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Rebecca H

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Baby's Got Blue Eyes: Volume 1 (DI Ted Darling)
Baby's Got Blue Eyes: Volume 1 (DI Ted Darling)
by Ms L M Krier
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced and exciting, 16 May 2016
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I started reading this book and I actually didn’t want to put it down. I read it in two sittings. It’s fast paced and without unnecessary detail to detract from the cracking plot. The main character Ted Darling is a detective with a difference as he gets on well with his DCI and the other detectives in his team. He is also openly gay and has a rather too perfect partner in Trev. I would have liked him to have had even a little flash of annoyance at some point, however, that may come. Maybe I’m just being rather picky at this! When he is called to the scene of a rather gruesome murder he is mystified that there are no clues to give them a lead in finding the murderer. D.I. Darling is up against a ruthless and extremely clever adversary. Another murder swiftly follows which is clearly meant as a challenge to him. The final murder is horrific and sends shockwaves through the team. Although I had an inkling as to who the murderer might be there was a bit of a question as to how this would work out. There was also a distraction with the arrival of DS Hallam to join the team. Nevertheless there were plenty of twists and turns in the storyline which kept me gripped to the end and what an exciting ending it was! Fast paced with believable and likeable characters I look forward to reading more in this series and learning more about them. I have no hesitation in recommending this book.


You Are Dead (Roy Grace)
You Are Dead (Roy Grace)
by Peter James
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.49

4.0 out of 5 stars Tense in parts, 3 May 2016
I have read all of the Roy Grace series so far but I found this one rather disappointing.It opened well enough with the disappearance of Logan Somerville and the tension started to build. However, I think it was rather easy to spot the serial killer from the start and the plot took us through a few twists and turns till he is finally caught and cornered - but (SPOILER ALERT) we are to believe he escaped the tunnel falling in- really?? I found it a most unsatisfactory ending. I enjoy all the police procedure details and also the details about Roy's life. However it's most definitely time to bring the Sandy saga to an end!


Good Morning Diego Garcia: A Journey of Discovery (Journeys Book 2)
Good Morning Diego Garcia: A Journey of Discovery (Journeys Book 2)
Price: £4.14

5.0 out of 5 stars Truth is stranger than fiction!, 29 April 2016
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Having read Susan Joyce’s first memoir and being enthralled by it I had high expectations of Good Morning Diego Garcia. I was not disappointed whatsoever. If anything it’s even more exciting! What an adventure! What a life changing experience! Susan and her husband Charles are invited to accompany Dylan and Mia, a couple she knew from Cyprus, to crew a yacht from Trincomalee, Sri Lanka to the Seychelles, all the way across the Indian Ocean then north through the Suez Canal. They decide it’s an opportunity not to be missed. Little do they know what lies ahead. They spend some time in India before finally getting to Sri Lanka and Susan describes all the sights, smells and tastes of the continent so vividly that we could be travelling alongside her. It’s an assault on the senses, from the stench of death to the sweet aroma of sandalwood. They travel on to Trincomalee where they finally embark on their journey across the ocean aboard the yacht Zozo. However the journey is beset with danger and they are caught up in terrifying storms. The boat is tossed up on mountainous waves and flung down into troughs. How it survived is a miracle. Add to this the fraught relationship between Susan and her husband and you have a not to be forgotten memoir. They do say that truth is stranger than fiction – read this book and you will discover that statement to be absolutely true. I had never heard of Diego Garcia but what a fascinating and disturbing tale lies there. The memoir is called a journey of discovery and it certainly is and on several levels. But the most important one is that Susan discovers she can be free and independent – on July 4th – Independence Day. Co incidence or not? It’s a well deserved 5 stars from me. Highly recommended.


