I was lucky to be given an advanced proof of this book by the publishers, having not heard anything about the book before picking it up I was instantly in the middle of a gripping narrative.
Everyone knows Cornelia Blackwood but there is something about her that people turn away from, and through the course of the book we slowly begin to uncover her story. A loving wife who tragically loses her husband but then finds he wasn’t where he should’ve been and through investigation she discovers a shocking secret, a secret somewhat poignant when you learn the truth about Cornelia.
It’s difficult to say much about the story without giving away major spoilers so I won’t say more about the plot, but you can’t help but be captured by the beautiful story telling that the author weaves around Cornelia in this book, you feel for her. The book deals with a difficult subject matter, but it’s not shied away from in anyway and you’ll be left with a lasting impression after reading this book!
The Flight of Cornelia Blackwood
Susan Elliot Wright
Simon & Schuster UK
19 February 2019
What has happened to Cornelia Blackwood?
She has a loving marriage.
But she has no friends.
Everyone knows her name.
But no one will speak it.
Cornelia Blackwood is about to do something very wrong, for reasons she believes to be right.
I’ve read many of Jodi Picoult’s previous books so am always eager to get my hands on a new release, and thanks to the publishers for allowing me an advanced review copy of this latest release.
Picoult is never one to shy away from emotive issues and this book is no exception, a shooter has taken hostages in an abortion centre and the police negotiators sister is an injured victim, his daughter a hostage caught up in the ongoing situation. But the book is about more then this situation it’s a revealing look at a series of characters and their connection to the abortion centre, both those in favour and those against the practice, as well as those who are there for very different reasons.
The book is very balanced and doesn’t sway to an opinion on either side of the abortion argument. There are parts of the story where you can’t help but be moved, and there was one particular part where a description left me very unnerved. You’ll find yourself drawn to each characters story and reason for being in the centre on the fateful day and left wondering how the situation will pan out, who will make it out?
There’s also a brilliant twist near the end which I would have liked to have seen more on (but perhaps it’s one for another novel).
Picoult really is a magical weaver of beautiful thought provoking stories!
A Spark of Light
Hodder & Stoughton
30 October 2018
The Center for women's reproductive health offers a last chance at hope - but nobody ends up there by choice.
Its very existence is controversial, and to the demonstrators who barricade the building every day, the service it offers is no different from legalised murder.
Now life and death decisions are being made horrifyingly real: a lone protester with a gun has taken the staff, patients and visitors hostage.
Starting at the tensest moment in the negotiations for their release, A Spark of Light unravels backwards, revealing hour by urgent hour what brought each of these people - the gunman, the negotiator, the doctors, nurses and women who have come to them for treatment - to this point.
And certainties unwind as truths and secrets are peeled away, revealing the complexity of balancing the right to life with the right to choose.
Nina is coming to terms with splitting from her husband who now has a baby on the way with his new partner, a friend has set her up on a blind date which turns out to be disastrous, the guy is definitely not for Nina and when she chokes on an alive it couldn’t be worse.. or could it?
Saved by the waitress Nina is very thankful but things soon take a turn when the waitress unexpectedly barges into Nina’s home followed shortly by her bloodied brother and a very young baby. What follows is a terrifying situation and one which pushes Nina to take many risks. The waitress Angel by name, but it seems not by nature.
I loved the way the first half of the book dealt with the traumatic hostage situation but the second half showed the aftermath and was in fact full of more twists and turns. This was more then your average crime thriller, it was thought provoking and had a family story on it’s heart. It was difficult not to be drawn into the main characters lives and feel for them.
A real thrill ride of a read!
Don't you cry
6th September 2018
She saved your life.
When Nina almost dies during a disastrous blind date, her life is saved by a waitress called Angel. But later that evening, Nina is surprised by a knock on the door. It’s Angel – and she’s pointing a gun at her.
Now she’ll make you pay.
Minutes later, Angel’s younger brother Lucas turns up, covered in blood shielding a stolen newborn baby in his arms. Nina is about to endure the longest night of her life – a night that will be filled with terror and lead her to take risks she would never have believed herself capable of…
With huge thanks to the publishers for allowing me an advanced Netgalley copy of this book prior to publication, having read the description of this new book by Helen Callaghan I was eager to get my hands on it ASAP and bump it to the top of my reading pile!
