Monday, 11 December 2017

Ragdoll

Ragdoll by Daniel Cole
Published by Trapeze Books
October 2017




A body is discovered with the dismembered parts of six victims stitched together, nicknamed by the press as the 'Ragdoll'. Assigned to the shocking case are Detective William 'Wolf' Fawkes, recently reinstated to the London Met, and his former partner Detective Emily Baxter.
The 'Ragdoll Killer' taunts the police by releasing a list of names to the media, and the dates on which he intends to murder them. With six people to save, can Fawkes and Baxter catch a killer when the world is watching their every move?

I saw this on a shelf in a bookshop and decided that it sounded right up my reading street, and I was right!  Ragdoll is a great crime thriller and I'm avidly looking forward to the next book which is due out next year.  Anyway I digress, back to this book....!
A body is discovered hanging in the window of a high rise apartment block in the middle of London.  On investigation it appears that the body has been constructed out of a number of body parts all from different victims - 6 in fact, but who are they?  More chillingly one of the hands has a finger that is pointing toward an apartment in the opposite tower; that flat belongs to Detective William Fawkes - is this a message from the killer aimed directly at Fawkes?
Alongside identifying the victims, the killer also has a list of other people he is going to kill and when he plans to do this.  Fawkes has this information, as too does his newsreporter ex-wife Andrea and now thanks to her, so do the public.  It is up to Fawkes and his team to find these individuals before the killer gets to them first.
This was a real page-turner and I thoroughly enjoyed it, right up to its dramatic climax.  What's more, at the time of publishing this, Amazon have it for sale on their kindle books for a mere 99p so what are you waiting for?!

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

The House

The House by Simon Lelic
Published by Penguin
November 2017


Londoners Jack and Syd moved into the house a year ago. It seemed like their dream home: tons of space, the perfect location, and a friendly owner who wanted a young couple to have it.
So when they made a grisly discovery in the attic, Jack and Syd chose to ignore it. That was a mistake.
Because someone has just been murdered outside their back door.
AND NOW THE POLICE ARE WATCHING THEM.

This is the first novel I've read by author Simon Lelic but as it was recommended by the Radio 2 Book Club and was super cheap for the kindle edition (99p at the time of typing this) I decided what harm could it do to download it and add it to my never ending tbr pile!  As it should so happen, it didn't stay on the pile for very long, and I read it in just two sittings.  For me it seemed to be a book of two halves, I felt the first half of the book was tense and quite spooky but not some much the second half.  This might be deliberate or just the way that I read it but as I put the book down on the Saturday evening I felt a little creeped out, but not at all on Sunday morning when I began to re-read it.
We have two main human characters, boyfriend and girlfriend Jack and Sydney who, as luck may have it, have just managed to purchase a house in the middle of London!  Now you may be a bit judgemental at this point and when you learn about their background think 'now how is this even possible?' but stay with it because all will be revealed at a later point in the tale.
The house - for this is a character in it's own right, is quite frankly spooky from the offset and I certainly wouldn't have been putting an offer in on it if I'm honest with you, however I am neither Jack nor Syd who decided to put in a cheeky bid only to find that it has been accepted by the overseas owner so now they have to move into the building complete with all of the contents that have been left behind.
And so things continue.... Jack makes a creepy discovery in the attic (but it kind of gets brushed aside), things go bump in the night and Syd meets the girl from opposite who has a dead mother and an abusive father in her life.  They both get involved with young Elsie and this is where the story takes a turn for the worst because her father is soon discovered murdered in the alleyway at the end of their garden and Jack's driving licence has been found nearby, but was he responsible?
The book is written in the first person, with each chapter being written by either Jack or Syd which doesn't exactly make them reliable authors.  I like the way the book ended though, I like a good twist to my thrillers.  Whilst this might have some flaws within it, if I'm being picky, it's not a bad thriller to spend your time or money on.

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

The Hanging Girl

The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook
Published by Hot Key Books
October 2017


Two girls, one fatal reading . . . because the truth always lies in the cards

Skye's mother believes she has 'the gift' - the ability to see the future. Skye however can only see the opportunity to make money - and happily fleeces her gullible classmates into handing over their cash to hear their futures through Skye's well-worn tarot cards. But it's all for a good cause, right? Skye needs to save her hard-earned cash to go to New York with her best mate Drew. 

Then the local mayor's daughter, Paige, disappears - and Skye has a tip off about her whereabouts. Skye is uncomfortable about the source and masks the tip off as a vision. 

But things get wildly out of control when Paige is found murdered and Skye is a prime suspect . . .

