Category Archives: My bookshelf

Recent Reads – October

I’ve taken to the idea of doing one summary post to look at what I’ve been reading rather than take up lots of posts by doing individual ones, so that is what I’m going to do. I’ve got my reading mojo back and feel like I am devouring books over the last couple of weeks, well at least compared to what I had been like.

Speaking in Bones


This was an audiobook and I struggled to get into it, but once I started listening regularly I was fine. I love this series and it’s nice to see the character development and relationship development as I read through. I liked this story it was interesting and kept me hooked. I also didn’t guess the ending, which I like, as sometimes its too easy to do so with crime books. I didn’t like the narrator though, so think I’ll stick to reading the next one myself.

The Assassins Blade


I have really enjoyed Sarah Maas’s books so far and it made sense to read the prequel book to understand the main character better. I also have the 4th book ready on my bookshelf, but feel I want to re-read the others first. I enjoyed this book and it gave me insight into where the character came from and how she ended up where we first meet he in Throne of Glass. I wouldn’t necessarily start with this book as I don’t think it matters if you’ve read a few of the main series first. Overall though I enjoyed it and it was face based and kept me glued to the pages.

Close Encounters of the Furred Kind


I’ve been waiting for this book for a while and it did not disappoint. I love reading about The Bear and his family. It makes me look at my cats and their character traits and imagine what they are thinking. I also hold conversations with them on a daily basis and it is nice to know other people do to. I also like that this breaks the ‘crazy-cat lady’ stereotype as this is about a guy and his four cats. yes he does have a girlfriend, but really it’s about Tom. If you like cats or like well written descriptions of places these books are great.

I also have re-read the first three Harry Potter books this last month. I needed something familiar and comforting while I was interviewing and wait to hear on my new job. These were exactly what I needed and stimulated my recent reading frenzy. So that six books in the last month!

I’ve currently got three books on the go:

  • Currently reading – Mindy Kaling’s Is everybody hanging out with me?
  • Currently listening to as bed time –  Death Masks by Jim Butcher
  • Currently listening to at work – The Rosie Effect

I also have a to-read shelf containing:

  • Court of Thorns and Roses
  • Percy Jackson’s Guide to the Greek Myths
  • Queen of Shadows
  • The Girl on the Train (borrowed from my friend Stacey)
  • Career of Evil (borrowing from my friend Ingrid)
  • Books 4 to 7 of Harry Potter to re-read too!

I love reading and books at the moment. I can’t wait to get to each and every single one of these books. It’s so nice to delve into different worlds and become the characters on the pages. For me it is an escape, but also time spent learning and growing and experiencing things I won’t get from my own life.



Recent Reads – September

I seem to be rubbish at book posts recently, but then again I seem to be rubbish at reading much as well! I thought rather than try to do a whole post on each book I’ll do a brief summary on the last few I’ve read to keep you up to date on my Goodreads challenge (which I am way behind on!).


I just finished the 5th book in the Tory Brennen series. I admit I struggled through this one. I kept putting it down for too long and then losing interest and having to recap to start reading again. I love the Kathy Reich style of writing, but found the story is just getting a bit too out there for me. I’m also not sure where this is heading as the ending has been left open for another story, but I’m not convinced it needs it. I definitely rushed reading this in order to get it back in time to avoid overdue fees at the library and that could have influenced my enjoyment.

The Trust about the Harry Quebert Affair

harry quebert

This was the last bookclub book I read and I really enjoyed it. I got really engrossed and found it easy to read, while thrilling at the same time. I didn’t guess the ending, which I tend to do with crime books most of the time. My bookclub had mixed reactions, but I like it and would recommend it as an easy, but longish read.

The Blood of Olympusblood of olympus This was the 5th book in the Heroes of Olympus series. I struggled through this one as well – what is it with me and the 5th books of series? I do love the Percy Jackson universe, but found that as there were many more characters in the series it was not as readable as the previous ones. I am also not a fan of chapters dedicated to specific characters, but I also wouldn’t know a better way to do it. I just don’t like having to wait to find out what happens to different people and the constantly changing narrator interrupts the flow for me. I did enjoy the series and the overarching storyline though so overall it was a good read.

