Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week in Books (May 31)

This Week In Books
Hosted by Lipsy Lost & Found my Wednesday post gives you a taste of what I am reading this week. A similar meme is run by Taking on a World of Words

My current read is What Remains Behind by Dorothy Fowler which I first saw mentioned on the brilliant blog Confessions of a Mystery Novelist… run by the knowledgeable Margot Kinberg, if you haven’t visited yet, I highly recommend it for the wealth of information.

Blurb

Everything leaves a trace. Chloe, a contract archaeologist, is excavating the site of a religious Kaipara Harbour community, which burnt to the ground in the 1880s. As the site is uncovered, what unpalatable truths will be revealed about the events on the night of the fire?

Chloe’s own family has farmed this land, and she is caught in the conflict as local resistance to the excavation mounts. When Chloe digs up more than shards of pottery, she realises that the site holds secrets that will not stay buried, and their effect on the present is devastating.

Moving between a diary written in the 1880s and the current day, this compelling novel has murder, mystery, love, lust – and archaeology. Goodreads

I have just finished reading Love Like Blood by Mark Billingham which is the fourteenth in the Tom Thorne series.

Blurb


A BLOODY MESSAGE

As DI Nicola Tanner investigates what appears to be a series of organised killings, her partner Susan is brutally murdered, leaving the detective bereft, and vengeful.
A POWERFUL ALLY
Taken off the case, Tanner enlists the help of DI Tom Thorne to pursue a pair of ruthless killers and the broker handing out the deadly contracts.
A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE
As the killers target their latest victim, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career and is drawn into a horrifying and disturbing world in which families will do anything to protect their honour. Amazon

Next up is a book that I have been anticipating ever since I first heard about it; The Child by Fiona Barton will be published on 29 June 2017.



Blurb

When a paragraph in an evening newspaper reveals a decades-old tragedy, most readers barely give it a glance. But for three strangers it’s impossible to ignore.

For one woman, it’s a reminder of the worst thing that ever happened to her.

For another, it reveals the dangerous possibility that her darkest secret is about to be discovered.

And for the third, a journalist, it’s the first clue in a hunt to uncover the truth.

The Child’s story will be told. Amazon

Posted in Weekly Posts

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph (May 30)

First Chapter

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.

My first paragraph this week comes from Blood Sisters by Jane Corry the author of the very successful My Husband’s Wife.

Blurb

Two women. Two versions of the truth.

Kitty lives in a care home. She can’t speak properly, and she has no memory of the accident that put her here. At least that’s the story she’s sticking to.

Art teacher Alison looks fine on the surface. But the surface is a lie. When a job in a prison comes up she decides to take it – this is her chance to finally make things right.

But someone is watching Kitty and Alison.

Someone who wants revenge for what happened that sunny morning in May.

And only another life will do…

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph ~ Intro

September 2016

Alison

Careful. It’s not the size that counts. It’s the sharpness. And the angle. The blade must sing. Not scratch.
I hold the piece of blue glass up to the window light. It’s the same colour as the type you occasionally see in bottles lining old fashioned pharmacies. A clean cut. No sharp bits that need trimming, which is always tricky. So easy to get splinters of glass in your skin or on your clothes.
Or in your mind.

I am intrigued by this one not least because my daughter has already read my copy of this book and highly recommends it so, despite the fact I haven’t got a clue what’s going on with the glass, I can’t wait to read this one for myself.

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

All the Good Things – Clare Fisher

Contemporary Fiction
4*s

Bethany Mitchell is in prison for doing a ‘bad thing’, what that is isn’t revealed until close to the end of the book. Erika, Beth’s counsellor in prison asks her to record the good things in an attempt to get her to ultimately confront what she has done.

I started All the Good Things with an open-mind; what I didn’t expect was how hard the experience hit me.
Bethany is just twenty-one but her life was already an exercise in surviving from her earliest memories. And this is exactly what we learn as her good things are lessons she’s learnt, or people she’s bonded with as she makes her uncertain way through the care system. This isn’t a straightforward account of misery though as Bethany has experiences that I’m sure many of us can relate to from her first job at the Odeon, and those that many of us have been lucky enough to avoid such as being removed from her first foster home where she formed a bond with her foster-father Paul over her love of stories, however outlandish.

