Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

The Woman in Cabin 10 – Ruth Ware

Psychological Thriller 4*s
Psychological Thriller
4*s

Lo Blacklock has won the office prize! Her boss Rowan is unable to take a cruise on a luxury boat to see the Northern Lights, so after ten years of doing travel journalism she’s finally going to have an expensive trip to write about. The trip on the Aurora promises fine dining and pampering aplenty and Lo will just have to file some pieces extolling its virtues! What could possibly go wrong?

Sadly, Lo has a traumatic experience just before setting off which indirectly led to a split with her boyfriend who she’s been holding at arm’s length. Not the best start when the boat isn’t a huge cruise-liner but a compact yet bling encrusted yacht with populated by other journalists, the billionaire owner and his wife and a smattering of the great and the good. Despite her personal problems Lo is determined to make this trip count, to make her mark and hopefully bag the stand-in role for Rowan when she takes her maternity leave. She’s pleased to meet a former boyfriend Ben on the boat, especially due to the anxiety that she’s suffered for years which has been made worse by the trauma of days before she drinks too much and quite frankly doesn’t really pull off the ambitious yet capable journalist look she was going for.

After retiring to her cabin she believes she hears a scream, followed by a big splash. The partition separating her verandah from the one in Cabin 10 is smeared with blood and the girl she saw in there earlier has disappeared. Lo fears she’s been tipped into the water and begins to raise the alarm, but it seems she’s not going to be believed.
The setting on a boat is great for this closed house type mystery and the lack of phone signal and the Wi-Fi being down completes the isolation from the rest of the world, and crucially stops Lo from doing what she’d like, which is to escape. Denied safety and panicking more than ever, unsurprisingly as she believes she’s on a boat with a killer, Lo tries to investigate herself. What follows is a fairly twisty turny read that is claustrophobic in the extreme. The style is underpinned by crisp writing, although we have an insight into Lo’s anxiety issues they are not endlessly dwelt upon so the plot moves along at a fair old pace.

I often say I don’t have to like the characters to enjoy a book and in The Woman in Cabin 10, it wasn’t that I actively disliked Lo but I didn’t really have it in me to whole-heartedly sympathise with her – this left me feeling more than a bit mean as I’m sure I wouldn’t enjoy being on a boat with no means of escape with a killer, but it did leave me feeling a little bit at odds with the book which was disquieting.

There is no doubt that Ruth Ware has come up with a book that is a modern twist on the locked house scenario. There are very few opportunities for this type of setting in the modern world where we can access someone the other side of the world with ease but the boat setting was entirely believable (although such an exclusive setting is one that I suspect few of us have experienced. From a fairly sedate start the pace slowly mounted to reach an action-packed finale, no sitting around passively while the detective pronounces the killer in this version!

If I’m honest I did prefer this author’s debut novel In a Dark Dark Wood, maybe because the setting and characters were far more familiar to me than those presented in this book. I like being able to relate to the characters in particular, even if I wouldn’t want to spend time with them but the mixture of sycophantic journalists and wealthy businessmen really don’t feature that heavily in my life. If you want a book with a bit of escapism with high drama, this is well-worth a read.

I’d like to thank the publisher Random House UK for allowing me to read a copy of this book which was published on 30 June 2016. This honest review is my thank you to them.

First Published UK: 30 June 2016
Publisher: Random House UK
No of Pages: 352
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week in Books (September 21)

This Week In Books

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

The Woman in Cabin 10 by the talented Ruth Ware tells the tale of Lo Blacklock who is on the trip of a lifetime to see the Northern Lights as a perk of her job as a travel journalist. Just before she was due to leave on the trip Lo’s home was broken into while she was there, she’s justifiably traumatised so when she thinks she witnesses a murder while on board the boat, she’s not sure what to believe. Is she on board with a murderer or has she imagined it?

The Woman in Cabin 10

You can read the synopsis and an excerpt from the first chapter in yesterday’s post.

I have just finished A Deadly Thaw by Sarah Ward, my review of this, the second in the superb Inspector Francis Sadler series, will be posted soon.

a-deadly-thaw

Blurb

Every secret has consequences.

