Please Don’t Leave Me Here is described on the back cover as "a riveting psychological thriller". This is a big call for Melbourne-based writer TaniaPlease Don’t Leave Me Here is described on the back cover as "a riveting psychological thriller". This is a big call for Melbourne-based writer Tania Chandler's debut novel, but for the most part it falls well short of what that line leads us to believe. Things start of in seemingly happy times for the main protagonist named Brigitte. She is married to a cop and is the mother of twins, life seemingly could not be sweeter. That will change though when Brigitte discovers that a cold murder case that she is at the centre of is being reopened.
Brigitte claims to have no recollection on what happened on the Friday before Christmas in 1994. On that day she she was mowed down by a hit-and-run driver while at her apartment a man is found beaten to death. The officer who comes to her aid Sam, will look after her and will soon make her his wife. Now all these years later it seems the past is doing it's best to ensure she can not hide from it. Looking into Brigitte's past we see she had a stormy relationship with the man who ends up dead. Eric treats her like dirt but would that be enough for her to snap and will the truth ever be revealed?
What sounds on paper to be an intriguing plot disappointingly finds itself bogged down by scatterbrained twists that descend into awkward attempts at horror. The descriptions of Kurt Cobain also are bizarre and confusingly threaded with the question of why are they even there coming up constantly. The biggest dissatisfaction for me being that even though the book tackled big issues such as drug abuse, domestic violence, grieving and police misconduct, the story nosedive's into farce so quickly, it just can't be taken seriously....more
I must say that Thrillers/crime novels and I have had a good run this year. Other than the odd disappointment (I'm looking at you Second Life), it seeI must say that Thrillers/crime novels and I have had a good run this year. Other than the odd disappointment (I'm looking at you Second Life), it seems the genre's have shrugged off the all mighty Gone Girl shadow and have returned to intrigue and creativity as there forte. This i am glad to say is something that continues with A time to Run.
When police officer, Samantha Willis makes the fateful decision to visit a friend and go out partying after having a row with her long time boyfriend Gavin, little does she know the danger she is putting herself in. After going out to a club, Sammi, mindful of having to get home and be back for work the next day heads out early. She will accept a lift from a barman she had met earlier at the club and then will not be seen for days.
When Gavin notices Sammi has not made it home he starts to get worried, and even more so when she doesn't answer any of his calls. After reporting her disappearance to the police, things become serious when she fails to report for her midday shift. Detective Janine Postlewaite is handed the case, with the only clue being the CCTV footage of Sammi entering the Ute of one of the club's Barmen, Donald Black. It is soon discovered he has a history of violence and has been a suspect in the murder of a number of missing local women. Despite a lack of evidence, Janine will stop at nothing to not only capture her man, but also find Sammi who will call on her experience as a cop to survive while being hunted by a madman.
I will say this is quality police procedural. The authors expertise as a police officer is there for all to see in what is a taut and heart thumping story that will keep you reading, non stop. Featuring two superb female protagonists in the determined, Janine who is superb as someone who's only thought is finding Sammi who despite her predicament refuses to just give in and will make the twisted Don work harder than he could ever imagine. With fascinating insights into what is involved with investigating missing people and a believable story line, J.M. Peace's debut novel comes highly recommended for anyone who is after a short and sweet crime read. ...more
On paper this book sounded like a really intriguing read. Sadly though it disappointed on so many levels and left me feeling confused by what i read.On paper this book sounded like a really intriguing read. Sadly though it disappointed on so many levels and left me feeling confused by what i read. Based loosely on the 1991 Austin yogurt shop murders, See How Small tells the story of three teenage girls who are murdered and there bodies discovered in the burn't remains of an Ice Cream store. After this though is when things gets totally bogged down and disjointed as the story goes from one character to another without any real hint of coming together. Moreover, the writing is not that impressive, with basic prose that is hindered by a scattershot approach that denies any resemblance of a smooth continuous narrative. With even the ending leaving me shaking my head, i can honestly say i was glad this was a short read as i would of been hard pressed to finish if it was any longer. Unless you like books to be random and fragmented then i simply can not recommend this one....more
Adamsville, Alabama is the sought place where not much happens. Part of America's Bible belt, the town loves Christianity and it's Junior football teaAdamsville, Alabama is the sought place where not much happens. Part of America's Bible belt, the town loves Christianity and it's Junior football teams. It's a place that likes to prides itself on it's moral and community spirit, but will be shown to be a bunch of hypocrites after the arrival of an outsider and a terrible tragedy forces it to look deep inside it's soul.
