#BlogBlitz : Andorra Pett & the Oort cloud Cafe by Richard Dee @RichardDockett1 @rararesources

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I am delighted to be sharing my thoughts on this fun cosy mystery book “Andorra Pett and the Oort Cloud Cafe” by Richard Dee. This is available in paperback and eBook format.  My thanks to Richard and also Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my copy of this book.

Synopsis:

Meet Andorra Pett; with her trusty sidekick, she’s taken over a derelict café. On a mining station. It just happens to be orbiting Saturn!
She’s hoping for a fresh start, away from all the drama of her old life. It’s a chance to relax and start again in a place where nobody knows anything about her or her past.

But the café holds a secret, and secrets have a habit of coming out; whether you want them to or not. And being accident prone doesn’t help. The more you try to pretend that you know what’s going on, the worse it gets.
Andorra’s plans for peace and quiet get lost amid the revelations and skullduggery and she soon realises that the fate of the whole station lies in her hapless hands.
In space, you can still trip over your feet; the question is, will you land upright?

My Thoughts:

Andorra and Cyril, (Andi & Cy) decide to relocate to a mining station.  The station is responsible for mining the rocks that make up the rings of Saturn, it has the basics on site that the inhabitants need.  Andi and Cy take over the abandoned “ucky Strike Cafe” (the ‘L’ fell off ).  It’s when they start checking round the premises that they realise it holds a secret, too late to back out now as their customers are arriving.

Oh this is a wonderful cosy mystery.  Andi and Cy have a brilliant dynamic and the author has explored and developed this really well, they are my far my favourite characters.  The others that you meet along the way are in themselves quirky and fun but also there is an underlying feeling of who can be trusted.  Many of them have a secret or two and are not completely honest when confronted about their involvement.  Richard has given really good description of the station, going as far as to explain how it works.  It has a farm, observatory, diner, shops, but he has gone into a bit more detail how the mining and the farm work in unison.  This is not over the top technical detail, but enough that I could follow what he meant.  These sections of the story are a great reminder of the setting and it helps to reinforce that feeling.  The plot was one that had me guessing right through, there are things that caught me by surprise with the red herrings and blind alleys that Richard has expertly lead this reader down.  It has a great amateur sleuthing feel to it with a grand exposing finale that I love.

Described as ‘Agatha Raisin in space’ story, after reading I am in agreement with this statement.  This is a great cosy mystery read with surprising twists, a fun read that I thoroughly enjoyed.  I had a smile on my face when I had finished, a ‘feel good’ read.  This is a book I would highly recommend to other readers.

About the Author:

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A native of Brixham in Devon, Richard Dee’s family left Devon when he was in his teens and settled in Kent. Leaving school at 16 he briefly worked in a supermarket, then went to sea and travelled the world in the Merchant Navy, qualifying as a Master Mariner in 1986. Coming ashore to be with his growing family, he used his sea-going knowledge in several jobs, including Marine Insurance Surveyor and Dockmaster at Tilbury, before becoming a Port Control Officer in Sheerness and then at the Thames Barrier in Woolwich. In 1994 he was head-hunted and offered a job as a Thames Estuary Pilot. In 1999 he transferred to the Thames River Pilots, where he regularly took vessels of all sizes through the Thames Barrier and upriver as far as H.M.S. Belfast and through Tower Bridge. In all, he piloted over 3,500 vessels in a 22-year career with the Port of London Authority. Richard was offered part time working in 2010, which allowed him to return to live in Brixham, where he took up writing and blogging. He retired in 2015, when he set up and ran a successful Organic bakery, supplying local shops and cafés. The urge to write eventually overtook the urge to bake but Richard still makes bread for friends and family. Richard is married with three adult children and two grandchildren.

He can be found  Website ~ Facebook ~ Twitter 

Other Titles by Richard Dee:

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See what other book bloggers think of this book by following the Blog Tour

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Many thanks for reading my post, if you liked it please give it a share.  Or go and get a copy of this fun cosy mystery and let me know what you think 🙂 xx

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#BlogTour : Forget Her Name by Jane Holland @janeholland1 : @rararesources #BookReview

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I am over the moon to sharing my thoughts about “Forget Her Name” by Jane Holland.  It is available to purchase in various formats.  You can grab a copy at Amazon UK.  I wish to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources and Jane for a copy of this book that I received via NetGalley.