Autumn 2004
In Bampton, Derbyshire, Lena Fisher is arrested for suffocating her husband, Andrew.

Spring 2016
A year after Lena’s release from prison, Andrew is found dead in a disused mortuary.

Who was the man Lena killed twelve years ago, and who committed the second murder? When Lena disappears, her sister, Kat, sets out to follow a trail of clues delivered by a mysterious teenage boy. Kat must uncover the truth – before there’s another death . . .Amazon

Next I plan to read Ward Zero by Linda Huber which will be published on 1 October 2016

Ward Zero

 

Horror swept through her. Had she been buried alive?

On Sarah’s first visit to see her foster mother, Mim, in Brockburn General Hospital, she is sucked into a world that isn’t what it should be.

Someone is lying, someone is stealing. And someone is killing – but who? With a grieving child to take care of, as well as Mim, Sarah has to put family first. She doesn’t see where danger lies – until it’s too late.

If you think you’re safe in a hospital, think again. Amazon

Have you read any of these? Do you want to?

Let me know what you are reading this week by adding your comments or leaving your link below.

Posted in Weekly Posts

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph (September 20)

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.

In the spirit of trying to tackle the number of requests I have outstanding for review on NetGalley and because I really did love In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware I have picked The Woman In Cabin 10 for my Tuesday post this week.

The Woman in Cabin 10

Blurb

This was meant to be the perfect trip.

The Northern Lights. A luxury press launch on a boutique cruise ship.

A chance for travel journalist Lo Blackwood to recover from a traumatic break-in that has left her on the verge of collapse, and to work out what she wants from her relationship.

Except things don’t go as planned.

Woken in the night by screams, Lo rushes to her window to see a body thrown overboard from the next door cabin. But the records show that no-one ever checked into that cabin, and no passengers are missing from the boat.

Exhausted, emotional and increasingly desperate, Lo has to face the fact that she may have made a terrible mistake. Or she is trapped on a boat with a murderer – and she is the sole witness… NetGalley

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph ~ Intro

PART ONE
Friday 18 September

1

The first inkling that something was wrong was waking in darkness to find the cat pawing at my face. I must have forgotten to shut the kitchen door last night. Punishment for coming home drunk.
‘Go away,’ I groaned. Delilah mewed and butted me with her head. I tried to bury my face in the pillow but she continued rubbing against my ear, and eventually I rolled over and heartlessly pushed her off the bed.
She thumped to the floor with an indignant little ‘meep’ and I pulled the duvet over my head. But even through the covers I could hear her scratching at the bottom of the door rattling it in its frame.
The door was closed.

Well that’s got off to a great start so I’m off to read the rest!

So what do you think? Would you keep reading?

Please leave your links, comments etc. in the envelope below

Posted in Weekly Posts

Weekly Wrap Up (June 26)

Weekly Wrap Up

 

I returned from my holiday in Crete, a lovely place that I’d love to return to late last Sunday night with a notebook full of scribbled notes from the books that I’d read and so this week has been spent trying to decipher them and put them into something resembling proper reviews!

Last Week on the Blog

Monday’s review was for Watching Edie by Camilla Wray which arrived shortly before I went on holiday from lovereading; great, but they wanted the review sent the day after my holiday started so the bones of that one was at least pre-typed. Fortunately the book was superb, dark and disturbing, just the way I like them and so this review was a joy to share.

On Tuesday my post contained an extract from another psychological thriller, Intrusion by Mary McCluskey. I’m taking the first stop on publication day, 1 July, on the blog tour for this one so my review will be with you later this week and the guest post by this author is superb.

Wednesday saw me sharing my reads with you, sadly this week has been busy and I haven’t even opened Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain yet and so I’m considering a book shuffle but we will see!

I had another review on Thursday, this time from one of my 20 Books of Summer 2016 challenge reads; Pictures of Perfection by Reginald Hill was actually a re-read but it was a superb choice, if I say so myself. I’d forgotten quite how brilliant this book was and it kept me thoroughly entertained at the pool-side, sipping cocktails!

