Rewind, recap: Weekly update w/e 09/02/20

Well – if you have come here looking for any excitingly bookish news, you’ve come to the wrong place. After a lovely week last week I have had a work filled week this week. Not that this is a bad thing as I’ve managed to make some very positive progress on some projects I am working on, which any of my colleagues will attest, is nothing short of a miracle. Bonus!

Hopeful representation of me – I haven’t been that thin in a long while…

So how has your week been? Did everyone in the UK survive Storm Ciara relatively unscathed? I was happily tucked up indoors watching near horizontal rain, but aside from a very soggy back garden and a few oddly angled bird feeders, nothing much going on around my way. I’ll take that. I’ve seen the pictures – it could have been so much worse.

Made bookish plans this week. Train is booked for the 3rd March for a brief foray down to London to attend the launch for Simone Buchholz’s Mexico Street, Steph Broadribb’s Deep Dark Night and Vanda Symon’s Containment which takes place at Waterstones Victoria. Looking forward to that one, although there is a strong change Karen, Simone and Vanda will be sick of the sight of me by then ;). Other than that is has been a week of immersing myself in beautiful books. And what stunners I’ve been reading too. More on that later.

My only purchases this week have been two Quick Reads titles – Clare Mackintosh’s The Donor and A Fresh Start which is a mixture of short stories by various writers. Whilst these are primarily intended for adults who don’t really read, I think they’re a great initiative and if a couple of £ from me and a featured review on my blog helps with their promotion, it’s hardly an issue for me to chip in. One Netgalley book this time around (that to be honest I’d forgotten requesting) which was Simon Mayo’s Knife Edge. I’ll be honest, I was intrigued to read his writing and this one does have a very topical theme so there’s no harm, right? One little bit of e-book post which is an early e-copy of the upcoming new novel from Mark Fowler, The Devil Wore Black. More on that nearer release day.

My reading this week has been heavily biased towards Orenda Books. Heavily as in I only read Orenda titles and my next read is an Orenda one too. Hey ho. I like the books, they were next in my list and it is the Year of Orenda so it was bound to happen at some point!

Books I have read

The Abrupt Physics of Dying – Paul E. Hardisty

One man. An oil company. A decision that could cost his life. Claymore Straker is trying to forget a violent past. Working as an oil company engineer in the wilds of Yemen, he is hijacked at gunpoint by Islamic terrorists. Clay has a choice: help uncover the cause of a mysterious sickness afflicting the village of Al Urush, close to the company’s oil-processing facility, or watch Abdulkader, his driver and close friend, die.

As the country descends into civil war and village children start dying, Clay finds himself caught up in a ruthless struggle between opposing armies, controllers of the country’s oil wealth, Yemen’s shadowy secret service, and rival terrorist factions. As Clay scrambles to keep his friend alive, he meets Rania, a troubled journalist. Together, they try to uncover the truth about Al Urush. But nothing in this ancient, unforgiving place is as it seems. Accused of a murder he did not commit, put on the CIA’s most-wanted list, Clay must come to terms with his past and confront the powerful forces that want him dead.

A stunning debut eco-thriller, The Abrupt Physics of Dying will not only open your eyes, but keep them glued to the page until the final, stunning denouement is reached. ‘A stormer of a thriller – vividly written, utterly topical, totally gripping’ – Peter James. ‘A page-turning adventure that grabs you from the first page and won’t let go’ – Edward Wilson. Shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger.

The Last Days of Disco – David F. Ross

Early in the decade that taste forgot, Fat Franny Duncan is on top of the world. He is the undoubted King of the Ayrshire Mobile Disco scene, controlling and ruling the competition with an iron fist. But the future is uncertain. A new partnership is coming and is threatening to destroy the big man’s Empire…

The Last Days of Disco is about family, music, small-time gangsters…and the fear of being sent to the Falklands by the biggest gangster of them all.

Witty, energetic and entirely authentic, it’s also heartbreakingly honest, weaving together tragedy and comedy with an uncanny and unsettling elegance. A simply stunning debut.

The Evolution of Fear – Paul E. Hardisty

Betrayed. A price on his head. It’s easy to survive, until they threaten her too…

Claymore Straker is a fugitive with a price on his head. Wanted by the CIA for acts of terrorism he did not commit, his best friend has just been murdered and Rania, the woman he loves, has disappeared. Betrayed by those closest to him, he must flee the sanctuary of his safe house in Cornwall and track her down. As his pursuers close in, Clay follows Rania to Istanbul and then to Cyprus, where he is drawn into a violent struggle between the Russian mafia, Greek Cypriot extremists, and Turkish developers cashing in on the tourism boom.

As the island of love descends into chaos, and the horrific truth is unveiled, Clay must call on every ounce of skill and endurance to save Rania and put an end to the unimaginable destruction being wrought in the name of profit.

Gripping, exhilarating, and above all, frighteningly realistic, The Evolution of Fear is a startling, eye-opening read that demands the question: how much is truth, and how much is fiction?

Three most excellent pieces of fiction there, I think you’ll agree. And as none are really what you could call quick reads, I’m happy I completed them all in the week too. Not my fastest reading speed, but I’m trying to enjoy reading now, not just have it being something I complete out of the way if that makes sense. Busy week on the blog, in fact we are fully booked up know to the end of next week. Can you tell I’ve slowed down …?

#Review – Alice Teale is Missing – H.A. Linskey
#Review – Exquisite – Sarah Stovell
#Review – The Tattoo Thief – Alison Belsham
#Review – Beast – Matt Wesolowski – Part 1
#Review – Beast – Matt Wesolowski – Part 2
#Review – Between Two Evils – Eva Dolan
#Orenda Roadshow Preview – Birmingham Roadshow 2019

#Review – The Burning Men – Will Shindler
#The Who’s Who of the Orenda Roadshows

Full on week ahead too. We have tours ahead for Are You Watching by Vincent Ralph; Her Last Breath by Alison Belsham; Watching from the Dark by Gytha Lodge; Perfect Kill by Helen Fields and Hidden Steel by Stuart Field plus a guest post from Adam Hamdy which is categorically not part of a blog tour to celebrate the release of his latest novel, Black 13. PLus there will be other reviews and more introductions to the stars of the 2020 Orenda Roadshows – keep those eyes peeled!

The only bonus of having no events this week has been that I get to spend time with the kitties. They were thrilled … So much so that this is a pictorial representation of how we whiled away the hours in between books and why I haven’t written up any reviews this week …

Hope you all have a brilliant week and that it is full of books and reading. I have a five day working week again (I know – sucks right?) but I make up for it with a week and a half off soon so I’ll cope.

See you same time next week.

Jen

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