How well do you see?

A different female detective. One not racked – completely – with angst. Thankfully.

And she comes from an ethnic background and is local to her policing area.

This story is set in an area of London I know quite well. I know of the cultural inheritances and the issues that came as new cultures came in and the local and new clashed – from the time of the Huguenots and before! See the Roman Road… Immigration to the UK has often come through the Docks and this affects the architecture as well as the culture.

I did think that the problem of distinguishing between forced and arranged marriages was portrayed well and the tip-toeing around not to tread on toes that is so common that it actually lets illegal activities occur rather than disturb certain elements of the community. As there is often a wall of silence and united front before outsiders this doesn’t help discover the truth.

I thought the author dealt quite well with the issues of inequality as I have seen this area transform – patchily – from nearly slums to desirable residences.

Overall a solid first book in this  new series.

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Find your way out?

A Map of the Dark Book Cover A Map of the Dark
The Searchers #1
Karen Ellis
crime, detectives, mystery, thrillers, female sleuths
Mulholland Books
11 Jan. 2018)

A girl missing
A woman, searching
A killer, planning...

FBI Agent Elsa Myers finds missing people.
She knows how it feels to be lost...

Though her father lies dying in a hospital north of New York City, Elsa cannot refuse a call for help. A teenage girl has gone missing from Forest Hills, Queens, and during the critical first hours of the case, a series of false leads hides the fact that she did not go willingly.

With each passing hour, as the hunt for Ruby deepens into a search for a man who may have been killing for years, the case starts to get underneath Elsa's skin. Everything she has buried - her fraught relationship with her sister and niece, her self-destructive past, her mother's death - threatens to resurface, with devastating consequences.

In order to save the missing girl, she may have to lose herself...and return to the darkness she's been hiding from for years.

Whilst I did quite enjoy this book especially the characters of some of the teenagers – the girl with creative mind and tattoos of her little creatures that kept her sane and operative under very dire circumstances. However, I found the other teenagers a bit wooden.

What irritated me though, is the current fad for this genre of having the female detectives to be very angst driven and this story takes this to the extreme. Whilst use of the angst is made in the story I am sure this was not the only way it could be written. This downgrades this book to a 4 star.

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Who’s Telling the Truth?

The Confession Book Cover The Confession
Jo Spain
mystery, thrillers,
January 11, 2018


Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.

Just an hour later the attacker, JP Carney, has handed himself in to the police. He confesses to beating Harry to death, but JP claims that the assault was not premeditated and that he didn't know the identity of his victim. With a man as notorious as Harry McNamara, the detectives cannot help wondering, was this really a random act of violence or is it linked to one of Harry's many sins: corruption, greed, betrayal?

This gripping psychological thriller will have you questioning, who - of Harry, Julie and JP - is really the guilty one? And is Carney's surrender driven by a guilty conscience or is his confession a calculated move in a deadly game?

I liked this book and found  it addictive reading. I resented leaving it to live the rest of my life. i just needed to know the why and the real who.

Who needs to confess – and about what?

Slowly, and inexorably we find out the truth and the reasons for the first, really big, confession.

Carefully crafted, this book takes you through the lives of the 2 story-tellers – that explain the final act.


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Mixed Magic brings interest

This is a series I read from book 4 (a free offering) back to 1 and through to the final book one after the other. And now I’m on her next series!

I loved this series. Great fun and a different universe where pure humans are extremely rare – only about 5% of the population as waves of magic have transformed every one else in some way producing shape shifters or those such as elves and goblins who are nearly always in their magic forms. And lots of cross breeding – imagine a drummer with 4 arms and a piano player with 6… or trolls living in your garbage cans and getting rid of all the rubbish..

Each new wave creates new types of magical beings, yes even unicorns, and they take on appropriate jobs too, ghouls and zombies work in undertakers or mortuaries or as pathologists.

Book 4 was about Ritual Space which is different from the rest of the series as the first 3 books follow one character through and then we hear about this magic space where you can not only hold wedding but also practice your spells.

I am seriously hooked by this author and shall devour all her output as i can afford it!