When Carolyn Lessing and her mother move to the town from New Jersey the kids at the local high school are fascinated. To the narrators of the story, three girls (known as we) who are not popular or uncool, she is someone who demands attention. Not only is she strikingly beautiful, she is also confident, highly intelligent and wastes no time in getting in with the cool kids.
For a while everything seems great for Carolyn with plenty of friends and is seemingly the epitome of cool. That will change though when she makes the fatal mistake of dating a senior called Shane, much to the disgust of on and off again girlfriend Brooke. Carolyn will see her world slowly dissolve as her former friends turn on her with bullying that started of so reflexively that it could easily be missed, but in the end evolves into something much more serious until the appalling and inevitable conclusion.
This is a book that made me angry while i was reading. Not with anything in terms of the writing, that was first class. What did anger me was the characters, both teens and adults. While the behaviour of the teenagers was simply unforgivable and the narrators, who shamefully looked on and did not speak up, the teachers and parents who did not intervene made me beyond furious. The fact that not one person who was seeing this unfold stood up and said "enough's enough" was just mind blowing. Bullying is a scourge that has evolved over time and is shown in all it's horrid details in what is a powerful and provocative read that will unsettle the reader. ...more
Jan Elizabeth Watson's debut novel shows us what happens when an isolated world is forced to meet head on with the outside one. Seven-year-old Asta HeJan Elizabeth Watson's debut novel shows us what happens when an isolated world is forced to meet head on with the outside one. Seven-year-old Asta Hewitt grows up in Bond Brook, Maine, with her bookish older brother Orion and her not with it mother. The only existence she has ever known is in the wall's of her house, with her mother filling her with stories of plague-ravaged wasteland waiting outside their door. Asta is content to be filled with this and make believe reality of religion and old time movie stars.
Asta's little world will slowly implode when her mother mysteriously does not return from her job one day and fearing for her, she and her brother will go out searching. What they find is not bodies piling up from the plague but a far more inviting world then what they could ever imagine. But when they are discovered by locals it is clear that they have been mistreated and after hospital stays, will be coerced into a scary world of elementary schools and being kept apart in separate homes. Asta will struggle to come to terms with the fact that the life created for by her mother was a lie as she tries to hold on to her families fractured past.
In an odd sought of way Asta in the Wings could be described as a much darker and less whimsical Lost & Found. Asta for one is a fascinating character, highly intelligent but someone badly effected by her upbringing. Narrated through her eyes, the story is one big eye - popping trip into reality. Combining dark and eerie passages with subtle humour, this is a skilfully written and beautiful book that explores mental illness and it's effects on young inquisitive minds. ...more
For a book that relies heavily on the theme of drowning, this quirky and unusual story is far from depressing as we look through family history and aFor a book that relies heavily on the theme of drowning, this quirky and unusual story is far from depressing as we look through family history and a curse that continues through the ages. Soon to be redundant library archivist Simon Watson is intrigued when a journal arrives on his doorstep. It appears to document the happenings of a travelling carnival in the 18th century. When he notices descriptions of long gone female relatives in it's pages Simon want's to find out more.
What he will find is highly disturbing, with all the women in his family dying of drowning on the same date, July 24th. With his younger sister Enola, a carnival performer herself, the question hangs as with the date soon coming up, is her life in danger? If there is a curse on his family then how can it be broken and what is the connection with the man who sen't the journal in the first place?
