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Joanna Cannon (Ashbourne, Derbyshire)
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The Accident: The bestselling psychological thriller
The Accident: The bestselling psychological thriller
Price: £2.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully terrifying ..., 15 April 2014
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This is wonderful story of how a quiet life can become very unquiet, if your path happens to cross with the wrong person. Superbly written, with cliffhangers which pull you straight into the next chapter, The Accident had me cheering for Sue from the very beginning. I felt her terror and her frustration, and the diary entries from twenty years earlier were perfectly pitched (would you have fallen for James, when did the red flags start fluttering, and how would you have reacted?) Fabulously done.
A very cleverly woven story of secrets and lies, of relationships and doubt and desperation. Beautifully terrifying.


Jubilee
Jubilee
Price: £4.99

10 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Perfect Hero, 29 Mar. 2012
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This review is from: Jubilee (Kindle Edition)
Jubilee is the story of a photograph. It's the story of how a moment in time, captured between glass and leather, can hold so much more than a thirty-year memory. Shelley Harris has created a wonderful hero in Satish. He is perfectly flawed, finding reassurance in the distance he has created between himself and others, and hiding his past within a measured life. When Satish is forced to acknowledge what happened on Jubilee Day, his self-control begins to unravel and the darker side of Cherry Gardens is exposed. This is a beautifully told story. The author's outstanding eye for detail has created an incredibly powerful book, sprinkled with fabulous memories, and anyone who was there will be transported straight back to the late 1970s. It is down to the skill of the author and the exquisite ability of her story-telling that Satish's narrative is so moving and so painfully beautiful. A very personal and heart-breaking tale told against the backdrop of a national event. I can't recommend it enough.


Broken (The Cole Trilogy, Part 2)
Broken (The Cole Trilogy, Part 2)
Price: £0.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Perfect Sequel, 8 Mar. 2012
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Once again, Marshall Buckley has lifted me from the ordinary world and transported me into a truly wonderful story. "Broken" is a perfect sequel to "The Long Second", and I was delighted to find myself back in Tony's life. I think one of the many brilliant things about these books, is that the reader discovers the characteristics of this world alongside the main character. This gives an instant connection, both to Tony and to the story, and the voice of the narrator is written so perfectly, it is exceptionally difficult to stop reading! I believe there is a land called 'just one more chapter', and Marshall Buckley is its king ...

"Broken" is beautifully paced. It's exciting, poignant and thought-provoking. I managed to make it last twenty-four hours (which I feel deeply ashamed about, considering how long it must have taken to write), but it was just too darned good to put down.

A brilliant read.


Mr Briggs' Hat: A Sensational Account of Britain's First Railway Murder
Mr Briggs' Hat: A Sensational Account of Britain's First Railway Murder
by Kate Colquhoun
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Much More ..., 5 Mar. 2012
Mr Briggs' Hat is a wonderful account of a truly fascinating murder case. Kate Colquhoun delivers the facts with such incredible clarity, yet tells them in a way which would rival any great novelist, creating a perfect balance of evidence and story-telling. The meticulous research is actually breathtaking. In the hands of a less-skilled writer, I might not have cared quite so much about Mr Briggs, but Ms Colquhoun writes in such a way that I felt as though I were unconvering the truth alongside her, and the discovery of new witnesses and changes in direction meant the pages of the book almost turned themselves. By the end of the story, I cared so much, I wanted to march into the courtroom and plead with the jury to see sense.

This is also so much more than a tale of murder. It's a beautiful insight into Victorian life; a brilliant account of man's reflexive fear of change, of a population fragmented by class and politics, and of a time which found itself on the edge of a moral quandary. It's the story of a man whose fate will be determined, not just by the evidence, but by the attitudes of the society in which he finds himself.

Perfect.


Raven Black (Shetland Book 1)
Raven Black (Shetland Book 1)
Price: £4.74

5.0 out of 5 stars A Perfect Story of Unbelonging, 31 Jan. 2012
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Raven Black has everything you could possibly want from a crime thriller: an evocative setting, intriguing characters, a perfectly-paced plot and many carefully placed clues (and red herrings!). What makes Raven Black stand out from other crime novels, and what makes it such a wonderful read, is the way the author has used the isolation of the landscape to emphasise the tightly woven sense of community. Against this, she has captured perfectly how it feels to be an outsider, an unbelonger, in a place where identity and tradition are everything. A theme which runs through every page. A wonderful, cleverly-crafted story which was a joy to read.


