The Party – Lisa Hall Review & Giveaway!

Thank you to the team at HQ stories for sending me an ARC copy of this book. As always, opinions and thoughts are all my own!

the party“It was just a party. But it turned into a nightmare.
When Rachel wakes up in a strange room, the morning after a neighbour’s party, she has no memory of what happened the night before. Why did her husband leave her alone at the party? Did they row? Why are Rachel’s arms so bruised? And why are her neighbours and friends so vague about what really happened?

Little by little, Rachel pieces together the devastating events that took place in a friend’s house, at a party where she should have been safe. Everyone remembers what happened that night differently, and everyone has something to hide. But someone knows the truth about what happened to Rachel. And she’s determined to find them.”

REVIEW:

The Party is a standalone psychological thriller featuring Lies, Scandal and Revenge. We follow Rachel who wakes up after a new year’s party in a strange room, feeling sick and knowing that something terrible has happened to her.

This book does deal with rape and sexual abuse and my not be suitable for someone who is sensitive to these topics to read. I would also like to add that I have never experienced rape or sexual abuse and I therefore cannot comment on how it is represented in this book.

I thought that this was such a fantastic book. We get to see chapters which occur from before the party and also after the party which I really enjoyed as both time points gave you a different view to who could have been the ‘bad guy’ in this book. It had me guessing backwards and forwards as to who it was and although I knew who it was by the time it was revealed, I’d definitely changed my min a few times so this is definitely one that keeps you guessing!

I enjoyed all the domestic issues that were wound into the storyline (and no, not all of them are Rachels!) We got to hear all about he neighbours both before and after the party and its clear that everyone had their flaws and issues on the street which meant that most of the didn’t see what happened on the night of party! {or maybe they did they’re just lying to protect themselves. . .?} And Rachel also had a lot to deal with at home with her husband which just worked so well with the main plot as she those issues to deal with along with what she could remember from the party.

I felt so sorry for Rachel; I think there will be a few of us who have woke up from a night out and can’t remember much so it was definitely easy to relate but this obviously goes a lot further as we get to follow Rachel’s panic at knowing something has happened, yet she has no idea who did it or even how it happened. It was so refreshing not to have an unreliable narrator too! Rachel really just seemed like a normal woman; no alcoholism or amnesia or memory issues (apart from the obvious memory loss of the night) and she didn’t try and use the memory loss from the night to cause trouble.

This really is a fantastic book that keeps you hooked – I read this in a day because I couldn’t put it down and I haven’t done that in a really really long time!

GIVEAWAY!

HQ Stories are kindly going to giveaway a paperback copy of The Party by Lisa Hall if you live in the UK! Enter below and good luck – this giveaway will be open for 7 days!

Clicke here to go to the rafflecopter site and enter the giveaway. Please read the terms and conditions before entering and remember this is for UK entrants only. I will need your address if you win so must be willing to supply me with this information if you win!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/80dc09121/?

indexLisa loves words, reading and everything there is to love about books. She has dreamed of being a writer since she was a little girl – either that or a librarian – and after years of talking about it, was finally brave enough to put pen to paper (and let people actually read it). Lisa lives in a small village in Kent, surrounded by her towering TBR pile, a rather large brood of children, dogs, chickens and ponies and her long-suffering husband. She is also rather partial to eating cheese and drinking wine.

You can find Lisa on Twitter!

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The Walls – Hollie Overton Review

The Walls

Thank you to NetGalley and Random House UK, Cornerstone for providing me with this digital ARC. As always, all opinions are honest and my own.

This follows Kristy who is a working single mum who also has to look after her ill father. She works at as a press officer for the department of corrections in Texas handling all the press releases and interviews for the Prisons; including the inmates that are on death row. She meets Lance, her son’s martial arts teacher and things start really looking up until they get married and things take a turn for the worst and then Kristy starts wondering if she can get rid of Lance . . . for good.