Dominated by a musty old book and a centuries-old curse that it seems is stalking a family of mermaids and circus freaks, Swyler's debut novel for the most part impresses. There is the occasional hints of coincidence that can cause the story to bog down and one of the characters that seems a bit out of place, but other than that is an enjoyable read. Featuring tarot cards, historical fiction and literary mystery, The Book of Speculation is well worth a read....more
To the outside world, Dr David Galbraith, a child psychologist is a pillar of the community. His hard work had seen him earn the respect of his peersTo the outside world, Dr David Galbraith, a child psychologist is a pillar of the community. His hard work had seen him earn the respect of his peers and with a kindly bedside manner, it seemed inconceivable that he was hiding an evil secret. All of this was a facade for what Galbraith really was, a true minanthrope - a man who positively despised his fellow human beings. Not only does he confidently boast that he had broken his wife but thinks nothing of abusing and even killing children in his care and has gotten away with it for decades.
Galbraith longs for a new fantasy and finds it in Anthony Mailer. His family are oblivious to the danger they are putting there son in when they make an appointment after being referred to by the family GP. Anthony, who is struggling after the breakup of his parents, clearly needs help, but after the first visit, Galbraith has made up his mind up on what he wants to do and will stop at nothing to make it happen. With the net closing in on Galbraith, the police will need to fight there way through a code of silence from perpetrators, unreliable witnesses and the realization that any wasted time could be disastrous for Anthony.
This was one of the most chilling books i have read for a long time. The character of Dr David Galbraith for one, is pure evil itself. Told through his point of view it makes for unsettling reading as we enter the sick and perverted world of a deformed character, devoid of any emotion or empathy for others. We also get an insight into the battles that child services and police have to go through, in there attempts to save children from abuse that can lead to terrible consequences later in life. If you like your psychological thrillers on the darker side than i can't recommend this brilliant debut enough. ...more
A mother and her child on holidays in Spain. A young man in the same holiday resort, a terrible incident and misunderstanding that will tear two familA mother and her child on holidays in Spain. A young man in the same holiday resort, a terrible incident and misunderstanding that will tear two families apart.
Catherine Ravenscroft has a seemingly happy life. Married to Robert, with a young adult son and a successful film-maker, she is content with how things are going. But when Catherine discovers an unfamiliar book at her bedside entitled, The Perfect Stranger she is shocked by what is written. The book will force her to relive an unspeakable moment in her life from 20 years ago that she hoped would be forgotten forever. Catherine is desperate to find out not only how the book came into being in her house but also who wrote about something that supposedly only she and one other person who is now dead knew about.
On the other side of the coin, we have Stephen Brigstocke who has had his world destroyed after the death of his young son Johnathon and wife, Nancy. After going through her belongings he will come across a manuscript that detail's a secret from a women he has never met, Catherine. Worse will come when he finds pictures taken by his son that will connect the two families and convince Stephen that his sons passing is because of this women. What will follow is a roller coaster ride of twists and turns as Catherine's life slowly implodes until the inevitable collision course when it is clear things are not as clear cut as they seem.
As a self confessed fan of psychological thrillers i can honestly say this one can bat with the best of them. Combining beautiful and emotional writing with an intriguing storyline that will keep you guessing makes for an absorbing read. Throw in engaging characters in Catherine and Stephen, that you can't help but be drawn to with the sadness of there pasts and the tragedy that is the present they now encounter makes for a truly hard hitting family drama that will leave you thinking well after you have read the final page. ...more
She may be one crazy individual, but Deanna Madden is also super sexy, bad-ass, brave, smart and totally unforgettable and for that i am glad to haveShe may be one crazy individual, but Deanna Madden is also super sexy, bad-ass, brave, smart and totally unforgettable and for that i am glad to have her back. This time around Deanna is seemingly in a very good place, maintaining her online persona and with a loving and patient boyfriend, things are on the up. Jeremy is just what she needs to pacify the urges to kill that have dominated her thoughts for years.
