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Emma Kavanagh

Monthly Round Up: April 2017

Welcome to the second of my monthly ’round ups’. I haven’t been able to read as many books as I would have liked, unfortunately, but I’m hoping to remedy that this coming month!

Books I’ve Read

cover.jpg.rendition.460.707The Killer on the Wall by Emma Kavanagh

This was one of those books where I was immediately grabbed by the blurb. Although I did enjoy it, I felt that it had a very slow start and took a while to get going.

 

Dying Games by Steve Robinson51oXpj-8ZIL

The latest of Steve Robinson’s Jefferson Tayte books was one of my most anticipated books of the year and it was not a let-down in the slightest. A fast-paced read containing some very macabre deaths!

 

34500937Dead Souls by Angela Marsons

Has Angela Marsons ever written a bad book?! This is probably the darkest of her Kim Stone series and one that is incredibly thought-provoking. One of my favourite reads of the year so far.

 

CockroachesCockroaches by Jo Nesbo

The second of the Harry Hole books, I found that this one was a big improvement on the previous book as we get more of an insight into Harry’s life and what exactly makes him tick.

 

Last Witness by Carys Jones

The follow-up to Wrong Number is a high octane tale of revenge as the heroine of the story is determined to avenge the murder of her husband. Review will follow on May 7th as part of the book’s blog tour.

 

 

One That Got Away by Annabel Kantaria

A tale of how appearances can be deceiving and how we can never really know what goes on behind closed doors. Annabel’s previous book, The Disappearance, was one of my favourite books of 2016 and this one did not disappoint either. Review will follow closer to the publication date in September 2017.

51ETyWXR--L__SX323_BO1,204,203,200_The Redbreast by Jo Nesbo

The third of the Harry hole books sees Harry finally dealing with a case in his native Norway – a case which has strong links to World War Two. My favourite of the series so far.

Books I’ve Acquired

IMG_1072The foggy streets of London’s Whitechapel district have become a nocturnal hunting ground for Jack the Ripper, and no woman is safe. Flower girl Constance Piper is not immune to dread, but she is more preoccupied with her own strange experiences of late.

Clairvoyants seem to be everywhere these days. Constance’s mother has found comfort in contacting her late father in a séance. But are such powers real? And could Constance really be possessed of second sight? She longs for the wise counsel of her mentor and champion of the poor, Emily Tindall, but the kind missionary has gone missing.

Following the latest grisly discovery, Constance is contacted by a high-born lady of means who fears the victim may be her missing sister. She implores Constance to use her clairvoyance to help solve the crime, which the press is calling “the Whitechapel Mystery,” attributing the murder to the Ripper.

As Constance becomes embroiled in intrigue far more sinister than she could have imagined, assistance comes in a startling manner that profoundly challenges her assumptions about the nature of reality. She’ll need all the help she can get—because there may be more than one depraved killer out there…

 

51vmfJ4pJiLTHERE’S A NEW KILLER ON THE STREETS…
A woman is found murdered after an internet date. The marks left on her body show the police that they are dealing with a particularly vicious killer.

HE’S IN YOUR HOUSE… HE’S IN YOUR ROOM
Under pressure from the media to find the murderer, the force know there’s only one man for the job. But Harry Hole is reluctant to return to the place that almost took everything from him. Until he starts to suspect a connection between this killing and his one failed case.

HE’S OUT FOR BLOOD
When another victim is found, Harry realises he will need to put everything on the line if he’s to finally catch the one who got away.

 

Ava doesn’t believe it when the email arrives to say that her twin sister is dead. It’s not grief or denial that causes her scepticism – it just feels too perfect to be anything other than Zelda’s usual manipulative scheming. And Ava knows her twin. Two years after she left, vowing never to speak to Zelda again after the ultimate betrayal, Ava must return home to retrace her errant sister’s last steps. She soon finds notes that lead her on a twisted scavenger-hunt of her twin’s making. Letter by letter, Ava unearths clues to her sister’s disappearance: and unveils harrowing truths of her own. A is for Ava, and Z is for Zelda, but deciphering the letters in-between is not so simple…A clever, twisty, suspense novel for readers of The Ice Twins by S. K Tremayne and Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberley McCreight.

