The Murder List by Chris Merritt blog tour @bookouture @DrCJMerritt

Source: Netgalley


The lifeless body sat, hands bound, silver tape over his mouth. Patches of blood had soaked into the cheap carpet around him. Zac had spent years gaining scientific insight into the mind: human motivation and behaviour. And this scene wasn’t right…

It’s been five years since Detective Zac Boateng’s daughter was murdered and her killer was never found. Now Zac is back working for the Metropolitan Police and is more determined than ever to bring the city’s killers to justice.

When a man is found brutally murdered in a rundown south London shop, all fingers point to the highly intelligent and manipulative Darian Wallace. Two years ago, the victim helped send him to prison. And he’s just been released.

Still grieving, Zac knows it will take everything he’s got to catch this dangerously clever killer. But just as he feels he’s getting closer, he realises all is not quite as it seems and he makes a devastating personal discovery.

Zac has a choice to make – risk letting this killer escape or watch his daughter’s murderer get away again…

An absolutely gripping thriller for fans of Mark Billingham, Peter James and Lee Child. The Murder List is one fast-paced thriller you won’t be able to put down.


Detective Zac Boateng’s world is crushed when his daughter, Amelia is killed in a hit-and-run. Five years later and Zac is investigating the brutal murder of a man in South London. Their only suspect is a man who has just been released from prison, Darian Wallace. And he knows how to play the police. But Zac isn’t the only person who is after him. As he and his team try to track Wallace down, Zac’s own, private investigations into his daughter’s murder takes an unexpected turn. Is he about to uncover the identity of his daughter’s killer? But at what cost?

The Murder List is an exhilarating debut novel by Chris Merritt. From the emotional, opening scene, in which Zac witnesses the murder of his daughter, we follow the characters on a pacy and tense ride. This book has all the ingredients that make a good crime novel and I really enjoyed it. Zac’s personal life was one of the main focuses of the book as he is still grieving the loss of his daughter. The grief that Zac feels is portrayed very well in Chris’ writing and I really liked the relationship that he had with his wife and son which gave his character a very human and relatable touch. Zac was a fantastic protagonist and I’m interested to see how his character will develop in future books, especially as Chris does leave us on a cliff hanger.

What I really enjoyed about this book was the characterisation; I really connected with Zac’s character, especially as he attempts to find out who killed his daughter and I could feel his anger as he fights to get justice. We also step into the mind of the suspect, Darian Wallace, and in these scenes I really felt the tension rise.

The Murder List is a strong debut by Chris Merritt. The plot makes for a hugely gripping and exciting read; I was kept engaged all the way through. If you enjoy dark crime thrillers with plenty of suspense and intrigue then I highly recommend this book. Thank you to Bookouture and to Netgalley for providing me with a copy to read and to Noelle Holton for the invitation to join the blog tour.

Publisher: Bookouture

Publication date: 21st March 2018

Print length: 318 pages



The Murder List - Blog Tour


#TheDevilsDice by Roz Watkins blog tour @RozWatkins @HQstories

Source: Netgalley


A white-knuckle crime debut introducing DI Meg Dalton, perfect for fans of Broadchurch and Happy Valley.

This game can only end in murder


A lawyer is found dead in a Peak District cave, his face ribboned with scratches.


Amidst rumours of a local curse, DI Meg Dalton is convinced this is cold-blooded murder. There’s just one catch – chiselled into the cave wall above the body is an image of the grim reaper and the dead man’s initials, and it’s been there for over a century.


As Meg battles to solve the increasingly disturbing case, it’s clear someone knows her secrets. The murderer is playing games with Meg – and the dice are loaded…




Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. To kick things off can you tell us a little bit about what your novel is about?

