Book review: She’s Not There by Joy Fielding

Saturday, January 27, 2018 Permalink

I’ve read almost all of Joy Fielding’s books, though Goodreads tells me I’ve read only two (so most must have been read before I started tracking them there as I once owned far more than that). I came across her book See Jane Run back in the early 1990s and devoured everything she wrote and had written for the next decade (or two).

I requested this book without knowing it wasn’t a new release and it was apparently published in 2016 though completely slipped through my reading radar / net thingy. And it was the perfect way to start the long weekend in Australia. 

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three-half-stars

Book review: Shadow Man by Alan Drew

Friday, January 26, 2018 Permalink

I’ve commented before on the number of books set in the not-too-distant past. Obviously for some – like Bloody January which I read recently, Adrian McKinty’s Sean Duffy series and Lynda LaPlante’s young Jane Tennison books – the time is almost another character in itself – the setting pivotal to the plot; but others just remind us of when things were different. A couple of my favourite series, the Robert B Parker Spenser series; and (the late) Sue Grafton’s alphabet series area (were, in the case of the latter) set just a couple few several decades ago. (Seems like yesterday but time flies, I mean… weren’t we worried about the Y2K bug just a couple of years ago?!)

Anyhoo, it’s a time before technology (as we now know it) was rife, before we had facts and information at our fingertips and, in some ways (given what we’re often exposed to), the opportunity for innocence was lost. 

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three-half-stars

Book review: Redemption Point by Candice Fox

Thursday, January 25, 2018 Permalink

It’s no secret that I am a huge fan of Aussie author Candice Fox. I love her work and very much appreciate her dry and whip-smart wit.

Two of my favourite (11) books of the year last year were hers and I was particularly excited by the appearance of Crimson Lake – the first in a new series after the popular Eden, Hades and Fall series.

Redemption Point is the second book set in the fictional far north Queensland community of Crimson Lake. And again Fox not only offers up some amazing characters, but also firmly plants readers in the humid dense rainforest and the murky crocodile-infested waters of my home-state’s isolated and often unwelcoming far north.

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four-half-stars

How quickly a heart can break

Saturday, January 20, 2018 Permalink

I haven’t written any non-bookish posts here for a while. All is okay but I’ve been struggling a little in my usual #firstworldproblems way. Stressing more than I should about work; worrying about things I think I SHOULD be doing (writing, blogging, reading), but not. The usual. And then there are the mid-life hormones running rampant through my now 50yr old body. In fact, I decided I was dying the other night cos according to my Fitbit I actually spent a few hours with my heartrate in the ‘fat-burning’ zone while lying in bed, even reaching the ‘cardio’ zone a few times. Bloody palpitations. 

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Book review: Bloody January by Alan Parks

Friday, January 19, 2018 Permalink

It’s only in recent years I’ve discovered books set during the years of my childhood… years in which I was pretty ignorant of the events taking place on the other side of the world. As a result then, I’ve been very much enjoying books like Adrian McKinty’s Sean Duffy series, set in 1980s Belfast during the thick of the ‘Troubles’.

Bloody January by Alan Parks takes readers back to 1973 Glasgow, where bribery and corruption is practically expected and morality and ethics only just entering the culture of the police force. 

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three-half-stars

Book review: The Confession by Jo Spain

Monday, January 15, 2018 Permalink

This intriguing read came soon after another ‘he said / she said’ book, Anatomy of a Scandal, and similarly (slowly) shares the history of its key players as we learn how they arrived at the point at which we meet them; although of course it’s very different in the sense that The Confession starts out with a violent act and we go about understanding why it came about. In many ways it’s a ‘whydunnit’ rather than a whodunnit. #ifthatmakessense

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three-half-stars

Book review: Hellbent by Gregg Hurwitz

Saturday, January 13, 2018 Permalink

I loved the first book in this series, Orphan X by Gregg Hurwitz. It was one of my favourite books of 2016. I enjoyed the second but it felt a little different. Orphan X  (aka Evan Smoak / The Nowhere Man) seemed as if he’d taken a detour from where we’d started and the novel was more an action-focused game of cat and mouse than its predecessor.

Hurwitz retains the action from both the first and second books in this third outing, Hellbent, but returns to where he started and builds on the humanity of the former assassin and – I ADORED this book.

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four-half-stars

Book review: Don’t Wake Up by Liz Lawler

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 Permalink

I read A LOT of mysteries, thrillers, crime fiction and the like. It’s rare that there’s something completely new… in fact, I sometimes read so many involving protagonists forced to return to a scene / their hometown where a sibling / friend (etc) disappeared decades earlier, I tend to mix-up the plot in question.

That’s not to say I don’t still enjoy those books. I obviously request them so there’s something about long-held dark secrets that leap out at me… in a non literal sense of course. This debut novel by Liz Lawler, however offered up something a little different. It starts with a fathomless crime; one that is a little far-fetched and hard to believe.

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three-half-stars