 

Two women. Two versions of the truth.

Kitty lives in a care home. She can’t speak properly, and she has no memory of the accident that put her here. At least that’s the story she’s sticking to.

Art teacher Alison looks fine on the surface. But the surface is a lie. When a job in a prison comes up she decides to take it – this is her chance to finally make things right.

But someone is watching Kitty and Alison.
Someone who wants revenge for what happened that sunny morning in May.
And only another life will do…

That’s it for another month. I’ve got a few great books on my TBR pile that I hope to read over the next few weeks, and don’t forget to join me on the blog tour for Last Witness by Carys Jones on May 7th when, as well as a review, I will be sharing an extract from the book.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Killer on the Wall by Emma Kavanagh

cover.jpg.rendition.460.707

Finding a dead body is certainly a shock so finding three must be truly horrendous! That is what happened to fifteen-year-old Isla Bell when she discovered the remains of three people propped up against Hadrian’s Wall. Fast forward twenty years and Isla is working in forensic psychology, studying the minds of serial killers and , in the course of her work, has come fact to face with the man convicted of those killings. Then the killings start again. Everyone in the town is a suspect but who exactly is the Killer on the Wall?

I was drawn to this book immediately after reading the blurb and couldn’t wait to read it. There is definitely a touch of the macabre about bodies being posed after death and so it sounded like it was going to be a thrilling read. Initially, I found The Killer on the Wall quite difficult to get into and I found myself skipping through the parts where Isla was carrying out the tests on the convicted murderer. Although this part of the story plays a big part in the plot, this was definitely my least favourite part.

Once the first body of the second wave of killings is discovered, the pace really picked up and I began to enjoy the book a lot more. Although the blurb leads you to believe that this book is going to be about Isla, I found the character of Mina, the police officer, much more appealing. I really admired her tenacity although was worried that she was going to end up as the next victim!

In a town where everyone could be a suspect, there are a lot of red herrings thrown in to add to the confusion as to who the killer could be. Throughout my reading of the book, I did have two potential suspects in mind and one of those did turn out to be the culprit.

In all, I did enjoy most of this book, but I had hoped for a lot more.

With thanks to Random House UK, Cornerstone and Net Galley for the ARC.

Monthly Round Up: March 2017

I’ve always been envious of those bloggers who are able to produce a weekly wrap-up of their reading as I know there’s no chance I would be able to fit this in! I have, therefore, decided to start a new feature – my monthly round up!

Books I’ve Read

41bCxzTsx9LThe Bat by Jo Nesbo

The first of the Harry Hole series – a series that I’d been wanting to start for quite a while. This was not a quick read for me and I can understand why fans say it is not one of his best.

 

51GRMUtXmDL

Blood Tide by Claire McGowan

The fifth in the series to feature forensic psychologist Paula McGuire, Blood Tide is an atmospheric thriller that really makes you wonder if anyone can be trusted.

 

61gMJQkjzYL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Missing Man by Nathan Dylan Goodwin

A novella featuring Morton Farrier, taking us across the pond to Massachusetts as the forensic genealogist embarks on a search to find his biological father.

 

51BcZVVrpeL__SX324_BO1,204,203,200_Hope to Die by David Jackson

The follow up to the brilliant A Tapping at My Door, Hope to Die sees detective Nathan Cody investigating the murder of a woman in the grounds of Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral.

 

34368544Last Breath by Robert Bryndza

The online buzz surrounding Robert Bryndza’s books featuring detective Erika Foster just keeps getting bigger and bigger. In Last Breath, we find Erika investigating the deaths of young women who have been found mutilated and cruelly dumped.

 

ARIA_Flint_THE TROPHY TAKER_EThe Trophy Taker by Sarah Flint

No review yet as it will be part of the book’s blog tour, but suffice to say that this story of a serial killer who is removing the heart and finger of his victims has become one of my favourite books of the year so far.

 

Books I’ve Acquired

Cockroaches51ETyWXR--L__SX323_BO1,204,203,200_The next two books in the Harry Hole series. Other reviewers seem to think that the series really gets going during ‘The Redbreast’ so I’m looking forward to reading that one.

