#ThrowbackThursday ~ Blood Rose Angel (The Bone Angel Series) by @LizaPerrat #HistFic

Blood Rose Angel was published in 2015. This is the third book in the series but could easily be read first or as a standalone, although I strongly recommend the series if you enjoy well written, authentic historical fiction.

Renee at It’s Book Talk began this meme as a way to share old favourites, as well as books that have been waiting on the ‘to be read’ pile for however long, and are finally getting an airing.

 

My Thoughts

The story begins in the year 1334 and focuses on Héloïse, growing up in Lucie-sur-Vionne and cared for by her aunt, the village midwife Isa, her dead mother’s twin. She’s taunted mercilessly about being a ‘non-born’ by some of the superstitious village folk.

While Isa was at the next village, Héloïse is called to her first birthing, setting her on the path of an apprentice midwife. Several years later Héloïse is accepted by some for her herbalistic and midwifery skills, although there are those who have always been scornful. She is married to Raoul, a stonemason working in Florence, and their daughter Morgane wants to follow in her mother’s footsteps and carry on the family tradition. 

Since Isa no longer worked, midwifing and healing kept me away many hours, and I was glad she was here for Morgane, though I wished – especially during the long winter nights – that her father could be at home too. 

‘I want to birth the babe, Maman.’

I’ve told you, my eager little apprentice….seven is too young but soon you’ll be old enough to do your own midwifing.’ I smoothed wisps of hair from her brow, kissed her sweet-smelling cheek and hurried out into the night.

When the Black Death is inadvertently brought to the village with Raoul’s return, tragedy descends on the people and  Héloïse had her work cut out trying to save as many as she could. Until Raoul demanded she stop and think of the safety of her own family. What was she to do….obey her husband or stay true to her vow? The decision was made for her in the worst possible way.

Liza Perrat has completely captures the emotions, behaviour and superstitious nature of the villagers in the face of this horrifying plague. It’s a harsh and violent time brought vividly to life with, amongst other things, wonderfully diverse characters, their everyday lives and the historical setting. Héloïse is a compelling woman, strong-willed and resolute, ahead of her time and easy to empathise with. She was determined to do whatever it takes to make life healthier and safer for the villagers, despite the treatment meted out to her.

A powerful and well constructed tale by a talented storyteller, the writing realistic and evocative. Historical details are fascinating and must have taken intensive research. From the superstitions, fears and ill-conceived beliefs that abounded in everyday life to the herbal knowledge and the way religion controlled people’s lives. It’s an incredible glimpse into the past where fact and fiction blend seamlessly together. 

About the Book

1348. A bone-sculpted angel and the woman who wears it––heretic, Devil’s servant, saint. 

Midwife Héloïse has always known that her bastard status threatens her standing in the French village of Lucie-sur-Vionne. Yet her midwifery and healing skills have gained the people’s respect, and she has won the heart of the handsome Raoul Stonemason. The future looks hopeful. Until the Black Death sweeps into France. 

Terrified that Héloïse will bring the pestilence into their cottage, Raoul forbids her to treat its victims. Amidst the grief and hysteria, the villagers searching for a scapegoat, Héloïse must choose: preserve her marriage, or honour the oath she swore on her dead mother’s soul? And even as she places her faith in the protective powers of her angel talisman, she must prove she’s no Devil’s servant, her talisman no evil charm.

The Secret To Happiness…Begins With Friendship @JessicaRedland #ContemporaryFiction #Romance #BookReview

Author: Jessica Redland

Published: September 2019 by Boldwood Books

Category: Contemporary Fiction, Romance, Book Review

Danniella is running from her past, so when she arrives at the beautiful seaside resort of Whitsborough Bay, the last thing on her mind is making friends. 

Alison is fun, caring and doesn’t take herself too seriously. But beneath the front, she is a lost soul, stuck in a terrible relationship, with body confidence issues and no family to support her.

Karen’s romance has taken a back seat to her fitness business. But she doesn’t want to give up on love quite yet. If only those mysterious texts would stop coming through…

The Secret To Happiness centres on three very different women with completely different lives—Alison, Karen and Daniella. They are strangers…until their paths cross, and what develops is an incredible bond of friendship and support.

Continue reading

Borderlands: A DCI Ryan Mystery by @ljross_author ~ When the gods made man, they made a weapon… #CrimeFiction #BookReview

Author: LJ Ross

Kindle Edition

Category: Crime Fiction, Murder, Police Procedural, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

When the gods made man, they made a weapon…

After uncovering a fresh wave of corruption within the ranks of Northumbria CID, Detective Chief Inspector Ryan was looking forward to an uneventful summer. But, when a young woman is shot dead on the remote army ranges of the Northumberland National Park, Ryan is called in to investigate.

The prologue introduces a soldier who has been stationed in Helmand Province and returns home traumatised, unable to hold down a job and is left to fend for himself on the streets. He’s a damaged soul who you can’t help but feel sympathy for, but one who holds onto his moral values, despite the dangers and obstacles he faces.

