#ThisBookshop: Waterstones Liverpool One

Tuesday, 30 September 2014 0 comments


My favourite shop in Liverpool by far is Waterstones (and indeed the best Waterstones as they recently won Store of the Year 2014 and rightly so). For a book lover it really is the most magical place where you can easily spend hours perusing the shelves or sitting in the comfiest chairs (if you can get one!) reading a book. With a cafe and various events and signings each month it's really hard to leave once you are inside. (Oh, and it smells divine).

Review: Frances: The Tragic Bride by Jacky Hyams (5/5)

Friday, 26 September 2014 0 comments
She was young, very beautiful and had everything to live for – but the life of Frances Shea, briefly married to Reggie Kray, remains one of the most tragic stories of the Swinging Sixties.

Courted by Reggie as a schoolgirl, her eight-year relationship with him drew Frances into an outwardly glamorous world of nightclubs, fast cars, beautiful clothes and showbiz parties. Yet as time went on, she found herself struggling to cope with the real world of the Krays, the hidden world that lay beneath the glossy façade and the cosy cups of tea in the downstairs parlour in ‘Fort Vallance’, their East End home, a horrific world of violence, drink, drugs – and sheer terror.

By the time Frances married Reggie in their very public, celebrity-strewn ‘Wedding of the Year’ in 1965, her life – and that of her own family – had become inextricably linked with Ronnie and Reggie’s rapid downward spiral from gangland extortion and brutality into senseless murder and mayhem.

Possessive in the extreme, Reggie remained obsessed by his wife from the day he met her – but he was never prepared to let her go. And despite her desperate attempts to break free, just two years after their wedding, Frances was found dead from a drug overdose, in her brother’s flat, at the age of just 23.

Only now, 50 years later, in a revealing and sometimes shocking examination of the facts behind the myths, the truth about the life of Frances Shea and her marriage to one of the Kray twins can finally be revealed, bringing with it the troubled, secret story behind Reggie’s obsession with her. Unseen until now, documents and diaries reveal the reality of their life together – and how the effect of their tragic, doomed relationship continued to haunt the lives of those closest to Frances right to the end.

Review: Disappeared by Anthony Quinn (4/5)

Thursday, 25 September 2014 0 comments
DISAPPEARED introduces Celcius Daly, a Belfast Police Inspector laden with flawed judgment and misplaced loyalties. One of 2012's top ten crime novels.

A retired Special Branch Detective succumbing to early-stage dementia disappears from his remote home in rural Northern Ireland. An ex-intelligence officer is tortured to death. But why was his obituary printed in the local paper before his death? A son seeks his father's long-lost body and vengeance against those who murdered him. A stone-cold killer stalks the outskirts of Belfast. But at whose behest is he hunting his targets? And why?

All are connected by a single strand spun out of the past... but as Inspector Celcius Daly knows, the past is never dead... it's not even past.


Review: Saving Grace by Jane Green (4/5)

Wednesday, 24 September 2014 0 comments
From the number one bestselling author of Tempting Fate and The Accidental Husband, comes Jane Green's stunning new novel about a shattered marriage and a devastating betrayal. 
 
Grace Chapman has the perfect life, living comfortably with her husband, bestselling author Ted, in a picture-perfect farmhouse on the Hudson River in New York State. Then Ted advertises for a new assistant, and Beth walks into their lives. Organized, passionate and eager to learn, Beth quickly makes herself indispensable to Ted and his family. But Grace soon begins to feel side-lined in her home - and her marriage - by this glamorous, ambitious younger woman.

Grace becomes increasingly distressed, as nobody around her believes that Beth could mean any threat.Is Grace just paranoid, as her husband tells her, or is there more to Beth than first thought? Then an unexpected email from Beth's former employer changes everything. What is Beth really capable of? Can Grace get her life back? And what if she realizes it's no longer the life she wants?

Review: LA Nights (4/5) & New York Nights (3.5/5)

Tuesday, 23 September 2014 0 comments
A short story from the hilarious author of A GIRL CALLED SUMMER - find out what Tamara was up to before her Ibiza adventures!

