High Force by LJ Ross (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Bk 5) @LJRoss_author #Thriller #TuesdayBookBlog

  • 33533363Author: LJ Ross
  • Published: January 2017
  • Category: Thriller, Mystery
  • five-stars

Hell has unleashed a demon – and he’s coming for you… 

Detective Chief Inspector Ryan’s worst nightmare has just become a reality. Notorious serial killer The Hacker has escaped prison and kidnapped one of his best detectives from her own home. His brutality is the stuff of legend – Ryan lost his sister and nearly his own life bringing the man to justice first time around. Can Ryan do it again to save his friend?

Picking up immediately after the cliffhanger ending in Angel, Denise MacKenzie finds herself in a desperate situation. Cold blooded killer Keir Edwards, aka The Hacker, has escaped from prison in an elaborate and high profile way, his single-minded goal drawing out DCI Ryan and causing as much suffering as possible. 

Detective Sergeant Frank Phillips isn’t coping well, his anger and guilt overwhelming. It’s been a week since Denise was taken and he and DCI Ryan are no further towards running Edwards to ground. They don’t know if Denise is still alive or if they’re destined to find her body.

Different only because we know who the perpetrator is from the start, this is a thrilling race against the clock for Ryan and his team. The pace doesn’t let up, but at the same time it shows how much trawling through files and paperwork is necessary to the investigation.  The history between Edwards and Ryan lends a significant and personal slant to the case. 

“Current thinking is that we’ve missed something, somewhere. So, we’re going to do the only logical thing and go back over our tracks. That includes re-opening every one of Edwards’ old case files.”

It was a tall order to retrace every report, every sighting and every piece of forensic evidence generated over the last seven days in addition to every year Edwards was an active killer, but it was the only way forward.

“I don’t need to tell you that we’ve ground to a halt.” He met Phillips’ stare and didn’t flinch. “Until Edwards shows himself, we’re treading water. But experience tells me there has to be a trail, one that we’re not seeing. I propose we start again and, this time, we find it.”

As with the previous books, a very atmospheric setting. One of the things I love about this series is the fact the locations are real, as beautiful and impressive as they are described, so much so that I’ve been inspired to visit places, some of which I probably wouldn’t ever have been aware of. Can’t wait to see the location(s) the author uses for future books.

The characters are multi dimensional, well drawn and easy to like and invest in. Their strengths and weaknesses have developed more with each book. I love the affinity and support between them and I particularly enjoyed the growth of DC Jack Lowerson’s character. We also get an insight into Edwards and the events that twisted his mind and contributed to make him what he became. 

An extremely well crafted, well written storyline, full of suspense and the tension builds unremittingly. Denise’s plight and resulting feelings were portrayed realistically, as was the team’s growing frustration and desperation. The final clash is nerve-wracking and exciting, with one or two threads left dangling.  An excellent series which is going from strength to strength.

Book links ~ Amazon UK | US

About LJ Ross

81laeqzoljl-_ux250_Born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, LJ Ross moved to London where she graduated from King’s College London with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Law. After working in the City as a regulatory lawyer for a number of years, she realised it was high time for a change. 

Her first book, ‘Holy Island’, has consistently been listed as an Amazon bestseller since its release in January 2015 and hit the Amazon UK Kindle #1 position in May 2015. Its sequels, ‘Sycamore Gap’, ‘Heavenfield’ and ‘Angel’ have all been #1 bestsellers.

Author links ~ WebsiteFacebookTwitterGoodreads

Church Island ~ Menai Bridge #Photography #MondayBlogs

Following on from last week’s post about the Belgian Promenade, as you walk across the causeway on to Church Island you’re met by this amazing tree and the stone plaque that goes with it.

churchisland1 Continue reading

#QandA with Aaron Lawler @WriterAJL #author of The Marvelous Paracosm of Fitz Faraday and the Shapers of the Id #SundayBlogShare

Welcome, Aaron. Please introduce yourself and tell us a little about your book.

I am a traveller in both the world and in the library. Writing allows me to design the journey, where I will go, what I will do, and who I will meet. Adventures in Europe, Canada, the States and Mexico opened me to new ideas. Philosophical jaunts changed who I am and the way I think. But writing allows me to wayfind. I can engineer a compass for my own path, following my own direction. The mindscape is an amazing place for a daytrip. Continue reading

Ghost Variations: The Strangest Detective Story in Music by Jessica Duchen #RBRT @jessicaduchen #bookreview #FridayReads

  • 32053103Author: Jessica Duchen
  • Kindle Edition
  • Category: Historical, Fiction
  • five-stars

London, 1933. Dabbling in the once-fashionable “glass game” – a Ouija board – the famous Hungarian violinist Jelly d’Arányi is amazed to receive a message supposedly from the spirit of the great composer Robert Schumann, asking her to find and play his long-suppressed violin concerto.

Ghost Variations is created from real people and true events which occurred during their lives; history dramatised into a rich and enchanting narrative.