The Devil’s Dice is the first in a new series set in The Peak District where I live. It features DI Meg Dalton, who’s recently returned to Derbyshire to make a new start. When she’s assigned a suspicious death, it’s her chance to prove to her sceptical colleagues that a slightly chubby vegetarian with a limp can make a great cop. But it’s a sinister case – a poisoned corpse has been found in a cave, and on the wall there’s a centuries-old carving of the Grim Reaper and the dead man’s initials. The man’s relatives blame a curse dating from the times of the witch trials, and locals claim the cave is haunted. Meg’s sure there’s a rational explanation, but with talk of an underground labyrinth where teenage girls go to hang themselves, the case is triggering flashbacks and memories of her dead sister. It takes all her brains and a good bit of brawn (not Meg’s strong suit) to solve the mystery and stop her own family falling victim to the curse.

Some of the themes in your book focus on local folklore and the legends in Derbyshire? Is local folklore something that you have always wanted to write about?

I do love a good creepy folk tale – I suppose they are the urban myths of the past, and some of them are irresistible. I like to make up my own versions of them which tie in with the themes of the book.

And have you always wanted to write a police procedural novel?

Absolutely not! This wasn’t at all what I intended. The book started out more of a psychological thriller, with the detective not being the main viewpoint character. But her voice ended up coming through really strongly and in the end she took over the whole book! This gave me a load of additional problems, because I knew absolutely nothing about police procedure, and I constantly worry about inaccuracies. Luckily I had a friend who was a SOCO and whose husband was a detective, so they helped me out (over large quantities of booze!)

Parts of the novel are set in caves, which can be found in and around the Peak District. Did you ever venture into similar caves as part of your research?

Yes, I went into the caves at the Heights of Abraham, which are quite similar to the Labyrinth in the book, and in the past I’ve been into the caves around Castleton, some of which you have to access by boat. Being trapped in a cave and having to swim out underwater is one of my nightmares! I’ve also explored caves abroad in Thailand and Malaysia (where I’ve encountered cave snakes and spiders, as well as a lot of bats!)

Did your characters surprise you at all when you were writing the book?

Definitely. As I said, Meg took over the whole book without permission. And the murderer changed half way through the story. Also Meg’s mum ended up having a more prominent role than I’d expected. And the character Mark had a few rants that seemed to come out of nowhere!

Did you have the story planned out before you put pen to paper or did the plot evolve during the writing process?

The plot evolved. I had no clue when I started, and I began by just writing a few scenes. Then I realised I didn’t know what I was doing, so I read books on how to write a book, and I analysed successful books (Thank you, Anne Cleeves – I chose one of Vera’s stories to pick apart forensically). As I did this, I started planning a bit more and trying to put structure into my ideas. I read a lot of screenwriting books to learn about character arcs and story progression and I devoured anything I could find by agents and editors about what makes a good, commercial novel.

How long did you spend working on your novel before you started looking for an agent?

I’d been working on it about eighteen months when I went to the York Festival of Writing. The book wasn’t ready to submit but I had a one-to-one with Claire McGowan and she said she liked my first chapter and would pass it on to her agent, Diana Beaumont, to look at. Diana liked it and said to send it to her when it was finished. I did this and she liked it. We talked and clearly saw eye-to-eye about the book (and life in general!) and she offered representation. I realise this is an annoyingly easy path to getting a brilliant agent, and I’m very grateful to Claire and the Festival of Writing!

If there was one piece of advice that you could pass on to aspiring writers, what would it be?

Write something you feel passionate about, but also accept that writing a commercial book is a craft that needs to be learnt, so invest in books and courses and conferences to learn that craft.

If your novel was to be made into a television series, who would you like to see cast as the main characters?

Oh, blimey, I’m rubbish at this. The book has been optioned and when ITV asked me this, I said maybe someone like Katherine Parkinson for Meg, as she’s great with adding humour to serious roles. Jodie Whittaker was also on my list but then she became a mega-star! Carey Mulligan’s another one I like. All these are probably a bit too good-looking, but I suppose you have to hot-up the characters for the screen 🙂

And finally, is there anything that you can tell us about what you’re writing next?

The second book in the series is nearly finished. A man is found with this throat cut and it seems to have something to do with the nightmares his daughter’s been having after her recent heart transplant. Again there are aspects which seem a little supernatural, and Meg’s belief system gets challenged big time!


