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

They All Fall Down – Tammy Cohen

Psychological Thriller
5*s

For those of you who read my blog regularly you’ll already know that I am a huge Tammy Cohen fan and it is only due to unforeseen circumstances that this review wasn’t posted prior to publication of her latest psychological thriller They All Fall Down on 13 July 2017. The good news is that if you want to read this in eBook format it is currently at the exceptionally low price of 99p.

The setting of this latest novel is in a private psychiatric clinic and right from the off there is a feeling that Hannah isn’t there of her own volition, but quite why and what happened before is left in the shadows. This isn’t the only mystery though, two women have died at the small clinic and Hannah is worried that they weren’t the suicides that everyone presumes. The problem is Hannah clearly has problems and she’s not being taken seriously by anyone, least of all her husband Danny who is becoming increasingly frustrated with what he thinks is her continued paranoia.

Once again Tammy Cohen has the pace absolutely nailed down. Now I’m somewhat a connoisseur of psychological thrillers, I know the wily tricks authors play to keep the facts hidden in order to ensure their twists give the maximum punch to the guts, and I confess this knowledge has tarnished the more amateur examples, but in this instance, there were enough clues given so that any twist felt far less artificial. Our main narrator, Hannah, by the very fact of her setting can be considered to be unreliable but we have other narrators including her fabulous mother Corrine. Corrine is so desperate to help her daughter no matter what she has done but she is also a realist who isn’t going to blindly go charging in without testing some of her daughter’s theories, so she turns detective. As always with this author all of the characters are carefully drawn, one where each time we meet them we learn a little bit more, sometimes coming to a different conclusion. This is particularly difficult with some of the issues Hannah’s fellow patients suffer from and I have to confess while racing through the book, I was also just like Hannah trying to leave the confines of the claustrophobic clinic.

If twists and turns enhanced by the fabulous pace aren’t enough to tempt you to read this, I must also mention the dialogue which is absolutely pitch perfect. With so many of the interactions between the characters betraying something which is key to the storyline, particularly those between the doctors and patients – those group meetings rang so true and at times the words on the page cut deep and I winced as the subjects battled both internal and external demons.

One of my issues with some books in this genre is the reliance on twists which is now the selling point rather than the original notion which was to explore the psyche, to my delight They All Fall Down manages both, we have the time to reflect on actions of the characters, and how their emotions can lead to them acting in the way that they do, but we also have some brilliant twists which in this case weren’t the ones I was expecting at all.

I’d like to say a huge thank you to the publishers Black Swan who kindly sent me an ARC of They All Fall Down, and to Tammy Cohen for writing this brilliant novel.

First Published UK: 13 July 2017
Publisher: Black Swan
No of Pages: 384
Genre: Psychological Thriller

Amazon UK
Amazon US

Books By Tammy Cohen – aka Tamar Cohen

The Mistress’s Revenge (2011)
The War of the Wives (2012)
Someone Else’s Wedding (2013)
The Broken (2014)
Dying For Christmas (2014)
First One Missing (2015)
When She Was Bad (2016)

Writing Historical Fiction as Rachel Rhys

A Dangerous Crossing (2017)

Posted in Weekly Posts

This Week in Books (July 5)

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

A mixed bag from me this week as I try to keep up with the 20 Books of Summer 2017 challenge, review all those books I’ve requested from NetGalley and that have popped through my letterbox during my absence….

At the moment I am reading An Act of Silence by Colette McBeth, a gripping psychological thriller which was published on 29 June 2017.



Blurb

These are the facts I collect.

My son Gabriel met a woman called Mariela in a bar. She went home with him. They next morning she was found in an allotment.

Mariela is dead.

Gabriel has been asked to report to Camden Police station in six hours for questioning

Linda Moscow loves her son; it’s her biological instinct to keep him safe. But if she’s not sure of his innocence, how can she stand by him? Should she go against everything she believes in to protect him?
She’s done it before, and the guilt nearly killed her. Amazon

The last book I finished was The Island by Victoria Hislop set on the beautiful island of Crete and focussed on the leper colony Spinalonga.

Blurb

On the brink of a life-changing decision, Alexis Fielding longs to find out about her mother’s past. But Sofia has never spoken of it. All she admits to is growing up in a small Cretan village before moving to London. When Alexis decides to visit Crete, however, Sofia gives her daughter a letter to take to an old friend, and promises that through her she will learn more.

Arriving in Plaka, Alexis is astonished to see that it lies a stone’s throw from the tiny, deserted island of Spinalonga – Greece’s former leper colony. Then she finds Fotini, and at last hears the story that Sofia has buried all her life: the tale of her great-grandmother Eleni and her daughters and a family rent by tragedy, war and passion. She discovers how intimately she is connected with the island, and how secrecy holds them all in its powerful grip… Amazon

Next up is Tammy Cohen’s latest book, They All Fall Down which will be published on 13 July 2017 and a book I’ve been hotly anticipating ever since I heard about its existence.

Blurb

Hannah had a normal life – a loving husband, a good job. Until she did something shocking.

Now she’s in a psychiatric clinic. It should be a safe place. But patients keep dying.

The doctors say it’s suicide. Hannah knows they’re lying.

Can she make anyone believe her before the killer strikes again? Amazon

What do you think? Have you read any of these books? Do you want to?
What are you reading this week? Do share in the comments box below.

Posted in Weekly Posts

Weekly Wrap Up (April 2)

Weekly Wrap Up

Well one-quarter of 2017 over already and in that time I’ve had some brilliant books to read including the very special A Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys (aka Tammy Cohen) and this week I came home to the final version complete with a lovely personal inscription from Tammy and in the acknowledgements a thank you to all book bloggers and a special mention for me. If you haven’t read A Dangerous Crossing yet, I highly recommend it

This Week on the Blog

After a somewhat unscheduled break last week when I realised I simply couldn’t fit anything else into my days I was back  this week raring to go!

