The Angel by Katerina Diamond – Blog Tour Exclusive Extract #blogtour

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Welcome to my turn on The Angel Blog Tour. I am very delighted to have a super extract from the book to whet your appetite for more.

The Angel by Katerina Diamond is published on 21 September 2017 by Avon

What’s it all about?

THE TRUTH WON’T STAY LOCKED UP FOREVER

When a burned body is found in a disused signal box, suspicion falls on lonely teenager Gabriel Webb. There’s no doubt he was at the scene of the crime, but does he really deserve what awaits him in prison?

DS Imogen Grey is certain there’s more to the case than meets the eye. But while she struggles to convince those around her of the truth, her partner DS Adrian Miles is distracted by his own demons.

When a brutal double murder is reported, their investigation is stopped in its tracks. Is the body in the box even who they thought it was? The duo realise Gabriel might have been locked up for a crime he didn’t commit. But with enemies watching Gabriel’s every move, they may be too late.

Miles and Grey are back in the thrilling new novel from bestselling author Katerina Diamond, perfect for fans of Karin Slaughter and M.J. Arlidge.

***** Exclusive Extract *****

Extract Thirteen from Chapter Four, pp 44-45

He grabbed his bag from on top of the cupboard. He couldn’t tell which bunk was his and so he sat in one of the chairs and waited for his cellmate. He was nervous about conversation. Worried he might say the wrong thing to the wrong person. Upset someone without meaning to. Hopefully his cellmate wouldn’t ignore him. He had been counting the words that had come out of his mouth since he had been charged, aware that he had only spoken when he had to, when he was spoken to first. He wasn’t sure if it made him feel more or less lonely. He had said fifty-five so far, most of them answering the nurse or counsellor in the screening as they processed him to enter the prison.

Gabriel looked through the bag of clothing his mother had sent in to see that his favourite T-shirt was missing. The Slipknot tour T-shirt that Emma used to sleep in. He hadn’t even washed it – he wanted it to smell of her. The rest of his stuff seemed to be there.

‘I’m Jason Cole. Who are you?’ A man entered the room, bounding straight towards Gabriel with his hand held out. Gabriel stood up awkwardly.

‘I’m Gabriel.’

‘Well it’s good to meet you, Gabriel!’

‘Thanks.’

‘You been inside before? I’m guessing by the look on your face the answer is no.’ Jason sat down on the edge of the bed.

Gabriel stuffed his things back into his bag and put them in the empty cupboard. He could sort it all out later.

‘Roll call!’ A booming voice came from outside the cell.

Jason nodded Gabriel towards the door and they both stood up. Gabriel was a good few inches taller than Jason, who had on a red shirt and blue jeans. Gabriel was once again feeling out of place in his fully black attire. Jason went outside and stood to the left of the door, and Gabriel followed, trying to remember what they had told him at the induction. So far so good though. Jason didn’t seem to be violent, at least.


If you are desperate to find out more …

The author, Katerina Diamondbooks and biography

Katerina Diamond on Twitter

To buy The Angel on Amazon UK

Please check out the rest of The Angel blog tour…

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The Bone Field – Simon Kernick

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The Bone Field was published in paperback on 27 July 2017 by Arrow

A NEW TWIST TO A DECADES OLD MYSTERY

1990
A young woman goes missing while backpacking in Thailand.

She is never seen again.

2016
Her bones are discovered 6000 miles away in an English field and, within hours, the boyfriend who reported her disappearance all those years ago is dead.

So begins a hunt to solve her murder that will take DI Ray Mason and PI Tina Boyd into a dark and terrifying world of corruption and deadly secrets, where murder is commonplace, and nothing and nobody is safe…

My thoughts

I am not a huge fan of Simon Kernick. I have dipped in and out of his books over the years. I was intrigued to read The Bone Field, particularly because it has a setting of 1990s Thailand. I had high expectations of a cracking read.

The Bone Field really was a very average thriller. It was missing a certain something to take it from average to spectacular. It certainly ticked a few boxes of the kind of book I normally enjoy. Dark mystery, with an international flavour and tough themes. Yet it just failed to hit the spot properly. I don’t think it helped ending on a cliffhanger.

We follow Tina Boyd, a private investigator and DI Ray Mason, a detective in the police force hunting for clues to a cold case murder. Henry Forbes contacts Mason with new information about his missing girlfriend, Kitty. Kitty was reported missing in Thailand in the 1990s. She is found buried in the UK, in the present day. The only clue seems to be a tattoo of a pentagram. With key witnesses being bumped off left, right and centre, Mason has to work hard to find out what ties everything together.