This was such a good debut. I loved that witchcraft was a theme in this book which added a spooky, creepy atmosphere to the writing. This theme, for me, really made the book stand out. The author, Roz Watkins, had me googling the local myths in this book which I was absolutely fascinated by. I’m excited to see that this is the first book in a new series; it’s a series that I’m keen to read more from.

Roz Watkins opens her novel with the discovery of the body of a lawyer in a cave in the Peak District. When Detective Inspector Meg Dalton arrives at the scene, strange markings are found on the stone wall and an eerie tale concerning the caves emerges. As the investigation progresses, unsettling details surface about a curse which has plagued the family. But what makes the case all the more perplexing is when another body is found. Could such a curse really exist?

I really enjoyed getting to know Meg as a character in this novel. She faces many obstacles in her path as she tries to bring the killer to justice but she is absolutely determined to do so, whatever the cost to herself and her career. She isn’t a character without her own problems and Roz explores some interesting themes in her backstory, I won’t go into too much detail here, but these themes I’m sure will prompt plenty of discussion in book groups. Ethical and moral issues do play a huge role in this book.

I also really liked her relationship with her side-kick, Jai. There were times when I did think that perhaps their working relationship wouldn’t work but as the novel progressed I did think that Meg would be lost without him, not as a colleague in particular, but as a friend.

The pace of the novel is excellent and exciting. As I finished each chapter I really wanted to find out what was going to happen next and Roz managed to expertly conceal the final truths in this book. She is an exciting new writer who I can’t wait to read more from. I’m sure her first novel in this series will win her lots of loyal, new fans. She is a talent to watch out for. Thank you to the publisher and to Netgalley for providing me with a copy of the book to read.

Publisher: HQ

Publication date: 8th March 2018

Print length: 384 pages





My Sister’s Bones by Nuala Ellwood Book Review @NualaWrites

Source: Purchased Copy


If you can’t trust your sister, then who can you trust?

Kate Rafter has spent her life running from her past. But when her mother dies, she’s forced to return to Herne Bay – a place her sister Sally never left.

But something isn’t right in the old family home. On her first night Kate is woken by terrifying screams. And then she sees a shadowy figure in the garden…

Who is crying for help?
What does it have to do with Kate’s past?
And why does no one – not even her sister – believe her?

The ‘shocking’ ‘haunting’ and ‘riveting’ thriller about the secrets even those closest to us keep, this book will keep you turning the pages late into the night. For fans of Clare Mackintosh, C L Taylor and Erin Kelly.


My Sister’s Bones, is a dark, atmospheric, twisty debut novel by Nuala Ellwood. We follow war reporter, Kate as she returns to her home in Herne Bay, England, after hearing about the death of her mother. Kate has an estranged relationship with her sister, Sally, who still lives in the town, and tries to make amends with her, even though Sally doesn’t want to hear anything more from her. But whilst she is home, Kate believes she has stumbled on a sinister secret, but how can she prove it when no one will listen to her?

Kate is haunted by the events that she has witnessed in Aleppo. She is suffering from PTSD and begins to hallucinate; she has dark dreams and visions about her time spent there. I found this aspect of the plot of My Sister’s Bones, absolutely harrowing, as we see Kate begin to crumble, and the scenes that she replays in her mind are very vivid and disturbing. Nuala Ellwood takes us into the heart of the troubles that have been going on in Syria and she brings them to the forefront of your mind and in these sections of the novel, the writing is very powerful. We also learn that Kate has been arrested, but we don’t yet know what it is that she is supposed to have done. Here the intrigue kept me turning those pages as I wanted to find out what had happened to Kate and why she was in a police station.

As well as Kate’s backstory as a war reporter, we also learn of the trauma that she and her sister faced in their childhood. Nuala peels back the layers of their relationship as the novel develops and there are some shocking twists and turns that will leave you reeling.

My Sister’s Bones is a very well written, multi layered novel. Nuala’s writing pulls you into Kate’s troubled world and it makes for an engaging and intriguing read. She is certainly a writer to watch out for and I can’t wait to see what she will write next.

