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boudicca

alwaysbooks

I have always loved books ever since I learnt to read. The sort of person who would look at an instruction manual if there were nothing else available. Not that that has happened too often - I have tottering piles of books not to mention e books. I will read almost anything as l long as it holds my interest. Besides books. I love music, photography, cryptic crosswords and playing Fitz 1 & 2 games.
The Good Sister: A twisty, dark psychological thriller that will have you gripped - Jess Ryder

Josie is happily living with her boyfriend until her eccentric father dies mysteriously and then her life begins to unravel alarmingly by what she discovers. Her "perfect" father wasn't so perfect after all. Well this was a page turner and a half and I kept reading it long after I should have turned the light off! Josie was naive though and a bit of a ditherer, the sort of character you want to shout at and shake. Loved the ending too - what a twist. A great cover too - enticing and I would definitely pick it up for a closer look. A book which definitely lives up to its description.

The Romford Pelé: It's Only Ray Parlour's Autobiography - Ray Parlour

Three and a half star rating.
A must for any football fan, especially Arsenal supporters. Not a huge star, but a vital part of the team nonetheless. Interesting, funny and entertaining, hearing what it’s like to be a footballer in a major team - the highs and lows, the japes, the camaraderie. I enjoyed this biography, getting a peek into a different world and being reminded of the great players from those days.

Silent Lies: A gripping psychological thriller with a shocking twist - Kathryn Croft

Five years after Mia’s husband Zach kills himself and one of his students, Josie disappears without trace, someone turns up to tell Mia something completely different. Told from both Josie and Mia’s perspectives. The reader is led through an emotional rollercoaster - who is telling the truth about that night 5 years ago and why has Alison turned up? What does she want? What does she know? So forget the TV and grab this book for sheer escapism and prepare to be mesmerised by the deviousness of some of the characters! Do hope there will be a follow up.

Cold Blood: A gripping serial killer thriller that will take your breath away (Detective Erika Foster Book 5) - Robert Bryndza

Three and a half star rating.
Murder, violence and stroppy police which means it’s another thrilling ride with DCI Erika Foster! The villains are just as evil and Foster is still a bolshy maverick, doing things her way, but just for once it would be nice if she had a little bit of happiness in her life - the poor woman is permanently miserable! Also I prefer not knowing who the villain/s are until the end as it makes it a more exciting story that way. Loved the Dartmoor setting for part of the book - nice to escape from good old London sometimes. Looking forward to the next adventure, with hopefully a happier heroine!

Copycat - Alex Lake

Keep a close eye on your Facebook account, something Sarah should have done, because it was too late by the time she discovered the second profile with identical pictures and details. Ben, lawyer and Sarah, dr, plus three children are living the dream until sinister things start happening. Despite realising who it was from the start I still loved this story. Sarah’s bewilderment as she tries to convince people “it wasn’t me” and trying to work out who it was and Ben struggling to believe her with so much evidence to the contrary was gripping. The lengths some people will go to get what they want is remarkable! A follow up would work well with this book.

The Break - Marian Keyes

What do you do when your husband, out of the blue, announces that he is taking a 6 month break from his life with freedom to go where he wants and do what he wants? This is Amy’s dilemma. I would have really liked this book, but it was way, way too long, so much so that anything and everything to do with work, the mother plus other inessential characters I just skimmed over or missed out entirely otherwise I would never have got through it all! Hugh was a drip and I didn’t take to him at all and man magnet Amy was annoying to say the least. There weren’t any surprises or “didn’t see that coming” moments. This would be perfect for those readers who enjoy LONG chick-lit books.

The Long Drop - Denise Mina

Two and a half star rating.
Bleak and chilling, based on a real individual, Peter Manuel, dubbed Scotland’s first serial killer. Not a nice man at all and most of the other people in this book weren’t particularly pleasant either. The start of this story is like being thrust into a conversation which began long before you arrived - confusing, trying to make sense of it all, so it helps to already be familiar with this appalling man before starting. I found this a bit hard going and struggled to get through it. Good descriptions of 1950’s Glasgow which gave a realistic feel of those days.

In a Cottage In a Wood: The gripping new psychological thriller from the bestselling author of The Woman Next Door - Cass Green

A chance meeting on Waterloo Bridge, London brings Neve a new start, but when she gets to Cornwall things don't exactly go to plan. Started off really liking this but less so in the middle and end. Neve was so annoying ALL the time! She just wades in with no thought to the consequences, she was selfish and inconsiderate and I didn't care for her at all - kept hoping she would be bumped off and quickly! The author has an engaging style of writing, making the book very easy to get into, so I would definitely read more of her books. An excellent stocking filler.

