Friday 28 October 2022

The Mother by Alex Kane

The MotherThe Mother by Alex Kane
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 2 days

Pages -

Publisher - Hera Books

Source - Netgalley

Blurb from Goodreads

Being head of a family is what she knows best
A decade ago, Cara Fraser, wife to one of Glasgow’s most notorious gangsters, was left a widow after Kyle Fraser was slain on the city streets.

The intervening years haven’t been easy – not least as Kyle’s murder left her to bring up little Ryan and Sean alone.

Now, Ryan and Sean are adults, and honouring their father’s memory by rising up to become the top gangsters on the dark streets of Glasgow.

Cara’s kept her head down, but has spent the last few years vowing to take vengeance on the crime family who killed her beloved husband and left her children without a father.

Glasgow gangland is about to discover that a mother will do anything for her family… even murder.

My Review

The blurb focuses a lot on Cara Fraser and her sons, Ryan and Sean and whilst the latter part of the book they do come more to the front it is the Bryson's who feature as the main runners at the start. Angie Bryson & her husband Dale have their fingers in a lot of pies and Cara's husband Kyle and brother Ian work for the Brysons, distributing drugs primarily. Angie and Cara don't get on and Kyle and Ian have put their plans in motion to become the top dogs. The timeline splits between then and now when the Frasers have decided, again the time is right, the time is now.

There is a lot of rivalry, competitiveness as often there is in gangland type books, fights for power, actions and consequences, shady underhanded behaviour and of course some people will go to any levels for what they feel is due them. Revenge, pride, business, drugs, rivalry, family, murder and is it even a gangster stle book if we don't have betrayal.

There are quite a few relationship dynamics, some you are shaking your head at antics/choices and behaviours but in this lifestyle it is a different world. One characters behavior though I was almost screaming NOOOOOOOO what are you doing?!?!?!

I have read a few of Kane's books and have another couple on my tbrm, when you pick up the books you can get lost in a different world or chaos and danger just waiting for some consequence to their actions. Bad behaviour, shady choices and the old secrets can never remain in the past dun dun dun, 4/5 for me, a wee bit of build up setting the scene and then you are plunged right in! This is a standalone, if you like gangster/ganglands then this is for you - oh and it is set in Glasgow.

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Thursday 27 October 2022

Genesis by Chris Carter

Genesis (Robert Hunter #12)Genesis by Chris Carter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 4 days

Pages - 544

Publisher - Simon and Schuster

Source - bought

Blurb from Goodreads

A killing like no other.
A killer more twisted than he’s ever seen before.
A case that will test him to the limit.
Has Robert Hunter finally met his match?

‘Do you believe the Devil exists, Detective?’ the officer at the end of the line asks. ‘Because if you don’t . . . I’m sure you will once you get here.’

Robert Hunter is called to the most vicious crime scene he has ever attended. It is made even more disturbing when the autopsy reveals a poem, left by the killer, inside the body of their victim.

Soon, another body is found. The methods and signature of the murder differs, but the level of violence used suggests that the same person is behind both crimes. Hunter’s fears are confirmed when a second part of the poem is found.

But this discovery does more than just link the two killings – it suggests that this is the work of a serial murderer.

With no forensic evidence to go on, Robert Hunter must catch the most disciplined and systematic killer that he has ever encountered, someone who thrives on the victims' fear, and to whom death is a lesson that needs to be taught.

From #1 Sunday Times and multi-million copy bestselling author, Chris Carter, comes the most compelling and ruthless Robert Hunter thriller yet.

My Review

The opening chapter of this was so creepy I went my first time ever live on Tiktok (smbslt) as I was reading it home alone. The character comes home drunk after a night out and starts getting messages from her phone, asking how her night was then turning a little sinister. Then they send a wee video, well that was me, checked my front door and read it and the rest of the chapter on TT so I wasn't alone. Absolutely creeped me out and if you have read Carter before he has a knack for being creepy and bringing to life some seriously shady characters.

