Book Review: The Ice Twins by S.K. Tremayne

I have been seeing lots of great reviews around for The Ice Twins by S.K. Tremayne and I couldn’t wait to read it. There has been lots of adverts around Facebook and Twitter regarding this book for a few months so I thought why not give it a go? I am sure I’m not alone in having a fascination with twins and reading about their strange connections with each other.
                   The Ice Twins by S.K. Tremayne

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Book Review: The Lost Concerto by Helaine Mario

I love a good thriller, in fact it’s one of my favourite genres, and The Lost Concerto by Helaine Mario mixes classical music, with mystery and intrigue. 
I am not a huge classical music fan but, I was willing to give this book a go as it looks like a great thrill. The jacket on the hardback version which I received to review from Oceanview Publishing, does not give much way picture wise. This makes it very visually appealing and wanting the reader to find out what it’s all about. 
                     

Book Description

A woman and her young son flee to a convent on a remote island off the Breton coast of France. Generations of seafarers have named the place Ile de la Brume, or Fog Island. In a chapel high on a cliff, a tragic death occurs and a terrified child vanishes into the mist.

The child’s godmother, Maggie O’Shea, haunted by the violent deaths of her husband and best friend, has withdrawn from her life as a classical pianist. But then a recording of unforgettable music and a grainy photograph surface, connecting her missing godson to a long-lost first love.

The photograph will draw Maggie inexorably into a collision course with criminal forces, decades-long secrets, stolen art and musical artifacts, and deadly terrorists. Her search will take her to the Festival de Musique, Aix-en-Provence, France, where she discovers answers to the mystery surrounding her husband’s death, an unexpected love—and a musical masterpiece lost for centuries.

             

My Review

It didn’t take me very long to read this book. The chapters are very short and well written. The author has written this book in a very beautiful way, describing the locations with an artistic feel. 
The main character Maggie, a concert pianist, is a strong female lead and has been through a great deal of heartache with the deaths of her husband and best friend, and now her godson missing. This has led her to give up on music and go in search of her missing godson Tommy. Maggie embarks on a journey that takes her into a world of stolen art, music and terrorism, and not all is what it seems. There is also a romantic element to the book in the form of Maggie’s ex-lover, and this gives us another dimension into her character.
There are many twists and turns along the way, that made it a bit hard to keep up. Especially as I was turning each page quickly to see what happens next! 
I would really recommend this book to thriller/mystery fans even if you are not fans of classical music/art. I know that I will re-read it one day so I have more time to take it all in and not speed through it at 100mph like I did this time. I think this book deserves it.
I have given The Lost Concerto by Helaine Mario 5 out of 5 stars.
Hardback Edition 443 pages
Published 1st July 2015 by Oceanview Publishing
Rachel xx
Disclaimer I was given this hardback copy to read and review free of charge from Oceanview Publishing through Tomoson. All opinions and views expressed are my own. Book description taken from Tomoson.com for purpose for this review only.

Book Review: Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk

When I first saw the cover of this book I thought the title was a little strange. What does Method 15/33 mean? With a picture of a pair of hands tied up with rope does not give much away to the reader. I was eager to find out what it’s all about.
Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk
Book Description:
 
Imagine a helpless, pregnant 16-year-old who’s just been yanked from the serenity of her home and shoved into a dirty van. Kidnapped Alone Terrified.

Now forget her …

Picture instead a pregnant, 16-year-old, manipulative prodigy. She is shoved into a dirty van and, from the first moment of her kidnapping, feels a calm desire for two things: to save her unborn son and to exact merciless revenge.

She is methodical, calculating, scientific in her plotting. A clinical sociopath? Leaving nothing to chance, secure in her timing and practice, she waits for the perfect moment to strike. “Method 15/33” is what happens when the victim is just as cold as the captors.

