I read Missing, Presumed by Susie Steiner, the first in this series featuring (then DS, now DI) Manon Bradshaw last year – although I didn’t know (more in the series would follow) at that time. Looking back on my review I certainly took to Manon, who I described as a ‘no nonsense’ sort of person. Which remains the case in her second outing.
Those who’ve been regular visitors to my site over some time will not be surprised to know I tend to ponder over things. I’ll read something – like this piece from Tiny Buddha – and I’ll bookmark it on my phone or computer while it marinates in my mind a little. Or a lot.
I hadn’t realised this book was the third in a series until I started reading it and my enjoyment probably suffered a little as a result as I felt like I was missing a lot of the context. The characters, however are great and – if you get the chance – I’d recommend starting at the beginning. Starting part-way through (as I’ve done) will mean you get some spoilers about earlier books, case outcomes and the characters’ exploits.
I was going to do a ‘taking stock’ post in line with Denyse Whelan’s link-up topic for today. In fact I even started it and prepared to regale you with tales of why I hate my hair and my new addiction to white chocolate.
I really only plan to do one non-book-related post each week but I’m posting today as it’s Denyse’s last link-up before she takes a break for treatment for mouth (oral cavity) cancer. I hate that this is happening to her and her family and cannot even imagine how scary and confronting it is for them all. My own dad had cancer as well as other health issues, so I can kinda relate from the point of view of a ‘loved one’ but I’ve appreciated that Denyse has taken the opportunity to share with us her feelings and her fears.
The first part of this book took my breath away. I found myself marking paragraphs and sentences that leapt out at me, folding over page after page. That did slow down and whether I became inured to David Free’s prose or his writing reduced to a (still amazing, but) low simmer, I’m not sure but I was initially mesmerised.
Some time ago I shared one of those self-pitying… ‘everyone needs a reason to get out of bed’ posts. I possibly joked about Vanilla Diet Coke but in essence was having my own little pity party about the fact I was single, childless and no one loved me. (Okay, so maybe that last bit wasn’t true. I have my mum. And friends.)
Like everyone there have been times in my life when I’ve struggled to identify anything to look forward to, or get excited about. However, I’ve made some changes so the overwhelm / dread / sense of purposeless isn’t quite as bad. I’ve quit full-time work, moved, started writing, had weight loss surgery and so forth… but I also have to remind myself that sometimes we need to create those things (worth waking up for) ourselves.
I’d seen quite a bit of hype around Wimmera, the debut novel by Melbourne writer, Mark Brandi whose work has been published in journals, magazines and newspapers in Australia and overseas. In fact, Brandi was awarded the 2016 UK Crime Writers’ Association Dagger for this debut.
I didn’t actually do the ‘resolutions’ or word / phrase / soup of the day / year thing this year. I did identify some things I wanted to ‘do’ before my 50th birthday at the end of 2017, but I really couldn’t be ‘arsed’ identifying things that would (as usual) remain un-done when 2018 rolls around.
I’m still – kinda – on a blogging break of sorts, though seem to be now consistently breaking the break on a weekly basis, so figured I’d join Denyse Whelan today who’s suggested we do a half-year stocktake or mid year check-in. Or similar.
This is the third of Debbie Howells’ books I’ve read and I was particularly blown away by her first, The Bones of You. I also enjoyed The Beauty of the End, and now the author, based in West Sussex, does it again with her third novel, Part of the Silence.
There’s something very engaging about her characters; and her plots generally offer up something a little different. I must confess to being a little disappointed in the ending of this book… though I know that won’t surprise regular readers of my reviews who know I’m kinda hard to please.