Synopsis: Eva Dunbar wakes in a large metal box. She has no idea who has taken her. She has no way out . . .
Eva isn't the first young woman to disappear. Detective Ian Bradshaw, leading the search, has no leads - and precious little time.
When at last a body is found, the police hope the tragic discovery might at least provide a clue that will help them finally find the kidnapper.
But then they identify the body - and realise the case is more twisted than they ever imagined . . .
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: So we finally get to see Tom Carney and his partner Helen as well as Ian Bradshaw. I've read all of Mr L's books and this particular series has always been one I enjoyed, however I lean more towards Tom and Helen as favourite characters over Bradshaw but this latest book makes them feel more like a team of three which is beginning to feel 'the norm'!
Tom and Helen get called into help Bradshaw with the disappearance of a woman by the name of Eva Dunbar.We get to see Eva's terror at the beginning of the book as she experiences the worst horror imaginable. She wakes to find herself locked in a metal crate with no means of escape. She doesn't know how she got there or who did it, but her terror and fear literally drips from the first few pages.
Escape to Greece with the perfect feel-good book to read on the beach this summer. If you love Kat French and Sarah Morgan, you'll love Mandy Baggot's sizzling summer romantic comedies.
Abby Dolan is having a very bad day... In twenty-four hours, she's lost her job and her boyfriend. Single and with nothing left to lose, she's headed for a Corfu escape to spend time with her family while she heals her broken heart.
Only her mum and sister's estate agency 'Desperately Seeking' is just that, desperate! Instead of the relaxing, sunshine holiday she'd hoped for, Abby finds herself spending her break helping get the business back on its feet. Determined to attract new clients and give her family a second chance at success, she finds the perfect property to sell in Villa Pappas complete with gorgeous gardener, Theo.
Perhaps working this summer could be a welcome distraction after all. But Theo has his own secrets and Abby isn't the only thing he wants to take off the market...
Synopsis: Roy Grace, creation of the CWA Diamond Dagger award winning author Peter James, faces his most complex case yet in Dead If You Don't.
Kipp Brown, successful businessman and compulsive gambler, is having the worst run of luck of his life. He’s beginning to lose, big style. However, taking his teenage son, Mungo, to their club’s Saturday afternoon football match should have given him a welcome respite, if only for a few hours. But it’s at the stadium where his nightmare begins.
Within minutes of arriving at the game, Kipp bumps into a client. He takes his eye off Mungo for a few moments, and in that time, the boy disappears. Then he gets the terrifying message that someone has his child, and to get him back alive, Kipp will have to pay.
Defying instruction not to contact the police, Kipp reluctantly does just that, and Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is brought in to investigate. At first it seems a straightforward case of kidnap. But rapidly Grace finds himself entering a dark, criminal underbelly of the city, where the rules are different and nothing is what it seems .
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: Well I must admit although I really enjoyed this latest Roy Grace outing I was kind of expecting a little more. If like me you were glad to see the back of the Sandy storyline, I also wonder if (like me) you were also expecting a little more from the thread regarding Roy's son? That little niggle aside this was a pretty decent read. You notice I say decent, and not great or good. I don't know whether that's because I just consistently expect more from Mr J or whether he just isn't up to scratch.
This story is set around a bomb threat at the local Football stadium as well as the kidnapping of the son of local businessman Kipp Brown who was briefly featured in the last book. The storylines were okay and certainly engaging enough but I still felt like there was something missing and I still cannot put my finger on exactly what that was. I love seeing the return of characters I love such as Roy's sidekick Glenn Branson as well as people like the always inappropriate Norman Potting.These consistently good characters and now the additin of Roy's son are certainly what keep me going back to this series.
One of the most exciting threads for me is Roy's son who frankly is one of the best things recently introduced. I think this gives Peter James the scope to take this series in a new direction and I sincerely hope that he will. I don't know if it's just me as the reviews for this book are mostly amazing so it seems I am in the minority. I just feel like there was a little something slightly off and although I cannot qork out what that is this latest release just didn't feel like it was as good as it could have been.
Synopsis: 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.
Kat's Rating: 4/5
*If you plan to read this series in order, please do not continue to read this review as this is book 13 in the series and will inevitably contain spoilers*
Kat's Review: I realised quite suddenly that with the newest Peter James nearly upon us I was actually a book behind. Then it dawned on me that the saga that was Sandy was no longer an issue so decided to dive right into the last book. We are introduced to Lorna Belling, a woman that is in an incredibly abusive relationship, but who is being offered another chance with another man to start over. Unfortunately she doesn't get that chance and is found murdered...enter Roy Grace. From the off Roy seems a little unbalanced, however it totally makes sense as he is just getting closure after the death of Sandy his wife who disappeared many years before. However, he still has to face the shocking realisation (that came from the conclusion of the last book) in the form of his ten year old son Bruno who he has only just learnt about.
With all of these issues at hand, and loads of staff not being around (Glen Branson his trusty sidekick being one of them) he has a lot on his plate. Add to that his wife Cleo and son Noah, his personal life seems to be one big jumble of activity. Thankfully he has the help in the form of his colleague Guy Batchelor so he becomes the help rather than the main lead. However, it becomes clear pretty early on this will not be straightforward and the book itself leans heavily on the police procedural.
The storylines most interesting thread for me was Roy's son Bruno. I think that the next book will hopefully explore this element of Roy's life in greater detail as I feel like this is potentially a great contribution to revving up the series. That opinion to one side, this book was very much a whodunnit and with Glen Branson not at Roy's beck and call it lost a little bit of magic for me. In addition, I thought that Roy and Cleo weren't right, it seemed to have lost some of the character strengths in replacement for the police heavy duties. The ending was somewhat of a mystery as there were a few questions that didn't get answered and I thought were a bit odd, I can only hope these will be addressed in the next book. Overall it was a decent read and I really did enjoy it, but maybe at the cost of areas that were normally more enjoyable. A solid read, but I hope things get back on more of an even keel for the next book.