When God was a Rabbit: The Richard and Judy Bestseller
When God was a Rabbit: The Richard and Judy Bestseller
by Sarah Winman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Letting Go, 21 Jan. 2012
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I loved this story.

I loved the narrator. I loved her humour and her observations, and the way her life was described with such clever brush strokes, so much could be said in so few words. The fact that the book is both shocking and humorous shows the incredible skill of the author. There were times when I laughed out loud and yet, on the next page, I would ache with sadness for Elly and Jenny Penny.

This is a beautiful story. It's a story of childhood and coming of age, but these intimate moments of growing up are set against a backdrop of world events, which only adds to their fragility. There are many different shades and themes but, above all, I think it's a story about letting go. It's about loss (of childhood, of innocence and of the people we love) and about how we move on when we lose the one thing to us which is most precious. By the end of the story, I was so wrapped in the characters, I almost couldn't bear to let go myself.

Stunning.


Write a Great Synopsis - An Expert Guide
Write a Great Synopsis - An Expert Guide
Price: £3.44

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sharp, Funny and Essential, 18 Jan. 2012
Write A Great Synopsis is essential for anyone who wants to give their novel the best possible chance of success. Unlike many of the 'how to' books, it's sharp and funny and a complete pleasure to read. Before this book, I was at a total loss as to how to even begin constructing a synopsis. Now, I feel as if I've been given the magic spell of synopses-writing and I wonder what on earth I was so worried about in the first place. Nicola Morgan's book will literally give you step-by-step guidance that will take your wandering thoughts and turn them into a clean, sharp, polished piece.

Not just recommended, but essential.


The Coward's Tale
The Coward's Tale
Price: £5.03

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, 12 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: The Coward's Tale (Kindle Edition)
I think this has to be one of the most complete books I have ever read.

The language is so exquisite, the characters so rich and the descriptions so painfully beautiful, I had to stop for a few minutes after each chapter, just to prolong the joy of reading it. The story has humour and poignancy and incredible depth, and the most flawless ending to a story I think I have ever seen.

Reviews normally include a summary of the plot and observations on the writing style, but I can do none of these things with The Coward's Tale. It's far too perfect to slice and analyse, I can only suggest you begin reading it. You will fall in love from the very first page.


Mondays are Red
Mondays are Red

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Power of Language, 8 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: Mondays are Red (Kindle Edition)
Mondays Are Red should really be read twice.

It should be read the first time to be entertained by the plot and the characters and the story itself, but it should also be read a second time, just to enjoy the words. They deserve a reading all to themselves.

I won't elaborate on the story, as there are other reviews which have explained it beautifully, but I do think that Mondays Are Red is about change. It's about how we might feel if we woke one day and saw the world differently, and how we would deal with the challenge of an entirely different view. It's also about the power of language, and reading the story has really made me question the self-imposed filter we place on the world, created purely through our own choice of words.

Mondays Are Red is classed as young adult fiction (which, of course, it is), but it's really a book for anyone who enjoys language. Luke's descriptions of his new view of the world are just magical and will stop you in the middle of a paragraph, just to savour them.

And if you're anything like me, it will make you ever-so-slightly jealous of anyone with synaesthesia.


The Long Second (The Cole Trilogy, Part 1)
The Long Second (The Cole Trilogy, Part 1)
Price: £0.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Many Reasons I Love This Book, 7 Jan. 2012
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If you're looking for an absorbing, cleverly-written, well crafted story, you have found it right here in The Long Second.

The main character, Tony, has such a believable, clear voice and you hear it right from the very first page. It's down to the writing skill of Marshall Buckley that you not only start to care about Tony, but also about each member of his ever-so-slightly dysfunctional family.

I love lots of things about this book. I love that Tony is just an ordinary guy. I love that you try to solve the puzzle of his new found lifestyle along with him. I love that the writing is so clever, you feel as though Tony is sitting opposite you and having a really good chat. But most of all, I love that The Long Second isn't published by a big-name publisher. I love that it's written by someone who clearly had a great story to tell and just wanted to share it with other people. I love that you can buy The Long Second just as easily as you can buy Booker Prize winners and Galaxy short-listeds and the novels of well-known authors.

And I love that The Long Second can sit alongside the winners and the short-listeds and the well-known authors, and I love that it looks not a fraction out of place.

I love it so much, I'm just about to order the sequel ...


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