In Place of Death
In Place of Death
by Craig Robertson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping and full of unexpected twists., 25 April 2016
This review is from: In Place of Death (Paperback)
This new novel from Craig Robertson had me gripped from the start to the end. It takes the reader into the strange world of urbexing. This adds to the sense of mystery and menace throughout. From the initial discovery of a body in the underground Molendinar Burn by a young ‘urbexer’ the story takes us on a journey into the dark places of Glasgow. Once again Tony Winter is called to photograph the crime scene and we see things from his curious perspective. One twist is that he realises he knows the victim and determines to find his killer. The investigating officer is Detective Inspector Rachel Narey who has recently been promoted. Like Winter she has her detractors who would like to see her fail. Their complex relationship also has us gripped as the investigation continues. In the course of the investigation she visits the Rosewood Hotel run by a notorious Glasgow villain who exploits the homeless and desperate. Narey makes it her mission to have the place closed which puts her in jeopardy. Winter also puts himself in danger by trying to draw out the killer. It’s a thrilling crime novel with a very unexpected twist at the end. Wonderfully sinister and atmospheric but so rooted in reality I am looking at Glasgow with different eyes!


Being Enough (The Greek Village Collection Book 17)
Being Enough (The Greek Village Collection Book 17)
Price: £3.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Heartwarming, 25 April 2016
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Being Enough is yet another Greek Village series masterpiece from Sara Alexi. You may think that life in a rural Greek village is a simple one but you would be wrong. Rallou, the main character is beset by anxiety and doubts about her life and about her husband Christos. Gradually as her story unfolds we can see how she has been influenced and manipulated by her sister. As usual we meet up with other characters from the Village, like Toula who helps Rallou on her way to Corfu. There is a little ‘miracle’ in store for the donkey man. I loved that! Of course there are links to the village as we find out that Rallou’s husband has a cousin there. Wonderful storytelling and as heart-warming as ever. It’s another winner from Sara Alexi


Coffin Road
Coffin Road
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping!, 25 April 2016
This review is from: Coffin Road (Kindle Edition)
This is another superb book from Peter May. Full of suspense from the opening pages it will have you gripped to the end. A man is washed onshore on a lonely beach on Harris and has no recollection of who he is or how he came to be there. As he staggers up he is called by his name and helped to his cottage. As the story unfolds he struggles to discover who he is and what he is doing on the island. There are another two threads to the story; one is that of a young teenage girl from Edinburgh who is struggling to cope with her father’s ‘suicide’ two years previously. The other strand concerns a Detective Sergeant who is investigating the circumstances of a body found on the remote Flannan Isle Lighthouse. Wonderful description and the bleak remote setting help to create a sense of danger throughout. It is masterful storytelling as the three strands intertwine. There is a great twist at the end which is a real surprise! It is also a tale with a moral message that we need to look after our environment. A well deserved 5 stars!


A is for Abigail (Sixpenny Cross Book 1)
A is for Abigail (Sixpenny Cross Book 1)
Price: £1.65

5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful., 7 April 2016
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As a fan of Victoria Twead’s memoirs I was interested to read her latest book which is set in the seemingly idyllic English village Sixpenny Cross. I wasn’t disappointed at all. It’s a delicious short read with enough intrigue and scandal to keep the reader engrossed. The main characters Abigail and Aiden would appear to have a perfect life but all is not well with the couple as Abigail longs to have a child and Aiden has set his face against adoption. It’s cosy yet distressing and I couldn’t help but feel for Abigail which is a tribute to the author’s skill in creating characters which stir up sympathy in the reader. There was an unexpected twist which took me by surprise. I was pleased with the happy ending although there was a touch of mystery there too. As an added bonus there is a recipe for Abigail Martin’s Carrot Cake which looks to be delicious. I can sense the Sixpenny Cross series is going to be a delight. I’m looking forward now to B is for Bella


Two Dogs and a Suitcase: Clueless in Charente (Sarah Jane's Travel Memoirs Series Book 2)
Two Dogs and a Suitcase: Clueless in Charente (Sarah Jane's Travel Memoirs Series Book 2)
Price: £2.48