Publisher: Penguin

Publication date: 7th September 2017

Print length: 400 pages


#29Seconds by T.M. Logan blog tour @TMLoganAuthor @BonnierZaffre

Source: Purchased Copy


The sensational new page-turning thriller from the number 1 bestselling author of LIES. Perfect for fans of FRIEND REQUEST by Laura Marshall and I AM WATCHING YOU by Tessa Driscoll.

Give me one name. One person. And I will make them disappear . . .

When Sarah rescues a young girl in trouble, she expects nothing in return. But her act of bravery puts a powerful and dangerous man in her debt. He lives by his own brutal code, and all debts must be repaid – in the only way he knows how.

He offers Sarah a way to solve a desperate situation with her intolerable boss. A once-in-a-lifetime deal that will make all her problems disappear.

No consequences. No comeback. No chance of being found out.

All it takes is a 29 second phone call.



Earlier this year I read T.M. Logan’s debut novel, Lies which I really enjoyed, so his second novel had a lot to live up to, and I wasn’t disappointed, it only took me a couple of days to finish it. As I have come to expect with T.M. Logan’s writing, it is fast paced and quite simply unputdownable.

There is always one person, in the lives of many of us, who really gets under our skin, it may not necessarily be someone we know personally, it could be someone who is frequently in the news. So if you had the chance to make them disappear, off the face of the earth, would you take it? This is the question posed to Sarah, our lead character; one name forms on the tip of her tongue, but she can’t just bring herself to say it, she knows that it is morally wrong and there could be disastrous consequences for her, but what happens when she is pushed over the edge?

The idea for T.M. Logan’s latest novel, 29 Seconds is so intriguing, it seems quite simple at first but he broadens it out into an action packed thriller which kept me turning the pages. When we first meet Sarah, she really doesn’t know who to turn to for help as she finds herself cornered by her boss’s advances, her boss seems to quite clearly think that he can treat her however he likes. I really felt angry as I read these scenes and I couldn’t believe that he was able to get away with it. It’s here that the story takes a surprising turn and she is made the offer that will change her life. What makes the idea in this book really interesting is that it really did get me thinking, would I choose to accept the offer made if I was in Sarah’s shoes? I can imagine that it will prompt lots of discussions in book groups.

29 Seconds was an absolutely riveting read. If you’re looking for a tense, exciting thriller, then I would highly recommend this book. I’m really looking forward to seeing what T.M. Logan writes next. Thank you to Emily Burns at Bonnier Zaffre for inviting me to take part in the blog tour.

Publisher: Zaffre

Publication date: 8th March 2018

Print length: 432 pages




Anaconda Vice by James Stansfield blog tour @jestansfield @BooksManatee

Anaconda Vice: A smart, fast paced thriller by [Stansfield, James]

Source: Review Copy


When Lucas Winter, a retired professional wrestler, runs out of gas on a dark and desolate road, his only thoughts are on getting to the lights of the small town up ahead, getting some gas, and getting out of there…only things aren’t quite what they seem in the tiny town of Anaconda.

Before he has a chance to solve his transport problem, Lucas finds himself in trouble with the law after a local man picks a fight with him…and then ends up dead. Innocent, Lucas fights to clear his name, tangling with the local law enforcement and the family of the dead man, who seem set on taking their revenge. Can Lucas get out alive? And just what is it that the residents of Anaconda are hiding….

“A tense and gripping thriller with a compelling new hero. Great stuff.” – Mason Cross


Anaconda Vice is a taut, action packed novel from debut author James Stansfield and I really enjoyed reading it.

Lucas Winter is a retired professional wrestler, as he is making his way home from an event, his car runs out of gas. Seeking help he ventures into the nearest town, Anaconda, a seemingly forgotten neighbourhood in America, which is slumbering peacefully. No aid comes to Lucas and with little options left available to him, he hunkers down and tries to get some shut eye. But his perception of the town quickly evaporates when he wakes up the following morning to find his vision blocked out by the barrel of a gun, and a rather angry resident. Not quite the welcome he was hoping for. And from that moment on, things only seem to go from bad to worse for Lucas.