Synopsis:

Rachel’s dead and she’s never coming back. Or is she?

As she prepares for her wedding to Dominic, Catherine has never been happier or more excited about her future. But when she receives an anonymous package—a familiar snow globe with a very grisly addition—that happiness is abruptly threatened by secrets from her past.

Her older sister, Rachel, died on a skiing holiday as a child. But Rachel was no angel: she was vicious and highly disturbed, and she made Catherine’s life a misery. Catherine has spent years trying to forget her dead sister’s cruel tricks. Now someone has sent her Rachel’s snow globe—the first in a series of ominous messages…

While Catherine struggles to focus on her new life with Dominic, someone out there seems intent on tormenting her. But who? And why now? She doesn’t have the answers – and in one final question lies her greatest fear.

Is Rachel still alive?

My Thoughts:

What The Hell!!!!! this is a good what the hell by the way.  I was only going to read a few chapters of this book and then crack on with a bit of housework….. yeah right….. read the book and left the housework 🙂 So where to start with this book, Catherine is just weeks away from getting married to Dominic when she starts getting odd things sent to her.  Catherine had an older sister who had died, but then had a snow globe that was her sisters sent to her, this is only the start of things.  Rachel and her death was something that Catherine’s parents never discussed properly with her, but now maybe it is the time for finding out the truth.

This is such a wonderful read.  Half way through I had worked the book out and was just going along for the ride.  Worked it out, well in my head I had, but the author had other ideas about that.  I was so way off the mark, and loved being taken on the journey that had me guessing, kept me riveted and intrigued.  The plot takes you along a road that seems quite normal, but then you realise this is all an illusion, you have actually ended up on a deep, dark and twisted path, the author has you where she wants you right from the off.  The creative and imaginative plot is full of surprises and suspense, Jane only lets you know where the plot is going when she is ready to reveal all.

The characters are memorable and well described and have been used in an imaginative way, they compliment as well as contrast each other.  There are class differences between Catherine and Dominic and the author has dipped into that aspect really well.  The pace of this started along quite nicely as we learn the details of the characters, but before long it speeds to a really great page turner pace.

This is my first experience reading Jane’s books and she has blown me away with this one, it is amazingly twisted and addictive. A powerful, well written book that explores dark psychological drama.

This is a book I Highly Recommend those who like a  tense, suspenseful drama that sows seeds of doubt into the reader.  A clever psychological read that has many good twists and feels very different to other books I have read in this genre.

I wish to express my thanks to Jane and Rachel for my copy of this book and spot on the blog tour.  My thoughts are my own and are unbiased.

About the Author:

doCK7Fd-_bigger  Jane Holland is a Gregory Award-winning poet and novelist. Her first novel KISSING THE PINK, published by Sceptre in 1999, was based on the women’s pro-snooker circuit, where she herself was a champion player, ranked 24th in the world. Since turning from sport to writing, she’s published six collections of poetry and dozens of thrillers, historicals, romances, romcoms, and feel-good fiction with major publishing houses, under various pseudonyms, including Victoria Lamb, Elizabeth Moss, Beth Good, and Hannah Coates.

Her first thriller GIRL NUMBER ONE hit #1 in the UK Kindle store in 2015, catapulting her into a life of crime. Her latest thriller is FORGET HER NAME. She currently lives with her husband and young family in the rural South-West, and enjoys encouraging new writers. You can find her on Twitter 

Photograph credit: Anand Chhabra

Check out reviews from other book bloggers 

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Many thanks for reading my post, if you liked it please give a share.  Better still, go and grab yourself a copy of this amazing book xx

#BookReview : Zenka by Alison Brodie @alisonbrodie2

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I am delighted to be sharing my thoughts on “Zenka” by Alison Brodie. This book is available as an eBook and can be purchased from Amazon UK and Amazon.Com.

Synopsis:

Devious, ruthless, and loyal.

Zenka is a capricious Hungarian with a dark past.

When cranky London mob boss, Jack Murray, saves her life she vows to become his guardian angel – whether he likes it or not. Happily, she now has easy access to pistols, knives and shotguns.

Jack discovers he has a son, Nicholas, a male nurse with a heart of gold. Problem is, Nicholas is a wimp.

