Author: LJ Ross
Published: Kindle Edition
Category: Crime, Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Book Review
He thought he was invincible, but he was wrong…
When an old man is found dead inside the ancient hermitage at Warkworth Castle, Northumbria CID are called in to investigate. With no apparent motive, it’s their job to unravel why he was murdered – and this time they’re forced to do it without their star detective…
Detective Chief Inspector Ryan and his wife Anna, have left Northumberland for Italy in pursuit of Nathan Armstrong, the psychopathic killer who first made his appearance in Dark Skies. Ryan is determined to bring him to justice once and for all but is hampered by the slower pace of the Italian policing system and Armstrong’s celebrity status as the author of an international best seller. Armstrong has an inflated sense of self-worth, money and connections which give him a feeling of invincibility, a conviction that he will always be able to stay one step ahead.
Ryan and Anna are staying at the luxurious Ryan family villa in Florence, mainly because it’s surrounded by high walls and has the best security system money could buy. Safety was important, especially since Anna was with him.
Back in Northumberland Phillips and MacKenzie are investigating the mysterious death of Edward Charon. His body was discovered in the hermitage, an old priest’s dwelling carved into the cliff on the northern bank of the River Coquet in Warkworth. The only way to reach the hermitage was by boat and Charon was one of the boatmen who ferried people across the river.
The sun had risen higher in the sky, burning away the misty fret that had rolled in from the North Sea to shroud the village, leaving a clear, crisp morning in its wake. Stone-built cottages and shops lined the main village square and the castle towered proudly above it all in the wintry landscape, its pale gold walls sprinkled with a layer of frost that shimmered like diamonds as it melted in the gathering heat.
“Pretty place,” Phillips said. “What did you say the old feller’s name was?”
“Charon,” MacKenzie told him “Edward Charon.”
“Why would anybody hurt some old codger who manned a rowing boat?”
MacKenzie frowned as she pulled into the castle car park. “That’s what we’ll have to find out, Frank.”
As MacKenzie and Phillips dig deeper into Chalon’s background they unearth some surprising facts.
Warkworth, in fact Northumberland as a whole, is a favourite place of mine and last time we were there, we took the rowboat across the river to the Hermitage. A very atmospheric place and incredible how it was carved out of the rocky cliff all those years ago. I love when I can picture the setting so clearly.
This is another compelling addition to the series and taking Ryan away from his normal environment enhances and gives an extra layer to the story. I could picture the Italian settings, so well were they described, and I enjoyed finding out more about Ryan and his family background, how it contrasts with his and Anna’s life in Northumberland.
Ryan isn’t used to standing back and waiting while another detective takes the lead, especially one who isn’t convinced he, Ryan, is on the right track. How can a famous and feted author be the dangerous psychopathic killer Ryan is convinced his is? Surely he has made a mistake. Although quite pleasant and appearing willing to further Ryan’s investigation, albeit at his own pace, it leaves the reader wondering if Inspector Ricci is actually being as helpful as it seems.
The Hermitage is a fast paced and exciting tale with, danger, intrigue and connections with the mafia. LJ Ross weaves the storylines together seamlessly and the settings are brought to life wonderfully, as always. Everything is tied up nicely, the ending is delightful and I love that Philips always manages unwittingly to lighten the mood.
About the Author
Louise was born in Northumberland, England. She studied undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Law at King’s College London and studied abroad in Paris and Florence. She spent much of her working life in London, where she was a regulatory lawyer for a number of years before taking the decision to change career and pursue her dream to write.
Now, she writes full time and lives with her husband and son in Northumberland. She enjoys reading all manner of books, travelling and spending time with family and friends.
Author: Kendra Elliot
Published: January 2018 by Montlake Romance
Category: Crime, Thriller, Mystery, Romance, Book Review
Raised off the grid by survivalists, Mercy Kilpatrick believed in no greater safeguard than the backwoods of Oregon. Unforgiven by her father for abandoning the fold for the FBI, Mercy still holds to her past convictions. They’re in her blood. They’re her secrets—as guarded as her private survival retreat hidden away in the foothills.
Mercy Kilpatrick is returning from her hideaway retreat in the woods when a young girl, covered in blood, runs out in front of her car.
