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suspense

Lost Girls – Angela Marsons

Lost Girls

4 Stars (4 / 5)

Fast paced is right! The latest in the D.I. Kim Stone series starts off with a bang and doesn’t let up! From the first gripping page you are hooked! Lost Girls is a fantastic read!

Kim Stone is back again after two young girls are kidnapped. One of the mothers asks for Kim directly to get her daughter back. But why did she ask for Kim? What history do they have? And is Kim going to be able to find both the girls when she discovers that the kidnappers have previously taken two young girls, and only one was returned?

Totally gripping from the start to the end. Thought it was fantastic!

If you haven’t read the previous two Kim Stone novels, its not a necessity – however I feel that you will not grasp the entirety of Kim’s character, and why she is the way she is, if you don’t read the others. Especially Evil Games.

Kim, what can I say about her? I have totally warmed to her character in the last two novels. I really enjoy her escapades and the way she works. I love her team and love her lack of social skills! I think she is fantastic! I only wish for a touch of romance! That’s the only thing that I feel has been missing from the series. We had a glimmer in each book, but that was it.

Lost Girls is really well written. Easy and quick to read and its not easy to put down!

My ONLY criticism is something that is totally my fault… I guess I read so many thrillers and ‘who-done-it’s’ that I always guess who the bad guy is. And this one was a bit too predictable for me. I knew who the uber bad guy was straight away, and even in the parrallel storyline I guessed who the perpetrator was straight away. I must say I was disappointed that I was right. HOWEVER it didn’t take any of the fun away from the story. And hopefully others will be more surprised.

Would I recommend it?

Absolutely! It was a really enjoyable read!

Many thanks to Angela Marsons and the publisher Bookoutre via NetGalley for a copy of this book in exchange for my review.

If you enjoy this book you may enjoy:

Evil Games    little black lies    the girl with no past

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Evil Games – Angela Marsons

Evil Games

4 Stars (4 / 5)

Evil Games is the second book in the Kim Stone series by Angela Marsons. Admittedly the first in the series was not my favourite book. Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy it – I read it before I started blogging my reviews so I actually can’t remember what it was about it that didn’t totally grab me. It seemed to grab the majority of my reading buddies who rated it extremely highly.  I wasn’t against reading the sequel, but it wasn’t on my list of priorities. However when I kept seeing phenomenal reviews for this and the third instalment “Lost Girls”, it sparked my interest again. When a few trusted book friends suggested that I give Kim Stone another shot, they convinced me. And I’m extremely glad they did!

Detective Inspector Kim Stone is back in this fabulous psychological thriller. Stone investigates the murder of a convicted rapist. Something doesn’t quite add up when they find the perpetrator, and trusting her instincts, Kim investigates deeper and gets more than she bargained for when she is faced with an extremely intelligent and difficult adversary, who is manipulating mentally vulnerable people to do their bidding.

I am really enjoying the depth of Kim’s character. Gradually we are learning more and more about why she is the way she is. Her childhood is explained in a lot of detail in this book and we begin to understand the horrors of her past. I’m extremely glad I read the second book before the third one, even though I have heard it is great as a stand alone. I also enjoy her interactions with other characters. I remember one of the things I didn’t like about the first book was the lack of… I was going to say “romance” but that’s not the word I am looking for, I guess tension or chemistry with Kim. There was a female teacher in the first one and someone else if I remember correctly, and in this one there was a glimmer of attraction with David, but I just felt it wasn’t enough. I understand why though. Her character is MAJORLY damaged… Sorting out her life comes before a roll in the hay – I understand that, but still I am hoping that the third book will focus a bit on her attempting a not so platonic relationship with another human being. I always enjoy a bit of chemistry/tension in thrillers, even if it doesn’t end well.

I really enjoyed the psychological aspect of this book. What a character Alex was! Loved to loathe her! It was refreshing and original to read of events from her perspective… Her skewed view of the world. And I really enjoyed the mind games and the extent that she would go to, to get her way. I have read characters like hers before, in other books by other authors, but I didn’t enjoy them half as much as I enjoyed Alex.

There is some subject matter that is disturbing, but there are no overly graphic scenes. So this book will appeal to any thriller fans, even the ones who don’t like too much violence and just enjoy a good story!

 As like the first one, Marsons writing is impeccable. Easy and so much fun to read. There are not too many characters, but there are just enough to make it difficult to guess who the bad guy is at the end. I was glued to this book from beginning to end and I am really looking forward to the next one! I have Lost Girls on my kindle ready to go! 🙂

Would I recommend it?