Tamara Gold was Hollywood's biggest wildchild, but the time has come to settle down at last with the man of her dreams: Jack Meadows, hunk of the moment, has finally proposed. But now she has to meet his parents - the celebrated rocker, Filthy Meadows and his fiery wife, Maria Gonzalez - ex-groupie and tiger mother. Will Tamara be able to keep her cool with her future in-laws?

A cracking short story that takes place just before the events of A GIRL CALLED SUMMER.



#NetGalley Month Update (Objective Complete!)


My aim for #NetGalleyMonth was to clear my shelf and get a 100% ratio. I did request a few books during the month and some aren't out until October/November. So whilst I've done a lot of reading, those reviews are scheduled for nearer their release and I've fell behind a little bit on reviews recently! Still though I read them, left feedback via NetGalley and achieved the 100% ratio that I wanted.


Hall of Fame Review: The Sunrise by Victoria Hislop (5/5)

The new novel from million-copy bestselling author Victoria Hislop.

In the summer of 1972, Famagusta in Cyprus is the most desirable resort in the Mediterranean, a city bathed in the glow of good fortune. An ambitious couple are about to open the island's most spectacular hotel, where Greek and Turkish Cypriots work in harmony. Two neighbouring families, the Georgious and the Özkans, are among many who moved to Famagusta to escape the years of unrest and ethnic violence elsewhere on the island. But beneath the city's façade of glamour and success, tension is building.

When a Greek coup plunges the island into chaos, Cyprus faces a disastrous conflict. Turkey invades to protect the Turkish Cypriot minority, and Famagusta is shelled. Forty thousand people seize their most precious possessions and flee from the advancing soldiers. In the deserted city, just two families remain. This is their story.

Hall of Fame Review: Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella (5/5)

Monday, 22 September 2014 0 comments
Becky Brandon (nee Bloomwood) is in Hollywood! It's as if all her life has been leading to this moment. She's hanging out with the stars … or at least she will be, when she finally gets to meet movie superstar Sage Seymour, whom husband Luke is now managing.

There's so much to see and do! And getting Minnie through the hurdles for her A-list Hollywood pre-school will require some…er…help. 

Becky sets her heart on a new career - she's going to be a celebrity stylist. Red carpet, here she comes! But Becky soon finds it's tough in Tinseltown. Luckily her best friend Suze comes over to keep her company, and together they embark on the Hollywood insider trail. But somehow...things aren't quite working out as they’d hoped. 

Then Becky's big chance comes, and it's an opportunity that money can't buy. But will it cost her too much?

Review: Dark Dawn by Matt McGuire (5/5)

Sunday, 21 September 2014 0 comments
Dark Dawn is an exciting crime debut that exposes the hidden underbelly of the new Northern Ireland, a world of drug dealing, financial corruption and vigilante justice.

Belfast. January 2005.

Acting Detective Sergeant John O'Neill stands over the body of a dead teenager. The corpse was discovered on the building site of a luxury development overlooking the River Lagan. Kneecapped then killed, the body bears the hallmarks of a punishment beating. But this is the new Northern Ireland - the Celtic Tiger purrs, the Troubles are over, the paramilitaries are gone. So who is the boy? Why was he killed?

O'Neill quickly realises that no one cares who the kid is - his colleagues, the politicians, the press - making this case one of the toughest yet. And he needs to crack this one, his first job as Principle Investigator, or he risks ending up back in uniform. Disliked by the Chief Inspector and with his current rank yet to be ratified, O'Neill is in a precarious position.

With acute insight, Matt McGuire's cracking debut exposes the hidden underbelly of the new Northern Ireland, a world of drug dealing, financial corruption and vigilante justice. 

Review: NYPD Red 2 by James Patterson & Marshall Kemp (4/5)

Friday, 19 September 2014 0 comments
NYPD Red – the task force attacking the most extreme crimes in America's most extreme city –hunts a killer who is on an impossible mission.

A vigilante serial killer is on the loose in New York City, tracking down and murdering people whose crimes have not been punished. The number of victims grows, and many New Yorkers secretly applaud the idea of justice won at any price.