Anyone who knows me knows I have a love for tarot, so when this book appeared on my radar I knew that I had to read it!  It's set in an American high school and features two best friends Skye and Drew.  They are nearing graduation and all both girls have dreamt of is of moving to New York together.  However Skye has forgotten to mention to Drew that she hasn't actually saved the money to be able to afford to go, and even her tarot card readings for her friends at school isn't going to bring in enough cash to help her out.  Then an offer comes her way following the disappearance of the mayor's daughter and she finds it hard to say no to the money that is offered to her.  All she has to do is tell the police that she has had a vision about classmate Paige and her abduction.  

Suddenly Skye is headline news, and her mother is delighted as she has always claimed that she too has been able to 'see things' and aims to help the police with their enquiries.  As the book progresses however, we soon learn that all is not how it initially seems and that Skye may have got involved with something that is soon going to get wildly out of hand.

I did enjoy this book.  It had a few good twists and turns and an ending that I didn't expect.  I'll certainly look out for more books by this author.

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Final Girls

Final Girls by Riley Sager
Published by Ebury Press
July 2017


FIRST THERE WERE THREE

The media calls them the Final Girls – Quincy, Sam, Lisa – the infamous group that no one wants to be part of. The sole survivors of three separate killing sprees, they are linked by their shared trauma.

THEN THERE WERE TWO

But when Lisa dies in mysterious circumstances and Sam shows up unannounced on her doorstep, Quincy must admit that she doesn’t really know anything about the other Final Girls. Can she trust them? Or...

CAN THERE ONLY EVER BE ONE?

All Quincy knows is one thing: she is next.

There was a lot of hype surrounding Final Girls when it came out in the summer.  I missed out on getting a review copy so had to buy it as soon as I could to see what all the fuss was about.  I have to admit, the hype is real; I really enjoyed this debut novel by Riley Sager.

The basis is that there are three women in America, all totally unrelated to each other but they have one thing in common.  Each was part of a mass murder and each was the only surviving victim in each situation.  They have been labelled as the 'final girls' by the media.  The first of these women is Lisa, and then she is found dead in her bathtub.  Just before she died she sent an email to Quincy asking her to get in touch with her - Quincy does not.  Then Samantha turns up on Quincy's doorstep and suddenly the two meet for the first time.  Quincy prefers not to think about her past life at all, but with Lisa's death and Sam's insistence that she relive the horrors of that night in the woods, the past seems to be coming back to haunt her.  There is only one person she can rely on to help her through this journey, and that's cop Coop, the man who rescued her at Pine Lodge all those years ago.

Yes there may be some unlikely twists and turns in the narrative, but come on, it's fiction for goodness sake, it's not real life and do you know what, this book has a decent ending.  I didn't work out 'whodunnit and I thought the ending was pretty much perfect - and anyone who knows me, or follows this blog knows I can't stand a weak thriller ending (Gone GirI - I rest my case!). Go get this and spend a few hours immersed in a gripping story.

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x 

Friday, 27 October 2017

Mirror Mirror

Mirror Mirror by Cara Delevingne & Rowan Coleman
Published by Trapeze
October 1017



FRIEND. LOVER. VICTIM. TRAITOR.
WHEN YOU LOOK IN THE MIRROR, WHAT DO YOU SEE?
Sixteen-year-old friends Red, Leo, Rose, and Naomi are misfits; still figuring out who they are and who they want to be. Life isn't perfect, but music unites them, and they're excited about what the future holds for their band, Mirror, Mirror. That is until Naomi vanishes before being pulled unconscious out of the river.
She's left fighting for her life in a coma. The police claim it was a failed suicide attempt, but her friends aren't convinced. Will Naomi ever wake? What -­ or perhaps who - led her to that hospital bed? How did her friends fail to spot the warning signs?
While Rose turns to wild partying and Leo is shrouded by black moods, Red sets out to uncover the truth. It's a journey that will cause Red's world to crack, exposing the group's darkest secrets. Nothing will ever be the same again, because once a mirror is shattered, it can't be fixed.

Mirror Mirror is the debut novel by top model Cara Delevingne, with some contribution by bestselling author Rowan Coleman.  Obviously I have no idea whether Ms Delevingne wrote the book, came up with the idea, wrote it alongside Ms Coleman but nevertheless they have worked together to produce this YA novel, and it's not half bad.

We meet a group of friends, Red, Leo, Rose and Naomi - misfits in their own ways but united by their love of music and the band that they are in together at school.  Pretty much at the start of the book Naomi disappears - and none of the others have any idea where she has gone.  Her mobile remains unanswered and her family have heard nothing from her at all.  The remaining trio are at a total loss as to where their band mate could have gone to.

