Well. It’s officially next year. Not sure how I feel about that. I’d like to say that I used the two weeks wisely. That I went to lots of places and did lots of fun stuff. But it was grey and wet and so I didn’t. Did get quite a bit of reading done though, and bought the odd book or two so that’s good, right? And Mandie and I managed a couple of nice walks so got to see the family of swans again, as well as a few others who ‘live locally’.
Did you all have a good Christmas and New Year? Was Santa kind and did he bring you lots of nice new books? Mine was pretty uneventful and people don’t tend to buy me books as they never know what I haven’t got but I do have vouchers so I can buy my own books whenever the mood takes me (yay). Had the (now) traditional curry on christmas day, followed by the equally traditional post lunch walk. It was too grey and drizzly to take picture but take my word for it that the 3.5 miles was a lovely change and well needed as Mandie and I were both stuffed after lunch. New Year’s Eve was celebrated in typical style. In pyjamas, reading and waiting for the noise from next door and fireworks to subside so I could get some sleep.
Two new Netgalley titles this past fortnight – Into the Dark by Fiona Cummins and Little Sister by Gytha Lodge. Really looking forward to reading both. I received The Christmas Murder Game by Alexandra Benedict from Mandie for Jolbokaflod. And I may have bought a few books myself. One or two. 2 Sisters Detective Agency by James Patterson and Candice Fox; Rizzio by Denise Mina; The Cyclist by Tim Sullivan; The Twist Of A Knife by Anthony Horowitz (preorder); The Sentence Is Death and The Word Is Murder by Anthony Horowitz; State of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny; The Searcher by Tana French; The Fire Killer by Ross Greenwood (preorder) and This Is What Happened by Mick Herron.
No #bookpost so that is my lot. Not too bad for a fortnight really.
Books I have read
This breathtakingly tense work is a tale of sex, seduction, secrets and lies, one that looks at history through a modern lens and explores the lengths that men – and women – will go to in the search for love and power.
It’s Saturday evening, 9 March 1566, and Mary, Queen of Scots, is six months pregnant. She’s hosting a supper party. Outside, Edinburgh is bustling. It’s full of the Great and the Good and the Idiot Sons of the Rich, here for a Parliament that will take Scotland by the shoulders and turn it from England to face Europe.
Mary doesn’t know that her Palace is surrounded – that, right now, an army of men is creeping upstairs to her chamber. They’re coming to murder David Rizzio, her friend and secretary, the handsome Italian man who is smiling across the table at her. Mary’s husband wants it done in front of her and he wants her to watch it done …
IF HE NEVER LEFT THE WOODS, WHERE DID HE GO?
A young man disappears during a stag weekend in the woods. Years later, he’s still missing.
But his friends who were with him that day are still searching for him. Still hunting for answers.
They hike deep into the wilderness.
With them is missing person specialist Frankie Elkin.
What they don’t know is that they are putting their own lives in terrifying danger, and may not come back alive . . .
When a one-night stand leads to a long-desired pregnancy, Susan will do anything to ensure her husband won’t find out … including the unthinkable. But when something horrendous is unleashed around the globe, her secret isn’t the only thing that is no longer safe.
A longed-for baby
An unthinkable decision
A deadly mistake
In an all-too-possible near future, when genetic engineering has become the norm for humans, not just crops, parents are prepared to take incalculable risks to ensure that their babies are perfect … altering genes that may cause illness, and more…
Susan has been trying for a baby for years, and when an impulsive one-night stand makes her dream come true, she’ll do anything to keep her daughter and ensure her husband doesn’t find out … including the unthinkable. She believes her secret is safe. For now.
But as governments embark on a perilous genetic arms race and children around the globe start experiencing a host of distressing symptoms – even taking their own lives – something truly horrendous is unleashed. Because those children have only one thing in common, and people are starting to ask questions…
Bestselling author of The Waiting Rooms, Eve Smith returns with an authentic, startlingly thought-provoking, disturbing blockbuster of a thriller that provides a chilling glimpse of a future that’s just one modification away…
When police investigator Sofia Kovic uncovers a startling connection between several Oslo murder cases, she attempts to contact her closest superior, Alexander Blix before involving anyone else in the department. But before Blix has time to return her call, Kovic is shot and killed in her own home – execution style. And in the apartment below, Blix’s daughter Iselin narrowly escapes becoming the killer’s next victim.
Four days later, Blix and online crime journalist Emma Ramm are locked inside an interrogation room, facing the National Criminal Investigation Service. Blix has shot and killed a man, and Ramm saw it all happen.
As Iselin’s life hangs in the balance, under-fire Blix no longer knows who he can trust … and he’s not even certain that he’s killed the right man…
Two of Nordic Noir’s most brilliant writers return with the explosive, staggeringly accomplished, emotive third instalment in the international, bestselling Blix & Ramm series … and it will take your breath away.
Worn down by a job he hates, and a stressful family life, middle-aged, middle-class Bradley picks up a teenage escort and commits an unspeakable crime. Now she’s tied up in his warehouse, and he doesn’t know what to do.