One of the things that is so compelling is that this girl who obviously has difficulty, however justified, in personal relationships is utterly realistic. She loves stories, she likes excitement and she lives in the moment. Beth is intelligent and troubled and with each episode of her life I wanted to step in and do something, quite what I wasn’t sure, but to let such a life travel in such a wayward manner was very much like watching a slow motioned car crash, ‘the bad thing’ or some other ‘bad thing’ felt the inevitable outcome.

The construction of the novel which has us simultaneously reaching back pretty much chronologically, through the episodes in Bethany’s life, as a child at school, with her boyfriends, leaving care and moving into her first flat and onto a relationship where she felt like she’d reached adulthood. We also see her growing in confidence as she is helped by Erika to make sense of her past and to hopefully work towards making a better future.

The book is almost a textbook lesson on life on one level that doing a bad thing does not make someone a bad person, on another when life is full of unhappy events, even if you have some good moments that can go on the list then sometimes one event leads to another and then to another until they become overwhelming.

Some items on Bethany’s list:

Friends you can be weird with.

How cats find the sun to lie in even on a cloudy day.

Reading books which make me laugh and books which make me cry and books which make me feel a bit more OK about who and where and what I am.

Ultimately Clare Fisher has hit the holy grail in writing about such a sensitive subject, not only making us care about her mixed-up protagonist from a less than easy starting point but doing so without explicitly excusing any of her behaviour. Only the hardest of hearts could read this story without feeling sympathy for more than one of the characters inside the covers.

I’d like to say a huge thank you to Penguin who kindly sent me a copy of All The Good Things ahead of publication on 1 June 2017.

First Published UK: 1 June 2017
Publisher: Penguin
No of Pages: 240
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Posted in Weekly Posts

Weekly Wrap Up (May 28)

Weekly Wrap Up

Well this has been one hectic week in a year that seems to becoming ever more frantic. My day job has been incredibly busy with increasing amount of different tasks being heaped on an already busy schedule. My daughter and her husband have been living with us for a couple of months now as they are in the process of buying a place. It’s been lovely and I’m sure we are going to find life very quiet when they leave but the logistics of who’s in and out each day for dinner, who likes what and which programme we will all watch on TV etc. is an aspect of life that I had thought had passed. My evenings are no longer spent quietly reading and blogging but listening to work stories, debating subjects far and wide before any book or blog gets a look in.

My partner’s daughter and her boyfriend have also arrived this week for a holiday and so today we’ve spent the day catching up on all their news, eating and drinking and deciding which tunes we’d take to our desert island. With the group being of varied ages I was surprised at how many tracks we all had in common.

So I do hope you’ll forgive me for my tardy responses while life has been so busy I have appreciated your comments and my own little corner in blogland more than ever.

On a last personal note – look how big my sunflower is now!!!

 

This Week on the Blog

My week started with a review of Go To Sleep by Helen Walsh a sad tale of the early days of motherhood and post-natal depression.

My excerpt post this week featured Love Like Blood by Mark Billingham , the fourteenth in the Tom Thorne series.

This Week in Books featured the authors; Clare Fisher, Sam Blake and Laura Barnett.

On Thursday I posted my review of The Stranger by Saskia Sarginson a book inspired by disasters that involved migrants. A book that made me think whilst still entertaining me.

My final review of the week was of In Deep Water by Sam Blake, the second in the Cat Connolly series set in Ireland featuring a tough boxing champion as the chief protagonist. In this book Cat is investigating the disappearance of her best friend Sarah Jane.

This Time Last Year…

I was reading Daisy in Chains by Sharon Bolton an absolutely stunning read populated by a whole book full of the most memorable characters ever. Sandra Wolfe invites Maggie Rose, Lawyer and true-crime writer who has managed to free seven other convicted criminals to help her but Maggie just isn’t sure that this is a case she can win but she agrees to meet the group.

Click here to read my full review or click on the book cover

Blurb

Famous killers have fan clubs.

