Tuesday 28 November 2023

Hello from holiday

we have took a wee bit of time out for a break away, work + everything else we need it.

It was a bit overcast but still warmer than Scotland which was - when we left, ooft winter is here for sure.

I haven't beought my laptop so will need to catch up with reviews and stuff when back. For now we are super chill, nice weather, sleep, books and even hoping for a a cocktail tomorrow, fingers crossed.

Here are some of the books I brought ♥️📚

And typical bookworm I brought not one, not two but THREE booklights with me. Two charge with the phone cable and one is usb so plugs into lappy and charges that way (o/h has his lappy so can charge on that if need be).

It is so nice just chill/poolside and we even made a wee bird pal ♥️ Anyway home soon, Pal watchingthe house and Luna is at the cat hotel. She is raging, look at this face, she wouldn't even look at me 🤣.

Hope you guys are having a great day, we have another giveaway on our Instagram. It is a bookmark, winner picks one, there are two available. one is The Shining (Stephen King inspired) and the other is the Mandolorian Grogu (baby yoda) holding a wand wearing a HP Gryffindor scarf.

Wednesday 22 November 2023

Let Me Go by Chelsea Cain

Let Me Go (Archie Sheridan & Gretchen Lowell, #6)Let Me Go by Chelsea Cain
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 2 days

Pages - 358

Publisher - Minotaur books

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

Detective Archie Sheridan is about to receive a birthday present from the last person he ever wants to see again: Gretchen Lowell.

The investigation into Jack Reynolds's drug enterprise is heating up and has Archie heading off to attend a masked Halloween party on Jack Reynolds's island, where Susan is a reluctant guest. But the next morning one of the guests is found murdered, and Archie quickly realizes that nothing is what it seems. Only one thing is clear: Gretchen is back, and she's been closer than anyone thinks. On Halloween Eve, with time running out, Archie will have to risk everything, and choose wisely whom to trust, if he and his loved ones are going to live through the night.

My Review

I really enjoy (if that is the right word) the Gretchen/Archie series but read them out of order so this was me going back the way. I think the thing with these books is the psychotic killer is a beautiful female but she is beyond dangerous, she can take out whole teams of trained killers. Her obsession with Archie is something else, gave me Hannibal/Clarise vibes to be fair.

Gretchen is on the loose, there is a killer out there and Archie knows Gretchen is stalking him. He has a "relationship not relationship" with his neighbour and he is just trying to get through yet another day without pills. Poor Archie is really put through it in this book, embarrassed, used, humiliated and always trying to do the right thing.

Mobsters, killers, threats, violence, abuse, sa, the books has just about a bit of everything. Gretchen is ruthless and brutal as usual and we see another glimpse of her madness/obsession levels with Archie, 4/5 for me. Absolutely not for the faint hearted though guys, graphic and brutal!

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Monday 20 November 2023

November's Competition is now live

Apologies it is a bit late, I have been a bit under the weather, then away to horrorcon and ended up floored with a bad chest/viral. Only starting to feel a bit more human and getting back to the real world tomorrow!

So what is November's comp going to be? Well, we had so much feedback/chat with the Britney Spears book, that I have decided that that will be Novembers prize - please note the ring light IS NOT INCLUDED.

As pictured, x1 hardback of Britney's new book and you can't have a book without a bookmark so you have a choice of two, you can have either x1, leather style, love heart page corner. It is very pale pink, the piccy looks white(ish) but it is absolutely pale pink, as pictured.

Or the multicolour magnetic one, again as pictured. All of our competitions are as pictured. Let us know in the comments which bookmark you would choose if you won.

To enter, use the Rafflecopter below, please only complete the entries you have done as winning entries are checked. This will be open worldwide as it a thin book and the bookmark weighs very little. Postage is going up again and again but we try make giveaways worldwide as we are able. Good luck.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Night Chills by Dean Koontz

Night ChillsNight Chills by Dean Koontz
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 3 days

Pages - 369

Publisher - Berkley books

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

The fever is spreading. Seizing the men and women of Black River. Plaguing them with night chills. Driving them to violent acts of rape and murder.

