Strangers – C L Taylor

Strangers – C L Taylor

We’re absoutely thrilled to be part of the Blog Tour for Strangers, C L Taylor’s latest gripping novel. As those of you familar with Compelling Reads will know we’re huge fans and get immensely excited when we know a new book is coming. It’s always a huge privlege to be able to get an early glimpse in exchange for review.

Once again C L Taylor has penned a wonderful thriller that has the reader locked in from page 1. Strangers is told from the point of view of three narrators – my favourite Ursula, thrown out of her friends place for stealing she’s described as giant of a woman who is clearly dealing with her own issues from her past while she encounters more issues through her work as delivery driver and her stealing habit. We also meet Alice the manager of a fashion store, who seems unlucky in love (the one Ursula likes to steal from) & Gareth the centre security guard who lives at home with his mum.

It’s not clear how at first these 3 people are connected, they could easily be 3 seperate stories. We soon learn a connection through the shopping centre, but as the story progresses their stories are cleverly interlinked and other characters are woven in. Until their stories collide in an epic way.

Each narrator captures your attention in different ways, drawing you into their lives and work, when their stories collide they do so perfectly. A tense, gripping drama with plenty of twists and turns to keep the pages turning.

You aren’t short of suspense in the book, with each narrator dealing with their own personal issues there are plenty of potential suspects (& indeed even potential crimes, until the conclusion of the story is reached)

A wonderfully written thriller as always – I think this is my favourite C L Taylor novel to date. She never fails to deliver!

Strangers Book Cover Strangers
C L Taylor
Avon
2 April 2020
400

Ursula thinks she killed the love of her life.
Gareth’s been receiving strange postcards.
And Alice is being stalked.

None of them are used to relying on others – but when the three strangers’ lives unexpectedly collide, there’s only one thing for it: they have to stick together. Otherwise, one of them will die.

Three strangers, two secrets, one terrifying evening.

The million-copy bestseller returns with a gripping new novel that will keep you guessing until the end.

You, Me and the Movies – Fiona Collins

You, Me and the Movies – Fiona Collins

You, Me and the Movies is one of those books that would not be out of place as a Richard Curtis film, a story of love and heartbreak that’s punctured with old movies.

Arden hasn’t had an easy life, and it seems she is somewhat living under a shadow, when a hospital visit to a friends leads to an unexpected reunion with her former love.

The story travels back and forth from present day to Arden’s time at university beautifully – you never feel lost.  It’s at university that Arden meets & falls in love with film lecturer Mac, embarking on a love affair that doesn’t last but that stays with her, her whole life. When she meets Mac again in hospital he is unable to communicate, but Arden reconnects with him through the memories of the films they watched together.

You can’t help but be invested in Arden and her story, and her story is told so beautifully it will wrench your heart. A timeless story of love, loss and second chances

You, Me and the Movies Book Cover You, Me and the Movies
Fiona Collins
Transworld Digital
4 April 2019
Kindle
355

When Arden meets Mac she quickly falls for the handsome, charismatic film lecturer. Their love is the sort you see in movies: dramatic, exciting and all-consuming… and complicated.

A love like theirs could never last.

But years later, whilst visiting a friend in hospital, Arden sees the one face she could never forget. Badly injured, Mac can only make brief references to the classic films they once watched together. Which is all it takes for Arden to remember everything…

Will Arden ever find a movie-worthy love again?

Unique and true-to-life, You, Me and the Movies is a love story like no other. Perfect for fans of David Nicholls, Jojo Moyes and Richard Curtis films this book will leave you crying big, fat tears of joy and sadness.

The Passengers – John Marrs

The Passengers – John Marrs

This book unexpectedly arrived in my post and from reading the description I was intrigued, immediately adding this to the top of my reading pile. In a future world of driverless cars a set of seemingly normal passengers set off on their normal journeys, but what then takes places is a page turner of a story as their cars are highjacked and their faces are projected everywhere. I was gripped from the very first page of this book, it’s one of those futuristic stories that is entirely plausible and that means it makes you think And this book really makes you think – from the start where we meet Libby as she takes her place in the jury investigating an accident involving driverless cars, deciding if the car or the person was at fault, to the stories of the highjacked passengers that we learn as the book progress – what way would you decide? I’ve not read any of John Marrs novels before, but this book really makes me want to check out more I really don’t want to spoil this book, so I can’t give away too much of the plot but this was truly a page turner and I was thrilled to see it’s soon to be made into a Netflix series – I am certain it will translate from page to screen in a big way! This book unexpectedly arrived in my post and from reading the description I was intrigued, immediately adding this to the top of my reading pile. In a future world of driverless cars a set of seemingly normal passengers set off on their normal journeys, but what then takes places is a page turner of a story as their cars are highjacked and their faces are projected everywhere. I was gripped from the very first page of this book, it’s one of those futuristic stories that is entirely plausible and that means it makes you think And this book really makes you think – from the start where we meet Libby as she takes her place in the jury investigating an accident involving driverless cars, deciding if the car or the person was at fault, to the stories of the highjacked passengers that we learn as the book progress – what way would you decide? I’ve not read any of John Marrs novels before, but this book really makes me want to check out more I really don’t want to spoil this book, so I can’t give away too much of the plot but this was truly a page turner and I was thrilled to see it’s soon to be made into a Netflix series – I am certain it will translate from page to screen in a big way!

