In Bloom – C. J. Skuse (Sweetpea #2)


In Bloom is published on 9 August 2018 by HQ and is available to buy here

Darkly comic crime sequel to Sweetpea, following girl-next-door serial killer Rhiannon as she’s now caught between the urge to kill and her unborn baby stopping her.

If only they knew the real truth. It should be my face on those front pages. My headlines. I did those things, not him. I just want to stand on that doorstep and scream it: IT WAS ME. ME. ME. ME. ME!

Rhiannon Lewis has successfully fooled the world and framed her cheating fiancé Craig for the depraved and bloody killing spree she committed. She should be ecstatic that she’s free.

Except for one small problem. She’s pregnant with her ex lover’s child. The ex-lover she only recently chopped up and buried in her in-laws garden. And as much as Rhiannon wants to continue making her way through her kill lists, a small voice inside is trying to make her stop.

But can a killer’s urges ever really be curbed?

My glowing review of Sweetpea

Sweetpea – book 1


My thoughts

In Bloom should be available on the NHS. Laughter medicine. It is dark and comic. Wildly wicked and clever. It will make you scream with laughter.

C J Skuse gave us the best ever adventure of a female serial killer in Sweetpea. We were introduced to Rhiannon an unforgettable young woman, with a few dark secrets up her sleeve. We are so lucky to have a sequel, that unexpectedly is even better than the original. Sweetpea was wonderful and perfect. In Bloom is that little bit more wonderful.

Rhiannon is a serial killer. She aces murder, like she has a GCSE in it. She only kills people who deserve it. She has morals, of a sort. The really evil ones in society are her prey. She has managed to get away with it so far. The story follows directly on from Sweetpea. Now life has become complicated for our anti-hero. Rhiannon is expecting her ex’s baby. She has a fresh dead body to dispose of. One police officer is progressively very interested in her. She is facing up horrible hormone explosions, the awful mummy brigade, getting fatter and a baby foetus with attitude. Can Rhiannon continue to escape justice? Can she still kill, with a gobby baby inside her? Can she stop writing lists of people she wants to murder? Mm mmm, you really want to find out.

C J Skuse is a genius. Sweetpea and In Bloom are two of the funniest books I have ever read. Skuse hits the right comic notes, with dark disturbing accuracy time and time again. Rhiannon is a dream of a character. The plot was incredible. A serial killer who tries to reform, with some success. I love Rhiannon so much. Probably wouldn’t want to meet her on a dark night. Or befriend her on one of her Christian road trips. Nope I would stay well clear of our lovely serial killer.

My advice (in the style of Rhiannon’s kill lists)

  1. Read In Bloom. If you haven’t read Sweetpea, get hold of a copy as soon as you can. You don’t want to miss this series. Hint to the author – more Rhiannon please.
  2. Forget walking the dog, eating, working or all the other boring stuff you do.  Reading is more important. Start it now. No excuses.
  3. Laugh. Laugh some more. Try not to make too many people stare at you, by snorting with laughter.
  4. Start making your own kill list (or maybe not…)

Highly recommended








About Northern Crime

Reviewer with a mind of her own. This is a collection of book reviews, which started in 2014. Mostly crime and odd other genres thrown in. Some I loved. Some I loathed. You get the picture.
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