Hamish Wolfe is charming, magnetic and very persuasive. Famed for his good looks, he receives adoring letters every day from his countless admirers. He’s also a convicted murderer, facing life in prison.

Who would join such a club?

Maggie Rosie is a successful lawyer and true-crime author. Reclusive and enigmatic, she only takes on cases she can win.

Hamish is convinced that Maggie can change his fate. Maggie is determined not to get involved. She thinks she’s immune to the charms of such a man. But maybe not this time . . .

Would you? Amazon

Stacking the Shelves

No sooner had I proclaimed the lowest TBR of 2017 last week than the postman got busy and bought me some stunning new books.

First up I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Yesterday by Felicia Yap which will be published on 10 August 2017 by Wildfire.

Blurb

There are two types of people in the world. Those who can only remember yesterday, and those who can also recall the day before.

You have just one lifeline to the past: your diary. Each night, you write down the things that matter. Each morning, your diary tells you where you were, who you loved and what you did.
Today, the police are at your door. They say that the body of your husband’s mistress has been found in the River Cam. They think your husband killed her two days ago.

Can you trust the police? Can you trust your husband? Can you trust yourself? Amazon

I also have a beautiful copy of Seven Days in May by Kim Izzo which will be published on 15 June 2017 by HarperCollins Publishers.

Blurb

As the First World War rages in continental Europe, two New York heiresses, Sydney and Brooke Sinclair, are due to set sail for England. Brooke is engaged to marry impoverished aristocrat Edward Thorpe-Tracey, the future Lord Northbrook, in the wedding of the social calendar.

Sydney has other adventures in mind; she is drawn to the burgeoning suffragette movement, which is a constant source of embarrassment to her proper sister. As international tempers flare, the German embassy releases a warning that any ships making the Atlantic crossing are at risk. Undaunted, Sydney and Brooke board the Lusitania for the seven-day voyage with Edward, not knowing that disaster lies ahead.

In London, Isabel Nelson, a young woman grateful to have escaped her blemished reputation in Oxford, has found employment at the British Admiralty in the mysterious Room 40. While she begins as a secretary, it isn’t long before her skills in codes and cyphers are called on, and she learns a devastating truth and the true cost of war.

As the days of the voyage pass, these four lives collide in a struggle for survival as the Lusitania meets its deadly fate. Amazon

I bought myself a copy of Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski because it was offered at the bargain price of 99p and I’d read so many good things about this novel story construction.

Blurb

1997. Scarclaw Fell. The body of teenager Tom Jeffries is found at an outward bound centre. Verdict? Misadventure. But not everyone is convinced. And the truth of what happened in the beautiful but eerie fell is locked in the memories of the tight-knit group of friends who embarked on that fateful trip, and the flimsy testimony of those living nearby.

2017. Enter elusive investigative journalist Scott King, whose podcast examinations of complicated cases have rivalled the success of Serial, with his concealed identity making him a cult internet figure. In a series of six interviews, King attempts to work out how the dynamics of a group of idle teenagers conspired with the sinister legends surrounding the fell to result in Jeffries’ mysterious death. And who’s to blame …

As every interview unveils a new revelation, you’ll be forced to work out for yourself how Tom Jeffries died, and who is telling the truth. A chilling, unpredictable and startling thriller, Six Stories is also a classic murder mystery with a modern twist, and a devastating ending. Amazon

And I couldn’t resist requesting a copy of Tom Bale’s latest book Each Little Lie from NetGalley. Again this was entirely down to the fabulous reviews I’ve read of this author’s previous books in the blogosphere. Each Little Lie will be published on 29 June 2017 by Bookouture.

Blurb

One split second can destroy your life forever

Single mother Jen Cornish is just trying to hold things together for the sake of her seven-year-old son Charlie. Until the day when she does an impulsive good deed to help a neighbour, setting off a terrifying chain of events that quickly spirals out of control…

When she is arrested for a crime she didn’t commit, Jen quickly starts to wonder if someone is playing a cruel game with her – or is she losing her mind?

Desperate to clear her name with the police, she must first untangle a chilling web of lies. But someone is watching her every move – and it isn’t just Jen who is in danger.