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JDI - she certainly did!, 31 Mar. 2016
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Having read Sarah Jane’s previous book I was very interested to see how she and Nigel would cope after moving to France. They managed to buy a ramshackle old property in Charente with a view to renovating it. However they faced a huge challenge as they were on a limited budget and the house was barely habitable. You cannot fail to be impressed at the way they set about creating a home fit to live in and also creating a garden where they plan to grow enough produce to live on. Sarah Jane is certainly an optimist and her determination, courage and belief that things will turn out for the best sustain them through some tough times. ‘We only talk about positive things when we work on the house to give it good karma’ this must have been incredibly difficult at times for them! They have very little money yet somehow the house begins to take shape and Sarah Jane becomes adept at creating meals from very little. The couple deal with ongoing family problems too while Sarah Jane has a dream of being a published author. Fortunately for us she managed to achieve that goal. Sarah Jane writes very openly and honestly about their struggles and her own feelings. It’s certainly not always a comfortable or cosy read. I’ve also read her book Frugal Summer in Charente alongside this which I would highly recommend as well.


Biff the Useless Mention: Book IV of the Sell the Pig trilogy (The Sell The Pig Series 4)
Biff the Useless Mention: Book IV of the Sell the Pig trilogy (The Sell The Pig Series 4)
Price: £1.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another tasty slice of Auvergne Life, 30 Mar. 2016
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This is the fourth and final book in the Sell the Pig Trilogy .I know! But the reason is made clear in the book as is an explanation of the intriguing title. For those of us who loved the first three memoirs this is another chance to settle down comfortably and enjoy another chat with Tottie. She has definitely settled in her ‘grottage’ and we learn of her continuing battles with the formidable French bureaucracy as she endeavours to get her ‘carte vitale’ Retirement for Tottie means taking up a new set of challenges and life is most certainly never dull. We travel with her to many of the fascinating and beautiful spots in the Auvergne area and she comes up with the idea of ‘Tottie’s Tours’ She is extraordinarily resourceful and is willing to turn her hand to any project even though she describes herself as accident prone. Loft conversion, wild camping, driving with her eyes shut... anecdotes told with great humour and some superb description. She has mastered the knack of conversational writing which draws the reader right in. Interestingly she describes how the idea of her detective Ted Darling was born. I’m really looking forward to reading that series. Sadly though this will be the last of the memoirs but you never know. A well deserved five stars from me.


Midwife: A Calling: Volume 1 (Memoirs of an Urban Midwife)
Midwife: A Calling: Volume 1 (Memoirs of an Urban Midwife)
by Peggy Vincent
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.25

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolutely enthralling memoir!, 28 Mar. 2016
What a wonderful and uplifting book this is. It deals with the wonder and miracle of birth and Peggy Vincent's warmth and love of her job and willingness to go the extra mile for her patients shines from every page. I have usually shied away from midwifery books but I’m so glad I read this and will be looking forward to more from Peggy. She describes her student days and how she felt drawn to obstetrics realising this was the area in which she wanted to specialise. Eventually after much extra study she became a ‘Certified Nurse Midwife’ which wasn’t always an easy path. She has dealt with doctors who regarded themselves as ‘superior. I have to say she dealt with them admirably being a woman of great character. She feels very strongly that women should have a much greater degree of choice when it comes to giving birth and is in favour of home birthing wherever possible. The book also describes the changing ideas regarding birth from having no fathers present and a high degree of medical involvement where the doctor’s word was law!
Each chapter deals with a different birth and she very cleverly interweaves her own personal story alongside the stories of the women she has assisted. We learn of breech births and the attendant risks. There are stories which show us the way people from different cultures and traditions approach birth which are absolutely fascinating. What a wonderful profession she has and how compassionate and kind she is with all her ladies. There is shock, drama, humour and medical details in abundance which makes this memoir educational as well as entertaining. I can’t wait for more from Peggy Vincent – highly recommended!


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