Posted in Book Review, Books I have read, Five Star Reads

In Too Deep – Bea Davenport

Psychological Thriller 5*s
Psychological Thriller

This is one of those compulsive reads that draws you in from the start. In a small market town there is a man, his wife and their young daughter. The man is keen to make his mark and how do you do that in a small town? You join the annual fair committee of course and make it the most successful one to date. How do you do that? Well you invite the journalists into your town, hype the obvious big pull, the dunking stall, no matter if it’s sexist in that only the women of the town are dunked, and you dress up in costume get the townsfolk to man their stalls and this being England, pray for fine weather.

Maura Wood is happy tending to her daughter Rosie’s needs and keeping house for Nick, well mostly happy, perhaps happier when he is out organising for the fair, but happy enough, that is until Kim a sassy journalist comes to town and opens Maura’s eyes to the possibility of life as a more independent woman, one who has more to think about than what to cook for dinner. The question everyone is asking, including Maura, is why is Kim so attentive to dowdy Maura? All of this was five years ago so what on earth happened in the meantime so that when we meet Maura she is living a life in London, not Dowerby, without her daughter and in the shadows working two jobs that pay cash in hand to avoid being found.

Well the root has to be in Dowerby, where the status quo rules, not just on the committee but in the minds of its traditional-minded inhabitants. When Nick and Maura move, far from being taken into the bosom of the community as Nick has been, but then this is where he came from, Maura isn’t quite ostracized but neither is she invited to join the other women so when Kim turns up and is interested in her life, Maura is predisposed to welcome a friend into her life, even if that friend is going to cause waves in Dowerby!

This is a clever story which unveils a chain of events, seemingly started so innocently, with a coffee and a chat, but ends up changing the course of Maura’s life forever so much so that she is extremely scared when she realises someone is onto her. On the anonymous streets of North London she hears someone mention her name, notes are posted through her door; who is this man and what does he want from her?

I thoroughly enjoyed this, the characters were well-drawn with the back-stories just enough developed to ensure that their actions were suitably aligned while the sense of small-town life was perfectly portrayed. This is a book that covers big issues but I’m relieved to say in an entertaining fashion which meant that rather than being dwelt upon or glossed over the effects remain long after the last page has been turned.

Having read this author’s second book This Little Piggy, Bea Davenport is certainly an author I will be looking out for in the future.

Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week In Books (March 16)

This Week In Books

Hosted by Lypsyy 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

I am currently reading Shot Through The Heart by Isabelle Grey which is absolutely gripping!

Shot through the heart

You can read the synopsis and an excerpt from this one in yesterday’s post

Before that my book of detection was of a more personal level with The People in the Photo by Hélène Gestern

The People in the Photo


The chance discovery of a newspaper image from 1971 sets two people on the path to learning the disturbing truth about their parents’ pasts.
Parisian archivist Hélène takes out a newspaper advert calling for information about her mother, who died when she was three, and the two men pictured with her in a photograph taken at a tennis tournament at Interlaken in 1971. Stéphane, a Swiss biologist living in Kent, responds: his father is one of the people in the photo. Letters and more photos pass between them as they embark on a journey to uncover the truth their parents kept from them. But will the relics of the past fill the silences left by the players?
Winner of fifteen literary awards, this dark yet touching drama deftly explores the themes of blame and forgiveness, identity and love.
Hélène Gestern lives and works in Nancy, France. The People in the Photo is her first novel.NetGalley

Next I plan to read one of the books that has been languishing on my kindle for far too long; In Too Deep by Bea Davenport has been sitting patiently since 21 July 2013.

In Too Deep


‘… The window’s so small I can’t see what happens next. But what I do know is that Kim is dead. And I know this, too that I helped to kill her. Kim, my lovely, only, best friend.’
Five years ago Maura fled life in Dowerby and took on a new identity, desperately trying to piece her life back together and escape the dark clouds that plagued her past. But then a reporter tracks her down, and persuades her to tell her story, putting her own life in danger once again.
Layer upon layer of violence and deceit make up the full picture for Maura to see and the reporter to reveal. Hidden secrets are uncovered that have been left to settle, for far too long. But in life some things can’t be left unsaid, and eventually the truth will out. Whatever the consequences. Goodreads

So that’s my week in books – what are you reading?