#BlogTour! #Review – Trap by Lilja Sigurdardóttir (@lilja1972) @orendabooks @annecater

Huge thank you to Orenda Books and Anne Cater for having me on the blog tour for ‘Trap’! Here is my review:

Happily settled in Florida, Sonja believes she’s finally escaped the trap set by unscrupulous drug lords. But when her son Tomas is taken, she’s back to square one … and Iceland.

Her lover, Agla, is awaiting sentencing for financial misconduct after the banking crash, and Sonja refuses to see her. And that’s not all … Agla owes money to some extremely powerful men, and they’ll stop at nothing to get it back.

With her former nemesis, customs officer Bragi on her side, Sonja puts her own plan into motion, to bring down the drug barons and her scheming ex-husband, and get Tomas back safely. But things aren’t as straightforward as they seem, and Sonja finds herself caught in the centre of a trap that will put all of their lives at risk…

What Does TWG think?

I hold my hands up and say that up until ‘Trap’, I hadn’t read the author’s previous book, Snare, which I have since found out that it is the first book in the series. I quite happily read ‘Trap’ as a stand-alone though, that said, just like other series, you may benefit from reading the books in order so that you don’t miss out on any little pieces of information.

I’m not sure what to think of this book to be honest – whilst I found the suspense brilliantly crafted, I felt a little out of my depth due to being a newbie on the ‘Nordic noir’ front. Not the author’s issue at all, it just means that I need to read more! Even with the translator making things easier for readers at the beginning, I couldn’t even begin to work out how to say some of the place names! This is coming from someone who struggles to say ‘railway station’.

Even though I spent a lot of the book out of my depth, I could still appreciate just how well the author can tell a story. I was transfixed by Sonja’s journey and out of the different journeys covered in the storyline, I enjoyed the dynamics behind Sonja’s life the best.

All in all, ‘Trap’ was a pleasant, unique read which kept me thoroughly entertained – I enjoyed stepping out of my comfort zone with this one!

About the author.

Icelandic crime-writer Lilja Sigurdardóttir was born in the town of Akranes in 1972 and raised in Mexico, Sweden, Spain and Iceland. An award-winning playwright, Lilja has written four crime novels, with Snare, the first in a new series, hitting bestseller lists worldwide. The film rights have been bought by Palomar Pictures in California. She lives in Reykjavík with her partner.

Advertisements

#BlogTour! #Review – Chilling Tales of the Unexpected (Box set 4 in 1) by Ann Girdharry (@GirdharryAnn) @RaRaResources

Chilling Tales of the Unexpected Full Tour Banner
Day three of the blog tour is with me, TWG, and I am spoiling you all by reviewing a boxset containing FOUR short stories in one. Yes, that’s right. You get FOUR short stories in one. Bargain or what? Big thank you to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

Box Set Cover
Four twisty, short reads.
Addictive works of suspense,
That will leave you breathless and give you goose bumps…

Trading with Death
What sacrifice might we make for those we love? In the face of death, will we be selfish or selfless?

Tell Me a Secret
Deceit, lies and secrets – how well do we know those close to us?

Sweet Justice
We follow Tess as she confronts the dark side…

Written on the Apple Tree
A moment from a past life, a possession, or a simple meeting between strangers?

What does TWG think?

Just like my previous reviews of short stories, this one will be short and sweet because really, how much can one write in a review about a short story, without giving anything away?

I am a big fan of Ann Girdharry’s previous novels, so I was very eager to get stuck into this little gem of a box set. If you haven’t read any books by Ann Girdharry before, prepare to be taken on a rather dark and twisted journey. This author doesn’t do thing by halves, that’s for sure!

‘Chilling Tales of the Unexpected’ contains four short stories; ‘Trading With Death’, ‘Tell Me a Secret’, ‘Sweet Justice; and ‘Written on the Apple Tree’. Even though all four stories each have dark foundations, they are all incredibly different. I’m not really one for books which contain mystical or fantasy elements, yet Ann Girdharry makes it work alongside multiple thrilling themes. If those weren’t included, I don’t think I would have enjoyed reading them as much as I did.

All of the stories are short which means that you can read all four in one go, or you can pick them up to read at a later date. Because I chose to read them all in one go, I had to have a couple of minutes breathing space between stories, just so that I wouldn’t get confused by the overlap. If I had to choose my favourite story from all four, it would probably have to be ‘Sweet Justice’, because the shock element was incredibly strong and brought goosebumps to my skin like they meant business.

I would definitely recommending this box set, especially if you haven’t read any other books by Ann Girdharry as you’ll get a little taster of her writing style with each of the four stories. Highly recommended, gripping and very entertaining reads. But then thinking about it, when does Ann Girdharry ever disappoint?

Buy now!

About the author.

Born and educated in the UK, Ann Girdharry is a trained psychotherapist and has worked as a manager in the not-for-profit sector for many years.
Today she lives in Montpellier, France with her husband and two children.