Wow this book was amazing. To start with, Kristy’s job was so interesting, and we were actually told a lot about her job within the book itself, without it sounding too much like you were reading a Wikipedia article or job description. I knew that there were still states in the US that had the death penalty, but I didn’t realise that there was such a job as Kristy’s and it really was a fascinating insight into that field. She has to arrange interviews and talk to prisoners on death row to see if they want to give interviews and she also has the difficult task of trying to deal with the protestors against the death penalty and trying to make sure that the death penalty and what was happening at these prisons wasn’t seen in an entirely negative light (which is a difficult task!). We also got to see her form a relationship of sorts with one of the men on death row, Clifton Harris, who starts writing letters to her and they both become ‘friends’ or as friendly as you can become in that situation. We also get to hear Clifton’s story and why he’s on death row and I really feel like al of this could have been a story within itself that I would have been happy to read about!

The actual main storyline of the book was also a great story. Like mentioned above, we follow Kristy who is a single mum and is looking after her father who is ill whilst also working full-time to hep support her family. Her son starts secretly going to a martial arts class and when she finds out, she confronts his teacher; Lance. It’s from here that Kristy and Lance develop a relationship that turns romantic and they eventually get married where things go south, and Lance starts to abuse her. I would like to first point out that I have no experience with domestic abuse and so I cannot comment on how it is portrayed in this book and I obviously do not condone Kristy’s actions in this book. I really liked how it eased into the abuse and I could see the progression as his abuse got worse. I really felt for Kristy and although I wanted her to leave Lance and get out with her family, it was easy to understand why she couldn’t just up and leave. Lance had managed to insert himself into every aspect her life and had everyone fooled. I found myself rooting so badly for her to win and get out of the relationship and the entire situation that she was in.

The characters were all developed really well. We got to hear plenty about Kristy herself; obviously it mentioned the job and we also got to hear about what happened with her when she was younger in order for her to become a single mom and also with how she got her job. We heard lots about Kristys’ son, Ryan and also her sick father who become an integral part of why she can’t Lance within the story. And we obviously get to deal a lot with Lance and wow I really got to hate him. He seemed great at first; he treated Kristy great and not just that, he treated her family great and was a real family man. He was romantic and loving and made Kristy feel amazing but there always seemed to be someth8ing off with him. And of course, he turns into an arrogant tool who is horrible and you just ending up rally really hating him and I’m glad of what happens in the end. Clifton Harris, the inmate was also a great character. We got to hear his story of why he’s in prison and it really threw some questions up on whether he’s guilty or not and made you really think about the death penalty and also the justice system in general.

I would 100% recommend that you pick this book up and it has definitely become one of my favourite books of this year so far. It’s a griping read but not just that, it’s interesting as well and you just don’t want to put it down. I have Babydoll by Hollie Overton sitting on my shelf and it’s definitely going to be one that I pick up sooner rather than later because of how fantastic this was. You can find this on Amazon in paperback and kindle.

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The Wedding Date – Jasmine Guillory Review

Wedding Date

I think this was a definitely a book that suffered from being overhyped, mainly on booktube and I had really high expectations going on and was ultimately, disappointed because I thought it was going to be really fantastic going off everyone raving about it. That’s not to say that it’s a bad book, it’s a good book but just nothing special like I was expecting.

This follows Alexa and Drew who both have high powered careers and end up meeting in an elevator when it breaks down. Drew needs a date for his best friend and ex-girlfriends weeding and ends up asking Alexa to be his date to the wedding on a whim She agrees, and we get to follow them and their growing relationship from there.

This definitely isn’t a book where you have no idea where the plot is going as it’s obvious that there is going to be a growing relationship between the two and it was more just reading to see the path it would take them to get there. It was nice to see two characters that didn’t come with a lot of baggage as it did make the romance a lot simpler and straight forward. That’s not to say that there weren’t any snags in their relationship and making it work as there were, but it meant they were the usual issues such a s miscommunication instead of major drama issues. It did have some sexy-time scenes but it isn’t overly sexy or smutty so you don’t nee to worry about that if it’s something that you dislike!

Like is said above, I was expecting something brilliant because of the hype and I was left feeling underwhelmed and a little bit let down. It was a good read and was great as a refresher and as a light read in between all of the crime/thriller books that I read. I’d recommend it if you’re looking for a nice summer beach read as it’s light and fluffy and won’t have you crying your eyes out or chucking the book across the room.

