Still Crazy by R N F Skinner

This is a love story spanning 30 years and the narrative moves backwards and forwards through the decades. It’s told by the two main characters, Melanie and Phil. I thought the author very successfully described the atmosphere and social etiquette of the 1970s. The book is well-written although some of the characters were two-dimensional and I found Melanie extremely irritating. It’s a good story but I found some parts too wordy and lost the thread a little bit. On the whole, I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to friends.

With thanks to LoveReading for allowing me to review this book

False Witness by Karin Slaughter

This is such a powerful read.  It’s very, very dark and in places, graphic. The plot is full of twists and turns and as the story neared its climax, I had to keep reading until I finished the book.  Not only is the plot superbly crafted , but it is extremely well-written and the characters become part of your life as you read.  This is definitely one of the best books I have ever read. 

Thank you to LoveReading for allowing me to review this book.

Crooked Creek by Fredrick Robertson

I really enjoyed this story. It’s quirky and funny and even though it’s set in the US, the characters are relatable to any community. It’s well written and the narrative moves at a cracking pace. It’s fairly short, yet long enough to get your teeth into,so ideal for a sneaky read when time is short. I look forward to reading more from this author.

Thanks to LoveReading for allowing me to review this book.

The Coffinmaker’s Garden by Stewart McBride

This is a very well-written book. The story flows well, the plot is good – weaving two story lines and some unexpected twists. But it is very dark, graphic in parts, and I found it hard to read.  There is dark humour and I had trouble reconciling the sometimes jokey prose and conversations with the disturbing plotlines and imagery. If you enjoy gritty stories about unconventional heroes, then this is the book for you.

In short, it’s a well-written and gripping storyline with intriguing and unconventional heroes.

With thanks to LoveReading for allowing me to review this book.

Review of Silver by Chris Hammer

This is a well-written and entertaining story. Set in an Australian coastal town, it tells of an investigative journalist’s mission to prove his girlfriend’s innocence and find the real murderer.I wasn’t sure that I would enjoy this book and it did take a while for me to get into the story. However, after a few chapters, the story started to draw me in properly and towards the end of the book I found that I couldn’t put it down as I wanted to know what happened. Beautifully written in the present tense ,which moves the story along and adds to the tension, it’s very descriptive. I liked the way the narrative switches from present to past in order to tell Martin’s back story, which in turn informs his current actions. Based on my enjoyment of this book, I will definitely be reading the prequel.

With thanks to LoveReading for allowing me to review this book.

Review of Deep State by Chris Hauty

This book is a rare combination of excellent writing and a cracking story. It’s written in the present tense and this, coupled with the concise writing, gives the plot a sense of urgency. What I particularly like is the way the author projects forward, using the future tense, in order to explain what happens to some of the main characters. The heroine, Hayley, is enigmatic, but although she is a woman of few words, her character comes through. If I have any criticism of this book, it is that some of the characters are two dimensional but that did not detract from my enjoyment. The author grabs the reader’s attention at the beginning of the book and takes you on a roller coaster journey. It’s one of those books you will stay up to finish.
Thank you LoveReading for giving me the chance to review this book

Review of A Single Thread by Tracy Chevalier

I really enjoyed reading A Single Thread and thought it was even better than Girl with a Pearl Earring. It ticked all the boxes for me – well-written, a great story and characters I cared about. Set in the 1930s – with memories of one war and fears of another – it tells the story of Violet, one of the generation affected by the loss of Britain’s men due to the First World War. It’s also a commentary on inter-war society and how women like Violet and her friends are daring to push against societal norms and question their own attitudes. I love that the women in the story are taking control of their own destiny, pushing back the boundaries one step at a time. This book is a great read – I finished it within a day, not because it lacks depth but because I needed to know how it ended. I would absolutely recommend this book.

As always, thanks to Lovereading.co.uk for allowing me to review this book

Bone Deep by Sandra Ireland

This is quite a small book so at first sight the reader would not perhaps expect a particularly in-depth story. However, the reader is in for a big surprise. The story is beautifully written: the language is sparing but is ideal for this stark tale of love, loss and betrayal. The descriptive writing takes the reader into the scene of the action, often heart in mouth as the narrative becomes darker. It’s the book equivalent of hiding behind the settee and peeping out through your fingers. The two main protagonists, enigmatic and grumpy Lucie and eccentric and forthright Mac, tell this story between them and the use of the first person adds atmosphere and urgency. Unlike with some novels, this technique does not detract from the other characters who interact with Mac and Lucie and they are well-rounded and believable. There are clues as the story progresses if you look carefully but the ending is shocking and unexpected. This book is definitely one you won’t be able to put down until you’ve finished the story. I loved it and look forward to reading Sandra Ireland’s first novel and any novels she writes in the future.

Thanks again to LoveReading for sending me this book to review

Review of Watching You by Lisa Jewell

The story starts with what’s clearly been a murder but that’s the only certainty until you get to the end of the book. This book is very cleverly written. It lulls the reader into a false sense of certainty: you are convinced you know who is the victim, who is the murderer and why the crime was committed. But as the story progresses, you realise that all is not as it seems.There are hints of dark and illegal deeds but who is lying and who is telling the truth? Who is watching and who is being watched, and why? The story progresses at a good rate and the characters are believable and complex and I certainly cared about what happened to them. This book is very enjoyable and once you start reading, it’s very hard to put it down. Based on my experience with this book, I will definitely seek out more books from Lisa Jewell

Thanks to LoveReading for giving me the opportunity to review this book

One in a million by Lindsey Kelk

On the face of it, this is a “chic lit” book featuring the usual cast of characters (best friends, gay mate, handsome neighbours, slightly disfunctional family). However, this book is much more in-depth than that. It’s funny and intelligent, much like its chief character and narrator, Annie. I fell in love with Annie and Sam. Their story made me laugh out loud, and occasionally cry. I was caught up in the story, didn’t want to put it down, finished it within 2 days, then wished I hadn’t as I wanted to carry on enjoying it. There’s a definite feel-good factor to this book. It’s beautifully written, with wit and insight which extends beyond Annie and Sam to the proliferal characters, who were well rounded and believable. I particularly liked the way the author started and ended the book with the same premise, again a sign of a well-written story. I really, really loved this book and would highly recommend it as it deserves to be a big hit.

Thanks to Love Reading for sending me this book to review