James Stansfield’s writing draws you into the setting; he really does make you feel as though you are trapped in this town alongside Lucas, especially when it seems that there is little hope of him escaping. In some places  it does feel very claustrophobic and some of the characters in this book really got under my skin, especially a few of the cops in the town. Lucas does find solace with one character and I particularly enjoyed the scenes in which they were alone together. He is a brilliant lead character and as the novel progressed I found myself rooting for him. I wanted him to get his life back on track and I was on tenterhooks throughout the story as I waited to find out what would happen.

Anaconda Vice is a really strong debut from James Stansfield with brilliant and well developed characters and a strong sense of place. He’s a writer who I will be watching out for and I am interested to see what he does next. Thank you to Liz Barnsley for inviting to take part in the blog tour and for sending me a copy of the book to review.

Publisher: Manatee Books

Publication date: 22nd February 2018

Print length: 245 pages



Daniel and James

Cold Heart by Stephen Edger blog tour @StephenEdger @Bookouture

I’m thrilled to be joining the Cold Heart blog tour today, which is the third novel in Stephen Edger’s Detective Kate Matthews series.

Cold Heart: A gripping serial killer thriller (Detective Kate Matthews Book 3) by [Edger, Stephen]

Source: Netgalley


It has been a week since anyone last saw fifteen-year-old Daisy, after she left her best friend’s house and started her short walk home. Detective Kate Matthews and her team have been looking for her ever since.

When a tip-off leads Kate to a disused gymnasium at Daisy’s school, she is shocked to find evidence linking to the murder of a different girl.

Working the two cases side by side, Kate’s blood runs cold when a gift-wrapped box containing a human heart is delivered to her at the station. The heart belongs to yet another unknown victim, but the message is clear: there will be more, and Daisy could be one of them.

When activity on Daisy’s Facebook account indicates she is still alive, the race is on for Kate and her team. Will Daisy be the killer’s next victim? Is Kate prepared to risk everything to stop another innocent life from being taken?

This absolutely unputdownable crime thriller will have fans of Angela Marsons, Peter James and Rachel Abbott biting their nails long after the final twist has sunk in.


Stephen Edger Profile photo (b&w)

Stephen Edger is a British crime writer, who has been writing since 2010. In that time he has written and published eleven novels, and five short stories. He writes mysteries and thrillers focused on crime.

Stephen was born in the north-east of England, grew up in London, but has lived in Southampton since attending university in the year 2000. Stephen works in the financial industry, and uses his insider knowledge to create the plots of his books. He also has a law degree, which gives him a good understanding of the inner workings of the UK justice system.

Stephen is married, and has two children, and two dogs. He is passionate about reading and writing, and cites Simon Kernick and John Grisham as major influences on his writing style.


If you’ve read my recent reviews, you’ll know that I’ve become quite a fan of Stephen Edger’s Detective Kate Matthews series. And I really enjoyed his latest offering. Cold Heart is dark, gritty and full of suspense. In my opinion, I think it is the best Kate Matthews book yet.

Daisy Emerson is already missing when the book begins. Kate and her team are halfway through the investigation. The police suspect that Daisy may have run away, but Kate isn’t willing to give up on Daisy just yet. When Kate returns to Daisy’s school to follow up on enquiries, a gruesome discovery is found in a building marked for demolition, which shines a new light on the case. But as the investigation deepens, disturbing new information is uncovered which may finally answer what happened to Daisy, and if she is alive or dead. Could Daisy have uncovered a dark secret?

From the start of this book, I wanted to know what had happened to Daisy. It was an interesting idea for Stephen to start the novel several days into the investigation, as already you can see lines wearing thin among certain people in Kate’s team, you really want Kate to fight for Daisy’s corner and get to the truth. Stephen does take a surprising turn in this book and this turn is what makes this novel even darker. But I’m not going to say to much here as I don’t want to spoil the story for readers.

As well as being under pressure to crack this case, Kate is also having to deal with a colleague’s personal problem and this is another source of tension in the novel; we aren’t quite sure what is going on in his life, until Stephen reveals the twist and it was one that I didn’t see coming. I think that in these moments in the book, it really brings out the best in her character, not only is she a great detective, but she would also be a great friend to have around, especially in a sticky spot.