I don’t have much else to say about this! This is an ok read that would be perfect for the beach or if you’re craving a light fluffy read. You can pick this up from Amazon in paperback or kindle and also from The Works.

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Now You See Her – Heidi Perks Review

now you see her

This was such a fast-paced book that pulls you in right from the start. Harriet has never left her daughter alone with anyone until she has no choice because she needs to go to an accounting course and needs someone to watch her. In comes Charlotte; a friend that Harriet has made through school who offers to look after Alice (Harriet’s daughter) and take her to the school fair along with her other 3 children and then that’ where things start going wrong. Charlotte takes her eyes off the kids for 2 minutes whilst they’re on an inflatable and Alice goes missing. Things move on from here and we get a lot of secrets reveals but I obviously don’t want to say anymore because of spoilers!

We get the perspective of both Charlotte and Harriet and we also get the past and present, so we get to see the lead-up to the abduction which I really enjoyed. The dynamics between were really well played out; Charlotte seemingly has it all in Harriet’s eyes and it was lovely to try and see Charlotte point out the flaws in her life so as not to make Harriet feel so bad about her own. The story really started to come into its own when we got to see the chapters that occurred before the abduction as these show you that things aren’t always as they seem, and you start to doubt everything. There were parts near the beginning where I really though that Harriet was just going a bit loopy, but the past scenes really brought to light what was going on. I also enjoyed getting to see Charlotte panic about what everyone was saying about her behind her back. Is she a bad parent or is it just bad luck? She has to deal with other parents and what they think of her and the repercussions of losing Alice even though it wasn’t necessarily her fault. A lot of the parents were very judgemental despite the fact that they also take their eyes off their children for a minute or so when they believe that they’re safe. It was just refreshing to get to see the other side of losing a child and the repercussions it has.

This is one of those books where there are more and more secrets being revealed or eluded to and it keeps you hooked all the way through and made you want to keep reading to figure out what the hell was gong on or what the secret was going to be. I also enjoyed the twist at the end and the way the end of the book played out. I really didn’t see it coming and I like that it could actually be believable and not some massive far-fetched twist that didn’t fit in at all.

This was a great take on the missing child/abduction plot that we see in thrillers and I thought it was really well done. The book was not just an enjoyable read but it was gripping and kept you guessing all the way through. The twists were believable and placed so well within the story that they didn’t feel fake or engineered or chucked in for the sake of making the story something special. I would like to say that despite this, I did just give it 4-stars and not a full 5. It was a great story, but I read a good few thrillers and it didn’t completely blow my mind which I feel that a thriller needs to now for me to give it the full 5-stars. Despite this, I would definitely recommend picking this up if you’re looking for a thriller read with a missing child.

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Her Name Was Rose – Claire Allan Review

Her name was rose

Rose has the perfect life; the perfect husband, a gorgeous house a beautiful child and a great job. Unfortunately, she was killed in a recent hit and run accident to which Emily was a witness. Emily’s life isn’t so great; she’s working in a crappy call centre job, she lives alone in a rented flat with no friends and doesn’t really know where her life is going. When Rose dies, Emily starts to wonder if she could fill the spot that Rose has left; get her great job and maybe eventually her husband and gorgeous son and lovely house. But obviously, things aren’t always what they seem . . . .

This was the perfect example of a book where you were meant to feel sorry for the main character and I actually did! I have read so many books where you’re obviously meant to feel sorry for the main character, but they just come off as being whiny and annoying, but I really liked Emily in this story. She had been through a lot with her ex-boyfriend and the story of what happened does get revealed through the book and he sounded like a complete idiot and I understood how she managed to go downhill so quickly and also stay in a bad place. This also helped account for why she was so willing and perhaps gullible later in the book because she was completely broken from her previous relationship.

This is told from both Emily and Roses’ perspective which I loved. As Emily integrates herself more and more into Rose’s life and we start discovering more, it was nice to also see Rose’s life being told by her. We see Rose’s perspective from before the accident {obviously!} and it was just really interesting to see what her life was actually life and we get to start to draw parallels between Rose’s old life and then with Emily integrating herself into Rose’s life and getting to know Rose’s husband Cian.