They’re watching her child as well. NetGalley

So do let me know what you’ve all found to read this week?

Those of you who read the slurs on the internet about me being a book hater will hopefully be reassured by the following TBR announcement – Please don’t believe the fake news being peddled in the dirtiest book blogger campaign ever witnessed but if a campaign of books and chocolate win the popular vote, I want to be inside FFLand’s wall of books!

tbr-watch

Since my last post I’ve read just 2 books and gained 4.

The current total is therefore 183 –
Physical Books – 107
Kindle Books – 62
NetGalley Books – 14

Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

In Deep Water – Sam Blake

Crime Fiction
4*s

I do like it when despite being part of a series, the author takes an entirely different scenario for their subsequent book. Yes we have Cat Connolly, a boxer, feisty and willing to do what she thinks is right in her role in Garda Síochána, but rather than a crime that spanned generations which we had in Little Bones, In Deep Water focus is on a crime which is very much of the present when journalist, Cat’s best friend and training partner Sarah Jane Hansen goes missing.

The first inkling that all is not well is when Sarah Jane fails to make a training session with Cat and her coach and doesn’t answer her phone. When Cat takes a call from Sarah Jane’s mother saying that she’s worried and her husband Ted Hansen, a reporter for CNN currently on location had warned her off a story, it isn’t long before Cat formally reports her friend as a missing person.

One of the pleasures of reading series is that the successful ones develop the key characters by adding layers to what has already been gleaned; Sam Blake has fully achieved this brief as by the very nature of having Cat investigate the disappearance of her friend, we get to see more of her vulnerabilities. After the investigation in the first book we have more of an insight into her relationship with her boss, DI Dawson O’ Rourke, a man who has become more protective of her following the mental and physical scars that resulted from their previous investigation. This interplay is entirely convincing, a bonus as I do like to feel that what I read in crime fiction is realistic. Fortunately despite the horrifying end to the last book, it soon becomes clear that Cat, despite her struggle to regain her previous fitness levels, was her desire to be a profiler within Garda Síochána and so she is studying as well as training and working. I have to be honest Cat’s schedule exhausted me just reading about it.

Sam Blake doesn’t neglect the secondary characters either, each one was well-drawn and yet distinct and pleasingly quite diverse while avoiding the easy short-hand clichés. We meet the highly successful business men and women, the coach with his own battle scars, a young boy with autism and some young women who are living a life I simply didn’t want to imagine.

There is no doubt that this was a superbly well-researched novel, a proper police procedural with the aspects of the investigation qualified with plenty of explanations which only rarely impinged on the flow of the storyline.
In Deep Water steps into the darker areas of crime, giving the book a real edgy feel helped along by plenty of action. This is one scary ride as the team retrace Sarah Jane’s last known movements, a journey that takes in the seedier aspects of life, one that if dwelt upon could be very depressing. Fortunately with many strands of storyline to juggle there is no time to dwell as this accomplished author pulls the strands skilfully together.

I’d like to thank the publishers Bonnier Zaffre for allowing me to read a review copy of In Deep Water and for Sam Blake for writing such an enjoyable read. This review is my unbiased thanks to them.

First Published UK: 6 April 2017
Publisher: Bonnier Zaffre
No of Pages: 416
Genre: Crime Fiction – Series
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

The Stranger – Saskia Sarginson

Contemporary Fiction
4*s

A small town complete with a tea room is the setting of this nuanced tale by Saskia Sarginson. This is not the obvious psychological thriller with never-ending surprises that I was expecting, but unsurprisingly given the previous two books I’ve read by this author; The Other Me and The Twins, there is undeniable tension and that sense of needing to know what happens next.

Eleanor Rathmell is the owner of the aforementioned tea room, she also keeps an assortment of animals at her home which she shares with her husband William. All is good in her life, except the secret she has kept all her married life. With few cares in her world, Ellie’s life is turned upside down when she witnesses a horrific car crash, an accident that to her horror she discovers results in William’s death. Worse is to come as she finds evidence that she wasn’t the only one with a secret.