I started the week with my review of Louise Walters A Life Between Us which tells the story across the decades of one family. There were many layers to this story told across decades but Louise Walters knows her craft and has written a belter of a book

My excerpt post was from The Restless Dead by Simon Beckett and this was one opener that you don’t want to read while you’re eating…

On Wednesday I featured books from Suellen Dainty, David Jackson and Thorne Moore who all featured in my reading week.

Next up my review of A is for Arsenic: The Poisons of Agatha Christie by Kathryn Harkup in which I unreservedly recommend for fans of the Queen of Crime, and I got to learn even more about poisoners and their poisons.

On Friday I took part in the blog tour by posting my review for The Housekeeper by Suellen Dainty (yes I had to read and review in record time this week) which wasn’t what I expected but I thoroughly enjoyed this slow peeling back of the layers of a household and the woman who was their housekeeper.

Yesterday was the fifth Put a Book on the Map feature and this time we visited Peterborough with Eva Dolan’s series featuring DI Zigic and DS Ferreira with help from A Crime Reader’s Blog and the unstinting support of The Book Trail

This Time Last Year…

I was reading Tastes Like Fear by Sarah Hilary, which had two seemingly disparate plots for DI Marnie Rome and DS Noah Jakes to solve. The whole series is incredibly strong with bang up to date storylines; Tastes Like Fear was no different.

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

Blurb

The fragile 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 return to the man who understands her and offers her warmth, comfort, a home. He gives 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.
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. Amazon

Stacking the Shelves

I’m getting the feeling that the publishers are trying to undermine my exceptional self-control for buying new books and requesting from NetGalley as I have had loads of great books through the post – here is a small selection

Blood Tide by Claire McGowan, the fifth in the Paula McGuire series set in Ireland was a welcome addition to the household.

Blurb

Called in to investigate the disappearance of a young couple during a violent storm, Paula Maguire, forensic psychologist, has mixed feelings about going back to Bone Island. Her last family holiday as a child was spent on its beautiful, remote beaches and returning brings back haunting memories of her long-lost mother.

It soon becomes clear that outsiders aren’t welcome on the island, and with no choice but to investigate the local community, Paula soon suspects foul play, realising that the islanders are hiding secrets from her, and each other.
With another storm fast approaching, Paula is faced with a choice. Leave alive or risk being trapped with a killer on an inescapable island, as the blood tide rushes in… Amazon

I was ecstatic to be sent a copy of the latest Peter James book, Need You Dead which is the thirteenth in the Roy Grace series set in Brighton. I am a huge fan of this series and will be part of the blog tour in May to celebrate its publication.

Blurb

Lorna Belling, desperate to escape the marriage from hell, falls for the charms of another man who promises her the earth. But, as Lorna finds, life seldom follows the plans you’ve made. A chance photograph on a client’s mobile phone changes everything for her.

When the body of a woman is found in a bath in Brighton, Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is called to the scene. At first it looks an open and shut case with a clear prime suspect. Then other scenarios begin to present themselves, each of them tantalizingly plausible, until, in a sudden turn of events, and to his utter disbelief, the case turns more sinister than Grace could ever have imagined. Amazon

I was also delighted to receive an advance copy of They All Fall Down by Tammy Cohen which will be published on 13 July 2017.

Blurb

She knows there’s a killer on the loose.
But no-one believes her.
Will she be next?

Hannah had a normal life – a loving husband, a good job. Until she did something shocking.

Now she’s in a psychiatric clinic. It should be a safe place. But patients keep dying.

The doctors say it’s suicide. Hannah knows they’re lying.

Can she make anyone believe her before the killer strikes again? Amazon

I also have a copy of a new to me author Maile Meloy with Do Not Become Alarmed which will be published on 6 July 2017 and came with a fetching boarding pass.

Blurb

When Liv and Nora decide to take their husbands and children on a holiday cruise, everyone is thrilled. The ship’s comforts and possibilities seem infinite. But when they all go ashore in beautiful Central America, a series of minor mishaps lead the families further from the ship’s safety.
One minute the children are there, and the next they’re gone.

What follows is a heart-racing story told from the perspectives of the adults and the children, as the distraught parents – now turning on one another and blaming themselves – try to recover their children and their shattered lives. Amazon

I also have one book from NetGalley, an exception had to be made because Steve Robinson gave me a link to request his latest genealogical mystery Dying Games, the sixth in the Jefferson Tate series. Dying Games will be published on 4 May 2017.

Blurb

Washington, DC: Twin brothers are found drowned in a Perspex box, one gagged and strapped to a chair. It’s the latest in a series of cruel and elaborate murders with two things in common: the killer has left a family history chart at each crime scene, and the victims all have a connection to genealogical sleuth Jefferson Tayte.

Hoping his insight and expertise will help solve the case, the FBI summon Tayte back to the capital. But as he struggles to crack the clues, the killer strikes again—and again. Tayte is known as the best in the business, but this time he’s up against a genealogical mastermind who always seems to be one step ahead.

With the clock ticking and the body count rising, Tayte finds himself racked with guilt, his reputation and career in tatters. The killer is running rings around him; is it only a matter of time before he comes for the ultimate target?

This is the sixth book in the Jefferson Tayte Genealogical Mystery series but can be enjoyed as a stand-alone story. NetGalley

What have you found to read this week? Do share, as you can see I’m always on the lookout for a good book!

tbr-watch

Since my last post I’ve read 6 books and gained 7 so the grand total is slowly inching upwards to 192
Physical Books – 114
Kindle Books – 61
NetGalley Books – 17