NYPD Red Detective Zach Jordan and his partner Kylie MacDonald are put on the case when a woman of vast wealth and even greater connections disappears. Zach and Kylie have to find what's really behind this murderer's rampage while political and personal secrets of the highest order hang in the balance. But Kylie has been acting strange recently – and Zach knows whatever she's hiding could threaten the biggest case of their careers.

Review: Lily Does L.A. by Nicola Doherty (4/5)

Thursday, 18 September 2014 0 comments
The second instalment in this hilarious, romantic and unputdownable five-part series. Perfect for fans of Lindsey Kelk's I Heart... novels.

Lily is an actress. At least, that's what she tells people, even though she's currently working in a call centre and her last big part was an ad for Sofa Warehouse. So when she's invited to her cousin Alice's wedding in LA, it's a dream come true. Alice's fiancé Sam is actually a Hollywood agent; how can Lily fail to get talent-spotted? There's only one problem; not only is Lily banned from mentioning acting, parts or producers to Sam, she's expected to spend the entire week doing wedding-related prep (read: chores) with Sam's boring groomsman Jesse. But Lily firmly believes that rules were made to be broken ...

Girls on Tour is an irresistible new series where ordinary girls have extraordinary fun in faraway places. Expect the unexpected, the utterly hilarious and unforgettable, on this rollercoaster ride of love, laughs, surprises and sparks. You have a VIP pass to join each girl's adventure, so pack your bags and buckle your seatbelts, because just about anything is possible...


Review: The Hot Country by Robert Olen Butler (4/5)

1914: War correspondent Christopher Marlowe ‘Kit’ Cobb arrives in Vera Cruz, Mexico, to cover the country's civil war. 

A passionate believer in the power of a free press and the moral superiority of the United States, Kit is no mere observer. He assumes a false identity to pursue German diplomat Friedrich von Mensinger en route to a meeting with revolutionary leader Pancho Villa, and the correspondent soon finds himself up to his neck in political intrigue. 

Along the way he's nearly shot by a mysterious sniper, joins forces with a double agent and falls in love with a headstrong young Mexican woman who may be mixed up in the revolutionary plot.



Review: Created, The Destroyer by Warren Murphy and Richard Sapir (3/5)

Wednesday, 17 September 2014 0 comments
One legendary hero. One epic series.

Sentenced to death for a crime he didn't commit, ex-cop Remo Williams is rescued from the electric chair at the eleventh hour and recruited by a secret government organisation named CURE. From this moment, he ceases to officially exist.

From now on, he will be an assassin, targeting criminals who are beyond the law. Remo's trainer is a grouchy old Korean named Chiun, whose mastery of the terrifyingly powerful martial art of Sinanju makes him the deadliest man alive.

Together Remo and Chiun set forth on their epic, impossible mission to vanquish every enemy of democracy - every bad guy who thinks they can escape justice.

This is a new era in man's fight against the forces of evil.

This is the time of the Destroyer.

Breathlessly action-packed and boasting a winning combination of thrills, humour and mysticism, the Destroyer is one of the bestselling series of all time. 

Review: Stalked by Alison Hewitt (4/5)

Monday, 15 September 2014 0 comments
A young woman's harrowing account of being stalked by the man she once loved

Alison Hewitt was in the midst of training to be a family doctor when she met Al Amin Dhalla through an exclusive dating agency. He was a seemingly respectable businessman from Canada, so attentive and caring it was easy to ignore the warning signs - until he started, step by step, to take over her life.

Six months after they first met Al Amin's web of lies started to unravel and Alison became aware that he had a sinister dark side. When she tried to end the relationship, the unthinkable happened and she found herself the victim of an escalating campaign of terror. Even when Al Amin was found with knives and guns, the police had no powers to detain him. Nobody could have imagined the events that were to follow, as Alison was left fearing for her life. It would take all her strength to survive.

Brave and gripping, Stalked tells of one young woman's fight against the man who terrorized her, and her determination to defeat the fear and live a normal life.

Review: Poisoned Ground by Barbara Nadel (5/5)

Ex-soldier Lee Arnold and his Muslim assistant Mumtaz Hakim run a detective agency in London's ethnically diverse, crime-ridden East End.

