Blog

Fatal Witness by Robert Bryndza @RobertBryndza #Crime #Thriller #FatalWitness 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Detective Erika Foster is back in FATAL WITNESS – with a chilling new serial killer case in Robert Bryndza’s multi-million bestselling crime thriller series!

How do you find a killer who has destroyed all the evidence?

Detective Erika Foster is on a late-night walk near her new house in Blackheath when she stumbles upon the brutal murder of Vicky Clarke, a true-crime podcaster.

Erika is assigned to the case and discovers that Vicky had been working on a new podcast episode about a sexual predator who preys on young female students around South London, staking out his victims in their halls of residence before breaking in at the dead of night.

When Erika discovers that Vicky’s notes and sound recordings were stolen from her flat at the time of her murder, it leads her to believe that Vicky was close to unmasking the attacker, and she was killed to guarantee her silence.

The case takes on a disturbing twist when the body of a young Bulgarian student doctor is discovered in the same building, and this makes Erika question everything she thought she knew about Vicky. With very little evidence, the clock is ticking to find the killer before he strikes again.

BUY LINK

Fatal Witness

MY THOUGHTS

I was delighted to see that Detective Erica Foster was to make another much-awaited appearance in the launch of book 7 of this hugely successful series. It feels like she has never been away, but get everything you need at hand because once you venture into the first chapter, everything kicks off. Erica isn’t even on duty when she finds herself up to the neck with the next serial killer to cross her path.

Robert Bryndza has an incredible talent that isolates me from the world around me until I finish the last page. Every word on every page I read, makes me feel like I am a bystander in his stories, and it is so intense as my heart races and my skin tingles.

The story has a modern feel to it, with the murder of Vicky Clarke, a true-crime podcaster, especially when it seems that all her research has been stolen from her flat too. But nothing is ever so simple for Erika as the killer claims another victim. Oh my, this is edge-of-your-seat reading, as the story spirals to yet another deep and dark level.

Erica is back in this full-on mind-blowing, all-action belter! Bring it on!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Robert Bryndza is best known for his page-turning crime and thriller novels, which have sold over five million copies.His crime debut, The Girl in the Ice, was released in February 2016, introducing Detective Chief Inspector Erika Foster. Within five months, it sold one million copies, reaching number one on the Amazon UK, USA, and Australian charts. The Girl in the Ice has sold over 1.5 million copies in the English language, and it has been sold into translation in 30 countries. It was nominated for the Goodreads Choice Award for Mystery & Thriller (2016), the Grand Prix des lectrices de Elle in France (2018), and it won two reader-voted awards, The Thrillzone Awards for best debut thriller in The Netherlands (2018) and The Dead Good Papercut Award for best page-turner at the Harrogate Crime Festival (2016).Robert has released five more novels in the Erika Foster series, The Night Stalker, Dark Water, Last Breath, Cold Blood and Deadly Secrets, which have all been global bestsellers. In 2017 Last Breath was a Goodreads Choice Award nominee for Mystery and Thriller.Most recently, Robert created a new crime thriller series based around the central character Kate Marshall, a police officer turned private detective. The first book, Nine Elms, was an Amazon USA #1 bestseller and an Amazon UK top five bestseller, and the series has been sold into translation in 18 countries. The second book in the series is the global bestselling Shadow Sands, and the third book is Darkness Falls.Robert was born in Lowestoft, on the east coast of England. He studied at Aberystwyth University and the Guildford School of Acting and was an actor for several years but didn’t find success until he took a play he’d written to the Edinburgh Festival. This led to the decision to change career and start writing. Before switching to writing crime, he self-published a bestselling series of romantic comedy novels. Robert lives with his husband in Slovakia and is lucky enough to write full-time.

Twitter: @RobertBryndza

robertbryndza.com

The Silent Brother by Simon Van der Velde @SimonVdVwriter #TheSilentBrother #NewRelease

ABOUT THE BOOK

The Past Never Dies
When his beloved little brother is stolen away, five-year-old Tommy Farrier is left alone with his alcoholic mam, his violent step-dad and his guilt. Too young to understand what has really happened, Tommy is sure of only one thing. He is to blame.

