#ThrowbackThursday ~ Honour & Obey #histfic @carolJhedges

Renee at It’s Book Talk began this meme as a way to share old favourites, as well as books that were published over a year ago. Not to mention those that are languishing on the to be read pile for whatever reason.

This week I’d like to showcase Honour & Obey by Carol Hedges, the second of four books featuring Stride and Cully, policemen in Victorian London. 

** A note from the author….the books are currently unavailable due to editing..back soon with Wonders & Wickedness, no 5 in the series, and brand new covers** 

They’re well worth waiting for 🙂

The long awaited sequel to Diamonds & Dust , Honour & Obey brings together Detective Inspector Leo Stride and his assistant Detective Sergeant Jack Cully. It is London, 1861 and a serial killer stalks the dark gaslit streets.
In another part of the city, Hyacinth Clout, bullied and despised by her older sister, decides to find love via the lonely hearts column of a newspaper. But will it be romance, or ruin?

My Review

A serial killer stalks the streets of London targeting the unfortunate women working in or for the sweat shops of the garment industry. Until that is, a well to do young lady meets her maker in a theatre box. The women all are all killed in the same way but unfortunately Detective Inspector Leo Stride and his Detective Sergeant, Jack Cully, of the detective division of the Metropolitan Police, aren’t making a lot of progress. The killer leaves no evidence and no witnesses have come forward. Only Emily Benet whose friend was the first victim, is willing to help the detectives. Stride and Cully must use any and all means at their disposal to try and apprehend the killer. Once again they are persecuted by the press for failing to do so in record time, with discrediting headlines, such as ‘Ghastly Murder’ and ‘Baffled Detectives’ which do nothing but hamper the investigation.

The story is peopled with a wonderful mix of fascinating, if not always likeable, and extremely well drawn characters both primary and secondary, with names reminiscent of the Dickensian era. We have, among others, the obnoxiously repulsive Rev. Bittersplit, the appealing Mullygrub children, horrid Lobelia Clout and the awful Morbid Crevice and his equally awful wife. Hyacinth Clout is an appealing character and one of my favourites. She rises above the cruelty of her sister and improves her life immeasurably; although not quite in the way she envisioned, after receiving a reply to her response to a personal advertisement in The News of the World. Hyacinth can’t think of anything worse than ‘a life of mindless and repetitious drudgery and boredom’.

Although the main aspect of the plot revolves around the murders, Carol Hedges cleverly and seamlessly weaves in sub plots and characters which connect and/or touch one another’s lives.

The story opens on a rainy, spring evening…

Stand awhile in the shelter of this doorway and listen. The noise of the pelting rain is almost drowned out by the great cacophonous cauldron of sound swirling around you. Horse-drawn omnibuses clip and clop, and slide on their steel wheels. Arguments break out amongst the shapeless huddled crowds hurrying to and fro. At the corner, a ragged soaked drunk raises his voice in discordant song. Church bells ring the quarter-hour in disunited chimes. A dog howls. It is an evening not to venture abroad, you might think. But you would be wrong. 

As with Diamonds & Dust, the first book in the series, Victorian London is brought to life vividly and packed with period detail. The squalor and hardship which is the lot of the much less fortunate, contrasting sharply with the more affluent members of society, the class divide all too apparent. The women who work long hours sewing beautiful gowns for those more affluent members, the Foundling unfortunate enough to work for Mrs Whitlow in her less than salubrious boarding house and Tonkin, a shop boy apprenticed to Morbid Crevice for the last six years. They are all, along with the story, authentic and believable. The writing is witty and engaging, flowing smoothly through the narrative. I love the covers too, with the little symbols relating to each story. Looking forward to book three which is due out later this year.

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Voyager by Carl Rackman #technothriller @carlrackman #RBRT #TuesdayBookBlog

  • Author: Carl Rackman
  • Published: April 2017 by Rackman Books
  • Category: Techno-Thriller, Thriller, Suspense, Book Review, Books, Reading

Voyager One. A tiny probe hurtling through the void of outer space more than twelve billion miles from Earth, it is the remotest human object in existence. Callie Woolf, Voyager Project Manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is stunned when the probe unexpectedly downloads a series of increasingly disturbing images.