Friday’s review was for one of my kindle reads. I have been a huge fan of the author Tamar Cohen since reading her first book, but for some reason I’d never got around to reading The War of the Wives; I have now! If you’re from the UK you may have missed it because there was some big political news that day!

Yesterday I posted a review for my fourth read from 20 Books of Summer 2016 (yes I know, I’m behind schedule but I’m not panicking, much!) This was another book from a crime series I love which I took away because I knew it would be a sure fire winner, and it was – The title? That will be Buried Angels by Camilla Läckberg 

Stacking the Shelves

Well of course I’ve been away with no access to NetGalley at all (I can only access it from my laptop as I have no idea what my password is and I’m too frightened to try and change it in case future access is denied!) but some old requests came through… and I came home! Here’s what I have:

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware whose debut novel In a Dark, Dark Wood was set around a hen party – I’m trying to forget how spooked I felt by this book as I’ll be attending my daughter’s next month!

The Woman in Cabin 10

Blurb

This was meant to be the perfect trip.
The Northern Lights. A luxury press launch on a boutique cruise ship.
A chance for travel journalist Lo Blackwood to recover from a traumatic break-in that has left her on the verge of collapse, and to work out what she wants from her relationship.
Except things don’t go as planned.
Woken in the night by screams, Lo rushes to her window to see a body thrown overboard from the next door cabin. But the records show that no-one ever checked into that cabin, and no passengers are missing from the boat.
Exhausted, emotional and increasingly desperate, Lo has to face the fact that she may have made a terrible mistake. Or she is trapped on a boat with a murderer – and she is the sole witness… NetGalley

Yep, that sounds suitably unnerving! The Woman in Cabin 10 will be published on 30 June 2016.

I also was lucky enough to get a copy of The Museum of You by Carys Bray which was published on 16 June 2016. I’ve read lots of reviews about this one and I’m intrigued to read it for myself.

The Museum of You

Blurb

Clover Quinn was a surprise. She used to imagine she was the good kind, now she’s not sure. She’d like to ask Dad about it, but growing up in the saddest chapter of someone else’s story is difficult. She tries not to skate on the thin ice of his memories.
Darren has done his best. He’s studied his daughter like a seismologist on the lookout for waves and surrounded her with everything she might want – everything he can think of, at least – to be happy.
What Clover wants is answers. This summer, she thinks she can find them in the second bedroom, which is full of her mother’s belongings. Volume isn’t important, what she is looking for is essence; the undiluted bits: a collection of things that will tell the full story of her mother, her father and who she is going to be.
But what you find depends on what you’re searching for. NetGalley

I also requested a copy of Claire Seeber’s The Stepmother as I have really enjoyed some of this author’s previous books. With a publication date of 15 July 2016 this is squeezing the reading schedule more than is remotely sensible so I’m swearing back of NG again; for real this time!

The Stepmother

Blurb

The perfect wife. A fairytale family. Don’t believe your eyes…
Jeanie and Matthew are a happily married couple who both have teenage children from previous relationships.
No one said it would be easy to raise a blended family under one roof but Jeanie and Matthew are strong. They will make it work.
And whilst Jeanie’s step-daughter Scarlett rejects her, Jeanie will just have to try harder to win her over.
But Jeanie has a past. A terrible secret she thought she’d buried a long time ago. And now, it’s coming to the surface, threatening to destroy her new marriage.
Someone is playing a terrifying game on Jeanie and she must put a stop to it once and for all.
After all, a fairytale needs a happy ending … doesn’t it? NetGalley

And finally I received a mystery book through the post which is strictly under embargo until 11 July 2016 – so I can’t tell you anything about it but I am incredibly pleased to have received a copy as I’ve never had a top secret book before!!

PicMonkey Collage TBR

TBR WATCH
We have progress!! Since my last post I have read 11 books, discarded 1 as DNF and only gained 4 so the total this week is now standing at 173 books!
89 physical books
66 e-books
18 books on NetGalley

What have you found to read this week?