Adventures in Books… The Hunt

“She will hunt down the men who took her family. She will have blood. Rose is the one that got away. She was the prey in a human trophy hunt organised by an elite and secret organisation for bored super-rich clients seeking a unique thrill. She paid a terrible price – when she escaped The Trail murdered her family. Every moment since she has been planning her revenge. Watching, waiting …And now her day has come.

Chris returns from his morning run to find his wife and children missing and a stranger in his kitchen. He’s told to run. If he’s caught and killed, his family go free. If he escapes, they die. Rose is the only one who can help him, but Rose only has her sights on one conclusion. For her, Chris is bait. But The Trail have not forgotten the woman who tried to outwit them. The Trail want Rose. The hunters want Chris’s corpse. Rose wants revenge, and Christ just wants his family back.

The hunt is on…”

TIM J LEBBON is a New York Times-bestselling writer with over thirty novels published to date, as well as dozens of novellas and hundreds of short stories.  Recent releases include The Silence, Coldbrook, Into the Void: Dawn of the Jedi (Star Wars), Reaper’s Legacy, and Alien: Out of the Shadows.  He has won four British Fantasy Awards, a Bram Stoker Award, and a Scribe Award, and been shortlisted for World Fantasy and Shirley Jackson awards.  A movie of his story Pay the Ghost, starring Nicolas Cage, will be released soon, and other projects in development include My Haunted House, Playtime, and Exorcising Angels.

He has had around 20 novellas published and hundreds of short stories, steadily building a dedicated following among the horror & dark fiction community.  A movie of his short story PAY THE GHOST was filmed last year in Toronto, starring Nicolas Cage and Sarah Wayne Callies, directed by Uli Edel. He is also working on two TV series ideas, as well as a new original screenplay. 

He has won 4 British Fantasy Awards (3 for Best Novella, one for Best Novel), a Bram Stoker Award and a Scribe Award.  He has also been shortlisted for the British Fantasy Award multiple times, the World Fantasy Award, and the Shirley Jackson Award.

To be honest and upfront this book was sent to me free of charge in return for a review. I find it extremely difficult to pass up the opportunity for a free book in the genres of fantasy and crime. I also find it opens my bookshelf up to new authors, which is good as I have a tendency to stay with my favourites, so it’s nice to mix it up.

I also loved the marketing campaign for this. In the run up to the receiving the book I received a letter and then a parcel with supplies in, such as energy bars and blister protection. It made it really fun and exciting to be part of this blog tour. I still only had the summary above so it was still a mystery as to what it was all about, but it added to the suspense.  Then the book arrived and it had been personalised with my name on. They were some nice touches from the marketing team for the book and a great way to build momentum for the release.

IMG_2136 IMG_2137

This was book was fast paced and nail-biting. Once I started reading I found it hard to put down as every time I would say ‘just one more chapter’ I would get to the end of that chapter and be left with a mini cliff-hanger and then want to read on! I think I read this bursts in three bursts and only stopped as I had to go somewhere else. I started reading before bed, but found it a little too violent for that for me personally.

The story was based on an interesting concept – using people as prey for sport. We see it all too often in the news about people going hunting animals, but this takes it to another level. It made me think about the type of people who do this with animals and I could then believe that there would be people out there who would do this to people. It is quite a scary concept if you start thinking about it too much!

The main characters were Chris and Rose. I liked Chris, but I’m still not sure if I liked Rose. I suppose it was easier to relate to Chris and his position, rather than Rose who had lived through something so awful.  I wonder if I would have felt more connected to her if we had started with her story, rather than it is drip fed to us through the book, but that is just my thought. I would like to hear her story in more detail though, maybe as a prequel.

Overall this was a good quick read that kept me engaged. I would recommend this to friends this time of year for holidays, especially if you are flying anywhere as this will keep you  gripped for those boring airports journeys.

I wonder if this is going to be a series as the ending was left open a little to take it forward and globally…

This post is the first in a blog tour for the publication of this book today! So do make sure you head over to these other blogs to check out their reviews too.