Tommy tries to be good, to live-up to his brother’s increasingly hazy memory, but trapped in a world of shame and degradation he grows up with just two options; poverty or crime. And crime pays.

Or so he thinks.

A teenage drug-dealer for the vicious Burns gang, Tommy’s life is headed for disaster, until, in the place he least expects, Tommy sees a familiar face…

And then things get a whole lot worse.

BUY LINK:

The Silent Brother

MY THOUGHTS

I had the pleasure of reading Backstories by this author, which was highly entertaining, and I jumped at the chance to read his second book, The Silent Brother. The stories couldn’t have been more different. The Silent Brother is raw and heart-breaking as the two young boys are abused by the people that should be protecting them.


When social services take one of the boys away, it leaves the older of the two feeling guilty that he couldn’t stand up for his brother. As the years’ pass, Tommy has had to learn how to survive, even if that means being part of the wrong crowd. He meets Annie, and she becomes his mission to be saved.


The past is going to collide with the present day. I couldn’t help getting drawn in with these characters, as you feel so helpless that the choices that they make, just won’t be enough. Definitely a book that I needed tissues for while reading. This is such a talented author.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Simon Van der Velde has worked variously as a barman, laborer, teacher, caterer and lawyer, as well as traveling throughout Europe and South America collecting characters for his award-winning stories. Since completing a creative writing M.A. (with distinction) in 2010, Simon’s work has won and been shortlisted for numerous awards including; The Yeovil Literary Prize, (twice), The Wasafiri New Writing Prize, The Luke Bitmead Bursary, The Frome Prize, and The Harry Bowling Prize – establishing him as one of the UK’s foremost short-story writers.

Simon now lives in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, with his wife, labradoodle and two tyrannical children.

The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley by Sean Lusk @seanlusk1 @TransworldBooks #TheSecondSightOfZacharyCloudesley #NetGalley #NewRelease

The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley by [Sean Lusk]

ABOUT THE BOOK

In 1754, renowned maker of clocks and automata Abel Cloudesley must raise his new-born son Zachary when his wife dies in childbirth.

Growing up amongst the cogs and springs of his father’s workshop, Zachary is intensely curious, ferociously intelligent, unwittingly funny and always honest – perhaps too honest. But when a fateful accident leaves six-year-old Zachary nearly blinded, Abel is convinced that the safest place for his son is in the care of his eccentric Aunt Frances and her menagerie of weird and wonderful animals.

So when a precarious job in Constantinople is offered to him, Abel has no reason to say no. A job presented to him by a politician with dubious intentions, Abel leaves his son, his workshop and London behind. The decision will change the course of his life forever.

Since his accident, Zachary is plagued by visions that reveal the hearts and minds of those around him. A gift at times and a curse at others, it is nonetheless these visions that will help him complete a journey that he was always destined to make – to travel across Europe to Constantinople and find out what happened to his father all those years ago.

With a Dickensian cast of characters that are brilliantly bonkers one moment and poignant the next, Sean Lusk’s debut will take readers on an immersive journey into the wonders of the world of Zachary Cloudesley.

BUY LINK:

The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley

MY THOUGHTS

This story felt like I was reading a classic. The opening chapter is one of tragedy as when Zachary Cloudsley enters the world, his mother leaves it. His father, Abel is grief-stricken, in need of a wet nurse for his son, and has a business to run. Enter the wonderful and straight-talking Mrs Morley and her baby daughter Leonora. Both to become larger than life characters in the story. I laughed so much at this pair.

Zachary is like a sponge soaking up everything around him, curious, bright and a child far beyond his years. Abel is the owner of a company that makes unusual clocks and life-like creatures that move. His workforce is loyal, and employment there is something to be treasured. Tom is a first-class worker with secrets that Abel is unaware of, all Abel sees is that Tom is bright and a hard worker.

When a life-changing accident happens to Zachary, Abel blames himself but, it leaves Zachary with yet another gift, one where he can see the future. To protect his son Abel makes a bad choice that is jumped upon by someone in high government and puts Abel in a terrible position.