The killer is brutal, the victims are very different from each other and how they are killed yet Garcia and Hunter know they are related because of something the killer leaves at each scene. Not for the faint of heart or easily offended. The killer is cruel, sadistic, brutal and the murders are graphic and stomach turning.

The book also deals with a lot of triggering themes, there is a heads up at the start of the book and a page of contacts people who are struggling with mental health etc can access. If you haven't read the previous books you could start here but you miss a lot of the history and they are really good books so I would recommend going back.

Dragged in and hooked from the opening scene and the book doesn't drop pace. Despite some horrific and sensitive issues being dealt with I think Carter handles them well, we know he suffered a significant personal loss too and I think you can feel the emotion/sensitivity whilst still keeping his usual graphic/horrific killer/killings. I also think many will appreciate the page of contacts for people struggling, 4.5/5 for me and I look forward to the next one.

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Wednesday 26 October 2022

N-4 Down: The Hunt for the Artic Airship Italia by Mark Piesing Blog Tour

OUT NOW click HERE to buy from AMAZON UK, available in ebook and treebook.

Today is my stop on the blog tour for N-4 Down: The Hunt for the Artic Airship Italia, for my stop I have my review

N-4 Down: The Hunt for the Arctic Airship ItaliaN-4 Down: The Hunt for the Arctic Airship Italia by Mark Piesing
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 3.5 days

Pages - 352

Publisher - Mariner

Source - Review copy

Blurb (partial) from Goodreads

The riveting true story of the largest polar rescue mission in history: the desperate race to find the survivors of the glamorous Arctic airship Italia, which crashed near the North Pole in 1928.

Braiding together the gripping accounts of the survivors and their heroic rescuers, N-4 Down tells the unforgettable true story of what happened when the glamor and restless daring of the zeppelin age collided with the harsh reality of Earth’s extremes.

My Review

History isn't something I read a lot of although as I get older I find I am getting more drawn to programs/books. N-4 down is about one of the biggest rescue missions to happen but it isn't just about that. We learn about some of the history of Zepplin travel, luxury trips, the making and history of some of these magnificent and I find rather scary air travel.

The book centers mostly around Noble, his struggle to conquer the North pole, his achievements and shortcomings, his feud/rivalry with a once friend/colleague to now competitor and enemy if you like. The build up to Noble's journey to the North pole which ends in the airship coming down, the crew needing rescued, the horror whilst awaiting rescue and what plagues Noble afterwards because of the decision(s) he made.

I find the fascination with these airships and the North pole so so interesting, I would put the book down to Google or go on YouTube and look up what had been written. The book has been so so well researched and there are so many references and links the reader can go and check out. Some of the scenes are horrific and make you hold your breath when you envision/read what they went through, the temperatures and many brushes with death.

This is very different from the types of books I normally pick up but as I get older I find myself more interested in history and I would have neve been able to set foot on one of these, even the luxurious style ones, too feart. However they are incredibly interesting to read about, what they were capable of and their uses, 4/5 for me.

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Rock N Roll Nanny - Blog Tour

The book is out to buy now, from Amazon, click HERE.

For my stop I have my review, enjoy.

Rock N Roll NannyRock N Roll Nanny by Sally Arnold
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 4 days

Pages - 300

Publisher -

Source - Review copy

Blurb from Amazon

What’s it like to prepare Christmas lunch with Mick Jagger? To go clubbing with The Who’s crazy drummer Keith Moon? Or to deal with the WAGs in a band’s entourage?

In 1971, Sally Arnold takes a nannying job in Paris that will transform her life. Her charge is Mick Jagger’s daughter Jade and she is soon running more than bath-time… she is working for the giants of rock as the first woman tour manager in the business.

When Sally moves on to organising charity events, she has to manage other larger-than-life personalities such as Billy Connolly and Rowan Atkinson. Sally also handles famous names from Princess Diana and the Duke of Edinburgh, to Mikhail Gorbachev and Poet Laureate Ted Hughes.

How did Sally survive in this world of rock and roll?