Both of these characters have been established in previous books. Unfortunately Kernick fails to fully fill in their backgrounds for newcomers to the series. I found myself frustrated by this weakness. Both Mason and Boyd are a little too similar in nature. They attract trouble. We got Mason’s point of view for a great deal of the drama. I preferred hearing from Tina Boyd, with her private eye perspective.

I think this will appeal more to established Simon Kernick fans. It was just an average read for me. One that I read to pass the time on a commute. Slightly disappointing. I am sure his earlier books had much more action and pace.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown – Baby Ganesh Agency Book 2 – Vaseem Khan

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The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown was published on 5 May 2016 by Mulholland Books

The second book in the heartwarming and charming Baby Ganesh series.

For centuries the Koh-i-Noor diamond has set man against man and king against king.

Now part of the British Crown Jewels, the priceless gem is a prize that many have killed to possess.

So when the Crown Jewels go on display in Mumbai, security is everyone’s principal concern. And yet, on the very day Inspector Chopra visits the exhibition, the diamond is stolen from under his nose.

The heist was daring and seemingly impossible. The hunt is on for the culprits. But it soon becomes clear that only one man – and his elephant – can possibly crack this case…

My thoughts

This year, I discovered the delightful and amusing Inspector Chopra series aka the Baby Ganesh Detective Agency set in India. I am now onto the second book The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown. They are such a pleasure to read.

The first book set the scene and introduced Chopra, his wife Poppy and established the detective agency. Chopra is a retired police officer, who loves hunting criminals and solving crimes. There is a tiny elephant as well, belonging to Chopra. He inherited the quirky Ganesha. Ganesha is a detective in his own right. In this follow up, the series gets going beautifully. Chopra and his wife are visiting a museum, when a major robbery takes place. The theft of a crown belonging to the Queen of England, that was on loan to the Mumbai museum goes missing. Chopra finds himself using his police skills, to hunt for a thief.

This is a highly entertaining crime series, with just the right dash of subtle humour. It feels like it has come into its own in book two. Chopra and his entourage are excellent. I just love it ALL … the Indian culture, the storylines and the resolution! Obviously, this is not dark gritty crime. It is the lighter kind of crime, done incredibly well.

Recommended. Especially for fans of Alexander McCall Smith and Michael Stanley.

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Find Me by J. S. Monroe – Exclusive Extract – Blog Tour @jsthrillers @headofzeus

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Welcome to my slightly late turn on the Find Me Blog Tour. Here is an exclusive extract of Find Me by J. S. Monroe to give you a taste of this smashing new thriller. Stick on the kettle, put your feet up and enjoy!

Find Me was published on 7 September 2017 in paperback by Head of Zeus.

What’s it all about?

Five years ago, Rosa walked to the pier in the dead of night, looked into the swirling water, and jumped. She was a brilliant Cambridge student who had just lost her father. Her death was tragic, but not unexpected.

Was that what really happened?

The coroner says it was suicide. But Rosa’s boyfriend Jar can’t let go. He sees Rosa everywhere – a face on the train, a figure on the cliff. He is obsessed with proving that she is still alive. And then he gets an email.

Find me, Jar. Find me, before they do…

*****Exclusive Extract*****

‘Why did you come here today, Jar?’

He feels his eyelids throbbing. Does he tell her that his life is being destroyed by the belief that Rosa is alive? That the love they had for each other was stronger than the lure of the Norfolk sea and her apparent suicide was out of character? That he is still drinking too much and suspects he’s being followed everywhere? That he has become a cynical and jaded human being, worn down by a job he dislikes and the extinction of a once-promising talent to string sentences together?

Or does he confess that he welcomes the prospect of spending an hour each week talking about Rosa? (Even if it is to an older woman he knows she would have disliked – Rosa had a thing about bottle blondes.) Carl listened in the early days, but Jar can tell he’s bored by it all now. He doesn’t blame him. Amy still listens. So does Da, but Jar feels guilty whenever he brings Rosa up in conversation; his parents are too old to worry about their grown-up son. It’s Kirsten’s job to listen.

‘Talking about her keeps the memories alive,’ he offers finally.

‘And the hope that she’s alive too?’ 
He doesn’t answer.
‘I’ve got to be straight with you, Jar,’ she says. ‘No one I’ve spoken to about post-bereavement hallucinations believes their loved ones are still alive. They see their hallucinations more in terms of an ethereal trace, a contrail left in the sky.’

Where has he heard that expression before? 
‘You mean an apparition? This isn’t a ghost story. ’
He listens to the sweep of her fountain pen, guessing her handwriting is rounded, well formed, as he wracks his brain. ‘I’m going to ask you a very blunt question. I don’t mean to be insensitive, I just need a single-word answer, the first that comes to mind.’ 
‘Go ahead.’ Here comes Sigmund, he thinks.
 ‘What would you have felt if Rosa’s body had turned up?’ Jar pauses. Despite the warning, he is unsettled by her question. 
‘Suspicious,’ he says, his voice quiet but firm. They look at each other in silence. Kirsten pushes back her chair and comes over to sit next to him on the sofa.

