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

Tastes Like Fear – Sarah Hilary

 

Crime Fiction 5*s
Crime Fiction
5*s

I was thrilled to receive a copy of this, the latest in the DI Marnie Rome series, from the publishers Headline as Sarah Hilary really has bought something quite special to a genre which already has plenty of sub-genres. This series is not quite a police procedural, there is far too much detail about the perpetrators and victims thoughts, hopes and fears in her books for that, but nor is a full on psychological thriller, as there is the ever-present police work with its procedures and methodology, although refreshingly, not so much about police politics to fit into that category, but hey wherever these books fit, I love them.

Tastes Like Fear didn’t disappoint in any way at all although I was a little wary when I read the synopsis as the words teenagers and harm jumped out at me, but I needn’t have worried because of course Sarah Hilary has tackled the subject of teenage runaways without resorting to endless descriptions of excessive violence, not that this book is all nicey-nicey, but I really got the feeling that this is a book that will take you behind the headlines, to the reality of life as a teen in the UK (and probably many other places in the world too.)

As in the previous two books there are multiple strands of plot as Marnie Rome and her partner DS Noah Jakes are off trying to find out who the girl was that caused a fatal traffic accident by running out into the road half-dressed. With two sets of casualties from the car accident, a missing runaway girl what the pair don’t need is a body found in a show-room apartment at Battersea Power Station. Just working out how whoever killed the girl could get into the building is a big enough puzzle. And that’s without the personal issues that both are facing with their brothers. These storylines subtly intersect with the other strands of the novel enhancing the story without taking over the investigation into a number of missing girls in the Bristol area.

One of the best things about this series is that it is firmly set in the present time; the author covers subjects as wide as gangs terrorising a council estate along with the misplaced teenagers who are disenfranchised for a whole variety of reasons, and not those that we instantly think of. The way some of our young people need to hide in a world where privacy isn’t always possible. With all the secondary characters as finely drawn as the chief protagonists, this is one book where I didn’t doubt for one moment that the story which was unfolding before my eyes could happen, the mark of a truly skilled writing by Sarah Hilary.

Although the reader has an insight into where the girls are and what is happening in their lives through short excerpts that doesn’t mean that this is a book without a mystery and nor is it one without action, I found myself gripping the book tightly as the ending got nearer and everything began to become clear.

This is an outstanding read, one I would recommend to anyone who likes intelligent crime fiction, this is a book that made me think about those who evade our eyes in the busy modern world. Although I’m sure this would work well-enough as a stand-alone read, you will be missing out if you don’t experience this series from the beginning.

I’d like to thank the publishers Headline who sent me a proof copy of Tastes Like Fear prior to publication on 7 April 2016. This review is my thank you to them.

Previous books in the series:

Someone Else’s Skin
No Other Darkness

Posted in Weekly Posts

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph (March 29)

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 chosen book for this week is Tastes Like Fear by Sarah Hilary, whose first and second books in the DI Marnie Rome series blew me away, and other’s too by the seems of things borne out by the fact her debut, Someone Else’s Skin won the 2015 Theakston’s Crime Novel of the Year.

Tastes Like Fear.png

 

Blurb

The young girl who causes the fatal car crash disappears from the scene.
A runaway who doesn’t want to be found, she only wants to go home.
To the one man who understands her.
Gives her shelter.
Just as he gives shelter to the other lost girls who live in his house.
He’s the head of her new family.
He’s Harm.
D.I. Marnie Rome has faced many dangerous criminals but she has never come up against a man like Harm. She thinks that she knows families, their secrets and their fault lines. But as she begins investigating the girl’s disappearance nothing can prepare her for what she’s about to face.
Because when Harm’s family is threatened, everything tastes like fear…

~ ~ ~

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph ~ Intro

Two years ago

Rain had blunted all of London’s Spires, flattened her high-rises, buried her tower blocks in puddles of mud. Even the chimneys at Battersea Power Station were laid low, their long reflections boiling in the water. Not just days, weeks of rain. Pillars of it coming down, stirring up a stink, shifting the ground under your feet, not letting you forget that this city was built on burial pits.

Please note that this excerpt comes from a proof copy

Tastes Like Fear will be published on 7 April 2016 by headline.