The fever is spreading. Designed by top scientists, and unleashed in a monstrous conspiracy - its deadly spell can unlock the most frightening potential of the human mind.

The fever is spreading. The nightmare is real. And death is the only cure.

My Review

Imagine tapping into a power where you have absolute control over other people, control to push people to do literally anything you wish. That is what we have here, mastering the formula to manipulate people in every way possible a trio decide to try it out in a small town. One of them then goes to see first hand just how much they can do/push/try/control and the results are shocking!

It took me a wee bit to settle into it but the book gives you the background on how they managed to accomplish the mind control and how to distribute and test out their new invention. Warning, as you would expect when people have complete control over other humans without fear or reprimand, repercussions or exposure things go to the darkest extremes.

It is an interesting idea and Koontz gives us a bit of, this is already in place look at x,y,z and it isn't a whole leap to thinking this could come to fruition which is terrifying. A small town, sexual deviancy, violence, abuse, murder, manipulation, SA, suicide, the book takes more than a few dark turns, 4/5 from us, approach with caution.

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Friday 17 November 2023

The Haunting Season - short stories - multiple authors

The Haunting Season: Ghostly Tales for Long Winter NightsThe Haunting Season: Ghostly Tales for Long Winter Nights by Bridget Collins
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 2 days

Pages - 304

Publisher - Sphere

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

Winter, with its unsettling blend of the cosy and the sinister, has long been a popular time for gathering by the bright flame of a candle, or the warm crackling of a fire, and swapping stories of ghosts and strange happenings.

Now eight bestselling, award-winning authors - master storytellers of the sinister and the macabre - bring this time-honoured tradition to vivid life in a spellbinding collection of new and original haunted tales.

From a bustling Covent Garden Christmas market to the frosty moors of Yorkshire, from a country estate with a dreadful secret, to a London mansion where a beautiful girl lies frozen in death, these are stories to make your hair stand on end, send shivers down your spine and to serve as your indispensable companion to the long nights of winter.

So curl up, light a candle, and fall under the spell of The Haunting Season . . .

My Review

I am the first to admit I am not a fan of short stories but the names of the authors featuring in this one definitely drew me in. Some stories are creepy/eerie, some ghostly, a few with animal harm which is always a no for me and one or two left me wondering what I had just read.

Perfect for the spooky season or if you just want a bit of a chill/creep. A few of the authors are more skilled in creating the gothic, chilling vibes than others.

I can't say any one story stood out for me but absolutely some were more enjoyable (if that is the right word) than others. Macabre, spooky, weird and just a mix bag of the auld creepiness. 3/5 for me this time, maybe dipping in and out instead of trying to read them so close together may well have made it more palliative for me. Still plenty of folk loved/enjoyed these so absolutely check out the book and see how you get on.

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Wednesday 15 November 2023

The Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

Fourth Wing (The Empyrean, #1)Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - as able, in and out over a week

Pages - 528

Publisher -

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

Enter the brutal and elite world of a war college for dragon riders from USA Today bestselling author Rebecca Yarros

Twenty-year-old Violet Sorrengail was supposed to enter the Scribe Quadrant, living a quiet life among books and history. Now, the commanding general—also known as her tough-as-talons mother—has ordered Violet to join the hundreds of candidates striving to become the elite of Navarre: dragon riders.

But when you’re smaller than everyone else and your body is brittle, death is only a heartbeat away...because dragons don’t bond to “fragile” humans. They incinerate them.

With fewer dragons willing to bond than cadets, most would kill Violet to better their own chances of success. The rest would kill her just for being her mother’s daughter—like Xaden Riorson, the most powerful and ruthless wingleader in the Riders Quadrant.

She’ll need every edge her wits can give her just to see the next sunrise.