 

51mCV12k+uL__SX323_BO1,204,203,200_After seeing this on https://rathertoofondofbooks.com, I couldn’t resist requesting it on Net Galley!

When Louise Williams receives a message from someone left long in the past she feels sick.

Maria Weston wants to be friends on Facebook.

Because Maria Weston has been missing for over twenty years. She was last seen the night of a school leavers’ party, and the world believes her to be dead. Particularly Louise, who has lived her adult life knowing herself responsible for Maria’s disappearance. But now Maria is back. Or is she?

As Maria’s messages start to escalate, Louise forces herself to reconnect with the old friends she once tried so hard to impress, to try to piece together exactly what happened that fateful night. But when another friend’s body turns up in the woods outside their old school, Louise realises she can’t trust anyone and that she must confront her own awful secret to discover the whole truth of what happened to Maria . . .

Love like bloodI’ve loved all of Mark Billingham’s Tom Thorne books so was delighted to get this one on Net Galley.

A BLOODY MESSAGE
As DI Nicola Tanner investigates what appears to be a series of organised killings, her partner Susan is brutally murdered, leaving the detective bereft, and vengeful.

A POWERFUL ALLY
Taken off the case, Tanner enlists the help of DI Tom Thorne to pursue a pair of ruthless killers and the broker handing out the deadly contracts.

A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE
As the killers target their latest victim, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career and is drawn into a horrifying and disturbing world in which families will do anything to protect their honour.

cover.jpg.rendition.460.707

I loved the premise of this book – very macabre!

The first body comes as a shock

The second brings horror

The third signals the beginning of a nightmare

When fifteen-year-old Isla Bell finds three bodies propped against Hadrian’s Wall, her whole world falls apart. In such a close-knit community, everyone knows the victims, and the man who did it.

Twenty years on and Isla has dedicated her life to forensic psychology; studying the brains of serial killers, and even coming face to face with the convicted murderer who turned her world upside down. She is safe after all, with him behind bars.

Then another body appears against the Wall.

And another.

As the nightmare returns and the body count rises, everyone in town is a suspect.

Who is the Killer on the Wall?

51mYBRRes4L__SX316_BO1,204,203,200_

 

I loved Annabel Kantaria’s last book so knew I had to have this one as soon as I saw it.

Everyone has one. An ex you still think about. The one who makes you ask ‘what if’?

Fifteen years have passed since Stella and George last saw each other. But something makes Stella click ‘yes’ to the invite to her school reunion.

There’s still a spark between them, and although their relationship ended badly, they begin an affair.

But once someone gets you back, sometimes they’re never going to let you go again…

So there you have it – my first monthly round up! Here’s to a great April!

The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh

One minute Selena Cole is in the local playground with her children and the next she has disappeared. Returning the next day, with, allegedly, no memory of what has happened, it is up to Detective Constable Leah Mackay to try to piece together what occurred in those missing hours. When Leah’s brother, Detective Sergeant Finn Hale, is tasked with finding out who killed solicitor Dominic Newell, the two cases seem to become linked. Is Selena involved in the murder or is there something even more sinister going on?

The case is complicated even further due to Selena’s occupation as part of a company specialising in kidnap and ransom – that is the safe recovery of people who have been taken in kidnap-rife areas of the world. As connections are made between the murder and the world of K&R, it is up to Mackay and Hale to bring the killer to justice and also piece together what happened during Selena’s disappearance.

I found that this book took me several chapters to get into but, once I did, I was hooked. Told mainly from the perspectives of the two police officers, we get to see the independent investigations and also the points when they realise that the two cases intertwine. The world of kidnap and ransom was, on the whole, new to me, and so I found this aspect very interesting. It is obvious that much research has gone into this as shown in the occasional interspersed sections detailing fictional kidnap cases.

It is a given that, in all psychological thrillers, there will be a twist but often, these twists are signposted. This was not the case, however, in ‘The Missing Hours’ as I was genuinely surprised when the moment was revealed. My only negative would be the ending of the book as I felt that it finished a chapter too early.

‘The Missing Hours’ will be published on April 21st.

This book was received from Net Galley and Randon House in exchange for an honest review.

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