Would you read on? Please leave your comments and links in the comments box below

Posted in Weekly Posts

Stacking the Shelves (January 9)

Stacking the shelves

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you’re adding to your shelves, be it buying or borrowing. From ‘real’ books you’ve purchased, a book you’ve borrowed, a book you’ve been given or an e-book they can all be shared.

Oh dear, oh dear… With that Amazon voucher burning a hole in my pocket it was inevitable that there would be some new acquisitions so I hatched a cunning plan; I would order books before the New Year in order to start afresh… what I didn’t bargain for was that I didn’t complete the process so when I next switched on my laptop there were three books waiting to be purchased in my basket.

Book one is one I’ve wanted for such a long time – I loved Sliding Doors and this is a book that explores the same premise and was published in paperback on 31 December 2015: The Versions of Us by Laura Barnnett

The Versions of Us

Blurb

What if you had said yes? The moments that change everything… One Day meets Sliding Doors in this outstanding debut that is causing a buzz across the publishing world
Some moments can change your life for ever. Have you ever wondered, what if…?
A man is walking down a country lane. A woman, cycling towards him, swerves to avoid a dog. On that moment, their future hinges. There are three possible outcomes, three small decisions that could determine the rest of their life.
Eva and Jim are nineteen and students at Cambridge when their paths first cross in 1958. And then there is David, Eva’s then-lover, an ambitious actor who loves Eva deeply. The Versions of Us follows the three different courses their lives could take following this first meeting. Lives filled with love, betrayal, ambition but through it all is a deep connection that endures whatever fate might throw at them.
The Versions of Us explores the idea that there are moments when our lives might have turned out differently, the tiny factors or decisions that could determine our fate, and the precarious nature of the foundations upon which we build our lives. It is also a story about the nature of love and how it grows, changes and evolves as we go through the vagaries of life. Goodreads

Silent Hours by Cesca Major has received rave reviews around the blogosphere including being featured on Bookaholic Confessions 15 Best Books of 2015, so I just had to have a copy too.

The Silent Hours

Blurb

An epic, sweeping tale of love and loss inspired by heartrending true events in the Unoccupied Zone of wartime France.
The Silent Hours follows three people whose lives are bound together, before war tears them apart:
Adeline, a mute who takes refuge in a convent, haunted by memories of her past;
Sebastian, a young Jewish banker whose love for the beautiful Isabelle will change the course of his life dramatically;
Tristin, a nine-year-old boy, whose family moves from Paris to settle in a village that is seemingly untouched by war.
Beautifully wrought, utterly compelling and with a shocking true story at its core, The Silent Hours is an unforgettable portrayal of love and loss. Goodreads

And finally after falling in love with The Go-Between last year I have a copy of The Shrimp and the Anemone by L.P. Hartley despite it having the shortest synopsis I’ve ever come across, I’m assured it is brilliant.

The Shrimp and the Anemone

Blurb

An evocative account of a childhood summer spent beside the sea in Norfolk by brother and sister, Eustace and Hilda. Amazon

Lastly I was delighted to open a mystery parcel on Wednesday, for once my protestations that I hadn’t bought or asked for this book was actually true! Tastes Like Fear by Sarah Hilary is going to be published on 7th April 2016. If this is anything like as good as Someone Else’s Skin and No Other of the Darkness this will be a fabulous read.

Tastes Like Fear

Blurb

You’ll never be out of Harm’s way
The young girl who causes the fatal car crash disappears from the scene.
A runaway who doesn’t want to be found, she only wants to go home.
To the one man who understands her.
Gives her shelter.
Just as he gives shelter to the other lost girls who live in his house.
He’s the head of her new family.
He’s Harm.
DI Marnie Rome has faced many dangerous criminals but she has never come up against a man like Harm. She thinks that she knows families, their secrets and their fault lines. But as she begins investigating the girl’s disappearance nothing can prepare her for what she’s about to face.
Because when Harm’s family is threatened, everything tastes like fear… Goodreads

TBR WATCH
Since my last count I have read 2 books, and gained 5 (one doesn’t have any details to share with you all yet), leading to a grand total of 174 books!
86 physical books
74 e-books
14 books on NetGalley

What have you found to read this week?