Adventures in Books… The Martyr’s Curse

blogtour“Sales of gripping ‘Ben Hope’ conspiracy thriller series top 1.1 Million Copies with over 1,500 5* reviews now on Amazon

Can Ben Hope find peace at last in a remote medieval monastery in the French Alps? His wanderings through Europe might have led him to this refuge but salvation is to be short lived for wherever he goes, trouble is never far behind.

When a team of merciless killers invade his newfound sanctuary and slaughter the innocent monks, Ben’s revenge quest quickly draws him into a bewildering mystery of stolen treasure, deception and murder.

What is the truth behind the cache of gold bullion apparently hidden for centuries under the monastery? What is the significance of an ancient curse dating back to a cruel heretic burning in medieval times? What are the real ambitions of the enigmatic leader of an organisation of doomsday ‘preppers’ calling themselves Exercitus Paratorum: the Army of the Prepared?

As he works to unravel the mystery, Ben is confronted with a terrifying reality that threatens to devastate the world and reshape the whole of our future. The race is on to prevent the ultimate disaster and there’s only one man who save us. His name is Hope, Ben Hope.”

To be up front, I was sent a copy of this book for free with the agreement to post a review today.

This is the 3rd book of the Ben Hope series I’ve now read and I want to read the others. So far they have been easy, fun reads I have enjoyed. I would definitely recommend as a holiday read for the summer. The chapters are short and snappy and left me wanting to carry on reading each time. I was saying ‘just one more chapter’ a lot with this book.

The book starts off catching up with Ben as he is rebuilding his life after the last book. He is lost and destitute and living in the middle of nowhere. He is in despair and is just looking for a way out. He is found and taken in by monks and that’s where the story starts to get interesting.

I love books where the modern world and history collide. I find it interesting and often learn something I didn’t know. I like fiction over non-fiction, but I also like to learn and find facts intriguing and often lead me to google a subject area to find out a bit more. This book did that, but I don’t want to give away the story by telling you what I looked up.

I liked the pace of this book. Starting out in a monastery setting helped slow the story down and let you get to know the main character more.  It then starts to speed up as the action unfolds.  The pace started to get too fast for towards the end. I felt it was rushed compared to the rest of the book, which was fast paced.  Maybe it was just me getting into the end of the book and turning the pages too quickly.

Overall I enjoyed the action thriller that this book was. It was a fun speedy read that kept me entertained while I was reading it. It is predictable in a way as it follows the same kind of format as the other books I have read in the series, but that does not make it any less entertaining and enjoyable. The character has developed through the books I have read and I have grown to understand him more. If you are looking for a fast paced action book that could easily be a film, or TV episode, to keep you enthralled for a few days then this books, and the series, is a good place to start.

The Marytr’s Curse is published today!

Front cover

Adventures in Books… The Book of You


“Clarissa is becoming more and more frightened of her colleague, Rafe. He won’t leave her alone, and he refuses to take no for an answer. He is always there.

Being selected for jury service is a relief. The courtroom is a safe haven, a place where Rafe can’t be. But as a violent tale of kidnap and abuse unfolds, Clarissa begins to see parallels between her own situation and that of the young woman on the witness stand.

Realizing that she bears the burden of proof, Clarissa unravels the twisted, macabre fairytale that Rafe has spun around them – and discovers that the ending he envisions is more terrifying than she could have imagined.”

This was a bookclub read from January and I can’t say I enjoyed reading it. It is pure and simple stalker story that takes place a little too close to home – in Bath and Bristol. I like TV and films that have this premise, but in a book and reading from the main characters point of view is not a nice feeling.

I also guessed the ending early on so was reading it just waiting for it to come about and because we were going to be talking about it in bookclub. It wasn’t all bad as the concept of keeping a journal and everything a stalker gives you and says is quite important and I didn’t realize this.

I can’t say I would recommend this to anyone to read and we didn’t rate it as a bookclub either, purely because of the subject matter, but maybe that means it did what it set out to do – make the reader uncomfortable,

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