Yet, with every day that passes, the war outside grows more deadly, the kingdom's protective wards are failing, and the death toll continues to rise. Even worse, Violet begins to suspect leadership is hiding a terrible secret.

Friends, enemies, lovers. Everyone at Basgiath War College has an agenda—because once you enter, there are only two ways out: graduate or die

My Review

I kept hearing about this one and one of my workies, Rachel, was like you HAVE to read this so I have someone to talk to it about, I mean how could I not, also huge FOMO. Violet Sorrengail is twenty, youngest of the family. Her sister and brother dragon riders and her mother hugely proud of their warrior abilities and paths chosen. Violet is more like her dad, not a fighter and destined for the Scribe Quadrant, those who document all the battles/history, lover of the written word not a warrior. However Violets mother is one of the highest ranked leader and Violet will enter/try for the Rider's Quadrant and or die trying, nothing less is unacceptable. Violet isn't one for rocking the boat and does what is expected of her, despite being ill prepared, despite huge numbers of cadets dying before getting past the first obstacle but this is her path and walk it she must! Oh and THERE ARE DRAGONS!

Guys for me, summing it up quickly I would say Harry Potter meets Game of thrones with echoes of The Hunger Games. There is also some spicey scenes in it which for me was a little cringe/funny but each to their own.

I was liking the book but it was the very last/end quarter that bounced it to a 5 star read for us. I LOVE that we have dragons but a dragon with sass and shade it absolutely outstanding/hilarious. There is so much going on in the books, family dramas, relationships, friendships, dodgy characters, death, murder & the whole when the riders bond with a dragon they develop abilities and all are very different.

It is a huge book but it has something for everyone, yeah it is fantasy but it has loads of stuff folk will find relatable/enjoyable am sure. 5/5 for us and we have the next one lined up which I suggest you do too because if you like this you will want to pick up the next one immediately. This is my first time reading this author, book two is lying in wait.

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Thursday 9 November 2023

The First 48 Hours by Simon Kernick

The First 48 HoursThe First 48 Hours by Simon Kernick
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - < 3 days (in and out)

Pages - 339

Publisher -

Source - Arc (out to buy today)

Blurb from Goodreads


He's a detective hunting cold-blooded killers, but does he know more than he admits?

She's a lawyer who must defend a murderer - but how far will she go to protect her only child?

They have a foolproof plan but will they get away with the money...and their lives?


My Review

A specialist kidnap group, deadly professional and so good they haven't hit the police radar, until now. It is simple, pay up, don't contact the cops and get your kid back & until now that is what has happened. The opening chapter pulls us into a kidnapping and a chance to see just how serious these kidnappers are.

So the book circulates between three main story lines, the cop investigating, the lawyer who represents all manners of bad guys, she is really good at what she does and her clients are some of the shadiest individuals. Lastly, the bad guys and we see how they operate, we meet some real sick individuals, twisted, depraved and controlling.

I think the thing with this one is we are introduced to the players real quick and yet Kernick manages to shock and pull out the rug from under you a few times. Fast paced and enough to keep you hooked and intrigued. I am not always a huge fan of multicharacter points of view because it can be distracting, disjointed and takes away from the story, not so in this one. You are with a character and glued to what is happening and happy to jump to the next and see what they are up to!

It has been a wee while since I read Kernick and this reminded me how much I do enjoy the twisted creepos world he creates and sucks you into, 4/5 for me this time. Today is publication day so grab your copy now.

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Wednesday 8 November 2023

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas

A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2)A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 5 days

Pages - 624

Publisher - Bloomsbury Publishing

Source - Gift

Blurb from Goodreads

The seductive and stunning #1 New York Times bestselling sequel to Sarah J. Maas's spellbinding A Court of Thorns and Roses .

Feyre has undergone more trials than one human woman can carry in her heart. Though she's now been granted the powers and lifespan of the High Fae, she is haunted by her time Under the Mountain and the terrible deeds she performed to save the lives of Tamlin and his people.