Since Bradley Barnes lost his wife in the 9/11 terror attacks he’s been part of a highly specialised FBI counter terrorism team. As the story opens the team are preparing to assist in a coordinated raid against a suspected source of domestic terrorism. The raid doesn’t go according to plan and there are several fatalities. Continue reading

Spotlight & #Giveaway ~ The Truth About Gemma Grey by Sophie Ranald @BrookCottageBks

Genre: Chick lit/romantic comedy
Release Date: 19 June 2017

Life isn’t working out quite as Gemma had planned. Her breakthrough job turns out to involve writing clickbait articles about cats. Her boyfriend Jack is off travelling the world with his glamorous BFF and her mum’s social life puts Gemma’s own to shame.
Then, after a late-night online rant, Gemma’s YouTube channel goes viral and everything changes.
Suddenly, she’s living the dream – only it’s not turning out entirely as she imagined.
Gemma realises she’ll have to choose between fame, real love and being true to herself – because she can’t have it all. Or can she?

Continue reading

The Black Hornet (James Ryker Book 2) by @RSinclairAuthor #Thriller @BloodhoundBook #BlogTour

Welcome to the final day of the Bloodhound Books Blog Tour for The Black Hornet, which I’m sharing with Chelles Book Reviews.

  • Author: Rob Sinclair
  • Published: June 2017 by Bloodhound Books
  • Category: Thriller, Suspense, Crime, Action, Book Review, Books, Reading, Blog Tour

What do you do when the love of your life vanishes without a trace? If you’re ex-intelligence agent James Ryker you search for the answers whatever the cost, however much blood and sacrifice it takes…

Six months ago Lisa was taken from Ryker, and he’ll stop at nothing to find out who is responsible and why. Following a trail to Mexico, the ex-Joint Intelligence Agency asset soon finds himself in the firing line of enemies he long thought he’d left behind. Set-up for the murder of a former informant, Ryker is thrown into a crumbling jail run by The Black Hornet, the notorious leader of a Mexican drug cartel. But what connects the cartel to the informant’s murder, and to Lisa’s disappearance? And just who is the mystery American claiming he can help Ryker in his hour of need?

The Black Hornet is the second book in the bestselling James Ryker series. Part Bourne, part Reacher, it’s an explosive and action-packed thriller to rival any other.

Continue reading

The Coven (Crystal Coast Series #1) by Chrissy Lessey @chrissylessey #FridayReads #Witches

  • Author: Chrissy Lessey
  • Published: April 2006 by Pandmoon Publishing
  • Kindle Edition due to be published on 27th June 2017 by Tenacious Books Publishing
  • Category: Contemporary, Magical, Fantasy, Romance, Book Review, Books, Reading

Newly single mother Stevie Lewis divides her time between raising Charlie, running a store with her best friend, and avoiding the meetings of her mother’s Beaufort Historic Society. Although her life has its challenges, it’s altogether average. Just the way she likes it.

The prologue sets up the basis of the story. In 1718 a small colony of witches lived peacefully on a small island, until the queen, Lucia, had a vision of discovery and the persecution to come. ‘She who holds the amulet, holds the power.’ She chooses the three strongest of the young women, with the necessary gifts to ensure their survival. When Lucia’s vision of the pirate attack became actual fact, the fates of Hannah, Catherine and Charlotte were sealed. They find themselves aboard Blackbeard’s ship and at his mercy.   Continue reading

#ThrowbackThursday ~ The 20’s Girl, The Ghost and All That Jazz #histfic #romance @june_kearns

Renee at It’s Book Talk began this meme as a way to share old favourites, as well as books that were published over a year ago. Not to mention those that are languishing on the to be read pile for whatever reason.

Continue reading

#Spotlight & #Excerpt ~ The Lost Sentinel by Suzanne Rogerson #BlogTour @rogersonsm

I’m pleased to be featuring the new release from Suzanne Rogerson.

Continue reading

Point of No Return (DCI Hatherall) by @DianaJFebry #Crime #Suspense #Book Review #TuesdayBookBlog

  • Author: Diana J Febry
  • Published: August 2015 by Wings ePress
  • Category: Crime, Mystery, Suspense, Book Review, Books, Reading

“Nothing to be sorry about. Your mother can’t wait to have you home. We’ll soon have you back on your feet again.”

Digby shuddered. Gratitude at their blind faith clashed violently with anger. The fear of facing another person, who still believed in him when he no longer believed in himself, sliced through him. The knife glowed red hot, the butter creamy and soft. He reached for the door handle. If he hurled himself from the car, the pain would stop.

Digby Pearce, wrongly accused of causing the death of his best friend by dangerous driving, was acquitted at the trial. Maintaining all along that James Palmer had lied about his involvement, the resulting anger and grief crushed and overwhelmed Digby completely, to the point where he made a terrible and drastic decision, hoping to point the finger of blame squarely at Palmer. Digby’s inner struggle and emotions were depicted extremely well, conveying the strength of feeling that ultimately ended in tragedy. Continue reading