I’m a fan of Mark Billingham’s Tom Thorne / Nicola Tanner series but also very much enjoyed (perhaps more!) his standalone 2021 release, Rabbit Hole. His latest novel, The Last Dance, kicks off a new series featuring Detective Declan (Dec) Miller… a witty wiseass I can soooo envisage on the big or small screen. Miller’s constant (almost compulsive) commentary is hilarious and it would translate well – if done properly with someone with great (droll) comedic timing.
Book review: Identity by Nora Roberts
It’d been a while between Nora Roberts’ books for me. Of course I continue to read her JD Robb ‘In Death’ series but I also enjoy her romantic suspense novels and her latest, Identity, is another great read. It was perhaps a smidge longer than it needed to be but offers great characters and – though not edge-of-your-seat suspense – the inevitability of what’s to come simmers menacingly in the background.
Book review: Home Before Night by JP Pomare
I’ve been increasingly enjoying JP Pomare’s work over the years. His latest release is actually a re-release of an audiobook (via Audible) from late 2022. I noted a few authors were doing something similar – releasing audiobooks or even novellas in the form of ebooks. It probably means this is a little shorter than usual. It’s very much in his style though… some slightly devious storytelling that has us making certain assumptions only to find out later that we were duped.
Book review: The Anniversary by Stephanie Bishop
The Anniversary by Stephanie Bishop is a novel that – I suspect – could divide its readers. Including me. I mean, it’s not that I didn’t like it because I certainly did. But my various personalities prevaricated between adoring Bishop’s glorious writing; feeling frustrated at things obviously being kept from readers or made little sense (which could potentially be plotholes); while at the same time wondering if I’m too obtuse to understand the not-necessarily-logical order in which elements of the plot flowed.
Book review: Eleven Liars by Robert Gold
Eleven Liars by Robert Gold is the second book in the series featuring journalist Ben Harper, who we met in Twelve Secrets when he was forced to revisit his own tragic past. Here Ben’s still working for his quirky boss finishing up a podcast offering newly-uncovered secrets involving his family when he literally stumbles across a new mystery.
Book review: Prettier If She Smiled More by Toni Jordan
Toni Jordan’s debut novel Addition, was one of my favourite books when it was released in 2008 and I also loved The Fragments – giving it a rare (for me) five stars. I commented then on her beautiful writing and her ability to develop complex, quirky, likeable and very real characters.
Prettier If She Smiled More features Kylie Schnabel – a judicious pharmacist and a responsible and pragmatic daughter, sister, friend and girlfriend – who’s perfectly content with her lot in life, harbouring no great ambitions for more than she has. Until it starts disappearing before her eyes.
Book review: The Running Club by Ali Lowe
I was worried The Running Club by Ali Lowe would be a bit like books about motherhood – featuring cliquey groups to whom I can not relate. I know people ‘inside’ of those groups don’t see the fact that they can be exclusive, but those ‘outside’ certainly do. Casual discussions about times and pacers and the like are similar to those about school drop-offs, P & C committees or playdates, for those of us on the ‘outside’.
However, though the club itself is how these meet – like The Trivia Night in Lowe’s first novel – merely a vehicle or way in which to bind a group of disparate people together in a way that isn’t natural so ultimately explodes before hopefully recovering and re-forming (in more ways than one!).
Book review: Going Rogue by Janet Evanovich
Going Rogue (Rise and Shine Twenty-Nine) by Janet Evanovich is the latest book in the Stephanie Plum bounty hunter series. Like JD Robb’s In Death series and Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone ABC series these are comfort reads for me. I know what to expect. I can feel confident that’s what I’ll get and it’s almost always the case.
Book reviews: 1979 & 1989 by Val McDermid
For reasons unknown I hadn’t read 1979 by Val McDermid when its sequel, 1989 arrived. I think perhaps I was a bit put-off by any mention of the IRA or money laundering and the like, as political and/or white collar crimes don’t really interest me much. (And no… I’m not sure why.)
However, a lull in new book arrivals meant I wanted to get to 1989 which naturally meant going back in time first. Because I am nothing if not anal about reading things in chronological order.