I was mesmerised by this whole story, Zachary and his second sight and the inventions that were part of his life. There are so many personal stories going on in the book. Yet because each of these characters is so unique, it never became overpowering or confused.

I liked how when a new character appeared, so did a description of them. It cemented each one in my mind straight away. The story isn’t just set in England, it travels much further through a perilous Europe. The weeks and months that it took kept me rooted in the 1700s. These days we forget just how big the world is.

I could read this book over and over and still be thrilled and terrified with the inventions and welcome each character back into my life again. A fabulous timeless story that I thoroughly enjoyed.

I wish to thank the publisher and Net Galley for an e-copy of this book, which I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Image

I’ve spent too many years trying to find satisfaction, joy or simple distraction in the many things we can do with our lives other than writing, but I’ve always returned to the page, to my attempts to capture imagined voices and make them as real as I can. There is a strange ecstasy in the act of turning the imagined into the frail reality of words.

I’ve won the Manchester Fiction Prize, the Fish Short Story Prize, the Cambridge Short Story Prize and won second prize in the Bridport Short Story competition. I’m persistent, you see. That’s what it takes, above all things. Persistence.

My favourite short story writers are Grace Paley and Nikolai Gogol, Richard Ford and Sarah Hall, Flannery O’Connor, Raymond Carver (a bit inevitable, old Raymond), Lorrie Moore, Richard Rash, Anton Chekhov and more others than it seems entirely sensible to go on to list.

I am more pleased than I can say to have found a wonderful agent in @davidhheadley of DHH literary agency. My novel, The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley will be published by Doubleday in June 2022.

Twitter: @seanlusk1

seanlusk.com

The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley by [Sean Lusk]

One of the Girls by Lucy Clarke @lucyclarkebooks @HarperCollinsUK 26th May #OneOfTheGirls #NetGalley #NewRelease #BookReview

ABOUT THE BOOK

One of us is a liar.
One of us is a stranger.
One of us is a cheater.

But who could be a killer?

The six of us arrived on the beautiful, sunbaked island of Aegos to leave it all behind, our suitcases packed with flip flops and beach towels, our heads full of dreams for the perfect weekend away with friends…

On the first night, we laughed and danced under the stars.

On the second night we went skinny dipping in the warm, summer sea.

On the third night the wine loosened our tongues, the lies spilling and the masks starting to slip.

And on the final night it all ignited as we celebrated around the beach fire – for someone, the holiday in Greece would be their last…

BUY LINK:

One of the Girls

MY THOUGHTS

What could go wrong? Six women known to the bride-to-be set out on an incredible bachelorette long weekend to the idyllic Greek Island of Aegos. They are not young kids, it is a group of thirty-something women. Some are already in relationships and have children themselves. They are all in Lexi’s life, the bride to be, one way or another.

The beautiful villa they are staying in sits on top of a cliff overlooking the ocean and beach, with nothing else remotely close by. It is a perfect setting for six women to party the nights away. But not everything is at it seems. As you know, one of them will not make it through this weekend. It becomes more of who is going to do it? And to whom, rather than a, who has done it?

The story is told by each of the characters, as they reveal how they met and know Lexi. But what starts as a strong group with a purpose soon beings to crumble. There is plenty of bitchiness to make you suspect every one of them at some point in the story.

The characters are not easy to like, but that is what makes it hard to guess what is going to happen and to who! I liked how the tension built in this book, which I felt the author created perfectly. I didn’t even get close to working the ending out.

I wish to thank Net Galley and the publisher for an e-copy of this book that I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lucy Clarke

Lucy Clarke is the author of six psychological thrillers. Her debut novel was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick, and her books have been sold in over 20 territories. Her most recent novel, The Castaways, was a Sunday Times bestseller. Lucy lives by the sea with her husband and two children.

Twitter: @lucyclarkebooks

lucy-clarke.com

Outside by Ragnar Jónasson @ragnarjo @MichaelJBooks #Outside #NetGalley #NewRelease

Outside by [Ragnar Jónasson]

ABOUT THE BOOK

Four friends. One night. Not everyone will come out alive . . .