The actual main story was great, and it didn’t feel like any of the situations were forced to happen which is one thing that I hate. As mentioned above, this is a story where you’re meant to feel sorry for the main character and I did, and it meant that all I wanted for Emily was a happy end for her! The inclusion of social media within the story really helped and it was very modern, showing that just because someone’s life is perfect online does not meant that its like that behind the computer screen. The plot twist and the reveal was a bit meh; it didn’t make all that sense to me and felt a bit anti-climactic but it was a shock and I didn’t see it coming so that was a plus. Emily’s ending also my jaw on the floor and squealing like a little girl and I loved that twist!

This wasn’t a full five-stars but it came pretty close and it’s definitely worth picking up! You can find this on Amazon in Kindle and paperback!

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NetGalley Update #2 June 2018!

Hi All!

I’m back again with a NetGalley update for you all! I did my first one of these back in march, which you can see here, and I finally manged to make it through all the titles I had in that post. So obviously I had to go and request even more! I currently have 6 books to read, most of which are released on the 26 July 2018. I also have a title I requested but haven’t heard back from yet which I thought would be fun to include as it sounds like a great read! As said before, I tend to read my NetGalley books in order of release date but if you have any of these that you think I just need to get to sooner then just let me know!

Her Name Was Rose – Claire Allan

36589624Genre: Thriller/Suspense

Release Date: 28 June 2018

Emily is driving along and ends up killing a young woman who steps out in front of her car – her name was Rose. Emily finds that she can’t move on and discovers that Rose had the life that Emily dreamed of; perfect home, loving family and a great job and figures that she could fill the space left by Rose. But Emily is soon to discover that not everything is as perfect as it seems.

Bad – Chloe Esposito

35607652Genre: Unsure as to what this would be!

Release Date: 26 July 2018

When requesting this, I didn’t realise that this was a sequel to the book Mad so bare this in mind! This follows Alvie whose sister Beth has just been found dead and Alvie’s boyfriend has vanished with the millions that they stole from Beth. Alvie follows her ex to get revenge but only one can survive and can Alvie get revenge before her crime catch up with her?

The Party – Lisa Hall

40570740Genre: Psychological Thriller

Release Date: 26 July 2018

Rachel wakes up in a strange room the morning after a neighbour’s party and she has no memory of what happened the night before. Why did her husband leave her alone at the party? Did they row? Why are Rachel’s arms so bruised? And why are her neighbours and friends so vague about what really happened? Little by little, Rachel pieces together the devastating events that took place in a friend’s house, at a party where she should have been safe. Everyone remembers what happened that night differently, and everyone has something to hide. But someone knows the truth about what happened to Rachel. And she’s determined to find them.

Something in the Water – Catherine Steadman

36794629Genre: Psychological Thriller

Release Date: 26 July 2018

Erin and Mark are the perfect couple and embark on their Honeymoon to Bora Bora. Whilst out Scuba Diving one day, they find something in the water which begins a chain events that soon spiral out of control.

 

The Walls – Hollie Overton

32938185Genre: Psychological Thriller

Release Date: 26 July 2018

Kristy Tucker is a press officer for the Texas department of corrections and handles all PR related things to do with the prisons – from death row notices to inmate interviews. She’s also a single mother and looks after her elderly father and all this starts taking a toll on her; that is until she meets Lance Dobson, her son’s martial arts teacher. He seems so perfect but Kristy soon discovers that he’s a monster and starts wondering if she can use her job to help her get Lance out of her and her families lives. . .  permanently.

When I Find You – Emma Curtis

39323683Genre: Psychological Thriller

Release Date: 09 August 2018

When Laura wakes up after her office Christmas party and sees a man’s shirt on the floor, she is horrified. But this is no ordinary one-night-stand regret. Laura suffers from severe face-blindness, a condition that means she is completely unable to identify and remember faces. So the man she spent all night dancing with and kissing – the man she thought she’d brought home – was ‘Pink Shirt’. But the shirt on her floor is blue. And now Laura must go to work every day and face the man who took advantage of her condition. The man she has no way of recognising.