Jelly d’Arányi, the central character, is a renowned Hungarian violinist, living in 1930s London with her sister, Adila and her family. Jelly has been the muse for several famous composers and is dedicated to her music, to the exclusion of her personal life, especially since she lost the man she loved at the Battle of the Somme during WWI. The sisters have lived in London since Jelly was sixteen and now as she approaches her fortieth birthday, Jelly is aware she is (unfairly) considered past her prime as a musician.  Continue reading

The Caretaker ~ a #ShortStory by Dan Klefstad #Vampire @danklefstad

A very intriguing short story which I believe the author has plans to develop into a novel. It was published in Crack The Spine Literary Magazine on February 1st 2017. I enjoyed reading The Caretaker very much, it’s a unique perspective on a vampire tale. To hear Dan read the quote below, check out the video clip.

Dear Applicant, Congratulations. Out of hundreds of applications, yours stood out…..But, I must warn you: The more you read, the more my employer will consider you a threat if you decline our offer. If you have no intentions of taking the job, delete this message now before reading further.” 

Then…the final warning.  Do you want to devote your best years to an exacting employer who will pay more than handsomely for loyalty and secrecy, spending your retirement in wealth and luxury or settle for a mundane job, family and regular yearly holidays? Continue reading

The Rising by Heather Graham and Jon Land #YA #Scifi @heathergraham @JonDLand @MacmillianAudio #TuesdayBookBlog

From acclaimed thriller-suspense novelists Heather Graham and Jon Land comes a story of action, mystery, and the endurance of young love.

Twenty-four hours. That’s all it takes for the lives of two young people to be changed forever.

Eighteen year old Alex Chin, popular star football player, was adopted by a Chinese couple, Li and An Chin, when he was a baby. Football is his passion and with plenty of scholarship offers, he believes he has a bright future ahead. His tutor, Samantha Dixon, is about to graduate and plans an internship with NASA, working with Dr Thomas Donati. All is going well for both of them until a head injury on the football field lands Alex in hospital. An initial CT scan shows something strange, and when Alex has a follow-up the bulbs in scanner burn out and the glass casing shatters. Then Alex’s doctor is murdered. And when Sam finds Alex’s parents dying in their home and have a run in with the non human attackers, she and Alex go on the run with help from Alex’s guardian, Raiff, who has been in the background, keeping an eye on him, knowing this day would come sooner or later.  Continue reading

Walking the Belgian Promenade ~ Menai Strait #Anglesey #Photography #SundayBlogShare

The Belgian Promenade is so named because it was built by Belgian war refugees. More than sixty refugees, men, women and children, fleeing their German occupied home town of Mechelen arrived on Anglesey towards the end of 1914. They showed their appreciation for the help, accommodation and welcome provided by the local people by building the promenade, which was finished in 1916. The pathway follows the Menai Strait from the town of Menai Bridge to Church Island, as shown on Google Earth.

menai-strait Continue reading

The Skeletons of Birkbury by @DianaJFebry #Murder #Mystery in the Cotswolds #FridayReads

  • 61etjg0qvilAuthor: Diana J Febry
  • Published: May 2012 by Wings ePress, Inc.
  • Category: Murder, Mystery
  • four-half-stars

Twenty years ago no connection was made between the disappearance of a girl from Cheltenham and a fatal car accident in the small village of Birkbury. But that changes when the body is found buried in Birkbury and there are two further car accidents and a local girl goes missing.

On the strength of reading and enjoying Who Killed Vivien Morse? a little while ago, I added The Skeletons of Birkbury, the first in the series and Diana J Febry’s debut novel, to my reading list. And I wasn’t disappointed. The setting, in a rural village location, was realistically described with the horse and farming community. A great mix of diverse and representational characters add to the appeal, from the ‘gentry’ to the older more civil, sometimes nosey, salt of the earth villagers, although they can appear quite uncooperative at times. Continue reading

Spotlight on Hinting at Shadows by @SarahBrentyn Short & #FlashFiction #WWWBlogs

I’m delighted to be spotlighting Sarah Brentyn’s collection of short and micro fiction ~ Hinting at Shadows ~ and sharing two extracts from the book along with my review.

hinting-at-shadows_ebook-cover_sarah-brentyn-resizedDelve into the deeper reaches of the human condition and the darkness that lives there.

A girl haunted by her sister’s drowning. A boy desperate for his father’s affection. A woman forced to make a devastating decision. A man trapped by his obsessions.

Experience tales of love, loss, murder, and madness through this collection of flash and micro fiction.

Take a peek behind the smile of a stranger. Get a glimpse inside the heart of a friend. Scratch the surface and discover what is hidden beneath.

These stories will open your mind, tug at your thoughts, and allow you to explore the possibility that, even in the brightest moments, something is Hinting at Shadows.

Continue reading

Character #Spotlight & #Extract from The Frog Theory by Fiona Mordaunt @AuthorightUKPR #TuesdayBookBlog

Character Spotlight on Kim

When I was younger, the pub become a huge part of my life because I realised that I had a talent for playing pool and it was the only place I could play. I was under age but I looked older than I was and regulations were not so strict then, so I got away with it.

All sorts of people would participate – students, business people, cab drivers – many from the surrounding council estates. I made many friends.

Two guys stood slightly apart from the crowd and all the girls just loved them, including me! I was too young for them even to glance in my direction (their radar was better than the landlord’s). Kim and Flow are loosely based on them. Continue reading