Rewind, Recap: Weekly Update W/E 28/08/22

Okay – who moved August? I mean, I know I had a pretty good month, a fabulous start to it with Bute Noir and all that, and some highlights along the way – well the occasional walk anyway – but it ends in a couple of days and, Bank Holiday or not, I’M NOT READY.

Well, I am, as I have plans coming up in September that I’m very excited for, but that’s another story and not going to help with this post. The week has kind of passed by in a strange mix of speed and torturous slowness. Long week at work and, in spite of a day off Friday and a Bank Holiday today, I’ve not been especially productive. Mandie and I managed a 10k walk on Sunday (legs ache now), and at least I took a few snaps along the way or this would be a very dull post.

Photo from L to R: Two black calves, a field of cows, Mute Swans and cygnets, a Mute swan with wings raised, a canal view, a cygnet on the canal, a swan and duck, the Newport canal boat.

Went to the funeral of a former colleague on Friday. Very sad but kind of inspiring too as she was very much a proponent of enjoying the here and now, and her positivity was infectious, even in the face of the illness that was ultimately going to take her from her loved ones, far too soon I might add. The kind of person who the phrase ‘beautiful inside and out’ was modelled on and she will be greatly missed, especially by those who knew her the best. But it does give you food for thought, and the main lesson to be learned is enjoy and make the most of every opportunity life throws at you. At the moment, for me, that comes in the shape of books.

This coming weekend sees me and Mandie embark on a short (long) bookish voyage which I’ll say more about next week hopefully (or if I remember), then middle of the month we have Bloody Scotland – always a calendar highlight. Cannot wait. Not too late to book tickets if you can get there. A quick day trip to Capital Crime at the end of the month and that will be us good for the rest of the year I think. Maybe

It’s been a mixed week for me. Some lovely book post this week in the shape of From Now On from the lovely Amelia Henley (Louise Jensen – Oct 13th) and Small Deaths by Rijula Das (Sept 13th), gifted by Amazon Crossing & FMcM Associates. I also received a copy of Sweet Dreams by Anders Rosalind (Sept 15th) from the lovely folk at Vintage. I really enjoyed the previous book in the series so looking forward to catching up with Ewert Grens. I was gifted the audiobook of Women Like Us by Amanda Prowse (Sept 6th) by Brilliance Audio and FMcM Associates ahead of the blog tour which I join later this week. What a fab week for books, huh?

Left to Right: From Now On by Amelia Henley; Small Deaths by Rijula Das; Sweet Dreams by Anders Rosalind and Women Like Us by Amanda Prowse.

1 new Netgalley title – Red Mist by Ant Middleton (Nov 24th). I really enjoyed meeting Mallory in book one so am looking forward to catching up with his latest antics. Two new book orders. One was the as yet un-covered new Matilda Darke novel from Michael Wood (October 28), the other was book 11 in the Lottie Parker series by Patricia Gibney, The Guilty Girl (June 15th).

Red Mist by Ant Middleton and
The Guilty Girl by Patricia Gibney

Books I have read

Harm by Sólveig Pálsdóttir

When wealthy doctor Ríkarður Magnússon goes to sleep in his luxurious caravan and doesn’t wake up, detectives Guðgeir Fransson and Elsa Guðrún are called to the Westman Islands to investigate what looks like murder.

Suspicion immediately falls on Ríkharður’s young, beautiful and deeply troubled girlfriend – but there are no easy answers in this case as they are drawn into family feuds, disgruntled friends and colleagues, and the presence of a group of fitness-obsessed over-achievers with secrets of their own.

As their investigation makes progress, Guðgeir and Elsa Guðrún are forced to confront their own preconceptions and prejudices as they uncover the sinister side of Ríkharður’s past.

Harm is the third novel featuring the soft-spoken Reykjavík detective Guðgeir Fransson to appear in English. Sólveig Pálsdóttir again weaves a complex web of intrigue that plays out in the Westman Islands, remote southern Iceland and Reykjavík while asking some searching questions about things society accepts at face value – and others it is not prepared to tolerate.

