Sins of the Father blog tour

My turn on the blog tour for Sheryl brownes new book, I have the priviledge of sharing with you an excerpt from her novel:

Matthew woke abruptly, hurtled from sleep by a nightmare he thought would never end. Sweat saturating his face, pooling in the hollow of his neck, he pulled himself upright and squinted against the thin trickle of sunlight filtering through the slatted blinds at the window. His first thought was that he had a hangover the size of an airdrome. His second, that they had no blinds at their bedroom window.

Easing his legs over the edge of the bed, a wheeze rattling his chest and nausea gripping his stomach as the room revolved in sick-making revolutions around him, his gaze went instinctively to the bedside table. His inhaler was there, the blue curative he carried with him, lined up neatly alongside his phone. Disorientated, Matthew blinked hard. His vision was blurred. His memory? Where the bloody hell was he?

A hotel room. Functional, he registered. Scanning his surroundings, he noted the fire instructions pinned to the door, the ancient fire extinguisher on the wall, the dusty circa nineteen eighties carpet. A shithole. Matthew closed his eyes and swallowed against the acrid taste in the back of his throat, then almost had a heart attack as his phone rang, loud and shrill, screeching through his brain like an express train. Scrambling around his mind for some recollection of what had happened the night before, he came up with nothing that was tangible, his tenuous thoughts seeming to slip away, like sea filtering ineffectually through sand. He had a few grainy, grey memories: Jasmine, the apartment, tastefully decorated. The painting, abstract colours intermingling. Coffee. Dripping. Shoes, clacking, like the ominous slow tick of a clock. One shoe. A stiletto. Connor …? Had he been there? Here? Matthew squeezed his eyes shut, tried desperately to remember. Natalie? Christ, no. 

His phone rang again, sharp, insistent. Becky, it had to be, and Matthew had no clue what to say to her. Attempting to control his escalating panic, to regulate his breathing, he let it ring and reached for his inhaler instead … and then stopped dead.

Seeing the crimson stains on his hand, Matthew’s heart somersaulted in his chest.

Dried blood, he registered, trying hard not to let the panic, now gripping his gut like a vice, cancel out logical thought. Old blood. His? How old?

Bringing both palms shakily to his face, he examined them. They were ingrained with the stuff. He flipped them over. His knuckles were bruised. Right hand. Sweet Jesus, what had he done? Disentangling himself from the duvet, Matthew scrambled to his feet, then quelling the nausea now clawing its way up his windpipe, he checked himself over. Deep wheals ran vertically down his chest. Four. Matthew swallowed hard. Checked his limbs. Found scratches on his arms. His neck, too. He could feel those, raw and sore.

His pulse rate ratcheting up, he yanked the duvet back. More blood. Too much. Stark against the grey-white of the sheets. Trying desperately to keep a lid on his emotions, he turned, stumbling towards the bathroom, where he leaned over the toilet and vomited the sparse contents of his stomach.

Standing unsteadily, Matthew clutched the sink hard for support. Deep gouges on his cheek, he noted through the mirror, then flinched as a flashback hit him head on: Jasmine, smiling, her eyes, flat and emotionless. Her fingernails trailing down his face, his torso. Her touch had been light. She’d inflicted no damage. So how? Who? Natalie? A fresh image assaulted him, Natalie lying next to him. On top of him. Had he? No! His gaze straying to the wall behind him, Matthew’s legs almost gave way. There were blood spatters on the tiles. Perspiring profusely, he dragged an arm over his forehead. Irregular, splattered all over the walls. Christ, this couldn’t be happening.

A terrifying scenario unfurling in his head, Matthew willed himself to turn to the bath. His hand visibly shaking, cold trepidation snaking the length of his spine, he steeled himself to reach for the mould-stained shower curtain, hesitated, and drew it back.

A tap dripped, slowly, steadily. Each drip echoing distortedly around the room, sounding like a nail being driven into his coffin. He registered the watery trickle of blood washing over the carcass of a spider wedged in the plughole.

No body.

Wilting with relief, Matthew turned away. Taking several slow breaths, he grabbed a towel from the rail, whilst simultaneously reaching for the sink tap, and then stopped, his head screaming, his instincts colliding. If he cleaned himself up, he’d be destroying evidence. If he ran … Matthew stared hard at himself in the mirror. More images assailed him, disjointed memories. Surreal, foggy recollections. He’d been here with two women. Jasmine and Natalie. Matthew knew that much. Thought he did. And every indication was that one of those women had been badly injured, or worse, possibly by him. If he was going to call this in, and terrified though he was, his conscience told him he had to, he couldn’t wash. He needed to. The smell in the room was cloying. A woman’s scent. It was all over him.