 

The Passengers Book Cover The Passengers
John Marrs
Ebury Digital
1 April 2019
Paperback
406

When someone hacks into the systems of eight self-drive cars, their passengers are set on a fatal collision course.

The passengers are: a TV star, a pregnant young woman, a disabled war hero, an abused wife fleeing her husband, an illegal immigrant, a husband and wife - and parents of two - who are travelling in separate vehicles and a suicidal man. Now the public have to judge who should survive but are the passengers all that they first seem?

After the End – Clare Mackintosh

After the End – Clare Mackintosh

Having read all of Clare’s previous novels I’m always excited when she releases a new one. This book is however something a bit different to her normal thrillers.

Max & Pip are a strong, happy couple with a beautiful little boy, but then their son Dylan gets sick and they are faced with the hardest decision any parent has to make.

But they don’t agree on the decision….

The ensuing story covers 2 possible outcomes that happen “after the end”. It doesn’t hold back from showing the pain, heartbreak & struggles that each character encounters as they question whether they’ve made the right decision.

This is probably the one book that will stay with me for a long time, it’s poignant and heartbreaking and a true credit to Clare.

After the End Book Cover After the End
Clare Mackintosh
Sphere
25 June 2019
Kindle
384

Max and Pip are the strongest couple you know. Only now they're facing the most important decision of their lives - and they don't agree.

As the consequences of an impossible choice threaten to devastate them both, nothing will ever be the same again.

But anything can happen after the end . . .

Dear Lily – Drew Davies

Dear Lily – Drew Davies

There’s something special about letters (we should write more), and I loved that this story was told by way of Joy’s letters to her sister.

Joy has done something completely out of character for her, and has found herself starting a new role in a new country, away from her family and friends – she is completely out of her comfort zone but through her letters you uncover her character, a bit of an overthinker, sometimes slightly neurotic but also very funny.

It’s a real uplifting story of starting over – it’s one sided being told through only Joy’s letters, but it totally works for the story arc – it’ll have you laughing at loud but also stiffling a few tears if you’re reading in public.

It’s also rare to find a “chick – lit” book written by a man that works so well – I didn’t even realise the author wasn’t a woman – fantastic read!

Dear Lily Book Cover Dear Lily
Drew Davies
Bookouture
17 May 2019
Kindle
276

Dear Lily,

It’s me, Joy, your much wiser and (very slightly) older sister. I thought I’d start a new tradition of letter writing – now that we’re long distance.

On the plane over here, I began to cry in seat 21C. I think the magnitude of it finally hit me, after everything that happened…

I haven’t even unpacked yet – the only thing I’ve taken out of my suitcase is Harville, your beloved childhood teddy. Sorry for stealing him, but I need him more than you do. Every time I look at that little brown bear I think about our childhood. Remember that dance we made up to Annie’s ‘It’s a Hard Knock Life’? (Remember the broom choreography?)

I’m also sorry for abandoning you – I’ve always been your agony aunt, and a buffer in your infamous shouting matches with Mum. But I had to leave, Lily, I had to.

Anyway, I’m here now. I’m here to start over, and to face up to the past. I want to learn to laugh again, and to find someone to love who will maybe even love me back. You always told me I was just getting by, not actually living, so I’m finally doing it. Wish me luck, little sister.

Love,

Joy x

Cross Her Heart – Sarah Pinborough

Cross Her Heart – Sarah Pinborough

Having read “Behind her Eyes” previously I was looking forward to another installment of Sarah Pinborough’s work and dived right in to “Cross Her Heart”

Lisa is a single mother who keeps herself to herself, she has 1 good friend through work and is overly protective of her teenage daughter Ava. Ava, like all teenagers I’m sure, has her own secrets – she’s been talking to a guy online. However she isn’t the only one with a secret as the biggest secret is the one Lisa has been keeping for a very long time, and one which is about to be uncovered.

Once again Pinborough has crafted a brilliant psychological story, you’re pulled into Lisa’s world and as her secret unravels find yourself racing through to uncover more and just as the book’s tag line says “you won’t see it coming”

Stick with this one and you’re in for a treat!

Cross Her Heart Book Cover Cross Her Heart
Sarah Pinborough
HarperCollins
21 February 2019
Kindle
394

Lisa tells lies.

Most of them are small white lies intended to make the life of her daughter, Ava, easier.

But her biggest lie of all about to be exposed.

Because Lisa is lying to everyone.

Lisa isn’t who she says she is.

Lisa isn’t even called Lisa at all.

Her real name is Charlotte Nevill and as a child she was convicted of the brutal murder of her half-brother, Daniel.

Someone out there knows the truth. They’re determined to make Lisa pay. And they won’t stop until everything she loves is destroyed.

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