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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I Couldn’t Sleep!

While You Sleep Book Cover While You Sleep
Stephanie Merrit
gothic, psychological, thriller,
Oct 2018

A pacy, chilling psychological thriller, set to reinvent the genre.

It begins, they say, with a woman screaming…

On a remote Scottish island, the McBride house stands guard over its secrets. A century ago, a young widow and her son died mysteriously there; just last year a local boy, visiting for a dare, disappeared without a trace.

For Zoe Adams, newly arrived from America, the house offers a refuge from her failing marriage. But her peaceful retreat is disrupted by strange and disturbing events: night-time intrusions; unknown voices; a constant sense of being watched.

The locals want her to believe that these incidents are echoes of the McBrides' dark past. Zoe is convinced the danger is closer at hand, and all too real – but can she uncover the truth before she is silenced?

This is a seriously creepy story – ideal to be told by those camping bonfires at night and in haunted house tours by the side of a blazing fire!

Those dreams – and what of the boy? And the bookseller? and…

Whilst the haunted house on a remote Scottish island could be considered a somewhat cliched start to a story with the single and fearless women determined to live in it, the story digresses quickly from the cliche and twists and turns into a guessing game. whilst it still continued to have odd cliched moments, I found the ending great as it just leaves you wondering. A true ghost story where you believe or you don’t but you can’t make a rational explanation for everything – or can you?

Really enjoyed this story and delighted to find a new author.

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I am here – she claims

Bring Me Back Book Cover Bring Me Back
BA Paris
psychological, suspense, crime fiction, thriller
(8 Mar. 2018)

The Disappearance
Twelve years ago Finn’s girlfriend disappeared.

The Suspicion
He told the police the truth about that night.
Just not quite the whole truth.

The Fear
Now Finn has moved on.
But his past won’t stay buried


A book that builds towards a chilling and unexpected climax.

Although I had some suspicions about what might be the cause of the sudden apparent return of Layla, I couldn’t figure out how 2 such incompatible persons could live in the same body. Thus i dismissed my idea.

But it turned out that I was both right – and wrong.

A well written novel with a nicely judged ending.


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And the fire burns brightly

Bonfire Book Cover Bonfire
Krysten Ritter
women's sleuths, psychological, mystery
November 9, 2017

Nothing burns as bright as the truth.

It has been ten years since Abby Williams left home and scrubbed away all evidence of her small town roots. Now working as an environmental lawyer in Chicago, she has a thriving career, a modern apartment, and her pick of meaningless one-night stands.

But when a new case takes her back home to Barrens, Indiana, the life Abby painstakingly created begins to crack. Tasked with investigating Optimal Plastics, the town's economic heart, she begins to find strange connections to a decade-old scandal involving the popular Kaycee Mitchell and her friends―just before Kaycee disappeared for good.

But as Abby tries desperately to find out what happened to Kaycee, troubling memories begin to resurface and she begins to doubt her own observations. And when she unearths an even more disturbing secret, her search threatens the reputations, and lives, of the community and risks exposing a darkness that may consume her.

With tantalizing twists, slow-burning suspense, and a remote, rural town of five claustrophobic miles, Bonfire is a dark exploration of what happens when your past and present collide.

A story that is based, as we know only too well, on frequent truths.

Small towns and political corruptions in return for jobs and a thriving economy and never mind the poor who live on the wrong side of the tracks and reap the rewards of this unholy alliance.

Chemical companies it is rumoured are the most frequent polluters of water and yet the list of the ten worst polluters are:

1. Agriculture
2. Mining
3. Fishing
4. Nuclear
5. Fuel
6. Plastics
7. Textile Manufacturing
8. Cleaning
9. Auto Manufacturing
10. Recreation
And the Daily Beast in 2010 claimed that the EPA estimated that there were 3,500 chemical spills each year, requiring $260 million to clean.
For instance, take  Milford, New Hampshire, with a population of 10,000, and the local Fletcher’s Paint Works and Storage. Within 2 Acres  34 Toxic chemicals were found.

Soil and groundwater around the site was found  to be contaminated with arsenic, lead, PCBs, and other chemicals, including volatile organic compounds. Which were also in the municipal water supply.

So why should we believe the chemical company in this story when it claims that the reservoir tests clean?  And what will it and those involved in the local corruption etc do, to ensure that the plant keeps on working without interference?

A story that has obvious links as shown above, with reality, but is then stretched into a complex and intriguing novel that keeps you reading.

PS. Abby does not reflect the Jessica Jones character too closely – but definitely drinks far too much!

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What a Day!

Best Day Ever Book Cover Best Day Ever
Kaira Rouda
psychological, suspense
September 7, 2017

A loving husband. The perfect killer? 'I wonder if Mia thinks I have a dark side. Most likely as far as she knows, I am just her dear loving husband.' Paul Strom has spent years building his perfect life: glittering career, beautiful wife, two healthy boys and a big house in the suburbs. But he also has his secrets. That's why Paul has promised his wife a romantic weekend getaway. He proclaims this day, a warm Friday in May, will be the best day ever. Paul loves his wife, really, he does. But he also wants to get rid of her. And with every hour that passes, Paul ticks off another stage in his elaborately laid plan... Behind Closed Doors meets Liane Moriarty in this creepy, fast-paced psychological thriller with a twist you won't see coming!

A chilling read that you just can’t put down.

It became obvious soon that the main character Strom lacked emotional empathy and at least one of his lies was very clear. But the full extent of what he was capable of only emerged as the story progressed.

There is a twist to the ending that you might not see coming, but don’t worry, you will still be reading….

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