Max is homeless, eating from rubbish bins, sleeping rough and barely existing – known for cadging a cigarette from anyone passing, and occasionally even the footpath. Nobody really sees Max, but he has one friend, and she’s gone missing.
In order to find her, Max is going to have to call on some people from his past, and reopen wounds that have remained unhealed for a very long time, and the clock is ticking…
Hard-hitting, fast-paced and immensely thought-provoking, Faceless – the startling new standalone thriller from New Zealand’s ‘Queen of Crime’ – will leave you breathless.
Sadie Nicholls has been found dead, brutally and strangely murdered, in her South East London flat. Her little boy is missing.
DI Alex Finn and DC Mattie Paulsen know that, in the case of a missing child, it’s the first 24 hours that count. They don’t have many left to find out where Sadie’s son might be and the identity of her killer. Why would anyone want a struggling single mother, loved by many, dead?
But when they realise a similar crime was committed at the same house nearly 20 years ago, a question is on everyone’s lips: is this more than just a coincidence?
This is third in Will Shindler’s Finn and Paulsen series – a British detective series that ranks with Mark Billingham, M.J. Arlidge and Stuart MacBride.
Jenna is trying to rebuild her life after a series of disastrous relationships.
Luke is struggling to provide a safe, loving home for his deceased partner’s young son, following a devastating tragedy.
When Jenna and Luke meet and fall in love, they are certain they can achieve the stability and happiness they both desperately need.
And yet, someone is watching.
Someone who has been scarred by past events.
Someone who will stop at nothing to get revenge…
Dark, unsettling and immensely moving, Quicksand of Memory is a chilling reminder that we are not only punished for our sins, but by them, and that memories left to blacken and sharpen over time are the perfect breeding ground for obsession, and murder…
A twisty and chilling thriller about a woman who did one bad thing when she was young… and must now suffer the consequences.
She thought she’d got away with it. She was wrong.
Hannah Godley is an agony aunt on a London radio show Queen of Hearts. She’s warm and empathetic; a good listener. Her catchphrase is: Be kind, always. But when a stranger phones in to tell a tragic story about her brother who killed himself after he was the victim of a terrible prank by two people, Hannah goes cold. Because she remembers Diane’s brother well. In fact, all these years later, he still haunts her dreams. All because of that one bad thing she did when she was young…
Is Diane just a sad, lonely woman looking for a friend, or does she know what Hannah did, and is looking for revenge? Because as Diane insinuates herself into her life and family, Hannah is going to discover that you can never truly escape that One Bad Thing you did – sooner or later, you’re going to have to pay the price…
Death In Disguise by Emma Davies
Francesca Eve thought she was prepared for anything at the events she caters for in her pretty little Shropshire village. Missing canapes? No problem. Burnt brownies? A piece of cake… But a dead body? Now that’s a recipe for disaster.
Francesca is nervous aboutcatering her first ever murder mystery party, but it’s clear from the clink of champagne flutes and piles of empty plates that the evening is a roaring success. The guests look spectacular in their disguises, whispering and giggling as they try to identify who killed beautiful young Becky. But days later the game takes a sinister turn when Becky is found poisoned, and all the signs point to the culprit being a party guest.
From the woman having an affair to the guest hiding her true identity, everyone had a secret – and it turns out that Becky knew them all. As Fran finds herself centre-stage in a real-life murder mystery, the finger of suspicion points at each guest in turn. And Fran starts to wonder, were any of these secrets dangerous enough to kill for?
Then the body of a second guest is found, and it becomes clear a deranged killer is going off-script. It seems anyone who was involved in the game that night is in their sights, even Fran. Can she unmask the murderer before the final curtain falls?
A page-turning cozy mystery packed with twists. If you love Clare Chase, M.C. Beaton and The Thursday Murder Club you’ll absolutely adore this unputdownable whodunnit.
Only a few posts to update you on as I took a bit of a break and it was mostly just recaps of the past year and my bookvent but if you missed any, here are the links:
#Review – The Creak On The Stairs – Eva Bjørg Ægisdóttir
#Bookvent Day 20 – Bad Apples – Will Dean
#Review – GIrls Who Lie – Eva Bjørg Ægisdóttir
#Bookvent Day 21 – The Rabbit Factor – Antti Tuomainen
#Bookvent Day 22 – The Quiet People – Paul Cleave
#Bookvent Day 23 – No Way To Die – Tony Kent
#Bookvent Day 24 – Part 1 – The Last Thing To Burn – Will Dean
#Bookvent Day 24 – Part 2 – There’s Only One Danny Garvey – David F. Ross
#Bookvent 2021 – Book of the Year – This Is How We Are Human – Louise Beech
#Bookvent 2021 – The Full & Final Countdown
#A Year In Books – Quarter 1
#A Year In Books – Quarter 2
#A Year In Books – Quarter 3
#A Year In Books – Quarter 4
And there you have it. My past fortnight in a nutshell. Looking forward to seeing what 2022 has to bring. I’ve already read some cracking titles and there are some in the pipeline that I’m really looking forward to reading. I think we still all need a bit of a distraction right now as lord knows what this year will bring. Thank heavens for books.
Happy reading all. See you next week.