Continue reading

The Rules of Murder (DI Dani Stephens Book 2) by by @RSinclairAuthor ~ The Race Is On To Catch a Killer #NetGalley #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Rob Sinclair

Published: January 2020 by Canelo Hera

Category: Murder, Crime Fiction, Thriller, Psychological, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Henry and Caroline Redfearne’s annual ball is the hottest social event of the year.

But the fun is cut short by the discovery of their son’s body, apparently the victim of a frenzied assault. He was last seen heading off with 17-year-old Sophie Blackwood, and a blood trail seems to show that Sophie has been kidnapped.

Dani Stephens is still coping with a traumatic brain injury—the consequence of her serial killer brother’s attack. Her personality changed in the aftermath, leaving her prone to mood swings and impatience but she is slowly improving and her concentration is better. That is until her brother intrudes in her present case.

Continue reading

The Confession by Jo Spain ~ What prompted an unprovoked attack? #Psychological Murder/Mystery @SpainJoanne @QuercusBooks

Author: Jo Spain

Published: January 2018 by Quercus

Category: Murder, Mystery, Psychological, Book Review

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.

Told from the perspectives of Julie, JP Carney and the investigating officer, DS Alice Moody, The Confession takes a totally different slant on a psychological thriller. From the dramatic and compelling prologue, set in the present, we know the identity of the murderer immediately. The mystery is why. What prompted the attack? What was the perpetrator’s’s motive?

Continue reading

Death on the Danube: A New Year’s Murder in Budapest by Jennifer S. Alderson #CosyMystery @JSAauthor #RBRT #FridayReads

Author: Jennifer S. Alderson

Published: November 2019 by Travelling Life Press

Category: Cosy Murder/Mystery, Travel, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Recent divorcee Lana Hansen needs a break. Her luck has run sour for going on a decade, ever since she got fired from her favorite job as an investigative reporter. When her fresh start in Seattle doesn’t work out as planned, Lana ends up unemployed and penniless on Christmas Eve. 

After losing the job she loved, not to mention her husband leaving her for his new assistant, Lana Hansen’s fresh start in Seattle isn’t working out as planned. Thank goodness for eccentric Dotty Thompson, her landlady and good friend.

Continue reading

#ThrowbackThursday ~ Mortal Fall: A Novel of Suspense set in Glacier National Park by Christine Carbo #BookReview

It’s a while since I did Throwback Thursday post and this week I’m revisiting Mortal Fall. This book follows on from The Wild Inside but can be read as a standalone as it has a different main character.

Continue reading

The Rise of Magicks (Chronicles of The One: Book 3) by Nora Roberts #PostApocalyptic #Fantasy #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Nora Roberts

Performed by Julia Whelan

Published: November 2019 by Brilliance Audio 

Category: Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic, Fantasy, Audiobook Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Fallon Swift has spent all her life preparing for this moment. No longer can she stand by whilst her fellow Magicks are hunted by the fanatical Purity Warriors or rounded up and experimented on by the government.

Fallon must follow her destiny to restore the magical shield that once protected them all. The final battle has begun…

Twenty years ago when a deadly pandemic was unleashed upon the world, destroying civilisation, a child was conceived. She, who would come to be known as The One, was destined to fulfil a prophecy and lead the light against the dark.

On the shield, one of seven forged in the timeless past to hold back the dark, fell a single drop of blood. 

So the shield weakened, and the dark, spider-patient, waited as the decades passed, and the wound spread under grass and ground.

And on the last day of what had been, a good man, in all innocence, broke the shield open. The dark rewarded him with a deadly infection, one that would pass from man to wife, from parent to child, from stranger to stranger.

Continue reading

Ryan’s Christmas: A DCI Ryan Mystery by LJ Ross ~ Christmas can be murder… @ljross_author #BookReview

Author: LJ Ross

Kindle Edition

Category; Contemporary, Fiction, Mystery, Murder, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Christmas can be murder…

After a busy year fighting crime, DCI Ryan and his team of murder detectives are enjoying a festive season of goodwill, mulled wine and, in the case of DS Phillips, a cake or two—that is, until a freak snowstorm forces their car off the main road and into the remote heart of Northumberland. 

On the way home from a trip to Edinburgh, where they spent some time perusing the Christmas markets, Ryan, Phillips and their better halves Anna and Denise, are caught out by a heavy snowfall, causing an accident which shut the main road for miles. Forced to take side roads they make slow progress, until eventually they reach the small village of Chillingham, where they had to abandon the car. 

Continue reading

Nameless (Books 1-6) by Dean Koontz ~ Series of Short #Thrillers #AudioBookReview #Suspense #FridayReads

Author: Dean Koontz

Performed by Edoardo Ballerini

Released: November 2019 on Audible 

Category: Collection of Novellas, Thriller, Suspense, Audiobook, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If our memories make us who we are, who is a man without any? Nameless has only a gun, missions from a shadowy agency, and one dead aim: dispense justice when the law fails. As he moves from town to town, driven by splintered visions of the past and future, he’s headed toward the ultimate confrontation…

Nameless comprises six novella length stories (they can be bought separately) with hints of the supernatural and horror, about a man with no past.

Continue reading