What starts as a fairly standard secrets and lies premise quickly morphs into a fairly issue-led novel about migrants. I was delighted to find although the author had clearly done her research, this not being a ‘shouty’ book from a soapbox, she hadn’t forgotten that we, her readers, want to be entertained. I can’t deny the social commentary on an issue that is far more complex than either side of the debate can sometimes appear to be willing to understand. The migrants featured in The Stranger work on a local farm working for David, a rich farmer with two grown-up children. The local’s mistrust of these migrants could seem at odds with the fundraiser they run for the refugees of the Syrian disaster. When a Romanian moves into Ellie’s garage to help out with jobs on the smallholding strange things begin to happen and there are no shortage of people willing to warn Ellie about the mistake she is making. Ellie has to decide whether the stranger she has welcomed is behind the acts or is someone trying to remove him from the scene.

From that short taster you can see that the plot lines of a widow struggling to comprehend the loss of her husband coupled with the secrets she has uncovered seem at total odds with the local issues of migrants but all of this is neatly tied in, often revolving around the tea room where everyday life continues and Ellie gets her life back onto some sort of track with the help of her assistant Kate. Inevitably there is some romance to sweeten the darker aspects of the storyline which emerge gradually and with great restraint as the book progresses.

The characters are distinct and the dialogue convincing which combined with the measured writing creates a subtle tension when life in the village begins to unravel and Ellie is left unsure who she can trust. The final outcome all the more shocking for the way the author plays the build-up straight down the line.

Although this wasn’t quite the book I was expecting to read I found it to be both an entertaining and thought-provoking read.

I’d like to thank Little Brown for providing me with a copy of The Stranger. This unbiased review is my thanks to them.

First Published UK: 8 September 2016
Publisher: Piatkus
No of Pages: 384
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week in Books (May 24)

This Week In Books
Hosted by Lipsy Lost & Found my Wednesday post gives you a taste of what I am reading this week. A similar meme is run by Taking on a World of Words

My current read is All The Good Things by Clare Fisher which will be published on 1 June 2017 by Penguin.

Blurb

Twenty-one year old Beth is in prison. The thing she did is so bad she doesn’t deserve ever to feel good again.
But her counsellor, Erika, won’t give up on her. She asks Beth to make a list of all the good things in her life.

So Beth starts to write down her story, from sharing silences with Foster Dad No. 1, to flirting in the Odeon on Orange Wednesdays, to the very first time she sniffed her baby’s head.

But at the end of her story, Beth must confront the bad thing.

What is the truth hiding behind her crime? And does anyone – even a 100% bad person – deserve a chance to be good? Amazon

I have recently finished In Deep Water which is the second in the Cathy Connolly series set in Dublin by Sam Blake. Little BonesA real thriller of a read, it was great to catch up with Cathy Connolly after her first outing in

Blurb

Good intentions can be deadly . . .

Cat Connolly is back at work. Struggling to adjust to the physical and mental scars, her workload once again becomes personal when her best friend Sarah Jane, daughter of a Pulitzer-winning American journalist, goes missing.
Her father is uncontactable, but her mother reports that he’d believed Sarah Jane was investigating something dangerous – yet the only records Cathy can find suggest that Sarah Jane was just involved in a seemingly innocent children’s project. Sarah Jane was last seen leaving her workplace – a popular Dublin restaurant – but seems not to have made it home. And then a body turns up, and Cathy fears they have failed to save her friend.

But when it transpires that the dead woman is not Sarah Jane, she realises that this case is only just getting started . . . In the world of missing persons, every second counts, but with the clock ticking can Cathy find Sarah Jane before it’s too late? NetGalley

Next I plan to read Greatest Hits by Laura Barnett who wrote one of my favourite reads of last year, The Versions of Us. Greatest Hits will be published on 15 June 2017 by Orion.

Blurb

One day. Sixteen songs. The soundtrack of a lifetime…

Alone in her studio, Cass Wheeler is taking a journey back into her past. After a silence of ten years, the singer-songwriter is picking the sixteen tracks that have defined her – sixteen key moments in her life – for a uniquely personal Greatest Hits album.

In the course of this one day, both ordinary and extraordinary, the story of Cass’s life emerges – a story of highs and lows, of music, friendship and ambition, of great love and great loss. But what prompted her to retreat all those years ago, and is there a way for her to make peace with her past?