My Review

Mett Sally Arnold, we hear about her younger years and her family history and it is quite an impressive history with impressive wealth and contributions. We follow Sally through her training as a nurse and then how she goes on to be a nanny for Mick Jagger and then her impressive career of managing huge names in rock and roll, amazing contributions to charity and the darker side of rubbing shoulders and mixing with celebrities.

As you would imagine the books covers exposure to substances, unsavoury people and Arnold touches on her own experience of being abused/people in power abusing that. Some of the antics and behaviour is quite appauling of these celebs.

Arnold also catalogues her heartbreak and loss, how they found out about the plane crash with the band Lynard Skynard and how many of her experiences shaped her future path.

It is a really interesting read, shocking that even in those circles people are not above being nasty/bitches to get ahead and stand on others. The author includes personal collection photos so there are some of celebs I hadn't seen before. If you like memoirs and reading about life in the circles of the rich and famous you have both with this as we go with Arnold before during and after. She has led a very interesting and successful life with her no nonsense attitude, 4/5.

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Monday 17 October 2022

Crimsom Lake by Candice Fox

Crimson Lake (Crimson Lake, #1)Crimson Lake by Candice Fox
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over months (was on my phone)

Pages - 348

Publisher - Forge

Source - bought (ebook Amazon)

Blurb from Goodreads

Crimson Lake, by Sydney-based, Ned Kelly Award-winning author Candice Fox, is a thrilling contemporary crime novel set in Queensland, Australia, perfect for readers of authors like James Patterson, Harlan Coben, Lisa Gardner, and Tana French.

How do you move on when the world won’t let you?

12:46: Claire Bingley stands alone at a bus stop
12:47: Ted Conkaffey parks his car beside her
12:52: The girl is missing . . .

Six minutes in the wrong place at the wrong time—that’s all it took to ruin Sydney detective Ted Conkaffey’s life. Accused but not convicted of a brutal abduction,Ted is now a free man—and public enemy number one. Maintaining his innocence, he flees north to keep a low profile amidst the steamy, croc-infested wetlands of Crimson Lake.

There, Ted’s lawyer introduces him to eccentric private investigator Amanda Pharrell, herself a convicted murderer. Not entirely convinced Amanda is a cold-blooded killer, Ted agrees to help with her investigation, a case full of deception and obsession, while secretly digging into her troubled past. The residents of Crimson Lake are watching the pair's every move... and the town offers no place to hide

My Review

So I accidentally read book two first whoops then we watched the series, Troppo, based on this book. Ted has moved to a small town to escape his horrific recent past. A cop, disgraced, accused of a heinous crime against a minor. The local cops are bullies and determined not to let Ted get comfortable in their small town. Enter Amanda, she is from said small town but very much an outcast for a crime against one of their own she also misses or ignores some social queues. Ted and Amanda end up an unlikely duo as Ted helps, reluctantly, Amanda with her private detective business. Investigating a missing person but small towns don't like people poking their noses into stuff and certainly not two ex cons like Ted and Amanda.

Oooft the book is quite brutal in parts, we flip back to Ted's past and how he got to where he is whilst he struggles with his new reality in a new town/place unable to escape his past. We also meet Amanda, my goodness Amanda is absolutely chaos! The book is quite different in points and it was good to fill in some gaps between the series and what I had read in book two.

The book covers some really shocking themes, child abuse, murder, bullying, violence, abuse of power, corruption and adorable geese. The relationship with Ted and Amanda is very different to a lot of duo team mates/partners in books etc and a really engaging take on two damaged, flawed and seemingly dangerous individuals. I love the medical examiners character, she doesn't play a huge part in either the book or show but what she does, I really like. I am sure there are 3 books so I need to check that and get it, hoping for season 2 on the show too, 4/5 for me. I have read this author before, combo with James Patterson so I do like her writing.

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October comp is now live

Apologies first that our competition page is down, it is under review (apparently an issue marked spam? and under review but very little information, our page has been the same since we started and just update the comps every month). We have requested review multiple times and there is noone to contact directly so we just have to wait.