When Naomi's body is pulled from the river and is left in a coma, the friends vow to find out what happened to her.  We learn more about the lives of Red, Leo and Rose - all three very different but yet united in their quest to help out Naomi.  When Red notices a mysterious tattoo on Naomi's wrist, the band know that this is something she would never have agreed to - someone has definitely had a part to play in her disappearance!

There are lots of different stories entwined throughout the book, and the twist with Red - nope never saw that coming!  I did work out who the perpetrator was before the big reveal but despite the many a swear word I really enjoyed this book.  Bravo!

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

The Angel

The Angel by Katerina Diamond
Published by Avon
September 2017



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.

Today I'm part of the blog tour for the new thriller from Katerina Diamond.  If you don't know who I'm talking about, where have you been?  This is her third novel featuring detectives Grey and Miles and you can check out my review of her debut The Teacher here.  I'm lucky enough to have been given an extract from the book to whet your appetite, so what are you waiting for?  Read on.....

Imogen knocked on the door of the church and pushed lightly against it. It swung wide open. The building inside looked empty. She had never been a religious person but she found the church quite calming in itself; the well-worn wooden seats, the dancing light from the stained-glass windows, the smell of incense and burning candles. It reminded her of her childhood; her mother was always burning incense and leaving candles lit through the night. It was a miracle there had never been an accident. She thought of her mother, painting by candlelight and she knew that was why she liked churches: they reminded her of her mum, the peaceful mother that would quietly paint in the half-light and not the manic mother that would continually forget to collect her from school.

‘Hello?’ she called out tentatively.

Adrian had no such compunction and walked down the aisle and up towards the altar.

‘Hello?’ His voice echoed hers. Seconds later a door opened to the side of the altar and a priest emerged.

‘I’m Father Berkeley. How can I help you?’

Imogen joined Adrian as the priest approached, they both pulled out their IDs and the priest’s smile got a little tighter.

‘We’re conducting an investigation. We heard that you have a lot of homeless people in and out of here. We just wondered if you had noticed anyone missing recently?’ Imogen said, as Adrian wandered off towards the candle bank, the tiny shine of the tea lights burning away even when no one was there.

‘It doesn’t really work like that,’ Father Berkeley told them politely, clearly already eager for them to leave. ‘People come and people go.’

‘Do you know a man called Bricks?’ Imogen asked him.

‘Yes, Bricks came here sometimes. He was a strange one. I occasionally invite people to eat with me. He came and had dinner a couple of times but I didn’t invite him back a third time.’

‘Why was that?’

‘He was quite unpleasant and made me feel uncomfortable. You know when someone has a darkness about them? I imagine you get something similar in your line of work, like an instinct about people.’

The Angel is out now for you reading pleasure!

Happy Reading

Miss Chapters x

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Good Me Bad Me

Good Me Bad Me by Ali Land
Published by Penguin
August 2017


'NEW NAME. NEW FAMILY. SHINY. NEW. ME.'
Annie's mother is a serial killer. The only way Annie can make it stop is to hand her in to the police. 

With a new foster family and a new name - Milly - she hopes for a fresh start. Now, surely, she can be whoever she wants to be. But as her mother's trial looms, the secrets of Milly's past won't let her sleep . . . 

Because Milly's mother is a serial killer. And blood is thicker than water...

Milly has just arrived at the family home of Mike, Sasha and Phoebe Newmont.  Her mother is awaiting trial on 9 counts of child murder, and Milly (formally known as Annie) is in hiding.  Apart from her foster parents, no one knows who she is or the secrets that she is hiding.  It was tough reading the school scenes between Phoebe and Milly, the bullying, the hatred that seemed to flow towards Milly, and the way that she tried to cope with this.  However it isn't long before you start to wonder about Milly, about how much she knew about her mother's behaviour and what part, if any, she played in the deaths of these children.  She isn't a reliable narrator, as at time there are two voices running through the narrative.  Milly wants to be accepted by Mike and Sasha and when there is a glimmer that she might be about to lose that security again and be moved on, her actions speak louder than words.  Phoebe is right to be suspicious of this girl sharing her home, because there may be more to Milly than meets the eye. 
I didn't find this book as 'thrillerish' as I thought I would to be honest and at one point, Milly thinks her mother has escaped from prison and I thought the book might have been going down a different path, but it didn't pan out that way.  It was a okay read and there were parts of it I really enjoyed  but I think more could have been made of the trial itself and of the crimes committed by her mother, but in the end that isn't where the focus of the book lay; it was to do with Milly herself and maybe there was more there to be revealed?  However, I do disagree that this book is the "new The Girl on the Train" because it isn't; the two books are completely different and there is no comparison between the two.
Happy reading

Miss Chapters x