Pre-order the gripping new stand-alone mystery from ‘world-class crime writer’ Ragnar Jónasson

When a deadly snowstorm strikes the Icelandic highlands, four friends seek shelter in a small, abandoned hunting lodge.

It is in the middle of nowhere and there’s no way of communicating with the outside world.

They are isolated, but they are not alone . . .

As the night darkens, and fears intensify, an old tragedy gradually surfaces – one that forever changed the course of their friendship.

Those dark memories could hold the key to the mystery the friends now find themselves in.

And whether they will survive until morning . . .

BUY LINK:

Outside 

MY THOUGHTS

There are only five characters in the story, but they fill every page with tension and the unexpected. The story opens in the middle. Then drops back to how they are all together in a storm, at the doorway of a safe shelter. It is one of those stories that would make it feel minus fifty, even in a hot climate.

What a strange group of people! They didn’t seem to fit together. They were rather like jigsaw pieces which, had been forced into the finished picture. It drops back to how they all met and when. Their backstories make for unusual reading that made me wonder why they had turned up in the first place.

I liked the descriptions of the area and how quickly it changed. Mild then unpredictable, deadly and unforgiving. It complimented the story to perfection. But I was so uneasy reading the story. I had butterflies constantly waiting to see who was going to give first because someone was.

It didn’t feel like a very long book, but I flew through the 352 pages quickly. A stunning book from this master of suspense in the most mesmerising place.

I wish to thank the publisher and Net Galley for an e-copy of this book, which I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Image

Ragnar Jónasson is an international number one bestselling author who has sold over two million books in thirty-two countries worldwide. He was born in Reykjavík, Iceland, where he also works as an investment banker and teaches copyright law at Reykjavík University.

He has previously worked on radio and television, including as a TV news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, and, from the age of seventeen, has translated fourteen of Agatha Christie’s novels. He is currently writing a novel with the Icelandic Prime Minister, Katrín Jakobsdóttir. His critically acclaimed international bestseller The Darkness is soon to be a major TV series.

Twitter @ragnarjo

Outside by [Ragnar Jónasson]

The Patient by Jane Shemilt @Janeshemilt @HarperCollinsUK #NetGalley #ThePatient #NewRelease #BookReview

The Patient: the gripping new suspense thriller novel from the Sunday Times bestselling global phenomenon - Jane Shemilt is BACK! by [Jane Shemilt]

ABOUT THE BOOK

When Rachel meets Luc, the attraction is instant.
But she is a doctor, and he is her patient.
She gives him the drugs he needs – but in doing so, risks everything.
And when a secret is exposed, they’re both in the firing line.
Not all patients are telling the truth.

BUY LINK

The Patient

MY THOUGHTS

What an unusual story this turned out to be, in a positive way. Rachel is a doctor that made a fatal error once and determined that such a mistake will never happen again. So when Luc walks in off the street saying that he needs meds, she prescribes him what he wants. There is an instant attraction between them, but she knows she will never see him again. Rachel’s marriage is rocky, and because of decisions she has made before to further her career, her daughter is not close to her.

When Rachel and her husband are invited to a party by the people next door, she discovers that her new neighbour is her mysterious patient with a stunning young wife. I felt that this story was going to be predictable, but I was enjoying it. I couldn’t have been more wrong. There was no way I could have guessed the path it would take.

There is no hint in the blurb at the events that follow in the book. It is dark and sinister, gripping and addictive. I had read late into the night, and there was no way I was putting this book down. Every page brought uneasiness. What a story this was turning out to be. It seemed like I was looking at every character from a different angle now, and no one was as I thought they were. Fabulous read!

I wish to thank the publisher and Net Galley for an e-copy of this book which, I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

While working as a GP, Jane Shemilt completed a postgraduate diploma in Creative Writing at Bristol University and went on to study for the MA in Creative Writing at Bath Spa, gaining both with distinction. Her first novel, Daughter, was selected for the Richard & Judy Book Club, shortlisted for the Edgar Award and the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize, and went on to become the bestselling debut novel of 2014. Since then Jane has published three more bestselling thrillers: Little Friends, The Drowning Lesson, and How Far We Fall. The Patient is her first novel with HarperCollins, and will be out in April 2022.