‘I’m sorry,’ she says, placing one hand brie y on his fore- arm. It’s not a flirtatious gesture, but he isn’t prepared for the inevitable intimacy that follows, her face now close to his, the scent of citrus. She rests her notepad on her lap and pulls the hem of her skirt – shorter than yesterday? – over her knees.

‘For these sessions to work for both of us, I need to understand your current state of mind, ask occasionally awkward questions, analyse your answers. It’s part of the free- association method I mentioned yesterday. Then we can talk more meaningfully about the hallucinations. Is that OK with you?’

Jar nods, turns away and then looks back at her. She is still staring at him.

‘Why “suspicious”?’ she asks.

He notices that the second button on her blouse is undone. It must have fallen open when she moved from the desk to the sofa. She can’t have done it deliberately – everything about her manner today is professional, neutral, denuded of all sexuality – but the ash of flesh is distracting, enough for him to drop his guard, consider more in her than he intends.

‘Because I think her death was faked.’


 

If you want to find out what happens next… you can buy your own shiny new copy here

J S Monroe at Head of Zeus website

J S Monroe on Twitter

Check out the rest of the blog tour for all kinds of Find Me delights!

*Apologies that this post is a day late. I have just started a new job and I am all over the place! I thought Sunday was the 16th September. Normal service will resume shortly…

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Copycat by Alex Lake – Blog Tour Review

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Copycat is published by Harper Collins on 7th September 2017 and is available to buy here

The gripping new psychological thriller from the bestselling author of After Anna and Killing Kate.

Imitation is the most terrifying form of flattery…

Which Sarah Havenant is you?

When an old friend gets in touch, Sarah Havenant discovers that there are two Facebook profiles in her name. One is hers. The other, she has never seen.

But everything in it is accurate. Photos of her friends, her husband, her kids. Photos from the day before. Photos of her new kitchen. Photos taken inside her house.

And this is just the beginning. Because whoever has set up the second profile has been waiting for Sarah to find it. And now that she has, her life will no longer be her own…

My thoughts

Copycat is a super story about revenge. It is the latest psychological thriller from Alex Lake. This is a story that I had fun with, even though it was another one that I guessed whodunnit early on. You can’t beat a good pyscho at work!

We meet the woman who has it all. Sarah has three children, a British husband and works as a GP (family doctor) in a lovely part of the States. Her perfect life starts to disintegrate. Someone has an identical Facebook profile to hers. Sarah realises this, but doesn’t see the full picture for a while. Slowly it appears that someone has an obsession with her. Someone knows her life inside out. She has a stalker. Someone sick is impersonating her online. Things escalate, as the stalker amps up the pressure. Sarah’s marriage becomes rocky. Her friendships suffer. People around her become suspicious. Dodgy emails. Alarming messages sent by Sarah. Odd parcels of books. Has Sarah completely lost the plot? Or is something more sinister afoot?

This book is a warning. Think about what you share with the online world. The more information that you make available online, the easier it is for it to be abused. We all may not have pyschotic stalkers about to pounce. But you never know …

I love it, when we see the drip drip effect. The slow torture of a likeable character. It was all done incredibly well. Poor Sarah. She really suffers. The vicious campaign against her triggers panic attacks and anxiety. Those panic attacks were very realistic, in their portrayal. Her life goes down hill fast. Even her husband turns against her. She becomes isolated. Yet she cannot work what out who might be responsible. All very thrilling!

Definitely one to rush to the shops for, if you like to see a character really suffer. It was all very entertaining, with the pace just right! You may find yourself shaking your head slightly at Sarah. She is a bit dim. Remember to change your internet settings, guys. That is the moral of the story. Danger may be lurking. Fabulous stuff!


 

Alex Lake can be found on Twitter Alex Lake Author

To buy the book click here

Check out what else is going on >>>

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Kill Me Twice – Simon Booker

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Kill Me Twice was published on 24 August 2017 by Zaffre and is available to buy here

‘Booker’s fast paced, twisting thrillers are a must-read for anyone who loves a good page turner’ Simon Kernick

‘A must-read’ Mark Billingham

Karl Savage is dead.
He must be. His ex, Anjelica, is in prison for murdering him in an arson attack. Multiple forensic experts testified to finding his charred remains.
So when Anjelica begs investigative journalist Morgan Vine to prove her innocence, it seems an impossible task. It doesn’t matter that Karl was abusive. That Anjelica has a baby to care for. That she’s petrified of fire. The whole world knows Karl is dead.
Then he turns up outside Morgan’s window . . .