Mumtaz is approached by an Egyptian woman, Salwa, whose husband is in Belmarsh on terrorism charges.

Salwa convinces Mumtaz of her husband's innocence and persuades her to go undercover to prove it. But Salwa is not what she seems.

Trapped in an old tunnel that leads to the London docks, will Mumtaz escape with her life?




Review: Pop Goes The Weasel by M.J. Arlidge (5/5)

Tuesday, 9 September 2014 0 comments
Starring returning heroine Detective Inspector Helen Grace Pop Goes the Weasel is the latest heart-stopping thriller from M.J. Arlidge, author of Richard &Judy Book Club pick Eeny Meeny.

A man's body is found in an empty house. His heart has been cut out and delivered to his wife and children. 


He is the first victim, and Detective Inspector Helen Grace knows he will not be the last. But why would a happily married man be this far from home in the dead of night?

The media call it Jack the Ripper in reverse: a serial killer preying on family men who lead hidden double lives.


Helen can sense the fury behind the murders. But what she cannot possibly predict is how volatile this killer is - or what is waiting for her at the end of the chase...

Review: Deserves To Die by Lisa Jackson (3.5/5)

Monday, 8 September 2014 0 comments
Judged

As he watches, her body drifts below the water's surface, forever altered. Before he disposes of each victim, he takes a trophy. It's a sign of his power, and a warning—to the one destined to suffer most of all…

Condemned

In Grizzly Falls, Montana, Detectives Selena Alvarez and Regan Pescoli are struggling with a new commander and a department in the midst of upheaval. It's the worst possible time for a homicide. A body has been found, missing a finger. Alvarez hopes this means a murderer with a personal grudge, not a madman. But then a second body turns up…

Executed

As the clues begin pointing toward a suspect, Pescoli's unease grows. Even with Alvarez barely holding it together and her own personal life in chaos, she senses there's more to this case than others believe. A killer has made his way to Grizzly Falls, ready to fulfill a vengeance years in the making. And Pescoli must find the target of his wrath—or die trying…


Review: Broadchurch by Erin Kelly (4/5)

Friday, 5 September 2014 0 comments
Inspired by the first season of the BAFTA award-winning ITV series, this is the official, unmissable Broadchurch novel. Incredibly moving and containing never-before-seen material, it takes you inside the minds and motivations of the unforgettable cast of characters.

It's a hot July morning in the Dorset town of Broadchurch when Beth Latimer realises that her eleven-year-old son, Danny, is missing. As Beth searches desperately for her boy, her best friend, local police officer DS Ellie Miller, arrives at work to find that the promotion she was promised has been given to disreputable Scottish outsider DI Alec Hardy.

When Danny's body is found on the beach Ellie must put her feelings aside as she works with DI Hardy to solve the mystery of Danny's death. As the case becomes a murder investigation the news hits the national press, jolting sleepy Broadchurch into the national spotlight.

As the town's secrets begin to unravel, members of this tight-knit community begin to consider those in their midst. Right now it's impossible to know who to trust...


Review: Private India by James Patterson & Ashwin Sanghi (4/5)

Thursday, 4 September 2014 0 comments
When Santosh Wagh isn't struggling out of a bottle of whisky he's head of Private India, the Mumbai branch of the world's finest PI agency.

In a city of over thirteen million he has his work cut out at the best of times. But now someone is killing women – seemingly unconnected women murdered in a chilling ritual, with strange objects placed carefully at their death scenes.

As Santosh and his team race to find the killer, an even greater danger faces Private India – a danger that could threaten the lives of thousands of innocent Mumbai citizens... 





Hall of Fame Review: The Wolf by Lorenzo Carcaterra (5/5)

Wednesday, 3 September 2014 0 comments
In this thrilling novel by Lorenzo Carcaterra—the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Sleepers, Gangster, and Midnight Angels—organized crime goes to war with international terrorism in the name of one man’s quest for revenge.

My name is Vincent Marelli, though most people call me The Wolf. You’ve never met me, and if you’re lucky you never will. But in more ways than you could think of, I own you.

I run the biggest criminal operation in the world. We’re invisible but we’re everywhere. Wherever you go, whatever you do, however it is you spend your money, a piece of it lands in our pockets.