The Coffin Path: 'The perfect ghost story' - Katherine Clements

Gothic 17th century ghost story set high up on the Yorkshire moors. Mercy Booth is content with her life, mistress of Scarcross Hall, assisting her father, and being a shepherdess but all that changes when she suddenly senses great danger, that something is watching and chasing her as she rushes home one evening. Shortly after an enigmatic stranger turns up - who is he and what does he want? A chilly, atmospheric story, best read when the light is fading and then the imagination can run riot! I loved the very descriptive scenes and could see how hard life must have been in those days - not just the hard work but they were living in superstitious times. Some very creepy moments but wish there had been more of those and less about sheep and all their doings!

The Art of Hiding - Amanda Prowse

Three and a half star rating.
On the day Aimee is meant to be getting married, she is at a funeral - her fiancés. Various things happen to make her wonder what really happened but instead of reacting instantly, she sits and ponders, starts a new cafe, meets other people. This makes her quite annoying and so are her interfering friends. There’s a lot of pathos and loss especially at the start when the funeral is being held in the church she should have been married in. Loved the idea of this story which was engaging and also loved the ending too. It’s an appetite whetter for other books by this author.

[Claire Douglas] Last Seen Alive (Paperback)【2017】by Claire Douglas (Author) [1837] - Claire Douglas

Three and a half rating.
A dodgy house swap, slightly problematic marriage, strange goings on and plenty of twists and turns along the way. Someone has got it in for Libby and Jaime, but who and why? This pair are meant to be intelligent but are so naive. It’s as if they shared the same one brain cell the way they carried on most of the time! There’s a lot of nasty, selfish characters in this book and only the dog is truly likeable. The ending comes as a bit of an anticlimax. There are some edge of your seat moments, it’s fast moving and there are some great descriptions of Bath, Cornwall and Thailand. I did like the writing style and the cover.

The Postcard: Escape to Cornwall with the Perfect Summer Holiday Read - Fern Britton

Two and a half star rating.
Secrets, sisters and Cornwall - what's not to like, but sadly it was a bit of a disappointment and didn't live up to its promise. The characters were either awful or sickly sweet and I didn't warm or care what happened to them plus apart from the use of mobile phones you would think this story was set decades ago. The Cornish descriptions were good and you could almost smell the ozone, so this might be a good book to read if you are lounging on a beach somewhere.

I Am Missing: David Raker, Book 8 - Joe Coen, Tim Weaver, Louise Brealey, Penguin Books

David Raker, a Private Investigator, is intrigued when a personable young man approaches him for help - he is the "Lost Man" who,was found on a beach with a head injury and now has no idea of who or what he is. Enter our hero who gets himself involved in quite a few "how's he going to get out of that" situations with the villains always on the hunt for him. I did enjoy this book but felt it could have been a bit shorter. There was plenty going on to keep the reader gripped and interested as the mystery is solved. This is my first experience with David Raker and liked him enough to read his other exploits with different adversaries.

The Marriage Pact: A Novel - Michelle Richmond

Two and a half star rating.
Alice and Jake, a couple of newly weds sign “The Pact” as they thought it would be a bit of harmless fun. It turns out to be a mysterious, sinister group with rules, regulations and punishment if anyone transgresses. The description and start drew me in initially but there were too many details about irrelevant things which interrupted the flow and spoilt what would have been a cracking story. It was an excellent idea and normally this is exactly what I like to read, but sadly I’m just a bit ambivalent about it.

The Woman in the Wood - Lesley Pearse

Maisy and Duncan are teenage twins brought up by a cold father and are sent to live with their even colder, aloof grandmother who lives in the New Forest. Their own mother is unable to look after them as she isn’t well and has also been sent away. During their explorations they come across Grace, the woman in the wood, who is treated like an outcast and she does not welcome visitors, preferring her own company - until someone goes missing. This is a lovely, heartwarming story of friendship, loyalty, deceit, romance and menace with a great feel for the 1960’s period it is set in. A wonderful “warm the cockles of your heart” book which leaves the reader wanting more!

The Pool House: Someone Lied. Someone Died. - Tasmina Perry

Nat and Jem move to New York when he is offered his dream job - sounds perfect, but is it? They become friends with a group of very rich people who spend their weekends in the exclusive, upmarket Hamptons where there is a mystery concerning Alice, one of the previous weekenders. Jem makes it her mission to find out what happened. This was a very easy to read story which flowed along nicely as the reader discovers the murky doings of the jet set. Although it was easy to see how it would all pan out, it didn't detract at all from the book. Loved the New York/Hamptons descriptions and the cover too. Exactly the type of book to accompany a holiday!