The agents trying to find a kidnapped girl have their own frustrations and desires wrapped into this chilling drama. In the twists of intersecting stories, one is left to ponder. Who is the victim? Who is the aggressor?
My Review:
 
The book is fairly short, and action packed with great characters. The main character is a very heavily pregnant 16 year old, who is creepily calm about her situation. Her kidnappers want only her baby to sell on and have no need for her at all. She is very methodical in studying her surroundings cataloging everything around her which could be used to her advantage. This is really smart and gives you an insight to what she is really like, and won’t give up without a fight.
The girl makes it really hard to connect with her as a reader as she seems quite emotionless and cold at times. I did struggle with this. As an avid reader I love to connect with the main characters in a novel.
The author has written a well described physchological thriller and a great page turner. The plot is fairly simple but the details surrounding the girls plot to escape with the numbering  of things around her can get a bit confusing.
I have given Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk 3 out of 5 stars.
Hardback Edition 226 pages
Published 5th May 2015 by Oceanview Publishing
Rachel xx
Disclaimer: I was given this hardback edition to read and review free of charge by Oceanview Publishing through Tomoson. All opinions and views expressed are my own. Book description  taken from Tomoson.com for purpose for this review only.

Book Review: Terminal Life by Richard Torregrossa

When i first spotted this book, I really liked the look of the cover and with the little description of a suited hero novel. This made me think that the hero of the story is very smart, business- like and immaculately dressed. A different type of hero to the normal costume dressed heroes that are ten a penny nowadays.    
                  


Book Description

Luke Stark, a Special Forces veteran, returns home from his second tour in Afghanistan to learn that his wife has been mysteriously murdered and his son has disappeared. These tragedies, in addition to suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, push him over the edge. He has also been diagnosed with an incipient form of cancer, but he forgoes treatment, a decision that is akin to a slow suicide.

Although he lives in a shelter, he wears an impeccable suit, an eccentric characteristic that sets him apart from his fellow down-and-outers and just about everybody else. He is nicknamed, somewhat ironically, The Suited Hero.

Revenge and the search for his son spark a kind of rebirth in him that is as cathartic as it is brutal. This leads him into the dangerous world of illegal prescription drug distribution, where nobody in this gripping mystery crime thriller— not even some family members—is who they appear to be.
This book is a very enjoyable action/suspense/thriller, and one that I read pretty quickly. The main character Luke Stark is a great hero and you can’t help but feel for him in his unfortunate circumstances. There are some fabulous action scenes with a little gore included, but this gets offset by a romance element which for me was a welcome change from all the action.
I would definitely recommend it as a fast paced summer read, I was wanting more at the end though so would love to see a few sequels. The author has a fantastic character in Luke Stark and I for one would read more of his adventures. 
I have given Terminal Life by Richard Torregrossa 5 out of 5 stars.
Hardback Edition
Published 2014 by Oceanview Publishing
Rachel xx

Disclaimer: I was given this hardback edition to read and review free of charge by Oceanview Publishing through Tomoson. All opinions and views expressed are my own. Book description and bottom image taken from Tomoson.com for purpose for this review only.

Book Review: The Confession of Thomas Hawkins by Antonia Hodgson

My first thoughts on this book was that it looked like a really interesting read. I haven’t read that many historical crime fiction, but was totally absorbed and intrigued by the cover of this one. 
Book Description

Spring, 1728. A young, well-dressed man is dragged through the streets of London to the gallows at Tyburn. The crowds jeer and curse as he passes, calling him a murderer. He tries to remain calm. His name is Tom Hawkins and he is innocent. Somehow he has to prove it, before the rope squeezes the life out of him.



It is, of course, all his own fault. He was happy with Kitty Sparks. Life was good. He should never have told the most dangerous criminal in London that he was ‘bored and looking for adventure’. He should never have offered to help Henrietta Howard, the king’s mistress, in her desperate struggles with a brutal husband. And most of all, he should never have trusted the witty, calculating Queen Caroline. She has promised him a royal pardon if he holds his tongue but then again, there is nothing more silent than a hanged man.