Absolutely! Marsons is emerging as one hell of a thriller writer!

If you like this book you may enjoy:

the girl with no past    Baby Please Don't Go    imperfect strangers    Now you see me   Pretty Baby    little black lies

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The Girl With No Past – Kathryn Croft

the girl with no past

5 Stars (5 / 5)

AWESOME BOOK!!! I absolutely DEVOURED it! I adore psychological thrillers when they are done well. I LOVE being surprised by awesome twists and turns! So when I saw a LOT of my friends rate this book highly, I had to give it a go. I recognised the authors name and realised that Kathryn Croft also wrote The Stranger Within, which I read earlier this year and thought was fantastic, so I was very excited to read this one.

Leah is a bit of a hermit. She lives alone and doesn’t have any friends. She lives the way she does because of an event in her past. Something that she did when she was younger that she cant escape from. So she has lived her life quietly with guilt and in shame because of her actions. Living a mundane existence, she believes that her past may finally be behind her as she takes the plunge and reaches out to make a romantic connection with somebody, something she hasn’t done for a very long time. However, her past quickly catches up with her when she begins to receive messages and is tormented by somebody who doesn’t want her to forget…

GREAT psychological thriller!!! Masterfully woven together into an absolutely fantastic story. It got me totally hooked from the start. I was completely intrigued. We don’t know much about Leah’s past, and slowly start to get glimpses of it every few chapters as the story progresses until the truth comes out. And then just when you think that you have all the excitement that the book has to offer, BAM another twist and you are left shell shocked!

It had a bit of a more mature, non-slasher “I know what you did last summer” vibe which was fantastic! I loved trying to figure out who the bad guy/girl was, whilst trying to figure out what she had done in the past. I was absolutely sucked in and couldn’t get enough of this book!

The characters were fantastic! Leah was the star of the book obviously. As we begin to get an understanding of her character and personality, why she is the way, she is she is extremely likeable despite her flaws. You find yourself caring about what is happening to her even though you have no idea what she was previously involved in. The other characters in the book were fantastic! Both in the past and present.  There were not too many characters either which I enjoyed. I find I tend to read so fast that I often forget who is who, so she made it easy for me! Especially because I read this book so quickly because I was totally hooked!

I loved the way this book was written. I went back and forth to Leah’s past and present so naturally. Her writing style is superb. I see it being compared to “gone girl”… Everything is being compared to that bloody book! I think this was far superior. I also think it would make a fantastic movie! This is another one with potential to be HUGE and I really hope it is.

Would I recommend it?

YES YES YES YES YES!!! Go read it! In fact, grab The Girl With No Past HERE (Its less than 2 bucks on amazon at the moment! BARGAIN!!!)

Many thanks to Kathryn Croft via NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review. And also a massive thanks to all my GoodReads friends who kept recommending it to me!

ADD TO GOODREADS

If you enjoy this book you may also enjoy:

Little Black Lies - Sharon Bolton   Now you see me   black eyed susans   Pretty Baby

 

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The Servants of Twilight – Dean Koontz

the servants of twilight

4 Stars (4 / 5)

Silly me didn’t quite realise when I borrowed The Servants of Twilight audio book from the library that it was originally written in 1984. It’s almost as old as I am! I was wondering why nobody was using mobile phones and why the police and investigators were not exactly using the most advanced technology, when it suddenly hit me. DUR MEL! Anyway it was still a really great book. I was expecting more a horror story, instead it was an action packed suspenseful thriller!

Single mum Christine is living a quiet existence with her son Joey, until one day they are confronted by a ragged old woman in the car park of a shopping centre. Appearing harmless at first, the old woman makes small talk with the boy, and then things suddenly change when the hag becomes aggressive and announces that Joey has “GOT TO DIE!”. Unfortunately for Christine and Joey, this batty old woman is the head of a cult who now believes that her son is the Antichrist and will bring about the end of the world. And most of the members of the cult are shady characters with lots of murderous skills and are all absolutely OBSESSED with killing him. Suddenly they find themselves running for their lives. Like a cat and mouse! Christine enlists the help of Charlie, a private detective, as they attempt to escape death. And Joey couldn’t possibly be the Antichrist… Could he??

Talk about ACTION PACKED!!! After the scene is set, BOOM!! Its action scene after action scene, dodging bullets, running for their lives. Never a dull moment! Fabulous!

Loved the characters. Christine, Charlie and Joey were all written really well and I loved all the dialogue between them, especially 6 year old Joey. I even loved the dogs and the bad guys! Especially Grace.