As her marriage to Tamlin approaches, Feyre's hollowness and nightmares consume her. She finds herself split into two different one who upholds her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court, and one who lives out her life in the Spring Court with Tamlin. While Feyre navigates a dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms. She might just be the key to stopping it, but only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future-and the future of a world in turmoil.

Bestselling author Sarah J. Maas's masterful storytelling brings this second book in her dazzling, sexy, action-packed series to new heights.

My Review

I read book one in the series and I know this is well loved by so many, I thought it was ok so went into book two with an open mind. I really really like this and think you do need to read book one to really have a feel for the characters and what their history is. Feyre is still recovering from her death experience and going from human to superior being. Her wedding to Tamlin is set and everything is going well, if only he would stop imprisoning her in their home for fear for her safety. Pesky Rhysand is still holding their bargain over her and Tamlin's head. Feyre hates him after everything she has heard and seen. As Feyre spends her time with Rhysand she finds out more than she bargained for and trying to use her time to hon the unexpected changes she experiences.

I don't know but for me this book had much more meat, moments of funny, shocking, jaw dropping, switch ups. Along with Feyre we are hating on Rhysand because of everything we learned in book one. I felt so bad for Tamlin and Feyre but with this book we get a fresh perspective as we navigate the Night Court that Feyre finds herself in. As more animosity builds between Tamlin and Rhysand, Feyre herself is conflicted with how things are turning out in the Spring Court and what her role seems to be there.

We find ourselves getting more of a picture of Rhysand, his people and both his and Tamlin's history. Feyre herself comes a bit more into herself, we knew from book one she wasn't ok with just being caged and pampered to, that wasn't her role when she was human and she finds it isn't a role she can fit into regardless of her status now. Feyre is independent, fierce, protective and likes to be active. She doesn't even have the bliss of painting to loose herself in now with all her trauma from everything she endured and survived in book one.

I thought book one was ok, book two is really good, I felt it had a lot more going, like book one we have threat to life, ultimatums, death etc but this book we get a lot more of who the characters are and I felt more about them. Threat of war is imminent, Tamlin won't believe it, Rhysand knows it is coming and we along with Feyre find out what we believe to be true and what side we stand on, 4.5/5 for me. I have book three waiting to be read, it won't be long before I pick that up!

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Tuesday 7 November 2023

Good Friday by Lynda La Plante Book Tour

Good Friday (Tennison, #3)Good Friday by Lynda La Plante
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 3 days

Pages - 400

Publisher - Zaffre

Source - Review copy

Blurb from Goodreads


Every legend has a beginning . . .

During 1974 and 1975 the IRA subjected London to a terrifying bombing campaign. In one day alone, they planted seven bombs at locations across central London. Some were defused - some were not.

Jane Tennison is now a fully-fledged detective. On the way to court one morning, Jane passes through Covent Garden Underground station and is caught up in a bomb blast that leaves several people dead, and many horribly injured. Jane is a key witness, but is adamant that she can't identify the bomber. When a photograph appears in the newspapers, showing Jane assisting the injured at the scene, it puts her and her family at risk from IRA retaliation.

'Good Friday' is the eagerly awaited date of the annual formal CID dinner, due to take place at St Ermin's Hotel. Hundreds of detectives and their wives will be there. It's the perfect target. As Jane arrives for the evening, she realises that she recognises the parking attendant as the bomber from Covent Garden. Can she convince her senior officers in time, or will another bomb destroy London's entire detective force?

My Review

Book three of the Tennison series and we see Jane growing a wee bit more - professionally and personally. Getting her own place, moving into the CID and still having to deal with the all the male chauvinistic style attitudes. The timeline in 1974/75 the book is very much terrorist/bombs/IRA and as one of our mains get caught right in the heart of it at the start so it is very graphic, breath taking and heart stopping. La Plante is so good at creating the situations/atmospheres that even me, not a visual reader was absolutely enfolded in the scene/emotions/terror. and that is just the start!