Based loosely on actual events, Antonia Hodgson’s new novel is both a sequel to The Devil in the Marshalsea and a standalone historical mystery. From the gilded cage of the Court to the wicked freedoms of the slums, it reveals a world both seductive and deadly. And it continues the rake’s progress of Tom Hawkins – assuming he can find a way to survive the noose…
           

When I decided I wanted to read this novel, I didn’t realise that it was a sequel to The Devil in the Marshalsea, but anyway I decided to give it a go. I am really glad I did, and felt that it didn’t matter that I hadn’t read the previous novel. 
The setting of the novel is in the deep grotty slums of London in the 1700’s. The way the book is written gives you a great picture of this time with the corruption and violence that seems to be all around you. The main character Thomas is such a likable character, and I was rooting for him all the time as we try to discover who actually dunnit?
The one thing I enjoyed about the book was that it is actually loosely based on real events, this to me gives it a sense of reality and truth behind the story.
My overall thoughts is that you will be taken on a fabulous ride with this thriller through grimy London and be guessing all the way! I have enjoyed it very much and look forward to going back and reading The Devil in the Marshalsea.
I have given The Confession of Thomas Hawkins by Antonia Hodgson 4 out of 5 stars.
Hardback Edition
Published 4th June 2015 by Hodder & Stoughton
Rachel xx
Disclaimer I was given this hardback edition to read and review free of charge from Bookbridgr. All opinions and views expressed are my own.

Book Review: The Bones of You by Debbie Howells

I requested to read an ebook copy of The Bones of You by Debbie Howells from Netgalley for one of my Bank Holiday reads. My initial thoughts of the cover image shown further below was that I am going to be in for a deep, dark, mystery, psychological thriller type of a book. I was not disappointed, and if you decide to read it neither would you.                                             
Book Description

When Kate receives a phone call with news that Rosie Anderson is missing, she’s stunned and disturbed. Rosie is eighteen, the same age as Kate’s daughter, and a beautiful, quiet, and kind young woman. Though the locals are optimistic—girls like Rosie don’t get into real trouble—Kate’s sense of foreboding is confirmed when Rosie is found fatally beaten and stabbed.
Who would kill the perfect daughter, from the perfect family? Yet the more Kate entwines herself with the Andersons—graceful mother Jo, renowned journalist father Neal, watchful younger sister Delphine—the more she is convinced that not everything is as it seems. Anonymous notes arrive, urging Kate to unravel the tangled threads of Rosie’s life and death, though she has no idea where they will lead.
Weaving flashbacks from Rosie’s perspective into a tautly plotted narrative, The Bones of You is a gripping, haunting novel of sacrifices and lies, desperation and love.
The book starts of with a rather creepy intro from Rosie, telling us that she is looking at the movie of her life. This suggests that she is dying and her life is flashing before her eyes. We hear Rosie’s side of the story throughout the book, and get to know her character this way.
Rosie’s mother Jo calls Kate to tell her that her daughter is missing. Kate and Jo don’t really know each other very much, but through the disappearance of Rosie and then the finding of her body, Kate becomes Jo’s rock. Jo’s marriage crumbles through the book, and she becomes a depressed pill taking alcoholic. Kate is with her every step of the way trying to make sense of what is happening while watching her own daughter Grace go off to university and her husband Angus heading up to York for work. 
I didn’t particularly like the character of Kate in the beginning, she seemed to be a bit of an interferring busy body, but as the book goes on I can see why. I am not quite sure I like the parts of Rosie telling her story from the grave either. This narative can be a bit confusing. 
I do like the author’s style of writing designed to tease the reader, drawing you in, thinking yes I know what happened, then throwing another spanner in the works changing your line of thinking. This keeps the reader very much engaged with the story.
This book is a good read for anyone looking for a mystery suspense who dunnit novel. 
I have given The Bones of You by Debbie Howells 3 out of 5 stars. 
Expected publication date 30th June 2015 by Kensington Books
Rachel xx

Disclaimer: I received this ebook free of charge in exchange for an hoenst review. All views and opinions expressed are my own. Book cover image and Book Description taken from NetGalley.com for purpose of this review only.