Zenka takes charges. Using her feminine wiles and gangland contacts, she will make Nicholas into the sort of son any self-respecting crime boss would be proud of. And she succeeds!

Nicholas transforms from pussycat to mad dog, falls in love with Zenka, and finds out where the bodies are buried – because he buries them. He’s learning fast that sometimes you have to kill, or be killed.

As his life becomes more terrifying, questions have to be asked:

How do you tell a mob boss you don’t want to be his son?

And is Zenka really who she says she is?

My Thoughts:

Jack Murray is a London organised crime gang boss.  Zenka is a Hungarian girl he saved, she know follows Jack everywhere.  She is his self-confessed guardian angel. News reaches Jack that he has a 26-year-old son, Zenka wants to help bring them together.  The son is Nicholas and he couldn’t be more different from Jack. Nicholas is caring, gentle supportive and a nurse, and to be honest a bit of a push over.  Zenka is aware of his character as she has been watching him, so a series of”events” are put in place to “toughen him up”!

Oh I loved this book so much.  A gangland boss with all the criminal elements you want to find in a story like this, a bit of an ugly lovable rogue.  Add into that the gentle nurse and you just know things somewhere along the way are going to go awry.  Then there is Zenka, I loved her character, her mannerisms and attitude. These elemants have been thrust together along with many other events and wrapped into a plot that I adored.  At times a little tongue in cheek, funny and some serious moments. This had me grinning like an idiot one moment, shocked at another and then at the end I had leaky eyes…..what the hell!!!

The characters were a great mish-mash of ratbags and villains, as well as those working legitimately to get on in life.  You will meet Zenka, Jack, Nicholas, Jason and Mrs Blanchflower who have a great range of traits making them memorable. There are others that you will make you own mind up about as you go.  But Zenka was my favourite by far,she comes across as very deadpan and it works at times hilariously, Alison has included letters to Zenka’s friend Alina, these give a little added extra to Zenka and are brilliantly amusing.

This is a story that is full of coincidences, but it has been put together so well that I didn’t care if these coincidences seemed a little too coincidental, they added to the pacing and the humour.

I would recommend this book to readers who like a crime, fiction, mystery that at times is humorous.  It is so well put together that I could not put it down.  I LOVED it and Highly Recommend it, a real corker of a read.

I wish to thank Alison for sending me a copy of Zenka.  My thoughts expressed here are my own and are unbiased.

About the Author:

51qW2E5DznL._SY200_  Alison Brodie is a Scot with French Huguenot ancestors on her mother’s side.
Alison has lived all over the world, including Kansas City, Athens and Basque country.
Her first novel – “Face to Face” – was published by Hodder & Stoughton and became Good Housekeeping’s Pick of the Paperbacks.
Alison has now gone Indie!
“Brake Failure” has 28 five-star reviews from professional book bloggers + “Masterpiece of humor” -Midwest Book Review
“ZENKA” is releasing 6 November, 2017.

Follow Alison on Twitter Website ~

Many thanks for reading my post, if you liked it please give it a share.  Better still, go and buy a copy of this great book xx

 

 

~BookReview : The Fragile Thread of Hope by Pankaj Giri @_PankajGiri

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I am delighted to be sharing “The Fragile Thread of Hope” by Pankaj Giri. Available to purchase in eBook format.

Synopsis:

A gripping emotional inspirational fiction about love, loss, and finding hope in the darkest of times.

In the autumn of 2012, destiny wreaks havoc on two unsuspecting people—Soham and Fiona.

Although his devastating past involving his brother still haunted him, Soham had established a promising career for himself in Bangalore.

After a difficult childhood, Fiona’s fortunes had finally taken a turn for the better. She had married her beloved, and her life was as perfect as she had ever imagined it to be.

But when tragedy strikes them yet again, their fundamentally fragile lives threaten to fall apart.

Can Fiona and Soham overcome their grief?

Will the overwhelming pain destroy their lives?

Seasoned with the flavours of exotic Nepalese traditions and set in the picturesque Indian hill station, Gangtok, The Fragile Thread of Hope explores the themes of spirituality, faith, alcoholism, love, and guilt while navigating the complex maze of family relationships.

Inspirational and heart-wrenchingly intimate, it urges you to wonder—does hope stand a chance in this travesty called life?