He had to call Becky. Trying to keep calm, to not give into his urge to run from the room and keep running, Matthew headed back to the bedroom, where his phone had been ringing constantly. Whatever had happened, she needed to hear it from him first. He needed to tell her … Tell her what? Something’s happened, but I don’t know what? I think I’ve been set-up but I have no idea why? I might have had sex with someone but it wasn’t intentional?

Consensual.

No! Disbelieving, Matthew gulped back an immediate deep sense of shame.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US

CHOC LIT

 

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Keep you Near Blog tour

Today i’m on the keep you near blog tour – I love Robin Roughley as an author he was one of my first new discoveries when we set up the UK crime Book club and has remained a favourite ever since. Keep you near is the first in a new series featuring Marnie Hammond.

A normal day in the park turns into a nerve shredding nightmare for eleven-year-old Marnie Hammond when she find herself in a desperate chase to stop the ‘bad man,’ from abducting Abby.

Fifteen years later, Marnie is a Detective Sergeant but the memory of her missing sister still haunts her dreams.

When it becomes clear that someone is stalking the streets of Kirkhead DS Hammond has her hands full, and after remains are discovered buried in dense woodland, Marnie fears the worst. But this is only the start of a nightmare that will unearth more bones, more victims and the terror that Abby might be among the dead.

To stop the monster Marnie knows she must break the rules, but when the twisted killer turns his attention on her it becomes a fight not only for the truth but for her sanity and her survival.

Can Marnie catch the murderer and solve her sister’s disappearance?

This is a change from Robin’s usual style of writing but it still has lots of features you’ve come to expect from a Robin Roughley book. Great characters – I particularly enjoyed the story arc that featured the young lad fresh out of a young offenders institution. Deftly written plot with plenty of twists, there are twists aplenty in this book. However it is really Dark, possibly too dark for some people it deals with the sensitive issue of child abduction and there were moments when I found it a difficult read. However it was  compelling and gripping it had me from the very first page and i didn’t want to stop reading until I found out what happened to the characters involved. I would read more from this series but i’m not sure if I should describe this book as something I enjoyed due to the dark nature of the subject material.

If you are not easily upset and can cope with a dark and twisted crime novel then I heartily recommend this  – Dark twisted and compelling this is truly a knockout 5* read from Robin.

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Some thoughts On Anglesey Blue

I recently read Dylan Jones new novel Anglesey blue – the first featuring Inspector Tudor Manx

MURDER. BETRAYAL. REVENGE.

It’s not the homecoming Detective Inspector Tudor Manx was expecting, but solving the case is just the start of his problems.

Recently transferred from the London Met to the North Wales Constabulary, Detective Inspector Tudor Manx has come to Island of Anglesey hoping for a quiet life.

But his hopes are dashed when a brutally mutilated body is found crucified to the bow of a fishing boat sending shockwaves through the peaceful community.

Manx’s faces pressure to solve the case quickly equipped with an inexperienced team.

Is the body a message or a premonition of more murders to come?

Adding to his mounting problems, Manx’s troubled past returns to haunt him. Manx left the island after the disappearance of his younger sister, Miriam; a cold case that still remains unsolved.

Can Manx solve the case before the body count rises?

How will he cope when he is forced to choose between his family and his duty as a police officer?

This is a really gritty crime drama – set on a small island in Wales. It is full of twists and turns and even though you work out the culprit before the end the route of how the inspectors get there is refreshing and interesting.

This has plenty of gruesome moments and some interesting characters not least our strangely named inspector – However I did find the name a little jarring. I liked the touches of Welsh thoroughout the book and the feeling that the author clearly knew the locations he used.

At times I felt there were to many twists and turns for me  – but for a debut novel this is certainly one with promise and I would be interested in reading more from this author, A solid 4* read for me

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Winterscroft by Anita Waller

So I find myself a lucky bloghounder once more – with the privilege of being on Anita Wallers blog tour. I’m a big fan of Anita’s crime writing I once nearly missed my bus stop entirely from being so absorbed (this is the same journey where I cried at the novel as well), she is also one of the few authors that I have a complete signed collection of books of.

That said Winterscroft takes a different turn, it’s a ghost story with some christian undertones without being overly religious.

When the beautiful Lavender is killed in a tragic car accident her family and fiancé Matt are left devastated.

As the year’s pass and wounds begin to heal, Matt, who has remained close to Lavender’s family, meets Beth and falls in love again.

When the happy couple announce their engagement, it sparks a series of bizarre and disturbing events.

Then when Matt and Beth make plans to wed at Lavender’s family home, Winterscroft, the frightening truth becomes apparent.

Lavender is back. And she is not happy.

