Rewind, recap: weekly update w/e 02/07/17


Went for a bit of a walk yesterday. Well a drive and a walk, but it took me past the wonderful old Ironbridge which the astute and well read amongst you may recognise from The Lucky Ones by Mark Edwards. Yep. That one. It was a lovely blue sky kind of a day so a bit of stroll and a nice coffee by the bridge were just what the Doctor ordered after another hectic week.

So. Last week was a weird one. Not much reading done if I have to be honest but I did do bookish things. On Thursday I went to Goldsboro Books Crime in the Court for the first time, which was either incredibly brave or incredibly daft of me. I’m edging towards the latter as unfortunately, very last minute, I had to go to Basildon for work on Friday so after a two hour train journey to London on Thursday afternoon, and a two hour train journey home, I finally got back in at 00:30… only to have to get up at 05:00 again to drive the 190 miles back down south to get to Basildon. Not the greatest moment of the week but it did mean I was able to finish listening to an audiobook I had started so it wasn’t an entirely wasted day.

Thursday night was good fun. I managed a quick hello to Mark Hill, finally got to meet Alex Caan (gotta love him despite him roping me into a selfie), and also met Amer Anwar, who worryingly recognised me from my Twitter profile pic, and Gabriela Harding, Tasha Kavanagh. Also got to say a quick hi to Fiona Cummins and had a brief catch up with Felicia Yap, whose debut novel, Yesterday, is out in August so keep an eye out for it. Also it was great to see Jacob Collins and Anne Williams again, to finally meet Rebecca Burnton and her fab kids and dog Dotty, and to have a quick chat with Lucy V Hay, Karen Sullivan and Tracy Fenton. There were so many other people there but as usual I was too shy and star struck to say hi. Hey, I’m impressed that I managed to approach Mr Hill. I think it helped Jacob and I were being brave together. You never know. By Harrogate I may manage to instigate conversations too (although I admit I had a good old natter with Amer and Gabriela who are both lovely).

Saturday saw me at the theatre in Wolverhampton watching La Cage Aux Folles with Adrian Zmed and John Partridge which was superb, but by Sunday I was exhausted so Ironbridge was a welcome relief. I also managed to pick up a signed copy of The Lucky Ones when I visited Ironbridge Books so that was even better. Well. It would be rude not to right?


Isn’t that pretty? I think so. I was even a nice little sister and picked up a copy for my middle sis while I was there.

Book post wise, I got two little parcels this week so I’m feeling a bit more loved (although big thanks to Linda Hill who says she loves me and my blog anyway, even if I am mostly nuts :D) First up was a copy of The Other Twin by Lucy V Hay. I’m on the blog tour for this one and I really loved it. Imagine my surprise when I opened up the book to discover my review had been quoted inside it. Another bouncy happy moment there. I love Karen and Orenda Books, and this was another brilliant addition to the catalogue so I am so proud to be quoted in there. Something else to bore people with every time we walk in a bookshop lol. Next up, I received a copy of The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 1/4 years old from Penguin. I’m on the blog tour for this one later this week and I have loved it. So funny, I laughed out loud over my coffee in Ironbridge yesterday. No strange looks directed towards me there then… Much. I also picked up a couple of proofs in the Quercus goodie bag at Crime in the Court on Thursday. The Confession by Jo Spain and The Memory Chamber by Holly Cave. Pretty good week, don’t you think.

Oh and I absolutely must not forget the wonderful little ARC ebook I received on Monday. Now this one is extra special because it is one I bid on at an online auction for The Book Club on Facebook, where I not only got the warm fuzzy glow that comes from helping charity, but I also got signed copies of all of the DCI Ryan books by LJ Ross, including the new book, Cragside. Not only that, but I am a named character in the new book. And, oh my life did I chuckle when I saw what LJ Ross had done with my good name… Absolutely love it. Can’t wait for everyone to meet ‘Jennifer Lucas’. Think this is going to be fun.


Purchase wise and Netgalley wise I have been good. No new Netgalley books. I know right? See I can do it. Admittedly I still have 26 to read but I am working through them slowly… Purchase wise it was two books and two pre-orders. Firstly a pre-order for Hide and Seek by Richard Parker which is out on 31st August. Well I’m sorry but after how much I loved (and I mean loved) Follow You, how could I not? Then another Bookouture pre-order with The Accident by S.D. Monaghan. See. Really this is all Bookouture’s fault and nothing to do with a lack of will power or any control on my part. I also purchased Western Fringes by Amer Anwar and Things We Have In Common by Tasha Kavanagh. Seemed rude not to after having such a lovely chat on Thursday :D.

Books I have read

CCragside by LJ Ross

Are you afraid of the dark..?