She writes suspense and thrillers, is a book reviewer and occasionally blogs for the Huffington Post UK. Her crime thriller novel, GOOD GIRL BAD GIRL, was an Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist 2017. Two of her thrillers are READERS’ FAVOURITE Five Star Books.

Social Media Links –

follow on Facebook
follow on Twitter 
follow on Goodreads 
follow on Bookbub

#BlogTour! #Review – The Boy at the Door by Alex Dahl (@Xandrabo) @HoZ_Books

Dahl_THE BOY AT THE DOOR_preview
What would you do for the perfect life?

Would you lie? Cheat? Or… kill?

Cecilia Wilborg has the perfect life. A handsome husband, two beautiful daughters and a luxurious home in the picture-postcard town of Sandefjord. She’s the type of woman people envy, and she wants to keep it that way.

Then Tobias enters her life. He’s a gentle, lonely eight-year-old boy. But he threatens to bring Cecilia’s world crashing down…

What does TWG think?

Ahh this one is going to be a tough book to review!

If I were to describe ‘The Boy at the Door’ in three words based on the concept alone, I would confidently say; twisted, dark and devious. However, if I were to describe this book in three words based on the content, I would say that it was confusing, uncertain and difficult.

Why?

Because whilst I enjoyed the overall premise of ‘The Boy at the Door’, I found the way in which the storyline was delivered, highly confusing. At times it felt like I was supposed to know more about the characters and the setting than that I actually did, making me feel as though I was missing a vital puzzle piece when it came to the hard-hitting moments. That said, I fully admit that there were times where I felt like I couldn’t continue with the book, yet due to the high intrigue level, I couldn’t help but be drawn to the storyline as I needed to know what happened to the boy and why Cecilia acted like she knew a lot more than she let on.

‘The Boy at the Door’ is interesting, very dark and weirdly addictive. I enjoyed the different setting, but I just wish that the delivery was less confusing. All in all, I definitely wouldn’t rule out reading another book by this author in the future!

Buy now

About the author.

Alex Dahl is a half-American, half-Norwegian author. Born in Oslo, she currently divides her time between London and Sandefjord.

Twitter: @Xandrabo

Facebook: @alexdahlauthor

 

#BlogTour! Re-posting my #Review – 88 North by J.F.Kirwan (@kirwanjf) @HQDigitalUK @RaRaResources

88 North Full Banner
Super excited to have the opportunity to re-post my review of J.F.Kirwan’s ’88 North’ as part of the blog tour organised by RaRaResources! A fantastic book – I can’t recommend it enough! Here is my review:

36106401
The deadliest kind of assassin is one who is already dying…

As the radiation poisoning that Nadia Laksheva was exposed to in Chernobyl takes hold of her body, she knows she has mere weeks to live. But Salamander, the terrorist who murdered her father and sister has a deadly new plan to ‘make the sky bleed’. Nadia is determined to stop him again, even if it is the last thing she ever does.

The only clue she has are the coordinates 88˚ North, a ridge in the Arctic right above one of the largest oil fields in the world, three thousand metres below the ice. If Salamander takes hold of the oil field, he could change the climate of the whole planet for generations to come…

But can Nadia stop him before her own time runs out?

The gripping third and final novel in J.F. Kirwan’s brilliant spy thriller series. Perfect for fans of Charles Cumming, Mark Dawson and Adam Brookes.

What does TWG think?

If you had told me a couple of years ago that I would be hooked on a spy thriller series, I would have laughed in your face. I have never really paid much attention to, nor had much interest in, spy novels. I’ve always thought of them as ‘boy novels’, stupidly. So, when I was approached to read J.F.Kirwan’s previous novel ’37 Hours’, my curiosity got the better of me and I decided to take a running leap out of my comfort zone, to read J.F.Kirwan’s novel. Of course I thought to myself, ‘nahhhhh, I won’t like it’, yet I was pleasantly surprised when I absolutely flipping loved it. Because of that, my excitement to read ’88 North’ was through the roof. Would Nadia complete what she set out to do? Would Salamander STILL rule the roost? So many questions, so little time. I would be lying if I said that my heart wasn’t in my mouth the entire time – because it was.

Once again J.F.Kirwan has written such a complex, intense and jaw dropping storyline, which makes talking about this book even more difficult as each event in the storyline is linked with another one, therefore not only would the chances of giving away one piece of information be extremely high, the chances of giving away multiple pieces of information are through the roof. I don’t wish to be the person who gives away an entire storyline, yet I would love to be able to shout about this book and say, ‘WHAT ABOUT THE PART WHEN…….’. Seriously.

Seeing as it had been a little while between reading the books in the series, it did take me a little while to get back into the swing of the storyline. That said, I guess you could read this book as a standalone. But in my personal opinion, I would advise you to grab the previous two books before you read this one just so that you can read all of the events in order, and so that you know each of the main characters back stories.

Reading ’88 North’ really was bittersweet as whilst I was super excited about delving into the book, I was gutted that as soon as I came to the last page, the series was now at an end. I didn’t want it to finish but I whole heartedly understand that Nadia’s story had to be left somewhere, and that carrying it on could weaken the overall feel of the storyline.