She and her husband, a professor of neurosurgery, have five children and live in Bristol.

Twitter: @Janeshemilt

The Patient: the gripping new suspense thriller novel from the Sunday Times bestselling global phenomenon - Jane Shemilt is BACK! by [Jane Shemilt]

The Confessions of Jonathan Flite (The Jonathan Flite Series Book 1) by Matthew J Beier @NetGalley #BookReview

The Confessions of Jonathan Flite (The Jonathan Flite Series Book 1) by [Matthew J. Beier]

ABOUT THE BOOK

Jonathan Flite claims to have memories he can’t explain. Seven layers of them, to be exact, all belonging to a group of teenagers who disappeared from a place called Idle County in 2010—ten years before his birth. Seventeen years of anxiety, violent outbursts, and refusal to admit he is lying have landed him at Crescent Rehabilitation Center, a seaside juvenile center for rich kids, and nobody has ever dared to believe his memories might be real.

Until now. On a blustery November day just three months after a nuclear terrorist attack in Geneva, Switzerland, ex-CIA psychiatrist Thomas Lumen arrives at Crescent to interview Jonathan for a book about Idle County. Fueled by his personal connection to the disappearances three decades earlier, he asks Jonathan to share what he knows—anything and everything.

By reigniting this thirty-year-old mystery, however, Jonathan inadvertently becomes a target of the very same religious terrorists who attacked Geneva, and they’ll stop at nothing to keep the secrets of Idle County under wraps. Jonathan must then make a choice: to continue telling his story, or risk the safety of everyone he loves

BUY LINK:

The Confessions of Jonathan Flite

MY THOUGHTS

I had not realised that this was book one of a series when I began reading it. It is somewhat complex and travels between 2010 and 2034. At age seventeen, Jonathan Flite is sent to a facility for troubled wealthy children. His mother has had enough of his violent outbursts and what she sees as his continual lies. Jonathan swears that he has memories of seven children who went missing ten years before he was born.

His mother researches his stories and finds that they link to a cold case in Idle back in 2010. When Jonathan kills a nurse at the facility, he is transferred to a rehab centre where he will serve a life sentence.

Thomas Lumen enters the story and shows an interest in what Jonathan has to say about the missing children. But he isn’t the only one that wants to know just how much Jonathan knows. A group of terrorists are drawn into the mix, and things become very deadly for anyone close to Jonathan.

It is a strange and fascinating story aimed at a teenage audience, but I was hooked. I liked how the characters developed through the story. The core of them is still recognisable but changed with the years too. Not everything was as first thought, and I had an uneasy feeling about how things were developing. It will be fascinating to see where this is going in the coming series. It is an excellent introduction.

I wish to thank Net Galley and the publisher for an e-copy of this book that I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matthew J. Beier

Matthew J. Beier is a novelist, screenwriter, photographer, and graphic designer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. His first novel, The Breeders, was published in 2012. He attended film school at Chapman University in 2003, where studied screenwriting, film production, and English before spending a final semester abroad at Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. When Matthew isn’t working, he enjoys tea, exercise, watching films, and spending time with his friends and family. He is currently working on Book 2 in the Jonathan Flite series, “The Release of Jonathan Flite

Twitter: @MatthewBeier

matthewbeier.com

The Confessions of Jonathan Flite (The Jonathan Flite Series Book 1) by [Matthew J. Beier]

The Key in the Lock by Beth Underdown @bethunderdown @PenguinUKBooks #TheKeyInTheLock #NetGalley #NewRelease #BookReview

The Key In The Lock: An atmospheric historical mystery perfect for fans of Once Upon a River and The Foundling by [Beth Underdown]

ABOUT THE BOOK

I still dream, every night, of Polneath on fire. Smoke unravelling from an upper window, and the terrace bathed in a hectic orange light . . . Now I see that the decision I made at Polneath was the only decision of my life. Everything marred in that one dark minute.