This is another excellent addition to this series and I’m really excited to read the next book. Thank you to Bookouture and to Netgalley for providing me with an advance review copy and to Noelle Holton for the invitation to join the blog tour.

Publisher: Bookouture

Publication date: 12th March 2018

Print length: 364 pages



Cold Heart - Blog Tour

Hold My Hand by M.J. Ford blog tour @MJFordBooks @AvonBooksUK

I’m thrilled to be joining the Hold My Hand blog tour today, which is a fantastic debut crime novel by M.J. Ford and as part of the blog tour I have an extract of the book to share with you.

Source: Review Copy


How long do you hunt for the missing?

A horrible vanishing act…

When a young Josie Masters sees a boy wearing a red football shirt, Dylan Jones, being taken by a clown at a carnival, she tries to alert the crowds. But it’s too late. Dylan has disappeared…

Thirty years later, Josie is working as a police officer in Bath. The remains of the body of a child have been found – complete with tatters of a torn red football shirt. Is it the boy she saw vanish in the clutches of the clown? Or is it someone else altogether?

And then another child disappears…


The paperwork didn’t take long, but the questions got more personal as they went along.

First, the basics. Name (Josephine Masters); address (she gave the rented place in the south of the city; didn’t need Ben somehow getting mail about this); DOB (as if she needed reminding); occupation (copper). Then medical history. Clean bill of health, apart from the scare last year; alcohol unit intake (everyone lied, right?); do you smoke (no, but gagging for one right now); last period (the 18th); last instance of sexual intercourse (regrettable); last pregnancy (she paused a moment, wondering whether it was the conception date they wanted, or the date of the miscarriage, then opted for the latter).

The secretary tapped deftly at the keyboard with manicured fingers. She was perhaps early twenties, a pretty, natural blonde, combining elegance and amiability in a way Jo could never have managed at that age.

Jo wondered what the young woman thought of her. Did she judge? What did she think of the going-on-forty-year-old sitting opposite, her hair needing a colour, her crow’s feet obvious, her sensible shoes and middle-of-the-range navy suit? Did she wonder why Jo was here, why she didn’t have a partner, if . . .

You’re getting bitter, Josephine. Stop it.


Josie Masters will never forget the last day that she saw Dylan Jones alive. Thirty years later, and she is working as a police officer, and when she is called to a disturbing scene, where a child’s skeleton has been unearthed, it reopens old questions about the case she has never forgotten. Has Dylan finally been found? But as the investigation steps up a pace, another child disappears in eerily similar circumstances. Now the race is on to make sure that history doesn’t repeat itself.

Hold My Hand is a fantastic crime debut by M.J. Ford. We follow Josie Masters as she tries to piece together what happened to a young boy thirty years ago, when he disappeared from a fair. In the opening chapter, M.J. Ford captured the ensuing panic that rises, when the boy’s mother realises that he is missing and it compelled me to continue reading. The fairground provided the perfect creepy atmosphere, for such a horrible crime to take place. Clowns have always terrified me, so when I read that scene, in which the little boy is being taken away by a clown, it really gave me chills. I just hope I’m not going to have nightmares. We then fast forward thirty years when Josie is now working as a police officer in Bath. She is a character who is haunted by this event that she has witnessed in her past. The fact that she had a personal connection to the case made her a really fascinating character to explore. We can see that she still carries the guilt all these years later, about the fact that she didn’t do anything that day to prevent Dylan from being kidnapped. Now, she hopes that she can finally bring some closure for his family.

The tension in this novel really picks up as the investigation into the two cases steps up and there are several surprising twists and red herrings. The ending of this book really came as a shock and I couldn’t quite believe what I was reading. But I’m not going to say anything more about that here; you’ll have to read the book if you want to find out what happens.

This is a cracking novel from M.J. Ford. I’m always excited to read a book by a new crime author, and I’m sure I’ll be keeping an eye out for what he’ll come up with next. This book kept me reading well into the small hours, I was desperate to find out what happens. Hold My Hand is a gripping story that will keep you engaged from start to finish. Thank you to Sabah Khan at Avon Books for sending me a copy of the book to review and for inviting me to take part in the blog tour.