Vox – Christina Dalcher

39932930Genre: Sci-Fi / Dystopia

Release Date: 21 August 2018

Set in an America where half the population has been silenced, VOX is the harrowing, unforgettable story of what one woman will do to protect herself and her daughter. On the day the government decrees that women are no longer allowed more than 100 words daily, Dr. Jean McClellan is in denial–this can’t happen here. Not in America. Not to her. This is just the beginning. Soon women can no longer hold jobs. Girls are no longer taught to read or write. Females no longer have a voice. Before, the average person spoke sixteen thousand words a day, but now women only have one hundred to make themselves heard. But this is not the end. For herself, her daughter, and every woman silenced, Jean will reclaim her voice.

 

And they’re the books I currently have! I have already read ‘The Walls’ by Hollie Overton which I thought was fantastic and gave it 5 out of 5 stars. I’ve also read ‘Her Name Was Rose’ by Claire Allan which I also enjoyed and gave 4 out of 5 stars. Both of these reviews will be up on my blog and goodreads shortly!

Have you requested any of these and are waiting to get round to them? Or are any of these highly anticipated and you can’t till publication date to get your hands on them? Let me know and we can buddy read!

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The Chosen Ones – Howard Linskey Blog Tour!

The Chosen Ones.jpg

First of all, thank you to Penguin Random House UK for sending me a copy if this book! As always, all opinions and thoughts are my own!

Going into this, I had no idea that this was actually the fourth book that had been written featuring Detective Ian Bradshaw and Journalist Tom Carney. However, it was one of those great books in a series that didn’t elude much to what had happened in previous books which was great as it meant that I didn’t feel like I was missing out on any character development from those previous books. In fact, I thought that Tom Carney and his partner Helen Norton got a very good introduction to who they were and what they did so there was no confusion will how they fitted in with DC Bradshaw.

This book was told from several different perspectives; DC Bradshaw, Tom and Helen, Eva (the girl who wakes up in a container) and Jenna are a few and we also get some chapters which are told in the past. This may sound very confusing however I found that the differing perspectives and also the flicking back into the past was very well done. Every character that was used got a full introduction, so we knew what was going on. Jenna’s character was one that I wasn’t sure about at first as I had no idea where she was going to fit into the story until that was explained a few chapters in.  It was fantastic getting to hear chapters from Eva’s perspective; Eva is the most recent girl who has been taken and she wakes up in a container and we get to follow her and her experience with her captor and trying to figure out what he wants from her and how she could possibly escape from him. I love it when we get to the victim’s perspective of things; I was really rooting for her to find a way out and we also got to see a few chapters told from the captor’s perspective and being able to collate these 2 viewpoints together really made for a great experience. I was hoping that Eva would find a way out, as mentioned before, but because of being able to see the captor’s perspective, we also got to see the possibilities of what may happen to her which really made it all that more suspenseful.

I enjoyed that the main plot point was obviously the abductions and figuring out who had taken them and getting them back in time. There were also quite a few other plots/back storylines happening in the background. As mentioned we had Jenna who is trying to deal with being blackmailed which does link into the story very well! We are also dealing with problems within the police force as it has been brought to attention that there are some corrupt police officers within the force which is causing an obvious media storm and DS Bradshaw has to ensure that he handles the current investigation well, so he doesn’t rock the boat anymore. There is also the police election to elect the Chief constable which hits a few bumps along the way and makes things slightly more difficult for Bradshaw again. Then we also get the personal issues with Helen and her ex-fiancée Peter as she is debating getting back together with him whilst also pondering her personal feelings for another person. I know it sounds like there is a lot going on and there is, but wow it was done so well. I was able to follow along with everything that was going on in the background and also keep up with the main storyline.

This was a great Crime-Thriller book which was so suspenseful, and I really struggled with putting it down to get stuff done! It definitely made me want to read the previous books that include DS Bradshaw and Tom Carney because I loved the dynamic between them and the writing itself in the chosen ones was just fantastic. It’s such a gripping and dark read which had great character dynamics and was full of suspense; I struggled to put it down. I definitely recommend picking this up if you’re a fan of crime and crime thriller books as it really is a great read and I gave this 5/5 stars! The chosen ones is out now and you can pick this up at Amazon in Kindle and in paperback.

I am part of the blog tour so check out the other stops on the banner below if you want to hear more reviews and read excerpts!

The Chosen Ones Blog Tour (updated)

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