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3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 20 March 2012
Like many other readers I was absolutely gripped by 'Into the Darkest Corner', I had this on pre order as soon as I could and was really looking forward to reading it. I think it must be a very difficult thing to follow on from a spectacular debut novel and I was prepared to forgive 'Revenge of the Tide' quite a lot. However the most disappointing features of this novel were, surprisingly, the very things which were the strongest part of 'Into the Darkest Corner'. There you had a vulnerable and defeated heroine fighting back to strength from an almost impossible position. Here you had a confused and manipulative woman who fantasised about a big strong man saving her every time she found herself in a tight corner. And they did. In the earlier book the plot was both unusual and utterly convincing, this just felt contrived and, ultimately, a bit of a 'so what'? I am willing to believe Elizabeth Haynes next novel will be a tighter and better narrative as I'm sure a writer of her promise and calibre will be able to return to form, especially once the pressure of that difficult second novel is out of the way. This is still worth a read, if you are not making comparisons to her superb debut you wont be as disappointed as I was, maybe read this one first and THEN treat yourself to the delights of 'Into the Darkest Corner.'
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Revenge of the Tide introduces us to Genevieve Shipley, a young woman who, as we meet her, is enjoying the life she had dreamed of; she is living on a barge at a marina on the river Medway in Kent, working away at decorating and renovating it to her requirements, and socialising contentedly with the other 'liveaboard' folk who are moored up nearby. It's an entire world away from her previous lifestyle in London, where she worked in a pressurised, constantly demanding sales environment during the day, and as a high earning pole dancer in an exclusive gentleman's club at night. As the novel opens, Genevieve is preparing for a boat-warming party that she's hosting that evening, and she has invited new friends from the other boats, and also some old friends from her life back in London; as she admits to herself, it's a 'mismatched group of people'. But when she makes a horrifying discovery that night, a body washed up right by her barge, the old life she thought she had left behind five months ago intrudes on the new, and her hard-earned peace and safety is shattered.

Into the Darkest Corner was the first novel by Elizabeth Haynes, and it was Amazon's Best Book of the Year 2011. It was also my personal favourite book of 2011, an absolutely cracking read that I have happily recommended to many fellow readers and will continue to do so. Therefore, to say that I was excited in my anticipation of the author's next book would be an understatement. I was also a bit nervous; how would the author follow on from her debut, would I enjoy it, would I find it compelling too? The answer to both is a definite yes.

I found the storyline gripping and I finished the book in a couple of sittings, kept intrigued by the way that what happened in the past is slowly revealed bit by bit as the novel progresses, the narrative moving from the present to the past, back and forth, building up our curiosity and the suspense about what Genevieve was involved in back then. Back in the present, the investigation into the body found at the marina continues, another alarming discovery is made, and the calm life aboard becomes anything but for Genevieve. The novel's title is also the name of the boat Genevieve has bought; upon purchase she learned that it is unlucky to change the name, so she keeps it as the Revenge of the Tide, and she loves the boat, seeing it as her protector; 'living aboard such a majestic, beautiful boat made me feel a bit safer, a bit less lonely. And it looked after me and hid me away from view. Boats were supposed to be female, but I always thought of the Revenge as male: a big, quiet gentleman, someone who would keep me safe.' Nevertheless, however homely the barge seemed to be becoming, it feels like the name is rather ominous, and Genevieve's need to feel safe and hidden now reveals a little about her feelings for the past.

I was intrigued by Genevieve herself; she is strong and independent, determinedly driven by the thought of her future escape to life on the boat, but despite this strength, she is flawed and naive too at times; she believes she has a handle on everything and everyone, but there is a darker, crueler side to some that she hadn't suspected. Somehow she sustains the demanding schedule of her day job and the evenings dancing, keeping her fit, enjoying it and providing such a fast way for her to raise the money she needs to fund her dream. The dialogue really flows well, the police questioning rings true, and the author creates and fleshes out rounded characters too; I could picture Genevieve visiting Malcolm and Josie along the pontoon. I really enjoyed Revenge of the Tide. Roll on novel number three, please!
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on 2 June 2012
I enjoyed Elizabeth Haynes' first novel. It was clever and well written. This, however is far from that. I found the plot weak, the writing poor and the heroine uninspiring. I felt that, whatever else, Elizabeth Haynes would write complicated and strong female characters. However this heroine was one dimensional and, dare I say, boring. I will however read the next novel. Someone that is capable of writing her first book is much better than this. I wonder if she was rushed to produce something quickly to follow her success quickly. Read her first, I personally would not recommend this.
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on 7 May 2012
I couldn't stop raving about Into The Darkest Corner, but feel very disappointed and let down by Revenge of the Tide. It doesn't have the same menace and tension as Haynes's debut and the heroine is two-dimensional (every man who meets her falls in love with her) and weak (she tries to find out what's going on, a man starts kissing her to distract her, and she promptly has sex with him again). It was a typical dodgy-gangster story without anything really going on and I put it down feeling relieved I'd finished it rather than hyperventilating as I did at the end of Darkest Corner!