You would think that with that kind of power I would be invincible. You would be wrong. I made a mistake, one that a guy like me can never afford to make. I let my guard down. And because I did, my wife and daughters are gone. Murdered by terrorists with a lethal ax to grind.

That was my mistake.

But it was also theirs.

I wasn’t looking for a war with them. No one in my group was. But they’ve left me with nothing but a desire for revenge—so a war is what they’ll get. The full strength of international organized crime against every known terrorist group working today. Crime versus chaos.

We will protect our interests, and I will protect my son. We won’t get them all, but I will get my revenge, or I will die trying.

They will know my name.

They will feel my wrath.

They will fear The Wolf.

Guest Post: Setting of The Hidden Girl by Louise Millar

Tuesday, 2 September 2014 0 comments
I'm excited to be part of the blog tour for Louise Millar's fantastic new novel The Hidden Girl. Today Louise is discussing the setting for The Hidden Girl which certainly makes for interesting reading. The Hidden Girl was the first book of Louise's that I read and I loved it, so look out for my review very soon.


When a country life dream turns into a nightmare . . .

Hannah Riley and her musician husband, Will, hope that a move to the Suffolk countryside will promise a fresh start.

Hannah, a human rights worker, is desperate for a child and she hopes that this new life will realise her dream.

Yet when the snow comes, Will is working in London and Hannah is cut off in their remote village. Life in Tornley turns out to be far from idyllic, who are the threatening figures who lurk near their property at night? And why is her neighbour so keen to see them leave? Plus Will's behaviour is severely testing the bonds of trust.

Hannah has spent her professional life doing the right thing for other people. But as she starts to unbury a terrible crime, she realises she can no longer do that without putting everything she's ever wanted at risk.

But if she does nothing, the next victim could be her . . .

The Setting of The Hidden Girl

As if this week wasn’t exciting enough with the arrival of the paperback of The Hidden Girl in bookshops, I’m embarking on my first blog tour. Thank you to everyone’s who’s invited me as a guest, especially to today’s host @bookaddictshaun from Liverpool, who loves ‘crime fiction and chicklit’.

So, to kick off, why did I choose Suffolk as a location for The Hidden Girl?

As a psychological thriller writer, I try to choose a setting that heightens the sense of vulnerability and isolation my characters experience, whether that is a lonely city street with unfriendly neighbours, or a remote rural spot where mobiles don’t work.
So my inspiration for Suffolk was not primarily the appearance of the landscape, but the number of times I’ve become lost there in a maze of narrow lanes with no signposts, and high verges obscuring my view.

As a writer, I found that intriguing: that you could be just a few miles from a town, but so disorientated. (And In case you think I’m just rubbish at following directions, two Suffolk readers told me recently that they still get lost, and they’ve lived there their whole lives!)
On one summer’s day, visiting family, I took yet another wrong turn down a dead end and did a U-turn outside a Victorian house. Its gate was locked, the shutters closed. Behind it was an overgrown walled garden. It was wild and beautiful, and looked abandoned.

I’d been considering a story for a while about what you would do if your last chance to have a much-wanted child lay in someone else’s hands. How far you would betray your principles to make it happen?

I imagined a FOR SALE sign outside this house, and a couple, Hannah and Will, stumbling upon it by accident on the way home from a Suffolk funeral to their small London flat. I imagined Hannah, at the end of her tether waiting to adopt, persuading Will that a move to this seemingly idyllic family setting might improve their chances with the agency.

As the idea took root, I then saw Hannah six months later, trapped in this new house by snow, up a ladder, frantically trying to decorate before her adoption social workers arrive for a very important visit – and then spotting something terrible out the window. Knowing with a chilling certainty that if she reported it, the social workers will have no choice but to postpone...

I set off home that day with plans to return with pen and camera to note down details about the Victorian house I’d found. But I never did. Because despite driving round and round, I couldn’t find it again.

And that’s when I knew I’d found the perfect hidden-away setting for a very creepy psychological thriller.

Thanks Louise! Also be sure to check out the other stops on the tour:





Blog archive

Copyright © 2014 Book Addict Shaun
Template by These Paper Hearts