By day, Ivy Boscawen mourns the loss of her son Tim in the Great War. But by night she mourns another boy – one whose death decades ago haunts her still.

For Ivy is sure that there is more to what happened all those years ago: the fire at the Great House, and the terrible events that came after. A truth she must uncover, if she is ever to be free.

But once you open a door to the past, can you ever truly close it again?

From the award-winning author of The Witchfinder’s Sister comes a captivating story of burning secrets and buried shame, and of the loyalty and love that rises from the ashes.

BUY LINK:

The Key In The Lock

MY THOUGHTS

This story takes place on two-time lines, 1888 and 1918. Ivy Boscawen’s only son died in the Great War, but she needs to know how and why. Her husband is a sickly man, unable to seek the truth himself, but nothing will stop Ivy. She had experienced tragedy before, with the death of a child in a fire. The truth had not come out then either, and it had always haunted her. She felt like she was been punished for not doing more than she had for the little boy.


It is quite a deep and dark read. It is intense yet a slow burn at the same time. The story is set not that long ago when women had few rights at work and at home. They were expected to do anything without questioning it or objecting because they could be easily replaced. But, at the same time, women were thought of as fragile and unable to cope with life’s tragedies. Ivy was determined to seek the truth out in the past and present, but could she bear the truth?


The story captures both periods perfectly. Although the outcome of both stories is heartbreaking. You know who dies but will people from the past and present be strong enough for the truth? This is the author’s second novel, and it will rip you open. What a talent this lady is. Highly recommended.

I wish to thank Net Galley and the publisher for an e-copy of this book that I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Image

Beth Underdown was born in Rochdale in 1987. She studied at the University of York and then the University of Manchester, where she is now a Lecturer in Creative Writing.

The Witchfinder’s Sister is her debut novel, and is based on the life of the 1640s witch finder Matthew Hopkins.

She first came across him while reading a book about seventeenth-century midwifery. As you do.

Twitter: @bethunderdown

bethunderdown.co.uk

The Key In The Lock: An atmospheric historical mystery perfect for fans of Once Upon a River and The Foundling by [Beth Underdown]

Fatal Hate by Brian Price @HobeckBooks #FatalHate #NewRelease #BookReview #BlogTour

ABOUT THE BOOK

DC Mel Cotton is back with a brand new case, the murder of Duncan Bennett. But who would want an unassuming warehouse worker dead?

The case soon becomes far more complex and dangerous, with terrorists, a paedophile network and a hitman in town. And against a background of rising hatred and violence, one woman pursues her deadly revenge.

Mel and her colleagues face their greatest challenge yet. Mel’s own courage will be tested to the limits. No-one is safe.

Fatal Hate is the thrilling sequel to the much-acclaimed Fatal Trade by the brilliant Brian Price

BUY LINK

Fatal Hate

MY THOUGHTS

This is the second book in the DC Mel Cotton series, and I felt that it had a lot to live up to after loving Fatal Trade so much. Well, the author Brian Price did himself proud with this one.


When Duncan Bennett is found dead, not far from where he worked, no one knows why anyone would want him dead. Duncan had portrayed himself as a boring no-body, but there was far more to him than anyone released.

When DC Mel Cotton and the team began to dig deeper into Duncan’s life, they soon found themselves in a dangerous place. There is so much going on in this story, and the bad guys always seem like they are one step ahead. Just writing about this story makes my back shiver and the back of my neck tingle.

I took to a new character in this story, a hacker who was willing to go further than anyone would ask him to go. But would it be a step too far? There are people in high positions that could have him silenced. I just hoped that he made it through.

Mel has some hard decisions to make. Firstly she doesn’t know who she can trust and who will believe what she suspects. Oh wow! In some books, you want to feel the rush again. That punch the air moment. The same feeling I got with this. I love this series. This book gives me a tense and believable story, with characters that at times have to go it alone.

