Christmas is ruined on Newbury Street, Norwich, following a spate of burglaries. Rumours are swirling that the thief may even live on the street. Instead of festive cheer, the residents are filled with suspicion and dread.
The police have increased their presence on Newbury Street and as Christmas creeps closer, their investigations reveal that everyone has something to hide.
But Christmas is a time for miracles… and if they open up their hearts and look out for each other, they might discover the biggest miracle of all.
Hayley Webster has written a lovely book with believable characters that the reader roots for. I really enjoyed the fact that ‘One Christmas Night‘ combines a mystery with heartwarming subplots.
As the story went on, I got more and more involved in the lives of these characters. I really admire that Webster manages to move the reader without being overly-sentimental.
Although it’s an easy read, ‘One Christmas Night‘ tackles serious subjects like racism, fraud and coercive control. I haven’t read a book with such a compelling cast of characters since ‘The Casual Vacancy‘.
I couldn’t put ‘One Christmas Night‘ down – it is the perfect festive read.
Forensic psychologist Doctor Alexander Gregory is renowned for being able to uncover whatever secrets lie hidden in the darkest of minds and, very quickly, he finds himself drawn into a murder investigation.
A killer is on the loose in County Mayo, Ireland and panic has taken hold on the rural community. The Garda are running out of time. Despite swearing to follow a quiet life, Gregory finds it impossible to turn down their desperate request for assistance.
Regular readers of this blog will know I’m a big fan of L.J. Ross’s DCI Ryan series so it was with some excitement that I picked up ‘Impostor‘, the first book in the Alexander Gregory series.
Despite having insane success with the DCI Ryan series, L.J. Ross has shown she isn’t afraid to take risks by embarking on a new series set in a new location. Ross has clearly done her research into psychological profilers – her portrayal of Gregory demonstrates her depth of knowledge. However, the story doesn’t lose its pace or get bogged down in unnecessary detail. It’s a real skill that Ross has honed – balancing backstory with pace.
The characters in ‘Impostor‘ are well-drawn with hidden depths. Gregory’s backstory is intriguing and I like how Ross manages to create three-dimensional characters who contribute to the narrative throughout.
Setting ‘Impostor‘ in Ireland gives Ross plenty of beautiful scenery to draw on and she does so with aplomb. L.J. Ross uses the countryside to create an atmosphere that contributes to the tense narrative.
As usual, L.J. Ross ensures that the reader is kept guessing until the very end. I was convinced I knew who the perpetrator was, only to be blind-sided by the big reveal.
I’m looking forward to reading ‘Hysteria‘, the next in the series.
Posted in Books, reviews
Tagged atmosphere, backstory, blog, book, characters, location, narrative, pace, reading, research, series, story, tense
When Carrie was accused of brutally murdering her husband’s lover, she denied it. She denied it when they arrested her, when they put her in front of a jury, and when they sent her to prison.
Now she’s three years into a fifteen-year sentence, away from the daughter she loves and the life she had built. And she is still denying that she is to blame.
Tess Gilroy has devoted her life to righting wrongs. Through her job for Innocence UK, a charity which takes on alleged miscarriages of justice, she works tirelessly to uncover the truth.
But when she is asked to take Carrie’s case, Tess realises that if she is to help this woman, she must risk uncovering the secrets she has struggled a lifetime to hide . . .
I really enjoyed ‘Clear My Name‘, Paula Daly delves into the world of charities that work to overthrow wrongful convictions. Although these charities are now often in the news, I haven’t read a novel about these groups before. Using Tess to tell the story gives the reader an insight into the difficulties encountered by those involved in these investigations.
The story is fast-paced and I found myself unable to put ‘Clear My Name‘ down. I constantly questioned what could have truly happened to Ella. ‘Clear My Name‘ is a compelling story featuring complex characters. Combined with an original concept, this novel is sure to be a hit.
Happy publication day to Paula Daly – you can get your copy of ‘Clear My Name‘ now. You won’t regret it.
Nanny Anna only takes her eyes off Laurel for a second, thinking Laurel was following her mum through the crowds. But in a heartbeat, Laurel is gone.
Laurel’s parents are frantic. As is Anna. But as the hours pass, and Laurel isn’t found, suspicion grows. Someone knows what happened to Laurel but they’re not telling.
My mum recommended ‘Have You Seen Her‘ to me and I could not put it down. The narrative is simple yet effective, sucking the reader in.
Set in a small village, ‘Have You Seen Her‘ explores the reaction of a community after a child goes missing. Sadly, it seemed an all-too-familiar scenario which added some realism to the story.
Alongside evocative descriptions of place, Hall’s exploration of her characters sets up a great mystery where anyone could be guilty. I thought her descriptions of Laurel’s parents and their relationship were particularly strong.
‘Have You Seen Her‘ is the first of Lisa Hall’s novels that I’ve read but it certainly won’t be the last.
When Grace’s fiancé vanishes without a trace the night after proposing, her life is turned upside down. But has Nick walked out on her, or is he in danger?
As Grace searches for answers, it becomes clear that Nick wasn’t the straight-forward man she thought she knew. And when she uncovers a hidden tragedy from his childhood, she realises an awful truth: that you can run from your past – but your secrets will always catch up with you . . .
One thing I really enjoyed about ‘The Night You Left‘ was the depiction of the characters and their backstories. The fact that Emma Curtis has weaved in so much nuance to the main players in this story means she can continue to surprise the reader throughout the book. The fact that these characters are multi-faceted gives this novel a depth which is sometimes missing in other books.
Using flashbacks effectively, Curtis manages to capture the voices of her characters as teenagers in order to increase the tension and create more possibilities as to what might have happened to Nick.
Emma Curtis has written an intriguing novel with flawed characters and many complex relationships that intersect to create a story that will keep readers guessing until the very end.
Happy publication day to Emma Curtis – ‘The Night You Left‘ is available to download now.