After his climactic battle with notorious serial killer The Hacker, DCI Ryan is spending the summer with his fiancée within the grounds of Cragside, a spectacular Bavarian-style mansion surrounded by acres of woodland. When they are invited to attend the staff summer party – a Victorian murder mystery evening – it’s all a joke until the lights go out and an elderly man is found dead. It looks like an unfortunate accident but, as the dead man’s life begins to unfold, Ryan and his team of detectives realise that all is not as it appears.

When a second body is found, terror grips the close-knit community and Ryan must uncover the killer who walks among them, before they strike again…

Murder and mystery are peppered with romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunit set amidst the spectacular Northumbrian landscape.

For fans of the series, I’m sure it feels like a long time since we last saw old Maxwell Finlay Ryan and his pals, even it has only been a few months. And what a welcome return this was. A change in pace from the last book it was no less fun (more so for me) and once again LJ Ross has managed a perfect blend of intrigue and menace, combining murder with the eautiful Northumbrian landscape perfectly. Put it this way. By the time I’d finished reading I was wondering just how practical it would be to take a day trip north to go a visit this wonderful setting. The book is released on 10th July, (not long now) but you can pre-order it here.

tckThe Crucifux Killer by Chris Carter

When the body of a young woman is discovered in a derelict cottage in Los Angeles, Robert Hunter is thrown into a nightmare case. The victim suffered a terrible death, and on the nape of her neck has been carved a strange double-cross: the signature of a psychopath known as the Crucifix Killer.

But that’s impossible. Because two years ago, the Crucifix Killer was caught and executed. Could this therefore be a copycat killer? Or could the unthinkable be true? Is the real killer still out there, ready to embark once again on a vicious and violent killing spree, selecting his victims seemingly at random, taunting Robert Hunter with his inability to catch him?

Hunter and his rookie partner, Garcia, need to solve this case and fast.

Oh. My. Word. What have I been doing and where have I been hiding? How have I missed this series. Combining everything I like in fiction, a solid Detective duo with a dark and totally twisted case this book was just what I needed. I listened to the audio and I won’t lie. There were times where even I pulled a face. This is not one for the weak of stomach or nerve. Loved it. My review will be posted soon (when I can find a few minutes to collect my thoughts) but in the meantime you can order it here.

TSDThe Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 1/4 years old

The hilarious international bestselling novel that has had pensioners ditching their sticks and zimmers to follow the age-defying, youth inducing antics inside The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 ¼ Years Old . . .

‘Terrific. This geriatric Adrian Mole made me laugh’ Woman and Home

Meet Hendrik Groen. An octogenarian in a care home who has no intention of doing what he’s told, or dying quietly. To that end, he creates the Old-But-Not-Dead Club and with his fellow members sets about living his final years with careless abandon. Such anarchism infuriates the care home director but pleases Eefje, the woman who makes Hendrik’s frail heart palpitate. If it’s never too late to have fun, then can it ever be too late to meet the love of your life?

This book had me chortling out loud from page two. Is it wrong that I want to adopt this guy as my Grandfather? If you only read one book about the pains of growing older then make it this one. I can’t wait for its sequel. I’ll be reviewing it later this week but in the meantime go and bag yourselves a copy here.

So that’s it. Three books. Well, three and a half as I’m just over 50% through another one I will finish today all being well. Not my best, not my worst. Just enough. Managed a good full week on the blog again this week with blog tours, reviews and book love so I’ll take that.

Review: Stranger Child by Rachel Abbott

#BookLove: Pam Lecky

#BlogTour: The Second Chance Cafe in Carlton Square by Lilly Bartlett

#BlogTour Review: Calling Down The Storm by Peter Murphy

Cover Reveal – Louise Jensen

#BookLove: Amy Sullivan of Novelgossip

Guest Review: The Beekeeper by Stewart Giles

I’m just heading into a big project at work today that will last the next six to eight months. Not sure how busy I will be or how much will I’ll be left with for reading but I’m hopeful. Reading after all will be a welcome distraction. That said, I’ve another full week on the blog this week so I’m not done yet.

Four blog tours this week. Starting tomorrow when I have two for you. Firstly I’m delighted to be sharing my review of Each Little Lie by Tom Bale. Then I have a guest post from Julia Roberts for her new novel, Alice In Theatreland, alongside my review. Later in the week I’ll be revealing my thoughts on The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen and an extract from Hunting Angels as part of the blog tour. I’ll also be sharing a little book love with authors Beth Webb and Jennifer Gilmour so do stop by.

I’m off to work to talk London property and prepare myself for the wonder that is ‘SITI’. Can hardly contain my excitement. Oh… Actually. I lie. I totally can.

Have a fabulous week of reading all. With a touch of luck and a prevailing tail wind I’ll see you same time next week.



7 thoughts on “Rewind, recap: weekly update w/e 02/07/17

  1. I loved Hendrik and his friends, if I make 83 I want to be the same – might be well on the way now! Looking forward to finding out what LJ Ross has ‘done’ to/with Jennifer Lucas as well. Happy Reading x

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