I think what I like about these books is that you have the police side, investigation, crime, murder(s) whatever the book is taking you to. You also get the feel of the times, the vile attitudes/prejudices/stereotypes/racisms et al of that era but also down to tv shows & things that will take you back. The family dynamics, the personal side of Jane whilst striving to be the best she can be at the job despite so much stacked against her and relationships in her life.

Tennison can be so relatable because she isn't perfect but she is a good person, she makes mistakes but never from a bad place, she is good people and for me, characters like that are a breath of fresh air. The pace is bang on, hooked as usually quickly, blend of characters to like, dislike, hate and I can't wait to hit the next one, 4/5.

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Friday 27 October 2023

The Drift by C J Tudor (repost)

So if you don't want to read a whole review, non spoiler, I have done a 10 words or less video on our TT for it.

Otherwise, enjoy the review, we read this back in January, fab book! Also today, at time of posting, the ebook and treebook (paperback) version is under £5 inc delivery, Amazon UK, absolute baragin.

The DriftThe Drift by C.J. Tudor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 4 days

Pages - 352

Publisher - Michael Joseph

Source - ARC

Blurb from Goodreads

Three ordinary people risk everything for a chance at redemption in this audacious, utterly gripping novel of catastrophe and survival at the end of the world, from the acclaimed author of The Chalk Man

Hannah awakens to carnage, all mangled metal and shattered glass. During a hasty escape from a secluded boarding school, her coach careened over a hillside road during one of the year's heaviest snowstorms, trapping her inside with a handful of survivors, a brewing virus, and no way to call for help. If she and the remaining few want to make it out alive, with their sanity--and secrets--intact, they'll need to work together or they'll be buried alive with the rest of the dead.

A former detective, Meg awakens to a gentle rocking. She is in a cable car suspended far above a snowstorm and surrounded by strangers in the same uniform as her, with no memory of how they got there. They are heading to a mysterious place known to them only as "The Retreat," but when they discover a dead man among their ranks and Meg spies a familiar face, she realizes that there is something far more insidious going on.

Carter is gazing out the window of the abandoned ski chalet that he and his ragtag compatriots call home. Together, they manage a precarious survival, manufacturing vaccines against a deadly virus in exchange for life's essentials. But as their generator begins to waver, the threat of something lurking in the chalet's depths looms larger, and their fragile bonds will be tested when the power finally fails--for good.

The imminent dangers faced by Hannah, Meg, and Carter are each one part of the puzzle. Lurking in their shadows is an even greater threat--one that threatens to consume all of humanity.

My Review

I will firstly say I have read almost all of this authors books and do really enjoy her writing and how she creates characters/atmosphere. So I do look forward to her next books and this one was no exception. The book surrounds three different groups of people and it is tense tense tense.

Carter and crew are in an abandoned ski resort, they call home and work on the vaccine to deal with the deadly virus that has swept the globe. Meg wakes up with strangers in a cable car suspended in the air, they are all knocked out and start waking and trying to recall how they got there. Hannah and her travelling companions are on a coach after escaping from the boarding school when they end up trapped, danger all around and no way to call for help!

Ooft the atmosphere and tension, some of it gave me The Things vibes, you know something bad could be in someone next to you and it is life threatening. Also the isolation all the group have, the guys at the retreat/chalet can come and go but there is still immanent threat about so they are effectively stranded although maybe not as bad as the cable car and bus guys.

There are a lot of characters and three separate scene settings which I don't always love as it can be distracting however Tudor writes it well you keep track no problem and when something kicks off on one group you don't want to leave to the next chapter. Then you are with the other group and its the same thing, I just wanted to know everything already.

Tudor keeps you on your toes and absolutely immersed in the carnage that follows as each group tries to survive. I had no idea where we were heading or what each endgame was going to be, that isn't always easy for authors especially when you have voracious readers. Yet she keeps it fresh every time and in this book we get three separate groups/happenings/stories that keep you hooked and guessing.

