of her undercover officer, not just in case their identity discovered, but also in case they found themselves sucked in to the cult’s ideals. This provided numerous heart-in-the-mouth moments as danger seemed to lurk around every corner.

The second plot in the book is also a good talking point. Bryant becomes aware that a killer is about to be released from prison, a killer who has haunted the detective ever since he was a young constable due to him being one of the first on the scene of the brutal rape and murder of a young girl. Convinced that he will kill again, Bryant believes that he should remain incarcerated to prevent another death. I really enjoyed this plot, and fully understood the detective’s obsession with the killer.

Killing Mind is another unbelievably entertaining book by Angela Marsons, one that had me gripped throughout and had me reluctant to put it down. Surely it’s about time we saw Kim Stone on the small screen?

With thanks to Bookouture and Net Galley for my ARC.

Take a look at the rest of my reviews for the Kim Stone series:

Silent Scream

Evil Games

Lost Girls

Play Dead

Blood Lines

Dead Souls

Broken Bones

Dying Truth

Fatal Promise

Dead Memories

Child’s Play

First Blood

 

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