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Floating or Drowning?

Woman in the Water Book Cover Woman in the Water
Katerina Diamond
Mystery Thriller Murder
Harper Collins, Avon Books

When a woman’s body is found submerged in icy water, police are shocked to find she is alive. But she won’t disclose her name, or what happened to her – even when a second body is discovered. And then she disappears from her hospital bed. Detectives Adrian Miles and Imogen Grey follow their only lead to the home of the Corrigans, looking for answers. But the more they dig into the couple’s lives, the less they understand about them. What’s their connection to the body in the river? Why have other people they know been hurt, or vanished? And can they discover the dark truth of their marriage before it’s too late? Smart, shocking and twisty – perfect for fans of Cara Hunter and Karin Slaughter.

I really thought I knew how this would end about three-quarters of the way through, but I was so wrong!

The ending is a 5 star for me, but overall, I thought the story needed tightening up and a general edit, which is why it gets a 4.

For once this police procedural demonstrates just how long it can take to solve a murder. The intricacies of police procedures that must be followed and the fact that people don’t always work through the night, but go home at 5 and come in at 9 even when they are trying to solve a murder. Much more realistic.

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Weddings and Animals

Meant To Be Yours Book Cover Meant To Be Yours
Susan Mallery
Fiction, romance
HarperCollins UK, Mills and Boon
October 22, 2019
464

Renee can plan the perfect wedding, but does love always go to plan? Wedding coordinator Renee Grothen isn’t meant for marriage. Those who can, do. Those who can’t, plan. But she never could have planned on gorgeous, talented thriller writer Jasper Dembenski proposing—a fling, that is. Fun without a future. And the attraction between them is too strong for Renee to resist. Now she can have her no-wedding cake…and eat it, too. After years in the military, Jasper is convinced he’s too damaged for relationships. So a flirtation—and more—with fiery, determined Renee is way too good to pass up…until his flame becomes his muse. Renee is an expert at averting every crisis. But is she finally ready to leap into the one thing that can never be controlled: love?

Here we have an author and PTSD and Dog meets a Wedding Planner with a Mum who can… (spoiler not included).

It is this Mum who gave her daughter serious issues with her won relationships – the daughter loses boyfriend after boyfriend… Absolutely love the Mum here!  And what she discovers.

Now Happily inc, a wedding themed town, I can believe in but could never live there… Overall a nicely written story with an unusual setting and wacky ideas – for weddings! I just had to assume that people had actually done this, and sure enough there were several Pinterest pictures of a Zebra theme but no actual zebras in these pics…

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Contracts are tricky things

Claiming My Hidden Son Book Cover Claiming My Hidden Son
Maya Blake
Fiction, romance
HarperCollins UK, Mills and Boon
October 17, 2019
192

My contract bride’s secret… …is about to turn my world upside down! My marriage to Calypso was simply business. Until our unexpectedly passionate wedding night shook us both! Unwilling to muddy our convenient arrangement with such inconvenient emotions, I reluctantly left. Now discovering the baby in my estranged wife’s arms is mine, it’s about securing my legacy. I will claim my son and again enjoy the one thing Calypso cannot hide—the chemistry that still sizzles between us…

An interesting take on why the story line goes up and down but for me, it was still a case of macho men and lust but not love.

Love takes time, trust and truth. All 3 of which were largely missing in the characters and storyline even though they admitted they were required.

Also, why would a 7 month pregnant woman travel to Kenya to volunteer when she had a potential life altering illness? That would have been better dealt with back in Switzerland? And which could have made her delivery problematic? Just didn’t add up. So (just) a 3 star.

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Listeners don’t hear good things

Through the Wall Book Cover Through the Wall
Caroline Corcoran
General Fiction (Adult) , Mystery & Thrillers
Avon
Pub Date 03 Oct 2019

Lexie’s got the perfect life. And someone else wants it…

Lexie loves her home. She feels safe and secure in it – and loved, thanks to her boyfriend Tom.

But recently, something’s not been quite right. A book out of place. A wardrobe door left open. A set of keys going missing…

Tom thinks Lexie’s going mad – but then, he’s away more often than he’s at home nowadays, so he wouldn’t understand.

Because Lexie isn’t losing it. She knows there’s someone out there watching her. And, deep down, she knows there’s nothing she can do to make them stop…

A compelling, heart-racing thriller that will have you looking over your shoulder long after you turn the last page. The perfect read for fans of Louise Candlish and Adele Parks.

Sorry Caroline but i just couldn’t get into this book. I did not find it riveting or anything other than dull. So dull, I failed to finish.

Still not all books are liked by everyone, which is a good thing – a critical reader is always useful and it is good for us as readers to be critical when reading…

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Marry in haste?

The Christmas Wedding Book Cover The Christmas Wedding
#1 Little Creek
by Dilly Court
Historical romance, women's fiction
HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction
17 Oct 2019

The village of Little Creek, the long winter of 1867  The first flakes of snow are falling when Daisy Marshall, secretly engaged to her master's son, finds herself jilted at the altar. Heartbroken, Daisy flees to the small village of Little Creek, nestled on the coast of Essex. There she is warmly welcomed – but the village is poverty-stricken, suffering under a cruel Lord of the manor. And when cholera hits, the villagers are truly in dire straits. Determined to help, Daisy makes new friends in earnest doctor Nicholas and dashing smuggler Jay – but also dangerous new enemies, who threaten to destroy everything she’s built. Can Daisy save the village and find happiness in time for Christmas?

So what do you do if you are brought up as a Lady, and don’t have any skills other than keeping house? Or maybe, being a Governess.

The perennial problem facing young women back in the – well most centuries before women went out to anything other menial work.

And when you lose what little income you have, you fall back on your family – if you have one.

And this is the story that we follow here, but we have a dashing pirate – well smuggler, as so many were along the British southern coast (as my husband’s family can testify!) and a villainy lord of the manor – all good gothic elements for a romance story.

Nicely told with some good historical facts and descriptions of the poverty that so many villagers lived in where huts were basically mud floors and mostly mud walls and roofs..  with rents and work under the control of the local lord – even in the 19th century.

Gentle and cosy by the fire reading because it all works out in the end – as it must.

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