My Thoughts:

This is a stunning and also a bit of an emotional roller coaster of a read.  We are taken into the lives and families of Fiona and Soham.  The start of the story is as an accident occurs, then it goes back in time. We meet the two main characters, to each other they are strangers, but we are told of their childhoods, experiences and memories as they progress through their lives.

Yes it’s a story about growing up with a religious and inspirational aspect to it.  I will be the first to admit that this is not something I would actively seek out to read.  But I was asked if I wanted to read this book  by the author, I checked out the reviews and was intrigued by what I read.  Now after reading the story myself, I am so glad I accepted to give this story a chance.

Pankaj has taken the characters and created a story around them, it is beautifully written even though they have experiences and events in their lives that are heartbreaking and indeed does show how fragile life is.  I started the book, a few hours later I had finished it, I cannot say when or where I found myself avidly turning each page, it just happened. It was like being immersed or cocooned in the world that Pankaj had opened up.

Each character suffers personal tragedy in their lives, we experience their desolation, thoughts, emotions and agonies as well as hearing inspirational insights of help and advice from those around them.  The way Pankaj has beautifully written and explained everything is what makes this special and also impossible to leave.

This is a book I think would appeal to readers of literary fiction, with romance, inspiration and religious aspects.  It is a beautifully crafted story that I absolutely loved and would highly recommend.

My thanks go to Pankaj for suggesting this book to me.  My thoughts are my own and are unbiased.

About the Author:

61h2u3csJqL._SY200_ Pankaj Giri was born and brought up in Gangtok, Sikkim—a picturesque hill station in India. He began his writing career in 2015 by co-authoring a book—Friendship Love and Killer Escapades (FLAKE). Learning from experience and the constructive criticism that he got for his first book, he has now written a new novel—The Fragile Thread of Hope, a mainstream literary fiction dealing with love, loss, and family relationships. He is currently working in the government sector in Sikkim. He likes to kill time by listening to progressive metal music and watching cricket.

Book Details:

Many Thanks for reading my post.  If you liked it, please give it a share.  Better still go and buy yourself a copy of this book.

#BookReview : The Book of Dust – Volume One – La Belle Sauvage by Phillip Pullman

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This is a book I have been looking forward to reading for a while now.  I decided it was going to be my New Years Eve read.  Phillip Pullman’s “The Book of Dust” volume #1 La Belle Sauvage, published by Penguin Random House and David Fickling Books.  It is avaialble in a variety of formats,

Book Details:

  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Random House Children’s and David Fickling Books; 01 edition (19 Oct. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385604416
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385604413

Synopsis:

Eleven-year-old Malcolm Polstead and his dæmon, Asta, live with his parents at the Trout Inn near Oxford. Across the River Thames (which Malcolm navigates often using his beloved canoe, a boat by the name of La Belle Sauvage) is the Godstow Priory where the nuns live. Malcolm learns they have a guest with them; a baby by the name of Lyra Belacqua . . .

 

My Thoughts:

It was an absolute delight to be going back to Pullman’s version of Oxford, to a time before His Dark Materials trilogy.  This book begins when Lyra and her daemon Pan are babies and how Malcolm and his daemon Astra meet Lyra and Pan for the first time.

Beginning in Oxford; we meet Malcolm and Astra, he is the son of The Trout Inn owners.  He helps out there and also at the nearby priory of Godstow doing odd jobs and chores for the nuns.  It is also when the authorities start to show themselves. There are several secret organisations that have their own motives and Malcolm is soon caught up in the middle of them.  A surprising the change in the weather leads to some dangerous and surprising twists that will take us on a journey down the Thames.

This is a book that I was eager to read and I wasn’t disappointed.  It was one of those books I knew I was going to love even before I started it.  It starts slowly as the story is set and the various backstories and introductions to the characters are made, then it gradually speeds up as the plot is unravelled and unveiled.  The characters are a real mixed bag of the good, bad and ugly, new characters mingled in with some old ones and the villains are indeed villainous.  Pullman has retained the air of mystery around the intentions of characters, you never know who is to be truly trusted and I love this aspect. The plot has, as you would expect, been very well-developed and has a good amount of twists that I am sure will continue into the next book and beyond.