Author: Bryan Gruley
Published: December 2018 by Thomas & Mercer
Category: Psychological, Suspense, Mystery, Thriller, Book Review
Their son is gone. Deep down, they think they’re to blame.
Summertime in Bleak Harbor means tourists, overpriced restaurants, and the Dragonfly Festival. One day before the much-awaited and equally chaotic celebration, Danny Peters, the youngest member of the family that founded the town five generations ago, disappears.
The prologue sets the scene for a kidnapping so we know something bad is about to happen, but not who the perpetrators are.
Author: Rob Sinclair
Published: November 2018 by Bloodhound Books
Category: Thriller, Suspense, Crime, Book Review
Ex-intelligence agent James Ryker receives a coded message through a secret drop point, a means of communication known only to him and one other person. The problem is, that person is his ex-boss, Mackie… and he’s already dead.
But the cry for help is real, and it’s a request Ryker can’t refuse.
Ryker receives a message through a channel no-one but his old boss, Mackie should have known about. But Mackie was dead.
Author: LJ Ross
Published; November 2018 by Audible Studios
Performed by a Full Cast
Category: Audiobook, Crime, Thriller, Suspense, Book Review
Introducing a new multicast drama by LJ Ross, the author of the international number one best-selling series the DCI Ryan mysteries.
There’s a serial killer targeting the streets of Newcastle, seemingly picking his victims at random but subjecting them all to the same torturous end. When the Chief Inspector on the case goes missing, it falls on DCI Ryan to track down the man who is brutally murdering women and goading the police to ‘catch me if you can’.
As everyone becomes a suspect, Ryan and his team get drawn further and further into the case, but for Ryan the nightmare gets closer to home than he could ever have imagined.
The Infirmary is a prequel, filling in DCI Ryan’s backstory pre Holy Island, and how he came to be taking a sabbatical at the start of the series.
Author: Owen Mullen
Released: October 2018 by Bloodhound Books
Category: Scottish Noir, Crime Fiction, Book Review
What if you were being stalked and no one believed you?
What if you were abducted in broad daylight?
What if you were chained to a bed and held captive in a cellar?
What would you do?
Mackenzie Crawford screamed.
What if your wife went out at night and wouldn’t say where she was going?
What if she admitted she had a lover?
What if you came home one day and discovered she’d left?
What would you do?
Derek Crawford went to pieces.
What if a woman with an alcohol problem disappeared?
What if there was no evidence of a crime?
What if her brother asked you to help?
What would you do?
In Glasgow, DI Andrew Geddes put the case to the top of his list.
What if someone you loved was in harm’s way?
Author: Ann Cleeves
Published: September 2018 by Macmillan
Category: Scottish Crime Fiction, Murder, Suspense, Book Review
Shetland: Welcoming. Wild. Remote.
Drawn in by the reputation of the islands, a new English family move to the area, eager to give their autistic son a better life. But when a young nanny’s body is found hanging in the barn of their home, rumours of her affair with the husband begin to spread like wild fire.
Helena, a well known knitwear designer, her husband Daniel, an architect, and their children, Ellie and Christopher, are recent incomers to Shetland. They’re leaving behind a hectic existence in London and are hoping for a better quality and more tranquil way of life, but find some of the local community less than friendly.
Author: Lisa Regan
Published: April 2018 by Bookouture
Category: Crime Fiction, Thriller, Suspense, Mystery, Book Review
Detective Josie Quinn is horrified when she’s called to the house of a mother who had her newborn baby snatched from her arms.
A woman caught fleeing the scene is Josie’s only lead, but when questioned it seems this mysterious girl doesn’t know who she is, where she’s from or why she is so terrified…
Is she a witness, a suspect, or the next victim?
After the traumas in the first book, Vanishing Girls, Acting Police Chief Josie Quinn is planning her wedding to fiancé, Luke. But Luke is behaving strangely and Josie can’t get to the bottom of what’s bothering him. Before anything can be resolved she gets an urgent call from her second-in-command, Lieutenant Noah Fraley. Since her promotion Josie has missed being in the field and welcomes the opportunity to be hands on again.