October giveaway is x1 horror themed bookmark, winner can choose x1 bookmark from those in the pictures. There are also two pins, one diamonte spider and one love heart with a cat on top, the winner can choose one of those too. Items are exactly as pictured and open worldwide. As usual please use the Rafflecopter to enter.

Sorry it isn't all in one photo, I really need a new phone & with multiple pictures hopefully it means you can see the bookmarks better to decide which one you want if you are the winner.

So above are the bookmarks, of all the ones in the picture they are mostly double sided. The dog one, one side says lives and the other is it passed, one side orange one blue. The Shining lady in the bath, one side she looks like she does when Jack first sees her then the real her, her chest is exposed so I have covered with my finger. The next are the brooches or pins, not sure what we call them nowaday lol.

This is the first, spider and I know not everyone likes spiders (I think it is so so cute) so the other option is a black cat on top of a heart.

The competition is open worldwide, I do try and do as many as possible but sometimes if it is ebook or Amazon V I just can't as Amazon sends directly so only allows your own country. When it is actual treebooks or things like this I send directly so can open it worldwide. Very aware everyone is feeling the pinch just now so November is in the process of being sorted and will be worldwide too. With bills rising things like books etc will be considered more luxury item and everyone should have the opportunity to read or have a wee something to look forward to. Enter via the Rafflecopter, beloe, as usual.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Shining by Stephen King

The ShiningThe Shining by Stephen King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over a few months

Pages - 659

Publisher - Hodder & Stoughton

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

Jack Torrance's new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he'll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote...and more sinister. And the only one to notice the strange and terrible forces gathering around the Overlook is Danny Torrance, a uniquely gifted five-year-old.

My Review

This is a re read, I haven't read it since I was a kid. I love the movie (Kubrick version only recently seen the other one) and as I was back home I wanted to read it again. There is so much I forgot about the book like actually don't even remember reading but it has been a long time.

You get a bit of history on the Overlook, I really wish we would get a more indepth backstory though as the darkness is so fascinating especially the hold it can have over people. So for anyone not familiar with it Jack Torrance, his wife Wendy and little boy head to the Overlook hotel for Jack's new job, caretaker over the winter, isolated just the three of them. Jack is a recovering alcoholic, when in the grip of booze he lost a lot and has been making it up to Wendy and Danny since. The Overlook is more than just a hotel it is home to a darkness that can influence the people who spend time there and when the people are special, like little Danny the hotel and its spirits want him.

The book features dark themes, King's books always do, not just the supernatural but the evil and darkness within humans. We also have the good too, lengths some people will go to to protect others. We learn about the Shining and how extraordinary little Danny is and the more time he and his family are in the hotel the more creepy things happen.

The thing with King is he creates creepy, atmospheric books that creeps you out, baddies that are terrifying because they aren't always of our world but some are and equally as scary. The Shining is a classic, I loved it when I was younger and I think it still holds up all these years later, 5/5 for me. If you really want to creep yourself out, read it when staying in a hotel, every time I visit one, the corridors, no matter how it is decorated I always envision The Overlook.

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Friday 14 October 2022

Women Like Us by Amanda Prowse Blog Tour

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Women Like Us, A Memoir, by Amanda Prowse, this is a LOVEBOOKSTOUR blog tour, you can find Kelly on Twitter.

I even took the book to the ice hockey with me to read inbetween intervals.

The book is available to buy from Amazon, click HERE.

You can find Amanda on Twitter and Instagram.

Women Like Us: A MemoirWomen Like Us: A Memoir by Amanda Prowse
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 10 days

Pages - 396

Publisher - Little A

Source - Review copy

Blurb from Goodreads

I guess the first question to ask is, what kind of woman am I? Well, you know those women who saunter into a room, immaculately coiffed and primped from head to toe?

If you look behind her, you’ll see me.