I wasn’t expecting there to be much romance in this book so I LOVED that aspect of it, and one of the scenes was quite raunchy. I like that he managed to squeeze the romance in amongst all the thrills, and I always find the best romances (in books obviously, I doubt in real life) are the ones that spawn from a bit of action and suspense.

I probably would have rated this book higher if it wasn’t for the ending. I was really disappointed with the ending. I can’t really go into it more or I will spoil the story.

However, it was still a fabulous book to listen to! I loved the 80’s feel (once I realised what it was) and the action and suspense was all very exciting!

The audio version: Ok the ladies voice annoyed me a lot at first. A little too animated at times, and I really didn’t like her portrayal of the male characters. However, as for all other audio books, I soon became used to her voice and didn’t have a problem with it by the end.

Would I recommend it?

Absolutely! I think most thriller fans will enjoy this one!

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Gravity – Tess Gerritsen (Audio Version)

Gravity

4 Stars (4 / 5)

This is my first Tess Gerritsen book. I know right? I’m a crime and thriller fan, AND a nurse… I should have read all the Rizzole and Isles by now!?? Well I never intended to, but having read this one I am inclined to give all of her books a go!

To quickly summarise it, some bizarre virus is killing off the crew of the international space station. Where did it come from?? How are they going to stop it? Doctor on board Emma must try to keep everyone alive whilst her husband back on earth goes on a mission to discover the origins of the pathogen.

Great read! Extremely suspenseful and exciting! Loved the whole thing! Yes, it was pretty corny… But it was supposed to be! I thought it was fantastic!

The characters were great! Soon to be ex husband and wife Emma and Jack are a great team.

The audio version was fantastic. The narrator was wonderfully talented and probably the best narrator of any audio book I have listened to so far. Even his portrayal of the female characters was fantastic and he really captured the emotion of all the characters.

There was quite a bit of blood and gore in this book and I really enjoyed it! Because most of the gory scenes happen in space it added an extra grossness… Floating blood etc. Thought it was really well done.

Some of the medical scenes were totally over the top, but Dr Gerritsen obviously knows her stuff as everything was quite accurate. I guess that is what makes her one of the top medical thriller authors.

Would I recommend it?

Yes it was great fun! Really enjoyed it. Any thriller and fan of a little space blood and guts will love Gravity! I’ve already started putting her other books on my TBR list!

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The Red Door – Rosa Fedele

the red door

4 Stars (4 / 5)

Glad to have found another Aussie book by an Aussie author to add to the list! I have been extremely unpatriotic through my life and have avoided Australian books. Only recently am I beginning to hugely regret this, as I have found some incredible books. I have wasted a lot of my life not reading Aussie books!!  I am really enjoying the Australian settings, especially in my home city Sydney – So I was glad to review this book as it is set in Glebe.

The main character (who we don’t know by name until the very end), bought the mansion “Rosalind” after a troubling event from her past. She is in the process of renovating and refurbishing the whole place. Its going smoothly with exception of some strange events on the upper level, and the fact that the tenant in number three wont let her in, and she begins to suspect he may be watching her. She does a little digging only to find her tenant may be connected in some way to the vicious murders of two teenage girls that occurred twenty years prior. Her quest to find out what happened leads her to some stunning realisations that will shake up the comfortable life she has created for herself, and her new friends. Has she found a killer? What happened in her past to make her run away to Rosalind? And why is it so cold upstairs?

I must be honest. When I first started reading this I didn’t think it was going anywhere. It felt quite disjointed, went around everywhere and I was a bit confused about who was who. I failed to see the significance of all the characters and parallel storylines. And the writing, with the small sections that ended without an explanation, began to frustrate me.  However I stuck with it and was extremely pleasantly surprised as the story began to unfold and I couldn’t put it down! Having finished it now I can appreciate how cleverly refreshing the writing was.

I loved the characters, especially Monique and Claudia. The main character and Anne annoyed me at times, but overall all the characters had their appealing qualities. I liked the main character a lot more after we learn of her back story. I enjoyed the romances and especially the complex – sometimes destructive friendships in the novel. And there were quite a few character twists to keep me satisfied! Especially towards the end of the book.

 I would call this novel more of a mystery than a thriller, although it did have a few thrilling moments. However it was completely engrossing, especially in the last two thirds of the novel. The author also did the illustrations throughout the book which are beautiful, and definitely give the novel more character and texture. I only wish there was more of them, as they seemed to randomly appear at the beginning of some chapters but not others.