I loved the story, I am a fan of ghost stories though and I found this one smart and entertaining. It’s a read in one sitting sort of book. although I didnt find it scary I was deeply moved at points as you would come to expect from Anita’s writing.

As always the characters are well developed and you are truly invested in all of them – the writing is beautiful and really plays on your emotions and I loved the ending – totally not what I was expecting. I have never read a book by Anita that is Less than 5* and this one is no exception – I no have a new author to recommend to people when they want a thrilling and interesting ghost story.

This is a great modern revival to the classic gothic tales of old, it would make a fantastic movie.

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Old friends and new enemies blog tour

Owen Mullen writes the Kind of detective fiction you expect from Hammett and Chandler but with a modern twist and Old friends and New Enemies is a great release:

The body on the mortuary slab wasn’t who Glasgow PI Charlie Cameron was looking for.

But it wasn’t a stranger.

Suddenly, a routine missing persons investigation becomes a fight for survival. As Charlie is dragged deeper into Glasgow’s underbelly he goes up against notorious gangster Jimmy Rafferty and discovers what fear really is.

Rafferty is so ruthless even his own sons are terrified of him.

Now he wants Charlie to find something. And Jimmy Rafferty always gets what he wants.

There is only one problem… Charlie doesn’t know where it is.

A shining example of modern British noir fiction,  this is a  fantastic Scottish detective novel,there are some gruesome moments in this one definitely not one to read if you feel slightly squeamish.

I loved the characters and how they develop throughout the series although none of them were particularly likeable as people they all felt quite real to me as I was reading, possibly because they were flawed. You do become endeared with Charlie and his compatriots and you almost enjoy that the Bar/cafe he uses as his office really existed.

The novel on my Kindle as it was an ARC finished quite soon and I felt slightly bereft when I reached the end always a sign of a good read. If you like your crime gritty and full of dark drama then this is the read for you. Owen Mullen and Bloodhound books are a Winning combination, and this is an outstanding 5* read for me

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After she’s gone by Sheryl Browne

today I’m on the blog tour for Sheryl Brownes, new book afters she’s gone –

He’s killed your child and kidnapped your wife. What would YOU do? 

There’s evil and then there’s Patrick Sullivan. A drug dealer, pimp and murderer, there are no depths to which Patrick would not sink, and Detective Inspector Matthew Adams has found this out in the most devastating way imaginable.

When Patrick’s brother is shot dead in a drug bust gone wrong, the bitter battle between the two men intensifies, and Matthew finds it increasingly difficult to hold the moral high ground. All he wants is to make the pimping scum suffer the way he did … the way Lily did.

But being at war with such a depraved individual means that it’s not just Matthew who’s in danger. Patrick has taken a lot from Matthew, but he hasn’t taken everything – and now he wants everything.

Sound exciting well I have a wonderful little excerpt for you:

Prologue

‘Oi, you can’t park there!’ a police officer yelled as Matthew mounted the kerb, careering his car haphazardly to a stop on the pavement.

His gut twisting violently inside him, his head reeling, Matthew ignored him, ramming his door open instead to scramble from the car and set off at a run.

‘What the …?’

Vaguely aware of the man giving chase, Matthew kept going, attempting to push past another officer closing in in front of him, only to be caught from behind.

‘Whoa. Come on, mate, you need to get back.’ Taking hold of his arm, the officer behind attempted to steer him away. ‘There’s been an accident up ahead. We need to clear—’

‘Shit, it’s Adams.’ The officer in front intervened.

‘Who?’ The man still hanging on to his arm asked.

‘Detective Inspector Adams,’ the officer in front supplied warily. ‘Let him through.’

Stumbling forwards as the guy behind relaxed his grip, his legs like dead weights beneath him, Matthew forced himself on, bypassing other officers, who now stood respectfully aside.

His wife was with her. Matthew swallowed back a hard knot in his throat. She was crouched over her, holding her impossibly small hand in her own. She didn’t look up. Rebecca kept her gaze focussed on their daughter. His daughter. Matthew felt something break inside him as he took in his baby’s injuries, her broken body, the slow trickle of lifeblood pooling beneath her, staining the drab, grey road crimson.

Please don’t. Matthew prayed hopelessly as he moved closer. Please don’t do this. The world seeming to slow to a stop around him, the use of his legs finally deserting him, Matthew dropped to his knees at the side of the child he’d loved with every fibre of his being ever since he’d first glimpsed her tiny form on the monitor.

‘Hey, Tigerlily,’ he said, his voice cracking as Lily’s eyes fluttered open. Wide blue eyes, once crystal clear with the innocence of childhood, they were filled with confusion and pain as she looked pleadingly up at him, silently begging him, her daddy, to fix it. His heart turned over as her lips parted. She wanted to speak. She couldn’t. Please don’t try to speak, baby. Tears he couldn’t hope to hide streaming down his face, Matthew leaned towards her, brushing her blood-matted, beautiful blonde hair gently away from her face. ‘Daddy’s here, darling,’ he choked. ‘It’s going to be just fine.’