I think I only have one more story of hers to read and I so look forward to it, I think Master King gave a favourable quote to one of her works and he wasn't wrong. Exciting, shocking, horrific scenes, a deadly virus and in amongst trying to survive some humans will still be awful and some will show amazing feats of strength, loyalty and character, 4/5 for me this time.

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Tuesday 24 October 2023

A Daughter's Disgrace by Kitty Neale

A Daughter’s DisgraceA Daughter’s Disgrace by Kitty Neale
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 3 days

Pages - 418

Publisher - Avon books

Source - Gift

Blurb from Amazon

Alison is the ugly duckling of her family and has always been treated with disdain by her mother. After years of being bullied, she is drawn to the one man who shows her affection. But when he brutally rapes her, leaving her pregnant, she is cast out.

Shunned by her family, Alison must start to make her own way and plan a life for herself and her unborn child – and for the first time she is master of her own destiny.

But when the baby arrives, Alison feels no love for her new son. Terrified that history will repeat itself, can she find a way to love her child? And will she ever find the forgiveness she craves from her family?

My Review

Oooft guys this book is *jaw drops* - talk about some shady horrible characters! Alison is the "baby" of the family, the youngest of three daughters and treated abysmally by almost everyone. She is mocked for her looks by family and locals, she is painfully shy as a result. She is such a good egg and just gives and gives whilst her mother and sister Hazel mock, put her down and take more and more. Linda is the eldest and has a soft spot for Alison but she lives away and has her own family. When Alison gets a job in a butchers things start to look up a bit until she is attacked and her whole world is turned upside down.

Now obviously it tells you in the blurb and there is the title too that there is an SA resulting in a pregnancy. I have to just say see if something doesn't happen in the first quarter I don't think it should be mentioned in the blurb as it is a spoiler. If I remember it is almost half way through so just a wee person gripe I have.

Alison's mum and sister Hazel (the middle child and absolutely spoiled) are really repugnant characters. I wanted to hug Alison because regardless of what she does, or how much she gives they never have a kind word for her. Contrasting that, her boss in the butchers is such a nice kind soul and I think against Cora (her mother) and Hazel it really shows the opposites and how bad/good they are.

The book is set in the 50s and Neale captures the authenticity of the time well, I thought. The whole keeping a front on because of the neighbours and judgement(s), saving for what little you had. The judgements - ie wearing lipstick and daring to date/work and the way people looked down on others.

I find these books you can sink into and just block out your own reality, if for just a little while, I have read Neale before and will read again, 4/5 for me this time.

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Friday 20 October 2023

The Sinner by J R Ward

The Sinner (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #18)The Sinner by J.R. Ward
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 3 days (in and out)

Pages - 512

Publisher - Piatkus

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

A sinner’s only hope is true love in this passionate new novel in J.R. Ward’s #1 New York Times bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood series.

Syn has kept his side hustle as a mercenary a secret from the Black Dagger Brotherhood. When he takes another hit job, he not only crosses the path of the vampire race’s new enemy, but also that of a half-breed in danger of dying during her transition. Jo Early has no idea what her true nature is, and when a mysterious man appears out of the darkness, she is torn between their erotic connection and the sense that something is very wrong.

Fate anointed Butch O’Neal as the Dhestroyer, the fulfiller of the prophecy that foresees the end of the Omega. As the war with the Lessening Society comes to a head, Butch gets an unexpected ally in Syn. But can he trust the male—or is the warrior with the bad past a deadly complication?

With time running out, Jo gets swept up in the fighting and must join with Syn and the Brotherhood against true evil. In the end, will love true prevail...or was the prophecy wrong all along?