I’m not sure whether it was just me, but I found this storyline to contain a lot more gore than the previous book and, whilst I would usually shy away from that sort of thing, all of the blood and gore fit one hundred percent. In all honesty, I don’t think the storyline would have made such an impact on me if it contained no elements of gore. It needed all of that to bring Nadia’s story to life even more, as weird as that sounds but I’m hoping that that makes sense to a lot of you.

J.F.Kirwan has quickly become one of my all-time favourite authors with his dark, gritty, suspenseful and utterly incredibly storylines. If it wasn’t for this author, I don’t think that I would have dared to step outside of my comfort zone to read, and fall in love with (as weird as that sounds) with this spy thriller series. I could not put this book down and to be perfectly honest, I really didn’t want to either.

Jaw-droppingly brilliant, ’88 North’ is the icing on the cake where Nadia Laksheva is concerned. A brilliant finale to a phenomenal series, I would recommend this book, and the series, time and time again.

Outstanding!!!

Buy now from Amazon UK.

Author Bio

J. F. Kirwan is the author of the Nadia Laksheva thriller series for HarperCollins. Having
worked in accident investigation and prevention in nuclear, offshore oil and gas and aviation sectors, he uses his experience of how accidents initially build slowly, then race towards a climax, to plot his novels. An instructor in both scuba diving and martial arts, he travels extensively all over the world, and loves to set his novels in exotic locations. He is also an insomniac who writes in the dead of night. His favourite authors include Lee Child, David Baldacci and Andy McNab.

Author links:

Website // Twitter // Facebook

#BlogTour! #Review – The Man Who Died by @antti_tuomainen @OrendaBooks

man who died blog poster 2017
Delighted to be involved in another jam-packed blog tour courtesy of the lovely Orenda Books! Thank you to Anne Cater for inviting me to take part in the tour, and a huge thank you to Orenda for the ARC. I am so excited to share my review with you all today. Enjoy!

51C9HEF2VhL

A successful entrepreneur in the mushroom industry, Jaakko Kaunismaa is a man in his prime. At just 37 years of age, he is shocked when his doctor tells him that he’s dying. What is more, the cause is discovered to be prolonged exposure to toxins; in other words, someone has slowly but surely been poisoning him. Determined to find out who wants him dead, Jaakko embarks on a suspenseful rollercoaster journey full of unusual characters, bizarre situations and unexpected twists. With a nod to Fargo and the best elements of the Scandinavian noir tradition, The Man Who Died is a page-turning thriller brimming with the blackest comedy surrounding life and death, and love and betrayal, markinng a stunning new departure for the King of Helsinki Noir.

What does TWG think?

I’ll be honest, I had absolutely no idea about this novel to begin with, yet there was part of me which couldn’t help thinking that I wouldn’t like it. I don’t know whether that was because the cover is so different to what usually catches my eye, or whether I was just apprehensive about starting a novel quite a distance out of my comfort zone.

However, after reading a mere couple of pages, I could not put the book down. There was just something so addictive about a man and his mushrooms, that I felt as though the author had put a spell on me with his severe level of intrigue. Daft maybe? Quite possibly!

I genuinely have never read a book like this before. Straight away I was confronted by a situation which seemed severely outlandish yet in the same vein – highly addictive. Jaakko is dying due to a high level of toxins in his body. Toxins which have appeared in his bloodstream rather steadily over a certain amount of time. The thing is, Jaakko has absolutely no idea how those toxins got there, nor does he know whether it was deliberate or a cruel twist of fate. Whilst that makes perfect sense overall, I couldn’t help but think ‘what on Earth?’ as I speedily changed the pages in the book.

Look, picking up a book about a man and his mushrooms isn’t usually high on my list. BUT, I think Antti Tuomainen may have just changed my mind on that. The entire storyline was exceptionally written. So many clever and thought out situations in amongst rather funny and bonkers moments, meant that my intrigue level was at its maximum and that I wouldn’t be stopping reading it for anyone.

Many parts of this book were rather gorey, yet in a weird way it added even more character to an already brilliant novel. Usually I would turn my head away or read those vivid details through my fingers, but this time I got stuck in as I didn’t want to miss a single thing about this storyline.

Going from thinking I wouldn’t like the book to absolutely loving it, is an extreme change of mind I’m not going to lie. However, the author deserves to be applauded for being able to change my mind in a matter of pages.

‘The Man Who Died’ is a witty, thrilling, intense, and highly addictive read which left me feeling extremely excited about whatever the author may bring out next. I absolutely loved this book. It made me laugh, it kept me guessing and not only that, it kept me on the edge of my seat in anticipation – waiting for the next highly suspenseful event to take place.

A brand new author for me and a brand new style of book, but I can honestly say that Antti Tuomainen now has a fan for life in TWG. Remarkable.

Thanks Orenda!

(The Man Who Died was written by Antti Tuomainen and translated by David Hackston)

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon US