Book review: Elevator Pitch by Linwood Barclay

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 Permalink

I’m posting this review earlier than planned as I accidentally read some of my TBR pile in the wrong order. As I only had this one electronically I didn’t have the usual media release and mistakenly thought it was out before some of the others on my list. So, oops.

Also, I’m a fan of Linwood Barclay and have read and reviewed many of his other books (and series) here, so happy to have read it slightly earlier than intended.

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four-stars

Book review: Under Currents by Nora Roberts

Wednesday, July 10, 2019 Permalink

I love Nora Roberts’ romantic suspense novels. They usually offer up a good balance of the two, which is important given my love of thrillers and suspense and antipathy towards romance. (As such.)

Interestingly, though this includes some suspense, it’s kinda short-lived. It grapples with some unpleasant themes (domestic violence and family violence, so trigger alert for some), but the thing I enjoyed most about this book was, in fact, how the romance played out and the relationship between our two lead characters.

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four-stars

Book review: The Chain by Adrian McKinty

Sunday, July 7, 2019 Permalink

There is currently a LOT of hype around The Chain by Adrian McKinty. I keep seeing articles on social media about the film rights of a book written by an Uber driver sold for a seven figure sum.

There’s actually an interesting note in the back of this book from McKinty about life as a writer. He’s got his successful Sean Duffy series under his belt but it’s a reminder that many seemingly-successful creatives (authors and the like) don’t actually earn much from their craft. Most have other jobs and alternative sources of income. Which makes me feel a bit grumpy about some idiotic athletes who earn gazillions.

But enough of my ranting. Let’s get down to it cos this standalone by McKinty is (#spoileralert) certainly worth all of the praise it’s getting. I wasn’t sure I was going to be enamoured but I was gobsmacked at how ‘real’ it all felt from the opening lines.

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four-half-stars

Book review: Never Look Back by AL Gaylin

Saturday, July 6, 2019 Permalink

It’s increasingly common for books to reflect popular culture – true crime podcasts and the like. I’ve now read a few novels that have pursued a story either via the podcast or for the purposes of one. (As an aside, Sadie by Courtney Summers, which does exactly that was one of my favourite books for the first half of 2019.)

This is a little different in that it’s mostly about the investigation which may (or may not) result in a podcast. But I guess this book by AL Gaylin also takes the opportunity to consider 21st century journalism, news and our consumption of information. In some ways it’s a peripheral issue, but in others a reminder of how different today’s world is from that of 40yrs ago.

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three-stars

Book review: A Nearly Normal Family by MT Edvardsson

Wednesday, July 3, 2019 Permalink

This book is written by Swedish author MT Edvardsson and published (obviously) in Swedish. I often worry a little about translations because you may be missing some stunning prose in the author’s native language – and you’re at the mercy of the translator’s ability to transform not only the language, but the tone and underlying nuances of the original.

There were probably a few moments early on that it seemed an obvious translation but either the phrasing settled or I became inured to the style of the author and translator as I stopped noticing part-way through and overall I think translator Rachel Wilson-Broyles does the original justice.

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three-half-stars

Book review: Six Minutes by Petronella McGovern

Monday, July 1, 2019 Permalink

This book came as a bit of a surprise. I’d had an advance copy for a while but put it aside for closer to the publication date when the final version arrived and I read some publicity around it.

In some ways you’d think the whole ‘missing child’ thing had been done to death. Indeed the blurb refers to The Cry and I know I’ve read quite a lot of books about disappearing children, but this felt different. The parents were less obvious suspects, though certainly had their secrets, and there was other stuff going on behind the scenes, involving both the parents and those who last saw the missing girl.

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four-stars

Book review: The Devil’s Lair by Sarah Barrie

Friday, June 14, 2019 Permalink

This is actually the first book I’ve read by Australian author Sarah Barrie though she’s penned the Hunters Ridge series and I understand this is loosely linked to her 2018 release, Blood Tree River.

I kinda guessed the ‘whodunnit’ part here which is eventually partially handed to us. The why wasn’t as predictable though and sets up the suspense in this book quite nicely.

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three-half-stars

Book review: The Whisper Man by Alex North

Tuesday, June 11, 2019 Permalink

The cover of this book includes recommendations from authors of some of my recent faves, and the fact I knew almost all of those quoted boded well for this book… ie. it would sit firmly in my reading comfort zone.

And it certainly did. Mostly. There was a smidge of the paranormal which I’ve struggled with in one of Lisa Unger’s series, but definitely not enough to put me off. And as we’re offered great characters and an intriguing plot, I’m glad I had the chance to dive into this debut novel by Alex North.

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three-half-stars