Also by Simon Booker – Without Trace

My thoughts

I really enjoyed Without Trace. This was the first book in the series, featuring an investigative journalist, Morgan Vine.

Kill Me Twice is the follow up. It is a massive disappointment. The premise was great. The execution of it, just failed to deliver a rather good thriller.

We meet a woman, who is behind bars and at the end of her tether. She seeks out Vine, who has a reputation now for helping in miscarriage of justice cases. Vine visits her in prison. The prisoner was accused of murdering a man named Karl. Karl’s body was identified forensically. Karl has been seen out and about. A dead man walking. The person querying the death of Karl is Morgan Vine. Vine is suspicious. She knows something is afoot. Can Vine get to the truth and convince the authorities?

Everything starts off well. It is a good concept. The problem is that it is hard to believe in it. It just doesn’t work at all. It is very off kilter. I can easily point to several reasons. We see rather too much of Morgan Vine’s irritating daughter, Lissa. She is twenty going on twelve. Much of the story relates to her behaviour and its consequences. I cannot remember the last time a character made me want to scream so much. Morgan Vine, herself, is like a massive caricature of a devoted mother and reckless adult. What kind of woman babies her twenty year old daughter like that? I wanted action, not dreary family drama. None of it felt real. The author took the emphasis away from the most interesting factor, the man who convinced the world he had died. When we heard from our baddie of the piece, it was such a cliche. The abused boy in childhood gone bad. I needed tension and fear. It was frequently all about Morgan’s abysmal love life and Lissa’s childish dramatics. I stopped believing in all of the characters very quickly. I ceased caring. I continued reading to see whether anything could spark my interest. Sadly it did not improve.

Overall Kill Me Twice failed to entertain me. It was weak. It was dull. I was not gripped by anything, except the need to put the book down. It felt more like a soap opera, than a thriller. I will not be continuing to read this series.

 

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Incidious Intent – Val McDermid (Tony Hill and Carol Jordan #10)

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Insidious Intent was published on 24 August 2017 by Little, Brown Book Group and is available to buy here

‘Murdered people don’t kill themselves . . .’

A quiet night on a country road. The stillness shattered by a car engulfed in flames, and a burned body discovered in the driver’s seat. As the investigation unfolds, DCI Carol Jordan and psychological profiler Tony Hill quickly realise that this is more than just a tragic accident. And so begins the hunt for a truly terrifying killer, someone who believes he is invisible, untraceable and untouchable.

As other victims are found to have met the same terrible fate, and with more women at risk, Tony and Carol are drawn into a dark and twisted web of fear and revenge that will force them to question their own ideas of justice . . .

Discover the pulse-pounding new novel from the inimitable queen of crime and number one bestseller, Val McDermid, featuring two of the most iconic and unforgettable characters in crime fiction: Tony Hill and Carol Jordan

Previously in the series: Splinter The Silence

My thoughts

After a massive wait, we finally have a new Hill and Jordan story. Thank you, Val McDermid! Insidious Intent is the tenth in this northern crime series, following on from Splinter The Silence (2015).

This is not a series, you can just randomly pick up. We see real character and long term plot development. You learn to love them. Carol Jordan has been through the mill. She turned to drink to cope with the Job and with life. She lost her brother and sister in law to a killer. Her borderline will they won’t they relationship with Hill has brought her back from the brink. Thankfully McDermid returns Carol back into the policing fold, with her lovely set of close work colleagues. Yes we have them all back; Stacey and Paula included. Tony Hill, profiler and much mixed up bloke, is now living with Carol. Hill is happily sharing the same space as Carol and taking care of her. This is a relationship, of a sort. Without the exchange of bodily fluids.

Carol is back in charge running ReMIT, a regional Major Incident Team. The body of a woman is found in a burnt out car, in the middle of no-where Yorkshire. This is the first case for Carol’s new squad. They look into the death of Kathryn McCormick. There are few clues, apart from the fact that Kathryn was murdered. It seems impossible. How did Kathryn, a very average office manager, fall into the clutches of a forensically aware killer? It is only when a Leeds woman is discovered in similar circumstances that things start to move on the case.

Insidious Intent reminded me a little of Love You Dead (2016) by Peter James. Both do a great deal for the wedding and marriage industry. Anyway that was my first thought. McDermid’s killer is one who is seeking revenge, by proxy. He cannot trace the woman he really wants to kill. This has left him furious, with deadly intent. I rather like him. He is clever. He is confident.

This case is one of those that you know the real police probably have all the time. The seemingly impossible one. Luck is not on their side. They just need a break. The killer needs to make one mistake. One tiny error to put him into the path of Carol, Tony and the gang. As a reader, you are on tenterhooks waiting for this to happen…

Insidious Intent was truly excellent. Val McDermid never disappoints. Recommended.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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