When I came to the end of this story, I knew it would not be easy to fill the hole it left. Roll on number three. I am waiting already!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brian Price is a chemist and biologist who retired from the Environment Agency in 2016. He is the author of Crime Writing: How to write the science and runs a website offering tips on science for crime writers (www.crimewriterscience.co.uk). He is an avid reader of crime fiction and has also written a number of short stories, one of which was a runner up in the Weston-super-Mare Literary Festival 2019 and another was short listed in the Chorley Writers Circle competition in 2018. He taught science and technology courses for the Open University for 26 years. Previous books include P for Pollution and C for Chemicals (with Mike Birkin).

I wish to thank Rebecca of Hobeck Books for inviting me on the blog tour for Fatal Hate.

Dry Heat by Len Joy @len_joy @FSBAssociates @bqbpublishing #DryHeat #NetGalley #BookReview

ABOUT THE BOOK

The day All-American Joey Blade turns 18, he learns his ex-girlfriend is pregnant, is betrayed by his new girlfriend, and is arrested for the attempted murder of two police officers. Then things get bad. The high school bonfire is supposed to be the kickoff to a great night: Joey has just won a football scholarship and he’s hoping for a sex breakthrough with his new girlfriend. Then his true love–but ex-girlfriend–Mallory tells his she’s pregnant. He’s reeling from that news when the bonfire explodes. Joey, his new girlfriend and her drug dealer friend TJ, flee in her truck. When the police pursue, TJ shoots at the cop’s car. It crashes and in the ensuing chaos TJ slips away undetected. Joey, the only adult in the truck, is hauled off to jail. Joey is charged with attempted murder and released on bail. TJ is nowhere to be found. When Joey discovers that Mallory’s father is pressuring her to terminate the pregnancy, Joey has to remain free to prevent that from happening. In desperation, he reaches out to notorious gang leader, Chico Torres, whom he met in jail, for help locating TJ. When Joey is offered a deal–his freedom in exchange for his cooperation in nailing Chico–he faces a decision that will change the course of his life and Mallory’s.

BUY LINK:

Dry Heat

MY THOUGHTS

Oh boy, how quickly someone’s life can crumble. Everything had been falling into place for eighteen-year-old Joey Blade. He had been offered a football college scholarship, and he had a new girlfriend and hoped to get lucky with her later. That evening at the High School bonfire, he learns that his ex-girlfriend Mallory is pregnant. Then an explosion sends everyone running.

Joey jumps in the driving seat of his girlfriend’s truck, along with her and her drug-dealing friend TJ. The police are soon in pursuit when TJ pulls a gun and fires at the police. When Joey pulls up, his two companions run off, leaving him to take the blame for the shooting. Things quickly worsen when secondary charges are brought against him for underage sex with Mallory.

Whoa, this is all action, and the story has just begun. Joey is a fabulous character with whom I connected from the start. How different his life could have been by just a couple of alternate choices. It seemed that Joey’s life had been taken out of his hands, but there was one person that could make a difference for him.

As no one will believe what he says, Joey takes the only path left for him, but his life will get even more complicated and deadly. It is a gripping read from the start because just being innocent isn’t enough. It is a spiral that intensifies in every chapter and becomes a darker and a heart-pounding page-turner.

What a brilliant second novel from Len Joy. Highly recommended.

I wish to thank Net Galley, the publisher and Anna Sacca for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Len Joy is the author of four books that have have received shining reviews and several awards. Everyone Dies Famous, published in 2020 won 1st Prize in the 2020 Top Shelf Book Awards and was described by Kirkus as . . .a striking depiction of small-town America at the dawn of the 21st century. NY Times bestselling author Kevin Wilson described it as A clear-eyed examination of how we live in an uncertain world. . . .In clear prose, Joy does real work here. I’m grateful for it. His first novel, American Past Time, published in 2014 took 1st Prize in the Top Shelf Book Awards in 2019 for Fiction and was described by Kirkus as . . .expertly written and well-crafted. His second novel, Better Days was a finalist in the Indie Excellence Book Awards in 2019 and described by Foreword Reviews as A bighearted, wry, and tender novel that focuses on love and loyalty.

Len is a nationally ranked triathlete and competed internationally representing the United States as part of TEAM USA. He lives in Evanston, Illinois with his wife, Suzanne.