My Review

I don't really remember Syn too much in previous books but I do remember Jo Early, the reporter who with another co worker where trying to cover the vampires/destruction when the Lessers and vamps battled. Turns out Jo is a half breed and on the cusp on transition and Syn is brought into her life as a job and Syn has no idea what lies ahead for him. So Syn is a bit rogue, whilst him and his fighters have taken oath to the king he is still a bit nomad, a loner, wild, a killer. He has had a horrific past and not the best of relations with the other sex. We hear a bit about his past and know he is a hitman, man, woman it doesn't matter he is happy to take folk out. So when Jo comes into his path he is not ready for the impact she has on him nor what it can mean for him.

We also get an unexpected pop up from Covet, book one in another series by this author, I think I need to read the rest of them for fear of spoilers in the next in this series, plus I did enjoy that one. Butch features a wee bit more and I feel we haven't seen a whole lot of the Lessers nor the Omega in the last few so it was nice to get a bit more of that side from the series.

As usual there is graphic adult scenes of an adult nature so not for the easy to blush or quick to be mortified, this is book 18 so you should know by now what you are getting. The book has a glossary at the start which I think is a fantastic idea to keep up with the terminology, no matter how long you have been reading the series it is good to have them. Murder, love, friendships, a wee bit almost gaslighting, certainly I was a bit annoyed at some of the behaviours of some but from the beginning you know he has a dark/dangerous/aggressive side. Always nice to see progression from the stories and I think with this one Ward has injected a new lease of life into the series and look forward to seeing where it goes, 3.5/5 from me.

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Saturday 14 October 2023

The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

The Near Witch (The Near Witch, #1)The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 2 days

Pages - 284

Publisher -

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.

If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company.

And there are no strangers in the town of Near.

These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life.

But when an actual stranger-a boy who seems to fade like smoke-appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.

The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.

As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi's need to know-about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.

Part fairy tale, part love story, Victoria Schwab's debut novel is entirely original yet achingly familiar: a song you heard long ago, a whisper carried by the wind, and a dream you won't soon forget.

My Review

I think this is my first time reading this author although I have heard the name many times in book groups and sure I have a few others on my tbrm. This is a standalone, punted as a half fairy tale half love story, I am not sure I would use any of them to describe it to be honest. Lexi is really close to her little sister, her mother hasn't been right since her dad died and uncle Otto is taking the lead of man in the house. Lexi is very much like her dad was and into tracking and getting in and about the thick of everything whereas at sixteen in the village it should be more ladylike and focused on wedding, absolutely not what Lexi has in mind. When a stranger is spotted in the village and then a little child goes missing from their bedroom, a hunt for the stranger begins. When another goes missing the townsfolk are after blood rather than answers. Lexi wants to know who the stranger is and she knows exactly where to go to find out.

I don't know for me there was so many seemingly separate threads that didn't exactly gel or come together or in some cases what was the point. The old witch tale that was used to scare the kids, I liked and thought it was well done. The kids disappearing was almost pied piper vibes, there was no harm or force they just seemed to have disappeared with no trace.

The sisters that Lexi goes to I would have loved to have heard more about them, mysterious, elderly witches, the only two left in the village. I think they would have made for great reading and maybe the author will revisit and do a story on them. I just think for a book about witches (ok The Near Witch implies just one) we wold have had more witches.

I didn't get the mob mentality of wanting to hunt down the stranger, surely you would want to capture them and get some answers, most importantly where are the kids. There were things I liked, things I didn't and some missed opportunities I felt but overall it was fine, 3/5 for me.

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Tuesday 10 October 2023

The Amityville Horror 2 by John G Jones

The Amityville Horror IIThe Amityville Horror II by John G. Jones
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 4 days

Pages - 400

Publisher - Warner

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

George and Kathy Lutz flee their demon-plagued home only to face renewed terrors

My Review

If you have read or seen the movies you know what the story is about, this book picks up where the first book leaves off. Kathy, George and the kids flee Amityville house leaving all their possessions/belongings and pretty much everything they own in attempts to flee the evil entity. Sadly they soon find that no matter where they go evil is following them.

The only thing I would say I found different from the movies etc well from what I remember the book goes into them doing the book and the promotion for it. How things go, how they are received by the general public, interviewing hosts and what is happening to the rest of their family whilst they travel.