Synopsis: When a single mother, Julie Simon, is found in her kitchen with a stab wound to her stomach, Cumbria’s Major Crimes Team are handed the case. Under the supervision of DI Campbell and witîh advice from his former DI, Harry Evans, DC Amir Bhaki fights to discover who assaulted an innocent woman and left her with life-threatening injuries. Nothing is as it first appears and when the team looks into Julie’s life they uncover a hidden sex-life that may just hold the key to the identity of her attacker.
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: This novella/short story is just under 100 pages, and although these sorts of short books aren't always my cup of tea, this was a really enjoyable bite sized read.
The Major Crimes Team are handed a case involving the stabbing of a single mother Julia Simon. Even though a short story Smith manages to pack a fair bit into this latest installment. This is almost like a mini catch up to see where the team are and what they are up to.
We see DI John Campbell trying to replace the now retired Harry Evans, however somehow I don't see it happening. What I did get was a small but jam packed mini investigation with colleagues such as DC Amir Bhaki and DC Lauren Phillips making a welcome return. Thankfully this seems like the perfect time to read this with a full length novel entitled 'When The Waters Recede' due in May.
Synopsis: They took her dad, but she won’t let them take her.
Nancy Byrne was the apple of her daddy’s eye. He might have been one of the most-feared gangsters in London, yet Jimmy Byrne idolised his little Nancy. But now Jimmy is dead, gunned down in cold blood - and Nancy vows to avenge his death.
She’s only twenty years old, but as the new head of the ruthless Byrne gang, running a lucrative world of drugs, sex and violence, she’s in over her head. Keeping her family together while her beloved grandma falls apart and her brother Daniel goes off the rails forces Nancy to grow up - fast.
But while Nancy takes the men on at their own game, there’s a greater danger hiding on the dark streets. Jimmy’s killer is on her trail - and will stop at nothing to shut her up.
Blood might be thicker than water, but soon, Nancy realises she can't trust anyone. Not even her own family.
Synopsis: Detective DD Warren and Flora Dane are in a race against time to save a young girl's life - or bring her to justice.
A family home has become a crime scene. Five people are involved: four of them have been savagely murdered; one - a sixteen-year-old girl - is missing.
Was she lucky to have escaped? Or is her absence evidence of something sinister?
Detective D. D. Warren is on the case, as is survivor-turned-avenger Flora Dane.
Seeking different types of justice, they must make sense of the clues left behind by a young woman who, as victim or suspect, is silently pleading, Look for me.
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: It's been a long time since I have caught up with DD and I was looking forward to seeing how she was doing. This latest installment sees the return of Flora Dane who was featured in the last book in the series, only this time she is working her way through life as a survivor.
DD is called to a murder scene involving a whole family, except one member of that family, the eldest daughter Roxy. DD needs to work out if Roxy is the suspect or the victim. Flora has a link to Roxy and as such manages to insert herself into the investigation and as such becomes DD's newest CI. Frankly it seems like a match made in heaven and I couldn't help but think this element of the story fitted in seamlessly.
The story is pretty well paced, although in all honesty probably not one of my favourites in the series. However, DD remains a favourite character of mine and I think this series most certainly still has the legs to keep running. There is quite a lot going on and the reader is kept engaged, however although I absolutely loved the addition of Flora, I kind of missed seeing more of her other colleagues so the return of those in the next book would definitely be welcome. I think to enjoy this book it always helps to have read the series in order as you have the background of the characters involved. Certainly an enjoyable book and one that I think fans will really enjoy.
Synopsis: ‘Thirty-seven years in the force, and if I was allowed to choose just one thing to erase from my mind, what’s inside that room would be it.’ That’s what a LAPD Lieutenant tells Detectives Hunter and Garcia of the Ultra Violent Crimes Unit as they arrive at one of the most shocking crime scenes they have ever attended. In a completely unexpected turn of events, the detectives find themselves joining forces with the FBI to track down a serial killer whose hunting ground sees no borders; a psychopath who loves what he does because to him murder is much more than just killing – it’s an art form. Welcome to The Gallery of the Dead.
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: I was thrilled to receive an ARC of the new Chris Carter and couldn't wait to get started. Robert Hunter is a wonderful character, and alongside him every step of the way is his colleague Carlos Garcia. The two of them are like chalk an cheese but always work better together. It was nice to catch up with the two of them but as usual with their roles wihtin the Ultra Violent unit they never sit on their laurels for long. This time it comes in the form of a particularly sadistic killer. The difference with this case is that this time they team up with the FBI.
I couldn't help but feel that the chock value of these murders along with the frisly detail seems to have stepped up a notch. There is no holding back with descriptive murder scenes so if you are squemish it's probably not for you. That aside the storyline kept me gripped. I also loved the fact we see more of Hunter's personal life albeit in small sections as his job alone limits what sort of relattionships he can maintain.
The first three quarters of the book was very 'cat and mouse' however the last quarter I read at lightining speed and at one point I sat bolt upright in shock! If you can stomach the violence and gore (not an issue for me) then these books as a series are absolutely addictive. For some reason it fell just short of the full stars for me, and I can't even exlain why! I just feel like this maybe wasn't as amazing as some of the others in the series, but by no means is any less enjoyable. A thoroughly enaging book that left me eager tot read the next in the series.