What she does not need though is the attention of prolific rapist and abuser Marcus, who is a man used to getting what he wants. After getting out of prison he wants nothing more than a new victim to ease his appetite and while under house arrest discovers our reclusive heroine. Marcus has made his mind up that Deanna will be his next victim with Jeremy to be taken care of before hand. With the use of brutal intimidation against her online mask Mike, the scene is set for a collision course. What Marcus does not know though is far from being innocent and petite, Deanna is not the sought of person you mess with.
For anyone who read The Girl In 6E who think they know what to expect than think again. If anything everything has been turned up a notch in a story that does not shy away from the shocking in the most awesome way imaginable. Deanna for one her usual psychotic and sexy teasing self with the surprise of the more human element of love. Justin is also superbly created as the easygoing, charming and loyal person who is just what Deanna needs, while Marcus is a full on nutcase and is up there with the most scariest characters i have ever come across in fiction. Throw in writing that effortlessly combines hot and steamy passages with edge of your seat mind screwing and you have a wonderful story for anyone who enjoys erotic thrillers. ...more
My initial impression of this book after reading the blurb was that it would be an intense thriller. While this premise did not materialize, what i goMy initial impression of this book after reading the blurb was that it would be an intense thriller. While this premise did not materialize, what i got was an intriguing take on the whole 'girl goes missing' theme. The story goes of 8 year old Carmel Wakeford, who goes missing from her mother, Beth, at a local children's festival. Carmel would be taken by a man who claims to be her grandfather. He will tell her that her mother had a terrible accident and her father who does not live with her mother, does not wish to look after.
With the man who claims to be her gramps, his girlfriend Dorothy and her two twin girls, Carmel refuses to believe she will not be reunited with her mother until she is told of her demise. In the following weeks, it becomes clear to the highly intelligent Carmel that her gramps believes she has a special gift and that she is a spiritual saviour. Over the months and years to come she will taken to many places to heal people while using the power of Christ. She will find it hard to keep perspective on who she really is and what she will become in the future.
Her mother on the other hand will go through her own personal hell not knowing what has happened to her little girl. With the help of her ex husband Paul and his new partner, she will try and move on with her life while never giving up the hope that one day she and her daughter will be back together. With a new job and car, Beth knows that it is for the best and with the police updates proving themselves to be one false hope after another and as the months turn into years she can only hope for a miracle.
I think this book would be stretching it to be called a thriller. What it does provide is fascinating insight into the relationship between a mother and a daughter during lengthy separation. there is strong feelings of love, faith, hope and connections. I also find it interesting that although Carmel was not physically or sexually abused she was ill-treated by having religious overtures and responsibility forced on her and being denied the maternal love of her mother. Featuring believable and compelling characters that complement a well written and highly engaging story, The Girl in the Red Coat is well worth a read for anyone who enjoys unique and original reads.
Best known for her engrossing psychological crime novels, Honey Brown's latest release in many ways is a big right hand turn from them previous books.Best known for her engrossing psychological crime novels, Honey Brown's latest release in many ways is a big right hand turn from them previous books. Thankfully though it still bears all the authors intelligent and engaging writing that has made her a favorite for many a reader.
At it's core Six Degrees is, a book about sexual attraction in all it's forms. Fear not this is not a Fifty Shades or sappy romance, but instead is a clever look at burning desire and attraction through it's diverse cast of characters. The narrative of the short stories is tied together by an accidental death that connects all the characters and allows Brown to explore a range of different relationships, from first love to the unresolved slow burn of an affair.
Each chapter is erotic and passionate in it's study of attraction, but far from being cliched the characters are real and distorted in their responses, while the stories, apart from being slightly predictable makes for a fun and rewarding read. Sexy enough to keep you warm through even the coldest Winter night with passages that are first class in there delivery, this racy and invigorating read comes highly recommended....more