I would certainly read the next book by Haynes because she is a good writer, but I do hope that the next offering is an improvement on this one.
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on 19 April 2012
I almost said, "Who cares?" - but it wasn't quite as bad as that. I cared. I wanted another riveting read to live up to Elizabeth Haynes's surprising debut and felt let down. I think my main reaction was disappointment. It is always hard to follow up on a brilliant debut, and "Revenge of the Tide" was nowhere near as good as "Into the Darkest Corner". "Darkest Corner" excited and stimulated me. The story line was fresh and original and very well researched. I loved the dark psychology of all the characters. But "Revenge of the Tide" is a thriller that lacks passion or energy. I gained the strong impression that it was a pot-boiler written fast and without much thought in order to deliver "Book no 2" to her excitable publishers. It's about Genevieve, a woman who has a good brain, as is shown by the fact she can earn huge sums working in finance in the City - but it's not enough. She wants to get rich quick, so she can buy a boat and escape - but escape from what? - this is never made clear. Her answer is to go in for pole dancing and putting out, while declaring that morally she won't go all the way. To me, this doesn't add up. I found the pages and pages of pole dancing descriptions neither erotic nor interesting. She falls in love with a heavy, a bouncer at the club (I don't think this is a spoiler, because she talks longingly about him from the start) and none of their romance - if you can call it that - adds up, either. She jumps into bed with him the first time they are alone and from then on, he is the love of her life. She thinks of him night and day, she dreams of him, she longs for him to contact her. But despite that, she has an affair with someone else (actually, I prefered him - I would have jumped into bed with him!) She also states that a murdered woman was her best friend - but that doesn't add up, either. She barely knows her, went to her flat just once, briefly, and has never had a proper conversation with her. There are good parts - I really enjoyed the descriptions of how she restores the boat and of some of the boat people she meets. Overall, the plot is mundane, makes little sense, and is about people I don't really like. However, I did keep reading, mostly in the hope that it would suddenly get better. Sadly it didn't. I will buy Elizabeth Haynes' next novel because someone who came up with such a brilliant first book can surely score again.
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on 2 April 2012
Like most of the other reviewers, I'd read and thoroughly enjoyed Into the Darkest Corner, and perhaps my expectations of Revenge of the Tide were so high I was always going to be disappointed. I found the characters hard to relate to, and flat, and the plot verging on the ridiculous. Genevieve, the main character, was pretty objectionable, and the rest of the cast were one dimensional - the only one I felt any warmth towards was Josie. The climax of the plot was, for me, just stupid, and I found myself skimming the latter parts just to get it over with. If I'd not read the author's previous book I would have given up on this a few chapters in, but kept plugging on hoping it would improve. It didn't. Save your money and wait for book number three.
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on 4 March 2013
More a character study in the eccentricities of the human animal than a murder mystery, DARK TIDE by Elizabeth Haynes is definitely not a page turner. It is more an examination of the life choices made by ex-sales representative and part time pole dancer (also ex) Genevieve Shipley, and how they are affecting her present pursuits. She has sought sanctuary and solace from the pressures of life in London by purchasing a houseboat with the money she earned in the course of practicing her dual professions (pole dancing being the more lucrative of the two).

Genevieve is one talented lady. Not only was she a proficient salesperson and a talented pole dancer, she is also a gifted carpenter and has decided to personally undertake the renovation of her houseboat......and from the description of the boat this is going to be no small undertaking.

Genevieve's previous life and friends and her current group of marina buddies converge at a party on the boat resulting in some revelations better kept unspoken and the discovery of a body floating alongside her boat, the REVENGE OF THE TIDE. Along the way, we become well acquainted with the marina folk, meet the requisite love interests (yes interests - plural) and some questionable characters from her former life at the Barkley "Gentlemen's Club" as well as being exposed to an in depth look Genevieve's somewhat immature and emotionally needy behavior.

DARK TIDE is not the sort of book that keeps you up at night reading because you are driven to find out what happens, chiefly because takes too long to get to the payoff. (Or perhaps I am just lacking in that all important virtue - PATIENCE).
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on 12 May 2012
I have just finished reading the Revenge of the Tide and it was a struggle, very disappointed after her fabulous debut novel Into the Darkest Corner. The main character Genevieve, who comes over as somebody who has no substance whatsoever. To finance her ambition to own a boat and get away, from what, is never explained - she takes up pole dancing at night after holding down a very successful job in the City during the day to earn more money for her dream? She flits from relationship to relationship, that is if you can call one night stands relationships.

There was no substance in the characters and the storyline didn't flow it just dribbled along. In fact at the end of the book I was bored stiff. Not recommended.
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on 26 April 2012
I have just finished Revenge of the Tide, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Completely different from Into the Darkest Corner, but still gripping and full of twists and turns. It was particularly enjoyable for me as coming from Kent, I could visualise the setting on the River Medway etc. Again well worth the 5 star review, and wait for Elizabeth Haynes next novel with bated breath....
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on 6 April 2012
Looking at some of the reviews here you might be forgiven for thinking that this book is not that good, but as the critical opinions seemed to mostly be complaining that it's not exactly the same as the first book I decided to read on, and glad I did.

Thankfully this book retains the writing style of the previous book which is what makes these books a real winner, reading them is so effortless the story plays out in your head automatically and really comes to life.

As with the first book there was very little I could find fault with, and is technically well researched. Some here have commented that the characters seemed unrealistic, but as they are supposed to be successful criminals who's success depends on them being seen to be tough and emotionless what we learn of them from Genevieve's observations make them far more plausible.

The story draws you in just at the right pace to make you want to read the next chapter to find out more and there are enough little unexpected twists to prevent it from being predictable.

Having said that I do have to agree that this is not as clever as the first book which brilliantly created a character who could intimidate and scare with just a look, a gesture or some tiny little action that most people couldn't describe in words but we all know can happen in reality. This doesn't try to be like her first book, it's just trying to be a good story that's well written and achieves this.

If I were to rate this compared to her first book it would possibly be lower, but if I imagine it was written by someone else I would happily give it five stars, and for that reason I have.
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