Sophia knows her parents, at least she thought she did but when she returns home to find the unthinkable has happened, her mum dead and her dead now in a critical condition she can’t believe how this could have happened. Her perceptions are challenged even more when she learns her mum was writing her book and the discovery of her hidden notebooks reveals to Sophia a whole hidden life her mum had before she was born, and the truth of that life could be dangerous to Sophia.
A bewitching novel about control and revelation – Sophia is a strong central character around which events unfold. In contrast her mother’s voice revealed through her notebooks is someone who seems to have been easily led and controlled, there are however parallels with Sophia’s own current situation at work, so the novel does show how control can take different routes. I found this to be a very powerful story with many twists and turns in its delivery, thought-provoking with a tight grip! Get this on your reading list now!
Everything is Lies
20 September 2018
What if your parents had been lying to you since the day you were born?
Sophia's parents lived quiet, ordinary lives. At least she thought so, until she came home to discover her mother hanged, and her father in a pool of blood.
Sophia is certain her mother didn't try to kill her father - but clearing her name will draw Sophia deep into a past she never imagined.
A past that hides a dark and twisted secret . . .
Because if everything you've been told is lies, then how dangerous is the truth?
Another book which was added to my to read pile on gifting from a relative, and the first Tom Thorne novel I’ve read. Although this is part of a series I had no problem in reading as a standalone – there are references to things which have obviously occurred earlier in the series, but missing the full history doesn’t impact on this novel.
Detective Inspector Nicola Tanner’s partner is murdered in their own home, and Tanner is sure the killers thought she was her. Tanner has been investigating a series of killings which she believes are connected as honour killings and her investigation has clearly got too close. Convinced her feelings about the killings are correct but being on compassionate leave means she can’t continue investigating herself (officially at least), she brings in Tom Thorne, someone with a reputation to not always follow the rules.
In the current age it could be difficult to deal with the subject matter at the heart of this story however I think Billingham has handled it with great care, producing a book which is considerate with the core subject but also believable. You are quickly a part of the story, and racing through to get to the conclusion and it’s clear that the author has done his research into this subject. I’m definitely happy to read more of this series!
Love Like Blood
Tom Thorne novels
8 March 2018
A BLOODY MESSAGE
As DI Nicola Tanner investigates what appears to be a series of organised killings, her partner Susan is brutally murdered, leaving the detective bereft, and vengeful.
A POWERFUL ALLY
Taken off the case, Tanner enlists the help of DI Tom Thorne to pursue a pair of ruthless killers and the broker handing out the deadly contracts.
A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE
As the killers target their latest victim, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career and is drawn into a horrifying and disturbing world in which families will do anything to protect their honour.
I’ll start by saying this is the first book by Anthony Horowitz that I’ve read and I was gifted the book by a relative. The word is murder is a cleverly written fictional murder mystery, when Diana Cowper walks in to a funeral parlour to plan her own funeral she ends up dead by the end of the day. So did she know she was going to die or something more sinister afoot? Investigating her death is Detective Hawthorne, a character it seems we are built up to dislike, he is rude, homophobic and has a high opinion of himself.
His “sidekick” however is the real interesting part of this book, because it is the author himself and it is this character that is also the narrator of the book. The events and story are all fictional however you do seem to become more lost in the story due to this fact and it’s easy to forget that this is fiction… I’m not going to lie I had to google to double check!
The plot is full of the twists and turns of any good murder mystery and I was taken by surprise by the discovery of the killer at the end. I found this a very compelling story made all the more real by the interesting character / author blur. If you are looking for a twist on the classic Whodunnit, this one is for you! More please!
The Word is Murder
19 April 2018
SHE PLANNED HER OWN FUNERAL. BUT DID SHE ARRANGE HER OWN MURDER?
A woman is strangled six hours after organising her own funeral.
Did she know she was going to die? Did she recognise her killer?
Daniel Hawthorne, a recalcitrant detective with secrets of his own, is on the case, together with his reluctant side-kick – a man completely unaccustomed to the world of crime.
But even Hawthorne isn't prepared for the twists and turns in store – as unexpected as they are bloody...