Daughter. Mother. Singer. Lover. What are the memories that mean the most? NetGalley

So what are you reading this week? Have you read any of these choices? Do you want to?

Posted in Weekly Posts

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph (May 23)

First Chapter

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.

My first paragraph this week comes from Love Like Blood by Mark Billingham which is the fourteenth in the Tom Thorne series and will be published on 1 June 2017.

Blurb

A BLOODY MESSAGE
As DI Nicola Tanner investigates what appears to be a series of organised killings, her partner Susan is brutally murdered, leaving the detective bereft, and vengeful.
A POWERFUL ALLY
Taken off the case, Tanner enlists the help of DI Tom Thorne to pursue a pair of ruthless killers and the broker handing out the deadly contracts.
A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE
As the killers target their latest victim, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career and is drawn into a horrifying and disturbing world in which families will do anything to protect their honour. Amazon

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph ~ Intro

One

The conversation stopped as soon as the woman they had come for arrived.
They watched Nicola Tanner’s car slow, stop, then reverse expertly into a parking space a few houses down from her own. They watched the woman get out and retrieve something from the boot. They held their breath as she locked the car with a remote and began walking towards her house; saw her lit for a second or two as she passed beneath a streetlamp.

‘Good, she’s got bags.’
‘Why is that good?’
‘She’s got her hands full. She’ll be distracted.’
‘OK.’
Their whispered breaths were briefly visible, eyes on the woman as she stepped to avoid a slick of leaves on the pavement and hitched her shoulder bag a little higher.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I don’t know about you but I have a feeling the whisperers are up to no good!

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Posted in Book Review, Books I have read, Mount TBR 2017

Go To Sleep – Helen Walsh

Contemporary Fiction
3*s

Well… this is quite a difficult review to write because this read made for quite uncomfortable reading even though it is now over a quarter of a century since I had my first child but here goes!

Rachel is looking forward to giving birth to her first child. She’s probably not quite ok with being a single mother but she’s prepared, or so she thinks. She’s bonded with her bump and looking forward to welcoming her child into the world complete with a doting grandfather and his second wife. Ok, being the product of a one night stand isn’t ideal but having weighed up the odds, she’s decided not to inform the father who has a chance of a new life away from Liverpool.

In these early chapters we learn more about the baby’s father who she first met as a teenager. Reuben was black and Rachel believes that this was why her father didn’t like him, you see this is a book that is as much about Rachel’s life before a baby, as after and as the book roll on, this is something I appreciated more and more. This background gives the reader real context to her struggle with life after Joe is born.

Before Joe is born, Rachel works as a support worker for truanting children supporting them helpfully back to school or if not into alternative training so she’s no pushover, but has a life dealing with truculent teenagers prepared her for life with a helpless baby? This beginning showing a woman passionate about her work coupled with a splash of jealousy about the woman who is standing in for her during her maternity leave, gives us a great insight into Rachel’s character and what she feels is important in life. Rarely do we hear about the doubts a woman has stepping away from the workplace in such an honest way and better still the points made are done with subtlety.

Labour begins, in fits and starts and Rachel contacts the hospital, she’s turned away, she’s not far enough gone to be admitted. So we got to this bit and my long-buried memories surfaced…
I take out my mobile, ring the hospital. The voice that greets me tries to be reassuring but never gets beyond dismissive:

How far apart? You’ve had how many?

Suffice to say labour isn’t as Rachel imagined and then baby doesn’t sleep. The language fits perfectly with the frustration she feels with the gap between what she imagined life would be like, and the reality.

Evening. The lights turned down low, the ward calm and ordered, all the babies washed and fed and winded, all of them ready for sleep; all except Joe. Joe fights it, struggles, bleats. Unable, unwilling to settle, champing on my chafed and throbbing chest, he writhes and burns  and gets angrier and angrier. I am so tired now – desperately achingly tired.