Publisher: Avon

Publication date: 8th March 2018

Print length: 336 pages



HOLD MY HAND - Blog Tour

White Midnight by Daniel Culver blog tour @DanielCulver11 @BooksManatee

White Midnight by [Culver, Daniel]

Source: Review Copy


Elizabeth Nowicki, a British woman and self-confessed stoic, settles down in the seemingly idyllic American town of Midnight, with her new husband and his two children. Six months on, life as a step mom is harder than she thought, and the shine of the American Dream has already worn off.

Bored and lonely, Elizabeth is drawn into a nightmare when someone in a duck mask murders two local cops…and the investigation reaches her new neighbourhood. When this is followed by strange happenings across the street, leading to another death, Elizabeth starts to conduct her own investigation….but can she find the killer before the killer finds her?

‘Daniel Culver is a bold and original new voice in crime fiction.’ – Fiona Cummins, author of Rattle 
‘Fresh, stylish and utterly enthralling, White Midnight is an outstanding debut and Daniel Culver is a writer to watch.’ – Chris Whitaker, author of Tall Oaks


I was pulled into Daniel Culver’s White Midnight straight away. I really think that it has one of the most original openings that I’ve read in a long while. He immediately sets the scene and the tone of the book as four police officers end up dead in a tavern in a town called Midnight.

Elizabeth Nowicki, has recently moved to the US from the UK. She has married Luca who lives in Midnight and Elizabeth makes the small American town her home, even though it wasn’t quite where she ever expected to be living in America. As she beings to adapt to her new life, she is drawn to the recent shootings in Midnight which have left her stunned.  Coming from the UK where gun crime is a rarity she is left bereft that something as dangerous as this could happen so close to home. And when her only friend in the town is found dead, Elizabeth begins to take matters into her own hands and investigates the strange events that have been happening in her new home. But she isn’t the only person who is interested. As Elizabeth looks into the history of Midnight, she uncovers a series of old crimes that have never been solved and the perpetrator has never been identified.

Daniel Culver’s debut was an intriguing read from start to finish. He opens the novel with a startling opening chapter. It really makes you step back and think about the the characters in this book as the plot unravels and as he introduces us to the townsfolk. As he introduced his protagonist, Elizabeth, I had questions about her, what drew her to marry this man from a small town in America? What prompted her to want to leave the UK? She was an interesting character to explore and I was keen to find out more about her. I thought it was a good idea to introduce a character who is new to the area as we are discovering the town at the same time that she is. This prompts her to be a lot more nosy than perhaps one of the resident’s would be which is really fascinating for the reader. I thought that Daniel really captured the atmosphere of the town well.

If you were a fan of Chris Whitaker’s All the Wicked Girls then I would highly recommend this novel. Daniel Culver is a fresh new talent in the crime fiction world; I’m looking forward to seeing what he comes up with next . Thank you to Liz Barnsley at Manatee Books for inviting me to take part in the blog tour and for providing me with a copy of the book to read.

Publisher: Manatee Books

Publication date: 15th March 2018

Print length: 263 pages



Daniel and James

#BringMeBack by B A Paris Book Review @BAParisAuthor @HQstories

Source: Review Copy


The Disappearance
Twelve years ago Finn’s girlfriend disappeared.

The Suspicion
He told the police the truth about that night.
Just not quite the whole truth.

The Fear
Now Finn has moved on.
But his past won’t stay buried…


When I read Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris last year, I read it in just a few hours. My friend and I raved about how it was the best thriller we had both read in a long while. There is something about the authors writing that is so gripping, that it doesn’t let you go until you turn the final page, almost as though it has put a spell on you, urging you to keep reading. As I found with Behind Closed Doors, I found her third novel to be immensely enjoyable. You do not want to miss it. I would suggest having plenty of coffee on the go when you begin, you will want to keep sleep at bay, which is why this book comes with the #forgetsleep.