Perfect book for candles, dark night, blanket & a quiet freaky night in. I think most people have an interest in this story and if you enjoy freaky/supernatural tales then whether you believe this to be a true story or not you will enjoy it. 4/5 from us for this one.

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Sunday 8 October 2023

Covet by J R Ward

Covet (Fallen Angels, #1)Covet by J.R. Ward
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - in and out over 5 days

Pages - 496

Publisher - Little brown & co

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

Redemption isn't a word Jim Heron knows much about - his specialty is revenge and, to him, sin is all relative. But everything changes when he becomes a fallen angel and is charged with saving the souls of seven people from the seven deadly sins. And failure is not an option.

My Review

Book one in a new series, Jim Heron is a man with a past, he is now working at a construction site and after an encounter of the adult kind with a stunning woman and an accident Jim finds himself in the company of higher beings. He is now effectively a player in a game of life and death, good vs evil and Jim has been picked as the representative of good. Jim has had a very shady past, he has done some bad things but he has a moral compass so they feel he is a good choice. The other side has their own player and Jim has his work cut out trying to do what is asked of him.

Oooft we have angels, demons, dodgyness, chat of domestic violence, manipulation, lust, seduction, murder, spells, you name it. I think this is a good foundation book one in a six book series. Not for the easily offended, adult scenes (of an erotic nature), evil forces, murder, trying to influence over the deadly sins, one side wants the individual to choose bad, the other side to choose good and humanity/souls are the end game so everything that is anything is at risk.

I do enjoy Ward's writing and normally it is the Black Dagger Brotherhood series I read but thought I would give this a bash. The battle between good and evil is one we see in most genres and it is a formula done over and over but Ward writes in a way, with characters, you engage with and what to see where it goes and folk get their comeuppance. I am going to order book two, I can't wait to see where the story goes next, 3.5/5 for me this time.

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Monday 2 October 2023

Hidden Killers by Lynda LaPlante BookTour

Book two of the #TeamTennison tour - "Hidden Killers" - for my stop I have my review, enjoy. You can buy your own copy now, from Amazon or any other good retailer.

We read ours with the pelting rain, in the nook with a blanket (is there anything nicer!).

Hidden Killers (Jane Tennison #2)Hidden Killers by Lynda La Plante
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - as able over 5 days

Pages - 496

Publisher - Simon & Schuster

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

A prostitute dressed in a blue rabbit fur coat walks through the darkness of Hackney Fields, seemingly alone. But someone is waiting for her...

A woman is found dead in her bath, a small child crying in the room next door... Is it an accidental death or the perfect murder?

When WPC Jane Tennison is promoted to the role of Detective Constable in London's Bow Street CID, she is immediately conflicted. While her far more experienced colleagues move on swiftly from one criminal case to another, Jane is often left with doubts about their findings.

Becoming inextricably embroiled in a multiple-rape case, Jane must put her life at risk in the search for answers. Will she toe the CID line, or endanger her position by seeking the truth...?

My Review

Oooh book two and we find Jane Tennison is promoted to Detective Constable in Bow Street, London CID. There are two cases being investigated, a rape and a young mother dead in a bath tub, Jane is finding just how different things work here. From new bosses, some of the same issues we found in book one, sexism, racism, skulduggery and hints of things not being quite above board Jane is feeling the pressure to do a job she loves, remain true to herself and conform.

I try to remember the time period this is set in, so sexism was (and still prevalent in some areas/places), hierarchy, unethical behaviours but you do get riled at how she is treated by her peers a fair bit.

From being put in danger, questioning her fellow officers and even putting her much loved job at risk by following her heart and intuition we follow Jane on some dark and questionable paths. There are some very unsettling themes in the book, rape, murder, people, cops struggling with their own demons, addictions - it is a busy book and mixed bag.

There is so much more to the series and I look forward to getting into them and seeing what the future holds for Jane and co, 4/5 for me this time.

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