This is an incredibly brave book to write, far from the sentimental picture usually portrayed of early motherhood. Life with a child that doesn’t sleep can be like hell on earth. I remember one awful night when I threatened to throw my daughter out of the window, words said in pure frustration and I hasten to add, not acted upon, but it is tough to be in charge of an infant in the dead of night who won’t be consoled. The author accurately portrays this and although I was horrified at some of Rachel’s actions as she was clearly suffering with postnatal depression as well as exhaustion, my judgement was tempered.

I’m glad I read this book long after the event, and perhaps this book should be given out to young women who believe that a baby will fit into their lives like a beautiful accessory but then, nothing can quite prepare you, so perhaps those of us can read with a wry smile, is the best audience after all.

Go to Sleep was my fifteenth read in my Mount TBR Challenge 2017, so I’m still on target to hit 36 books purchased before 1 January 2017, this one having been bought in April 2015 so fits the bill!

mount-tbr-2017

 

 

 

First Published UK: 2011
Publisher: Cannongate Books
No of Pages:  320
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Amazon UK
Amazon US

 

Posted in Weekly Posts

Weekly Wrap Up (May 21)

Weekly Wrap Up

I must start with an apology this week for my lack of comments and interaction on social media caused by a cyst below my eye – very uncomfortable and caused my face to swell into something quite horrific looking, and worst of all I could only see through one eye for a while.

Onto happier things – the week before Easter I planted seeds for three sunflowers, three tomato plants and two pepper plants and I’ve had success, in fact huge success for me as I’m the least green-fingered person on the planet – I have one sunflower and it’s growing like crazy.

I was absolutely delighted and honoured to be nominated for the Best Book Blog Award in the Annual Bloggers Bash Award, thank you to whoever nominated me! Voting is now open until 2 June 2017 at 12pm.

This Week on the Blog

Well my week started late due to the blog tour for Need You Dead by Peter James running last Sunday.

On Tuesday my excerpt post was from The Stranger by Saskia Sarginson, which tells the tale of a newly widowed woman living in a small community when a stranger appears…

My This Week in Books post featured the authors C.L. Taylor, Helen McGowan and Helen Walsh

My first review of the week was for Ruth Rendell’s Monster in the Box bringing my total of books read and reviewed for the Mount TBR Challenge 2017 to 14 out of 36 – bang on target.

This was followed by my review for Blood Tide by Claire McGowan, a dark story set on a small island inhabited by people wary of the outside world, not helpful when there are two people missing from the lighthouse! This series set in the fictional Ballyterrin, Ireland just keeps getting better!

Finally I posted my review of The Escape by C.L. Taylor, a thrilling psychological thriller which coincidentally also has its best scenes set in Ireland had masses of action to keep my fully entertained.

This Time Last Year…

I was reading Love You Dead by Peter James, the twelfth in the Roy Grace series set in Brighton. In this book one strand of the story arc which had been going since book one came to an end and I feared Roy Grace would be no more but thankfully that hasn’t been the case and the thirteenth book is out now! In case you hadn’t already guessed, I love this series.

You can click on the book cover for my full review or read it here

Blurb

An ugly duckling as a child, Jodie Bentley had two dreams in life – to be beautiful and rich. She’s achieved the first, with a little help from a plastic surgeon, and now she’s working hard on the second. Her philosophy on money is simple: you can either earn it or marry it. Marrying is easy, it’s getting rid of the husband afterwards that’s harder, that takes real skill. But hey, practice makes perfect . . .

Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is feeling the pressure from his superiors, his previous case is still giving him sleepless nights, there have been major developments with his missing wife Sandy, and an old adversary is back. But worse than all of this, he now believes a Black Widow is operating in his city. One with a venomous mind . . . and venomous skills. Soon Grace comes to the frightening realization that he may have underestimated just how dangerous this lady is.
Love You Dead is the gripping twelfth book in Peter James’ Roy Grace series. Amazon

There are no entries for Stacking the Shelves this week!

That’s right no new books in any format have made it into the house this week.

So do let me know what you’ve all found – after all I may run out of good books to read!

tbr-watch

Since my last post I’ve read 4 books and gained 0.

The current total is therefore 181 – the lowest total of 2017
Physical Books – 106
Kindle Books – 61
NetGalley Books – 14