Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Friendship, Mystery, New Books, Romance, Romantic Comedy

The Wedding Cake Wish, Little Duck Pond Café Rosie Green 5*#Review @Rosie_Green88 @rararesources #BlogTour #BookReview #romcom #LittleDuckPondCafe #FridayReads #TheWeddingCakeWish

Wedding excitement is in the air! With their big day approaching, Fen has her heart set on a gorgeous, intimate celebration with not much fuss at all. But strong-minded mother-of-the-bride Marjery seems to have considerably grander plans. There’s also the small problem of a missing best man, and when Fen tasks Hudson Holmes and Ruby Watkiss with the job of tracking him down, their investigations unearth far more secrets than they bargained for. Will the Big Day go ahead in the light of such dramatic revelations? Can a wedding cake wish save the day? One thing’s for sure – this will definitely be a wedding to remember!

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

I love cosy mystery, and I love the Little Duck Pond Cafe series, so it’s great I can have both in one action-packed book. Fen is finally getting married, and whilst she longs for an intimate wedding, her mother has outrageously ambitious plans. There is tension in Fen and Rob’s relationship, and the over-the-top wedding plans aren’t helping. When the best man disappears, Fen asks Ruby and Hudson, who we met in A Summer of Surprises, to track him down. Told from Fen and Ruby’s viewpoints, the reader enjoys a delightful rom-com and a cosy mystery, both of which are woven together at various points.

The story has drama and mystery as family secrets unfold and impact the forthcoming wedding. An unexpected visitor tests Ruby and Hudson’s friendship, and the tension is palpable. Full of humour, and romance too, this is a lovely addition to the series.

Rosie’s series of novellas is centred around life in a village cafe. The latest, ‘A Summer of Surprises’, is out now.

Look out for ‘Snow Falls over Sunnybrook’, a heart-warming Christmas delight, out in November 2021. As snow drifts down over the village, will romance finally blossom for one very special pair?

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Crime, Detective, Family Drama, Friendship, New Books, Thriller

Death in the Woods Jo Allen 4*#Review #DCI Jude Satterthwaite @JoAllenAuthor #CrimeFiction #PoliceProcedural #Thriller #BlogTour #BookReview #Cumbria #EdenValley @rararesources #LakeDistrict #FridayReads #DeathintheWoods

A series of copycat suicides, prompted by a mysterious online blogger, cause DCI Jude Satterthwaite more problems than usual, intensifying his concerns about his troublesome younger brother, Mikey. Along with his partner, Ashleigh O’Halloran, and a local psychiatrist, Vanessa Wood, Jude struggles to find the identity of the malicious troll gaslighting young people to their deaths.

The investigation stirs grievances both old and new. What is the connection with the hippies camped near the Long Meg stone circle? Could these suicides have any connection with a decades-old cold case? And, for Jude, the most crucial question of all.

Is it personal — and could Mikey be the final target?

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I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

A suicide case does not usually merit the attention of a senior police detective, but when more than one young victim is dying, an unsettled community wants answers. DCI Jude Satterthwaite and his team investigate but are struggling to find any connections between the victims. The possibility that someone is inciting the suicides gives the investigation a sinister edge, and the race is on to find the culprit before more young people take their lives.

The possibility of a personal connection to the case makes revenge a conceivable motive. The contemporary plot has an authentic combination of personal and professional events in the investigative team’s lives. Complex relationships and a menacing internet presence make this addictive reading. The Cumbrian setting with its relatable characters gives depth to the story.

Jo Allen

Jo Allen was born in Wolverhampton and is a graduate of Edinburgh, Strathclyde and the Open University, with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in geography and Earth science. She’s been writing for pleasure and publication for as long as she can remember. After a career in economic consultancy, she took up writing and was first published under the name Jennifer Young, in genres of short stories, romance and romantic suspense. She wrote online articles on travel and on her favourite academic subject, Earth science. In 2017 she took the plunge and began writing the genre she most likes to read — crime.

Jo lives in the English Lakes, where the DCI Satterthwaite series is set. In common with all her favourite characters, she loves football (she’s a season ticket holder with her beloved Wolverhampton Wanderers) and cats.

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Crime, Detective, Family Drama, New Books

Without A Trace Jane Bettany 4*#Review @JaneBettany @HQStories #CrimeFiction #WithoutATrace #BlogTour #BookReview #DIIsabelBlood #PublicationDay #FridayReads

You can cover up the truth, but every murder leaves a trail…

The rain was relentless. It stung Ruth Prendergast’s face as she dashed towards her house, desperate to escape the cold and settle down for an early night. But upon entering her bedroom, she finds a man, lying on her bed – a knife buried in his chest.

When Detective Isabel Blood and her sergeant arrive on the scene, Ruth claims she’s never laid eyes on the victim before. But with no sign of a break-in, how did the killer gain access to the house?

Then Ruth disappears, leaving Isabel and her team to fear the worst. Has their lead suspect escaped, or is Ruth in danger herself?

Forensic evidence at the crime scene is sparse, and it’s proving impossible for Isabel to make a breakthrough. With Ruth still missing, time is running out.

But how can you catch a killer that doesn’t leave a trace?

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from HQ via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

The second book in the DI Isabel Blood series fulfils the potential of the first book. This story set in the East Midlands is a variation of a locked room murder. A newly divorced woman returns home on a wintry night and finds a dead man in her bed. She claims he is a stranger, but there is no sign of forced entry to the property. The investigative team led by Isabel have little evidence to go on, and when the woman who found the body disappears, the situation becomes complex and urgent.

The investigation is well-written and plausible, with a satisfying conclusion. There is a good balance of personal and professional interfaces in the story, adding authenticity and depth. This promises to be a series to follow.