So did this book live up to my prior expectations? Hell yes and then some, it is Phillip Pullman, it is part of Lyra’s story so what is not to love.  Now comes the agonising wait for the next book 😦

If you have read His Dark Materials you will love this book.  It is a highly recommended read from me xx

I have a hardback copy of this book, I always take off the dust jacket when I read one so I don’t damage it.  Look was hidden underneath it

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About the Author:

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Philip Pullman was born in Norwich on 19th October 1946. The early part of his life was spent travelling all over the world, because his father and then his stepfather were both in the Royal Air Force. He spent part of his childhood in Australia, where he first met the wonders of comics, and grew to love Superman and Batman in particular. From the age of 11, he lived in North Wales, having moved back to Britain. It was a time when children were allowed to roam anywhere, to play in the streets, to wander over the hills, and he took full advantage of it. His English teacher, Miss Enid Jones, was a big influence on him, and he still sends her copies of his books.

After he left school he went to Exeter College, Oxford, to read English. He did a number of odd jobs for a while, and then moved back to Oxford to become a teacher. He taught at various middle schools for twelve years, and then moved to Westminster College, Oxford, to be a part-time lecturer. He taught courses on the Victorian novel and on the folk tale, and also a course examining how words and pictures fit together. He eventually left teaching in order to write full-time.

His first published novel was for adults, but he began writing for children when he was a teacher. Some of his novels were based on plays he wrote for his school pupils, such as The Ruby In The Smoke. He is best known for the award winning His Dark Materials series, consisting of Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.

Many thanks for reading my post.  If you liked it please give it a share, also go and buy yourself a copy of this fabulous book 🙂 xx

#BookReview : Perfect Death by @Helen_Fields : @AvonBooksUK : @NetGalley

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“Perfect Death” by Helen Fields is available for pre-order from Amazon UK  and is due for publication on 25th January 2018.  Published by Avon Books UK.

Synopsis:

There’s no easy way to die…

Unknown to DI Luc Callanach and the newly promoted DCI Ava Turner, a serial killer has Edinburgh firmly in his grip. The killer is taking his victims in the coldest, most calculating way possible – engineering slow and painful deaths by poison, with his victims entirely unaware of the drugs flooding their bloodstream until it’s too late.

But how do you catch a killer who hides in the shadows? A killer whose pleasure comes from watching pain from afar? Faced with their most difficult case yet, Callanach and Turner soon realise they face a seemingly impossible task…

My Thoughts:

Helen has pulled off another brilliantly twisted and intricate plot as we are reunited with Callanach, Turner, Ailsa, Lively and Tripp.  Bringing some events from previous books into this story to give a little more information on the established characters.  The story is set in Edinburgh when the body of a young women is found in the area known as Arthur’s Seat, initially thought to have died from hypothermia.  But from experience of reading Helen’s previous books, it was never going to be as simple as hypothermia.  Other events take place and now as cases build up, the team of investigators are on a non-stop roller-coaster of crimes, reports, lab results and meetings.

This is an absolute cracker of a read, with several plots running at pace with a mingling in of back stories of the characters.  With all these going on Helen has not blurred or befuddled the plots, and at no point while reading was I confused.  Having read previous books, I was already acquainted with the main characters so only had to get to know the new ones.  While going through the story you are never aware of where the story will take you, and there are some very surprising twists.  This is a story that also has a psychological element to it that carries a serious message.

If you have not read Perfect Remains and Perfect Prey I would advise doing so. This book could be read as a stand alone, but you will get a better and more in depth feel for the characters.

This is a book I highly recommend to readers who love a fast paced, multi plot driven, police crime and thriller books. It has brilliant characters, well laid out and written.  Yep. I loved it 🙂

I would like to express my thanks to NetGalley, Avon Books UK and Helen Fields for my eARC of this book.  My views are my own and are unbiased.

Buy Perfect Remains at Amazon UK. Read my review HERE

Buy Perfect Prey  at Amazon UK. Read my review HERE

About the Author:

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A former barrister, Helen now writes a Scottish set crime series – D.I.Callanach and D.I. Ava Turner. Her debut novel Perfect Remains and the second in the series Perfect Prey are Amazon best sellers. Her next book ‘Perfect Death’ is due out on 25 January 2018. She currently commutes between Hampshire, Scotland and California, and lives with her husband and three children.

Follow the author on Twitter or her Website.

Book  Details:

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (25 Jan. 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0008181616
  • ISBN-13: 978-0008181611

Many thanks for reading my post, if you liked it give it a share. 

Or better still, go and buy this book xx