Fear & Phantoms (The Victorian Detectives Book 6) by @carolJhedges ~ Historical #CrimeFiction #TuesdayBookBlog #RBRT

Author: Carol Hedges

Published: September 2018 by Little G Books

Category: Historical, Crime Fiction, Book Review

When a young man’s body is discovered buried deep beneath the winter snow, Detectives Stride and Cully little realise where the discovery will take them. Is his murder a random, one-off event, or could the death be linked to the mysteriously elusive individual who has already brought down one of the City’s long-standing private banks?

Fear & Phantoms is another very enjoyable addition to the excellent Victorian Detectives series. The story opens in the early hours of a snowy winter morning, as an injured man is left to freeze to death. And as Helena Trigg wakes to a bright white, silent world she discovers her twin brother Lambert’s bedroom neat, tidy and empty. Assuming he has left early for work she doesn’t worry until she returns at the end of the work day to empty lodgings and an accusatory letter.

Detective Inspector Stride and Detective Sergeant Cully are dealing with sightings of a supposed apparition in railway tunnels and the ensuing media frenzy. Which is nothing compared to the crime they will investigate very shortly. A con man is defrauding banks, masquerading as several different people, and killing those who get in his way.

Lucy Landseer, a budding novelist, journalist and very purposeful young lady who is determined to pursue her dream of a writing career in London, keeps her eyes and ears open at all times in search of articles and stories, which comes in very useful along the way.

A train going in the opposite direction arrives, and they board it. Now, Lucy is highly intrigued. What is going on? Feeling more like a detective than a writer, she follows them, placing herself in an inconspicuous seat.

What I love about these books, apart from the colourful, well defined characters (with sometimes very apt names…Tom Scallywagg MP), be they good, bad or downright evil, are the evocative descriptions of Victorian London. The dark, menacing back streets contrasting sharply with the more affluent areas, and the opulence of the wealthy set against the often terrible lives of the poorer classes, particularly the children. Two of these children play a small but significant part in the plot and are portrayed brilliantly.

I enjoyed meeting again the characters who have been constants throughout, as well as new ones, witnessing their development and experiencing Carol Hedges’ wonderful way with words and distinct narrative style. Stride and Cully along with Inspector Greig have their work cut out to make sense of the financial dirty dealings and murders, in addition to bringing the perpetrator to justice. The proverbial thorn in their side, chief reporter Richard Dandy, makes the job harder than necessary with his scurrilous newspaper articles. Plot and sub plots are woven together expertly, bringing the story to a very satisfactory conclusion.

Book links ~ Amazon UK | Goodreads

I chose to read and review Fear & Phantoms for Rosie Amber’s book review team, based on a digital copy from the author.

About the Author

Carol Hedges is the successful UK writer of 18 books for Teenagers/Young Adults and Adults. Her writing has received much critical acclaim, and her novel Jigsaw was long-listed for the Carnegie Medal. 

Carol is also the writer of ‘The Victorian Detectives’ ~ a series of novels set in 1860s London and featuring Detective Inspector Leo Stride and his side-kick Detective Sergeant Jack Cully. 
The six books in the series are:
Diamonds & Dust
Honour & Obey
Death & Dominion
Rack & Ruin
Wonders & Wickedness
Fear & Phantoms

Carol Hedges lives in Hertfordshire with a tortie-siamese cat and a lot of pond fish. When not writing/sleeping/trying to resist cake, she tutors A level and GCSE English Literature. She campaigns as chair of a local action group to save a community urban green space from possible development. She also minds her two grandchildren, one of whom is the star of the Award Winning series of blogs: The Adventures of L-Plate Gran.