It was set in 1983, the year I was born, so perhaps I’m a bit too young to appreciate a lot of the early 80’s references, however this didn’t matter in the slightest. I have seen Duran Duran live (admittedly only because they were opening for Robbie Williams), so at least I wasn’t completely clueless!

Would I recommend it?

Yes for any mystery and thriller lovers and fans of 1980’s Sydney.

Many thanks to author Rosa Fedele for a copy of The Red Door, in exchange for my review.

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Yeager’s Law – Scott Bell

Yeagers Law

4.25 Stars (4.25 / 5)

I really enjoyed this book. It is up there as one of the better books I’ve read this year! I thought it was fantastic!

Yeager is a truck driver with some serious ex-marine, beat-up-the-bad-guys skills. So when the lovely Charlie randomly saves his life from a man with a grudge, besotted Yeager agrees to drive and pick up a load of books for her bookstore. However Charlie’s ex husband is playing her, and its not only books that Yeager picks up and brings to Charlie. Suddenly he has a bunch of bad guys after him, a drug cartel to somehow outfight, and a certain young ladies life to save!

Loved it! What a fabulous action packed read! I LOVED the action scenes! Lots of violence, blood and gore! Thought it was fantastic! There was one cringe worthy scene in particular which I won’t spoil for you, but I LOVED it! OUCH!

The characters were so likeable! Yeager! What a character! I thought he was fantastic. In the book he is described as having a Russell Crow vibe. I didn’t exactly picture him like that. In my mind perhaps I had a more Gerard Butler type in my mind… I guess they look kind of similar. Anyway he was awesome none the less! And I really liked Charlie, she is a feisty independent woman with a cute son and a dickhead of an ex husband. She was classy yet tough. Loved the secondary characters too. Victor and Cujo were awesome! Loved Victor in the action scenes! And Nina! What a piece of work she was! I thought she was a great character.

The tension and budding relationship with Charlie and Yeager was a highlight of the book for me. I love a bit of romance in a story and this did not disappoint. It was sexy without being overly graphic and the chemistry between the characters just worked.

There wasn’t much I didn’t like about this novel to be honest. I didn’t quite buy Yeager as a broke truck driver, although I’m not sure exactly why. I enjoyed how each chapter was written according to place and not character. I found it to be written very well overall.

Would I recommend it?

Absolutely! Yeager’s Law is a fun ride for all action/thriller/romantic suspense fans!

Many thanks to author Scott Bell for a review copy.

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The Black Echo – Michael Connelly

the black echo

4 Stars (4 / 5)

This is the first instalment in the extensive Harry Bosch series, and also happens to be the first one that I have read (or heard in this case). I really enjoyed it.

Harry Bosch is a detective in the LAPD homicide division in Hollywood. While investigating a body found in an old tunnel, he recognises it as a fellow ex marine Meadows who served with him in the Vietnamese war. They were both “tunnel rats” who fought below Vietnam in the extensive tunnels. After recognising him, and realising it wasn’t a simple drug overdose that it looked like, Harry gets pulled into a bigger investigation. His bosses want him out of the force at any cost, and his enemies want him dead. The hunt is on for the killer before he finds himself the next victim.

This book pretty much had everything I enjoy in a novel. Bit of violence, a mystery, romance, sex, and lots of twists and turns. I enjoyed the audio version narrated by Dick Hill. He played Harry really well and I got totally wrapped up in it. However his female voices left a lot to be desired (not his fault, he is a man after all) and I struggled to listen to his impersonation of women. Especially the lead female character Eleanor.

Harry is an awesome character. I will be very interested to see how he develops in the later novels, when I get there. I also enjoyed that it was written in the early 90’s. No smart phones or internet… Everything took much longer, and the characters were constantly having to find payphones to contact other people. Not sure how we all survived back then!

I enjoyed the different storylines within the novel. Loved how everyone was out to get poor Harry, even though he was totally innocent. Sure, he didn’t go exactly by the book but he wasn’t crooked. Loved the tension and romance between him and Eleanor. Loved his ex partner. Thought all the characters were great in their own right. Even Lewis and Clarke!

The only thing I didn’t like about The Black Echo was the TOTALLY PREDICTABLE twist at the end. I must have figured it out about a quarter of the way into the book and it frustrated me that Bosch didn’t pick it up until the end. I think this was the main reason why I dropped a star.

I have the second in the series “The Black Ice”, also narrated by Dick Hill, ready to go on my iPhone. Looking forward to it.