The Santa Killer by Ross Greenwood

The Santa Killer is coming to town…

One night less than two weeks before Christmas, a single mother is violently assaulted. It’s a brutal crime at the time of year when there should be goodwill to all. When DI Barton begins his investigation, he’s surprised to find the victim is a woman with nothing to hide and no reason for anyone to hurt her.

A few days later, the mother of the woman attacked rings the police station. Her granddaughter has drawn a shocking picture. It seems she was looking out of the window when her mother was attacked. And when her grandmother asks the young girl who the person with the weapon is, she whispers two words.

Bad Santa.

The rumours start spreading, and none of the city’s women feel safe – which one of them will be next?

He’s got a list. It’s quite precise. It won’t matter even if you’re nice.

Women Like Us by Amanda Prowse

Amanda Prowse has built a bestselling career on the lives of fictional women. Now she turns the pen on her own life.

I guess the first question to ask is, what kind of woman am I? Well, you know those women who saunter into a room, immaculately coiffed and primped from head to toe?

If you look behind her, you’ll see me.

From her childhood, where there was no blueprint for success, to building a career as a bestselling novelist against all odds, Amanda Prowse explores what it means to be a woman in a world where popularity, slimness, beauty and youth are currency—and how she overcame all of that to forge her own path to happiness.

Sometimes heartbreaking, often hilarious and always entirely relatable, Prowse details her early struggles with self-esteem and how she coped with the frustrating expectations others had of how she should live. Most poignantly, she delves into her toxic relationship with food, the hardest addiction she has ever known, and how she journeyed out the other side.

One of the most candid memoirs you’re ever likely to read, Women Like Usprovides welcome insight into how it is possible—against the odds—to overcome insecurity, body consciousness and the ubiquitous imposter syndrome to find happiness and success, from a woman who’s done it all, and then some.

The Night Watch by Neil Lancaster

He’ll watch you.
A lawyer is found dead at sunrise on a lonely clifftop at Dunnet Head on the northernmost tip of Scotland. It was supposed to be his honeymoon, but now his wife will never see him again.

He’ll hunt you.

The case is linked to several mysterious deaths, including the murder of the lawyer’s last client – Scotland’s most notorious criminal… who had just walked free. DS Max Craigie knows this can only mean one thing: they have a vigilante serial killer on their hands.

He’ll leave you to die.

But this time the killer isn’t on the run; he’s on the investigation team. And the rules are different when the murderer is this close to home.

He knows their weaknesses, knows how to stay hidden, and he thinks he’s above the law…

Max, Janie and Ross return in the third gripping novel in this explosive Scottish crime series. Pre-order now!

Not too bad for a week – four books. I had started the one last Sunday but, even with the day off, I’m quite pleased with that considering work is still not letting me relax (boo hiss). Quieter week on the blog but it got padded out a little by some late entry press releases on Friday. Recap below:

#Review – Tick Tock – Simon Mayo
#Review – The Blood Tide – Neil Lancaster
#Review – The Murder Mystery – Alice Castle
#Review – The Killing Choice – Will Shindler
#PressRelease – Bloody Scotland unveils Crime in the Spotlight Support Acts
#PressRelease – Capital Crime Launches the Fingerprint Awards

A full week ahead with lots of reviews including two blog tours. Today I take a look at The Secret of Elephants by Vasundra Tailor and on Friday I’ll be reviewing Women Like Us by Amanda Prowse.

So there you have it. A mixed week but I like to think a positive one. I’m still a long way from my blogging best but think I’m slowly turning a corner. Watch this space.

Have a fabulous week all and hopefully, for those in the UK, a happy and sunny Bank Holiday. Lots to worry everyone these days so it’s important to make the most of those moments of peace and enjoy them when you can.

Jen x