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Heroines and Hellions Box Set: some new reviews

Fairy Wings Book Cover Fairy Wings
Heroines and Hellions
Louisa Klein
urban fantasy
Carter & Bradley Publishing
(2 Jan. 2018)


22 Kickass Heroines.
22 Exclusive Urban Fantasy and Fantasy Novels.
0 Damsels in Distress.

Do you like your leading ladies to save the day...or raze it?

No matter which you prefer, this set is brimming with 20 magical stories (many BRAND NEW) told by some of the leading voices of urban fantasy and fantasy in the industry, including several New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors!

If you want strong female leads who strike back against the captivating worlds of vampires, elementals, fiends, and paranormal monsters, then you're ready to charge into the adventures of HEROINES & HELLIONS, a pure Urban Fantasy/Fantasy collection!

Grab your stake, silver bullets, and your limited edition copy of HEROINES & HELLIONS

Be aware before you start reading that a number of the authors claim that the book was published too early and that a: the story included was not the one promised; or b:it is not finished. the do offer the opportunity to sign up for ending or correct story.

  1. Chains of Iron and Silver

by Margo Bond Collins and Erin Hayes

2 of my favourite fantasy authors creat a story where 2 monster hunters, cursed by a demon (family history), meet up to rescue a Fairy Rince captured by werewolves. ow was he? and the werewolf hunter has a pet werewolf? really? clearly a story yet to be told. So there is lots of killing of werewolves by our hunters. fun anf feisty heroins. 4 stars.

see Mistletoe and Mischief and Sin and Silver for more about these 2 hellions. I’m going to read them…

2. On a Red Horse

Monica Corwin

The 4 horsemen of the Apocalypse – shock horror – are female! and living as humans…

  • and they are intimate with the Norse gods and the  Greek gods and…

– and guess what? they run a coffee shop Duh?

An interesting take on the topic and fun read.

3. Wolves and Daggers by Melanie Karsak

A steampunk novel. I rather like this concept where it is set in the Victorian era, but not, with all the usual paranormal characters/creatures – and a Secret Police wearing Red Capes (not so secret then..). there are several wolf packs living in London but they are not very civilised – only one pack has anyone who can read and write. And the female pack runs a brothel.

So the questions behind this story is why are the packs working together? and what are they doing with all the different scientists they keep kidnapping?

4. No-Body’s Here: Bec Mc Master

5. Demon’s are a Girl’s Best Friend: Heather Marie Adkins

Rather a fun idea – you accidentally are a demon and accidentally have a child and then hide by pretending to human with an obsession with cross-stitch? And don’t tell your daughter what is coming for her? The small fact that her dad was a King in the demon world and that she might have to take his place if he dies?

Oops if you are her daughter. Another nicely written story and I love the cross-stitching mother.

6. Xin: Jade Kerrion

7. Secrets of the King: Gina Watson

8. Frigid: Rene Folsom

9. Dark Crown: Melle Amande

10. Underground Magic: D.D.Meirs

Well this was different, our heroine fights dirty in cages – lots of martial arts here and nasty – very nasty creatures to be fought.

11. Elements: Michelle Hercules

I didn’t like this one quite as much as most of the others. Lots of gods and goddesses and Gaia involved.

12. The Guardians: Elise Marion

Another girl who is half-demon and destined to fight and save the world.

A familiar tale but nicely written and set in New Orleans one of the favourite places for these dark and steamy novels..

13. A Touch of Death: Carly Fall

14. Marked in Shadow’s Keep

15. Jace’s Destiny: Ashley C. Harris

16. Dead Certain: Kim Cleary

17. City Stalker: Maria Monroe

18. Djinn Rising: Christine Walker

19. Fairy wings: Louisa Klein

And London is not what you thought when there is a wizard in charge of hunting down artefacts for the British museum and statues come to life after closing time.

A new author for me, writing a prequel to a series I’ve not encountered. But a nice, somewhat clipped way of writing and a heroine unsure of her powers – but not in this story at least, destined as the world’s saviour for a change.

Love the Mary Poppins bag – just what I want when I travel, o hold luggage and as many pairs of shoes as I want, and all in a bag that weighs next to nothing.

20. Trick of Shadows: Alex Owens

21. Takin’ it Back: Ash krafton

22. Ink: SJ Davis

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