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Deeper Than The Dead – Tami Hoag

image

4 Stars (4 / 5)

I am totally addicted to audiobooks now! I absolutely LOVE being able to do other things while I listen to a book! I listen when I’m doing the housework, driving my car, folding the washing… Even have it on speaker when I’m in the shower! Feels like I am accomplishing something when I am doing menial tasks! Love it! And I LOVED this Tami Hoag thriller! This is the first book I have ever “read” of Hoag’s, but it absolutely wont be the last!

The year is 1985 and while running through the woods, children find the body of a woman buried in the ground. Her eyes had been glued together, the ear drums destroyed and the mouth glued shut. It is soon apparent that they have a serial killer on their hands in the town of Oak Knoll, as two other bodies have been found this way in the last two years. Investigator Mendez calls out FBI agent Vince Leone t0 help with the case. Vince is an expert at the controversial new skill called “profiling” (controversial back in 1985 that is…), and he uses his talents to find the killer. The story also delves into the lives of the children who found the body, and mainly focuses on their teacher Anne Navarre, who finds herself at risk of becoming the next victim.

Deeper Than The Dead was a great story! Although I was a bit disappointed with the ending and the “twist” that was not really a twist at all, I was still thoroughly entertained by this wonderful book.

The audio version worried me at first, as Kirsten Potters American accent is quite heavy, and I cringed at having to listen to it for 10 hours. However she did a really great job at the narration. I enjoyed her performance and after a little while the accent didn’t distract me at all. I especially enjoyed her portrayal of Chicago’s Vince.

The characters were all really detailed and enjoyable. The children were written really well , I really enjoyed how all the characters interacted and intertwined within the story. Loved the 1985 setting. I can barely remember when mobile phones weren’t the norm, and fingerprinting was done by a fingerprinting expert and not a computer system. Really makes you thankful for the technology that we take for granted today. DNA evidence was unheard of, and even police reports had to be sent or faxed over. No email here folks!

Loved the romance, even though it was EXTREMELY corny. I want to marry you after knowing you for 3 days and going through an extremely traumatic ordeal… Yeah right… But still, I found myself getting swept up in it. I love a bit of romance with my thrillers!

My favourite character was Vince by far! Fabulous! Bullet in the head Vince. I hope he is in the future novels set in Oak Knoll, yes this is the first in a series apparently.

Would I recommend it?

Absolutely! Thought it was a great read! Looking forward to future ones, hope the audio versions are done with the same narrator!

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Melophobia – James Morris

Melophobia

 

4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5)

Wow! Great book! James Morris does it again with another captivating YA novel that is sure to get people reading!!

Melophobia is set in an alternative, dystopian America, where somewhere along the way all music became outlawed. The government is in control of all things that can cause anarchy. The Beatles got arrested, and even listening to music became an offence punishable by harsh law. The story follows young Merrin, an undercover patrol officer, who spends her days (and nights) busting underground raves, parties and concerts – To rid the world of music once and for all. She is tasked with finding “The Source”, a musician who is talented in all genres of music, and distributes it to his followers. Merrin goes deep undercover to find “The Source”, but begins to question everything in her life as she begins to fall in love with the music, and the man behind it.

First of all, LOVE the cover! Simple yet gets the point across in a BIG way! I also love the title. Melophobia = Fear of music…

I REALLY enjoyed this book! Im a bit hit-and-miss with dystopian settings, but Morris’s music-free America was so well done! It was a fascinating and interestingly original setting! What a dark and dismal world it is without music! I am glad I don’t live in it!

Absolutely loved the characters! Merrin had a lot of growing to do throughout the novel, and I really liked her by the end. I enjoyed the unrequited love triangle, and Anders unhealthy almost obsession with Merrin. I loved how Merrin was the daughter of an important government figure and the back story of her mother and what happened to her absolutely made the novel for me! Loved the twists and turns! Don’t want to give anything away!

Loved the romance, it has a sexy scene that might be a bit graphic for the under 16’s, and a bit of blood and gore. But It had everything I love in a book; mystery, a great setting, bit of romance, bit of sex, bit of violence, twists and turns and was overall an extremely satisfying read!

I love how even in a book, music can be described so beautifully! I could easily resonate with the description of the music, as if I were sitting there listening to it myself. Just goes to show what a powerful thing music is and how we all take it for granted.

I enjoy YA dystopia novels because they help people understand oppression. This book is no exception. I can easily imagine this book becoming the next Hunger Games. It has the potential to be HUGE!

And what a dramatic ending!! I can’t wait for the next one! I truly hope that this book reaches the masses because it is FABULOUS!!

Big thanks to author James Morris for an advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.

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