Bits of her writing life can be viewed on her blog:http://carolhedges.blogspot.com

Connect with Carol via Twitter: @carolJhedges

Ella Maud ~ The story of an unsolved #truecrime by Nicholas Nicastro @Endeavour_Media #HistoricalFiction

Author: Nicholas Nicastro

Published: October 2018 by Endeavour Media

Category: Historical Fiction, True Crime, Book Review

A beautiful girl of 19 disappears from her home after bidding a fateful goodnight to her sweetheart. She is found dead in the Pasquotank River 36 days later. He is convicted TWICE for her murder – but is innocent. So what really happened…?

Ella Maud Cropsey, or Nell as she is more commonly known, and her family live in a small community in North Carolina. Set around the turn of the 20th century, the story is a fictionalised account of her murder, based on the known facts.

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Chasing Ghosts (The Dudley Sisters #6) by Madalyn Morgan #BlogTour #Giveaway @rararesources #HistFic @ActScribblerDJ

Welcome to my stop on the Blog Tour for Chasing Ghosts by Madalyn Morgan, courtesy of Rachels Random Resources. Heres a short summary of the book before my review…

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Promise by Robert Crais (An Elvis Cole/Joe Pike Novel) #CrimeFiction

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.

This week I’m revisiting The Promise, an audiobook released in 2015, and narrated by MacLeod Andrews and Luke Daniels. 

My Review

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Magic O’Clock & Magical Memories by L.S. Fellows #BlogTour @rararesources @lfwrites Short Story #BookReviews

I’m delighted to be one of the bloggers kicking off the tour for these two books, courtesy of Rachel’s Random Resources.

Magic O’Clock ~ A fictional tale of dementia and hope

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Dreaming of Christmas by T.A. Williams ~ Christmas Romance @TAWilliamsBooks #NetGalley #DreamingofChristmas

Author: T.A. Williams

Published: August 2018 by Canelo Escape

Category: Festive Romance, Contemporary, Fiction, Book Review

It’s the dream Christmas: snow, mountains… and, er, an ex-boyfriend. But can Zoe still find love in the Alps?

Dumped on Christmas Eve by her long-term boyfriend, it’s been a rough year for Zoe Lumsley. But then she gets an invitation she can’t refuse: an all expenses paid skiing holiday with old university friends.

Zoë Lumsley had barely stepped into her flat after a few days spent with her parents when the phone rang.

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Loft by Bette Lee Crosby #BookReview Contemporary Fiction with a Touch of Magic

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.

This week’s choice is The Loft by Bette Lee Crosby, the second book in the Memory House Collection, published in September 2015. Lovely stories with a touch of magic.

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By Sword and Storm (The Munro Scottish Saga #3) by @margaretskea1 #HistoricalFiction #Saga

Author: Margaret Skea

Published: July 2018 by Corazon Books

Category: Historical Fiction, Saga, Book Review

1598. The French Wars of Religion are drawing to an end, the Edict of Nantes establishing religious freedom in all but Paris.

For the exiled Adam and Kate Munro, the child Kate carries symbolizes a new life free from past troubles, despite their lingering nostalgia for Scotland and the friendship of the Montgomeries.

After the Turn of the Tide and A House Divided comes By Sword and Storm, the third and final book in the Munro saga.

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The Cornish Coast Murder by John Bude (British Library Crime Classics) #CosyMystery Book Review #FridayReads

Author: John Bude

Republished: March 2014 by The British Library Publishing Division

Category: Crime, Mystery, Thriller, Police Procedural, Book Review

The Reverend Dodd, vicar of the quiet Cornish village of Boscawen, spends his evenings reading detective stories by the fireside – but heaven forbid that the shadow of any real crime should ever fall across his seaside parish.

This classic mystery of the golden age of the golden age of British crime is set against the vividly described backdrop of a fishing village on Cornwall’s Atlantic coast. It is now republished for the first time since the 1930s with an introduction by the award-winning crime writer Martin Edwards.

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Wild Fire (Shetland Book 8) by Ann Cleeves #Scottish Crime Fiction @anncleeves #JimmyPerez #TuesdayBookBlog

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.

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