Twelve years ago, Finn’s girlfriend, Layla, disappeared without trace, whilst they were on holiday in France. Layla has never been found, despite a massive police search. Now, Finn is engaged to her sister, Ellen, but as they begin to make plans for their wedding, people close to Finn, begin to report sightings of his missing former partner. Finn doesn’t want to believe that Layla has returned after all these years and he battles with his conscious over his decision to marry Ellen. Is he making the right one? What would Layla think of him when she realises that he has chosen to marry her sister? Has Layla really returned twelve years after she was reported missing, and if she has, where has she been during that time?

Bring Me Back is unbelievably tense, you know when the author has great writing skills when you’re shouting at the characters on the page at the decisions they’re making, and when you can’t bear to read on, for fear of what is going to happen to them next. I won’t say too much about the plot as I don’t want to spoil it, but we hear from the perspectives of two characters in this book, Finn and his fiance, Ellen. B A Paris kept me asking questions about them as I turned the final page of each chapter, which made me desperate to read the next. For me, I think this book really is about the characters, although the plot is good, it is really Finn’s tangled relationship between these two sisters that drives the story.

I’m sure, as with her previous book, I will be raving about this for a long while; I’m looking forward to seeing what she comes up with next. Bring Me Back is another belter of a read. Thank you to Sophie Calder at HQ for sending me a copy of the book to review.

Publisher: HQ

Publication date: 8th March 2018

Print length: 384 pages


Dying Day by Stephen Edger Book Review @StephenEdger @Bookouture

Dying Day: Absolutely gripping serial killer fiction (Detective Kate Matthews Book 2) by [Edger, Stephen]

Source: Purchased Copy


Some mistakes you live with. Others you die for…

When the body of a young woman is found in the boot of an abandoned car near the Southampton Docks, Detective Kate Matthews is ordered to stay well away from the scene.

Exactly a year ago, Amy, a junior detective on Kate’s team, was murdered when she was sent undercover to catch a serial killer targeting young girls. Kate never forgave herself for letting the killer slip through her fingers and her team are worried this coincidence might push her over the edge.

When another girl’s body is uncovered days later with similar bruising around the neck, Kate launches an investigation of her own, determined to connect new evidence to the old to catch this monster before more innocent lives are taken…

Mysterious sympathy cards left with the families of the victims finally lead Kate to the twisted individual from her past. But if she’s found the killer, why does the body count keep rising?

An absolutely heart-stopping crime thriller that will have you sleeping with the lights on. Perfect for fans of Robert Dugoni, James Patterson and M.J. Arlidge.


Dying Day is the second book in the Kate Matthews series by Stephen Edger. I really enjoyed the first book in the series, but this book takes it up another level. After I finished the first book, I really wanted to find out more about Kate’s past, and Stephen has certainly satisfied my curiosity in his latest novel. Kate really is pulled through the emotional ranks in this book and we can see again her determination to see a case through, even if it means risking her own life and career. She is a fantastic character and an exciting new addition to the crime fiction world.

At the beginning of Dying Day, Kate is ordered to stay away from a murder investigation that is being conducted by Southampton Police force, after the body of a young woman is found. But Kate can’t help herself, and as she looks into the case she notices similarities to the murder of her colleague, Amy Spencer who was killed the previous year. Amy was working undercover in an attempt to lure a killer who was murdering young girl’s. Kate has never forgiven herself for putting Amy at risk and the fact that she never caught Amy’s killer has haunted her ever since. She has made it her mission to find them and bring them to justice. But as she tries again to hunt for her colleague’s killer, she may be putting her own life at risk.

It was fascinating to learn more about Kate’s recent history in Dying Day. We learn a lot more about her than we did in the previous book in the series. Although the book is told from her point of view, it is also told from Amy Spencer’s, her colleague who was murdered the previous year. The tension in the novel builds up, as you know, as the reader, that you are waiting for the moment when she comes across her killer. It makes for a really gripping read.

This was another exciting read from Stephen Edger, if you are looking for a new crime series, then the Kate Matthews books certainly come recommended from me. I can’t wait to see what Stephen will come up with next.

Publisher: Bookouture

Publication date: 17th November 2017

Print length: 316 pages