From her childhood, where there was no blueprint for success, to building a career as a bestselling novelist against all odds, Amanda Prowse explores what it means to be a woman in a world where popularity, slimness, beauty and youth are currency—and how she overcame all of that to forge her own path to happiness.

Sometimes heartbreaking, often hilarious and always entirely relatable, Prowse details her early struggles with self-esteem and how she coped with the frustrating expectations others had of how she should live. Most poignantly, she delves into her toxic relationship with food, the hardest addiction she has ever known, and how she journeyed out the other side.

One of the most candid memoirs you’re ever likely to read, Women Like Us provides welcome insight into how it is possible—against the odds—to overcome insecurity, body consciousness and the ubiquitous imposter syndrome to find happiness and success, from a woman who’s done it all, and then some

My Review

I have heard/read and even used warts and all used many times and I absolutely am using it for this book however it is probably the first time I am using it with actual pure felt meaning! So if you don't know who Amanda Prowse is she is an author who has written A LOT of books, I have read 3 with a few more on my tbrm and many more to buy! So about the book, Prowse takes us through her life, from a wee barra, teen, adult and authorhood.

This book took me through Amanda's life and back to quite a few stages of my own. Some of the things/experiences were so relatable I could have written them myself. Then there was some shockaroonies like the sanitary belt, I absolutely had to go and look that up. I can't imagine how you get into it let alone wear it!

The book is very open and honest and whilst I feel like you get that reading a lot of autobiographies Amanda Prowse felt it went deeper. If you have never had a battle with addiction, your weight or both then you may not appreciate just how much I imagine it cost to not only deal with that but to then commit it to paper and share it with the world. I wanted to reach out and hug her because it is a battle like no other and despite some addictions being treated more with compassion and understanding food/weight gain is still very judged/stigmatized.

The book is really interesting, emotive and takes us on many roads of the authors life and experiences, I have been struggling to read like I used to but for snippets of time I managed to loose myself. I cannot wait to read her other books and will absolutely be buying up others as I go along. If you only read one memoir this year make it this one, 5/5 for me.

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Friday 7 October 2022

Bones to Ashes by Kathy Reichs

Bones to Ashes (Temperance Brennan, #10)Bones to Ashes by Kathy Reichs
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 10 days

Pages - 310

Publisher - Arrow

Source - bought or gift

Blurb from Goodreads

As a child, she was told to forget about the missing girl. But some memories don’t die….

The discovery of a skeleton in Acadia, Canada, reawakens a traumatic episode for forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan: Could the young girl’s remains be those of Évangéline Landry, Tempe’s friend who disappeared when Tempe was twelve? Exotic, free-spirited, and slightly older, Évangéline enlivened Tempe’s summer beach visits…then vanished amid whispers that she was “dangerous.” Now, faced with bones scarred with inexplicable lesions, Tempe is consumed with solving a decades-old mystery — while her lover, detective Andrew Ryan, urgently needs her attention on a wave of teenage abductions and murders. With both Ryan and her ex-husband making surprising future plans, Tempe may soon find that her world has painfully and irrevocably changed once again.

My review

When Tempe was younger her childhood friend and sister went missing & no matter how much Tempe asked questions she got no answers. Fast forward present day, bones of a young girl has been found, older bones with strange lesions, could this be Tempe's old friend, just coincidence? It certainly drags up memories and questions from Tempe's past.

This is book 10, I have gaps I think in the series as I would pick them up and read as I found them (sorry I know this makes people twitchy) but I find you can follow it fine. Tempe's relationship features in this one well her lover or ex lover, officer Andrew Ryan (he is a detective) well I suppose you can say it is complicated. So the two themes go along side, the bones investigation/Tempe's past and the ongoing issues with Andrew. They work together on a case so it is complicated, is it over, things are getting in the way, attraction - I suppose it I had read them more recently or in order I may be a bit more invested,

I always find these books interesting because of the anthropological aspect, I love when you learn things from books or spark interest to look into things more yourself. It isn't my fave of the series but still interesting read, 3.5/5 this time.

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