Lies. Lies. He screamed inside. It was going to be fine. It could never be. He couldn’t fix it. How could he let his little girl go knowing he couldn’t? Cradling his baby gently in his arms, Matthew’s heart splintered inside him as he watched her life ebb away.

****

They were taking her away in an ambulance. What use was an ambulance? Panic engulfing him, Matthew took a faltering step towards it, and stopped. He couldn’t. Couldn’t ride with her, watch as the warmth drained from her body, her baby-soft skin turning blue and cold. Life fucking extinct.

‘Matthew!’ Rebecca called to him as, his chest heaving, Matthew turned away. Terrified of what he might see in her eyes, he couldn’t turn back. This was his fault. He should have been there. He’d promised to drive them to the cinema. He’d known Patrick Sullivan might make good his threat. He should have been there! A potent mixture of grief and rage broiling inside him, Matthew recalled his last encounter with the sadistic piece of scum with sickening clarity. Sullivan’s expression hadn’t altered when he’d informed him his brother had been an unfortunate casualty in a drug bust gone wrong. Matthew had been surprised. Sullivan’s hatred of him went way back since they were kids in school. Guessing he would hold him personally responsible, Matthew had been bracing himself for Sullivan to reach across the table and attack him right there in the prison interview room. Instead, Sullivan had reached casually for a cigarette. Lighting up, he’d glanced down and scratched his forehead slowly with his thumb.

‘How’s that pretty young wife of yours, DI Adams? Pregnant again, isn’t she?’ he’d enquired eventually, blowing smoke circles into the air as he’d looked back at him. ‘Give her my regards, won’t you?’

Sullivan had then leaned forwards, a twisted smirk on his face, his eyes as black as molasses and swimming with pure evil. ‘I would do it myself, but I’m a bit busy … banged up … in here.’

It had been a threat. Innocent to all ears but Matthew’s, it had been a direct threat. And now, still sitting pretty in prison with a cast iron alibi, Sullivan was no doubt congratulating himself on a job well done, imagining that he’d also succeeded in warning Matthew off pursuing him once he got out. Wrong, you bastard.

A little bit about the author:

Heartache, humour, love, loss & betrayal, Sheryl Browne brings you edgy, sexy, heart-wrenching fiction. A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and shortlisted for the Best Romantic e-book Love Stories Award 2015, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.

Recommended to the publisher by the WH Smith Travel fiction buyer, Sheryl’s contemporary fiction comes to you from award winning Choc Lit

to have a chance of winning a copy go here:

ECOPY OF THE BOOK

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Robbing the Dead by Tana Collins

Today i’m on the robbing the dead blog tour – This is a new novel by Tana Collins a yorkshire born novelist and one of the burgeoning group of talents in Bloodhounds flock.

I am new to reading Tana and found robbing the dead refreshing and gritty – it stood out from a lot of crime i’ve read recently.

Robbing the dead is based in a small Scottish university town

what links a spate of horrible murders, a targeted bomb explosion and a lecturer’s disappearance? Is a terror group involved? If so, who is pulling the strings? And what does something that happened over forty years ago have to do with it?

At its heart it’s a police procedural with a very goes against the rules kind of copper as the main protagonist, and his fetching young lady assistant. What confuses me about this novel is it feels like it is very of a particular time – It spends a lot of time discussing welsh nationalism and bloody sunday. The events it depicts happening like a spate of arson attacks etc are things I remember from being a child. So it feels like it is set in the past but it isn’t.

The novel is set now, and these events are affecting people now, and to that extent it makes a good point about radical views and the long reaching affects of terror both on the families of the extremists and the people sent to deal with them. For that reason it still has something to say as a novel and I like that the author uses a different example of people with extreme views, rather than reaching for the current baddies we all think about.

I also loved the characters – you grew to know everyone who had a role in the novel, I enjoy books when the characters grow and develop as they go, by the end of this novel I felt involved in their lives. It also feels like there is more to come from these characters and that we will go on and see them in other books by the author and maybe even find how their lives develop over time. Their is a back story to the characters but it is not overplayed, you feel like what you find out about the characters past has a real impact on how they respond to the events in the novel.

I finished this novel a few days ago now and it still makes me think even a few days later – this is the sign of a well written book. I would look forward to reading more by Tana collins, this is a very accomplished start to her Bloodhound career. A solid 5* read from me 16729193_10155045459841255_5364539352159634966_n.jpg

 

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