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A Fatal Secret By Faith Martin

A Fatal Secret‘A Fatal Secret’ is the fourth book in Ryder and Loveday series by Faith Martin.

A family day out at Briar’s Hall ends in tragedy when a young boy goes missing – and his body is found at the bottom of a disused well in the orchard. It looks like a simple case of an eleven-year-old exploring where he shouldn’t: a tragic accident. But Coroner Clement Ryder and Probationary WPC Trudy Loveday aren’t convinced. If Eddie had been climbing and fallen, why were there no cuts or dirt on his hands? Why would a boy terrified of heights be around a well at all? Clement and Trudy are determined to get to the truth, but the more they dig into Briar’s Hall and the mysterious de Lacey family who live there, the murkier things become. Could it be that poor Eddie’s death was murder? There are rumours of blackmail in the village, and Clement and Trudy have a horrible feeling that Eddie stumbled on a secret that someone was willing to kill for…

Even though this is the fourth book in the series, it was the first one for me and I found it to be a highly enjoyable and suspenseful story.

Set in 1961 we follow Trudy Loveday and Clement Ryder as they investigate the death of a little boy that everyone thinks is an accident but they suspect murder. As they delve into the history of the de Lacey family, owners of the land that the little boy died in and as they delve into the past they’re uncover some secrets that people would like to remain hidden.

This is a real murder mystery that the reader can really sink their teeth into. The story is cleverly plotted with complex and suspicious characters that really makes for interesting reading. Set in the 1960’s, the story highlights the female officers were treated back then in regards to equality and respect. The relationship and friendship between Trudy and Clement is also quite interesting, only starting out in the police and with Clement being old, we see the difference in viewpoints from the generations and how the pair of them work together to solve the crime.

A short novel that can be gobbled in one sitting, this book was an engaging story from the beginning. With a great plot, complex characters and drama throughout, ‘A Fatal Secret’ is an addictive page turner of a crime novel.

You can buy ‘A Fatal Secret’ from Amazon.

Through The Wall By Caroline Corcoran

Through The Wall ‘Through The Wall’ is the latest book by Caroline Corcoran.

Lexie loves her home. She feels safe and secure in it – and loved, thanks to her boyfriend Tom. But recently, something’s not been quite right. A book out of place. A wardrobe door left open. A set of keys going missing… Tom thinks Lexie’s going mad – but then, he’s away more often than he’s at home nowadays, so he wouldn’t understand. Because Lexie isn’t losing it. She knows there’s someone out there watching her. And, deep down, she knows there’s nothing she can do to make them stop…

Avon Books have produced some fantastic thrillers this year and I have to say ‘Through The Wall’ is a brilliant book.

The story is seen through the narratives of neighbours Harriet and Lexie and the issues that they are going through. Lexie is desperate to have a baby with her partner Tom but is having difficulty which is putting severe pressure on their relationship and her mental health. Unknown to her, her socialite neighbour is obsessed with her and is determined to break her relationship up.

Harriet is convinced that Lexie is leading the life that she deserves and is set on destroying her life. There are flashbacks in the story informing the reader that she has had some issues in her life that has really impacted her both emotionally and mentally.

I really really enjoyed this book, so much so that it kept me up later at night. The chapters are short and snappy and this made for really engaging reading. The chapters alternate between the two women and this really does make for gripping reading as Harriet is determined to destroy Lexie’s life whilst Lexie is doubting her self and her own mental health.

A genuinely gripping story from the start to finish, ‘Through The Wall’ is a cleverly written story that really pulls the reader in. Touching on mental health, relationships and infertility, is book is one of the best psychological thrillers I’ve read this year and will most certainly be looking into more books by the author!

You can buy ‘Through The Wall’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

The Vanished Bride By Bella Ellis

The Vanished Bride‘The Vanished Bride’ is the first book in a new series by Rowan Coleman called ‘The Bronte Mysteries’ and Rowan is writing under a new pen name called Bella Ellis.

A young woman has gone missing from her home, Chester Grange, leaving no trace, save a large pool of blood in her bedroom and a slew of dark rumours about her marriage. A few miles away across the moors, the daughters of a humble parson, Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Brontë are horrified, yet intrigued. Desperate to find out more, the sisters visit Chester Grange, where they notice several unsettling details about the crime scene: not least the absence of an investigation. Together, the young women realise that their resourcefulness, energy and boundless imaginations could help solve the mystery – and that if they don’t attempt to find out what happened to Elizabeth Chester, no one else will. The path to the truth is not an easy one, especially in a society which believes a woman’s place to be in the home, not wandering the countryside looking for clues. But nothing will stop the sisters from discovering what happened to the vanished bride, even as they find their own lives are in great peril…

For those who love their classics infused with murder and mystery, then ‘The Vanished Bride’ is the perfect story to delve into. Rowan Coleman is writing as Bella Ellis and explores more of her passion and interest into the Bronte Sisters as they investigate into the gruesome disappearance of a young woman. Armed with attitude, sass and cunningness, the 3 sisters embark on an investigation with some help from their brother Bramwell.

Famously known for their writing, we see a different side to the sisters as they investigate the crime and find themselves standing up to men who have a rather old fashioned view point to women and their behaviours. They are outspoken and with the story seen from different perspectives, it gives an interesting and insightful slant to the story and women’s way of thinking. The story is creatively written and right from the offset, it is bleak and atmospheric adding an eerie element to the story. As well as being a murder mystery tale, there is also a background to the Bronte sisters and their troubled family and it shows the strength and power of these independent women who stood up to controlling men and bad behaviours.

Entertaining from the first page, ‘The Vanished Bride’ is a fascinating story from start to finish, although it is a work of fiction, it is perfect for fans of the Bronte Sisters and is a highly accomplished piece of writing that is not only fun to read but insightful as well. The perfect introduction to a new murder series!

You can buy ‘The Vanished Bride’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

A Million Dreams By Dani Atkins

A Million Dreams‘A Million Dreams’ is the latest book by Dani Atkins.

Beth Brandon always dreamed of owning a florist, but today the bouquets of peonies and bright spring flowers are failing to calm her nerves. Because today, Beth has a life-changing decision to share with her husband. Izzy Vaughan thought she and her husband would stay together forever, but sometime last year, their love began to fade. They both find such joy in their young son Noah – but is he enough to keep them together? Eight years ago, something happened to these two women. Something that is about to bring them together in a way no-one thought possible…

Dani Atkins is renowned for writing books that really pull at the readers hearts and this book is no different.

In this book we meet two women who want the same thing, to have a family. Izzy and Beth froze their embryos with the hope of a family but unfortunately Izzy is the only woman who has a little boy that she loves whilst Beth is alone having lost her husband to cancer and the thought of having a family seems far away, until one day she’s decides to go it alone and reveals something she never knew was possible.

It’s hard to go into a lot of details without giving a lot of away, but this is a book that battles with morals and issues that bring the reader on an empathy emotional rollercoaster.

Dani’s books really touch on sensitive and controversial topics that make the reader step back and take stock, delving into their thoughts and how they would act if put into the same position.

Written honestly and with care, ‘A Million Dreams’ is Dani at her very finest, a heartbreaking and compelling story about a mother’s love and questions, what is right and wrong, this book is a story is story of resilience and hope and is a tearjerker from the first page.

You can pre-order ‘A Million Dreams’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 14th November 2019.

A Perfect Cornish Christmas By Phillipa Ashley

A Perfect Cornish Christmas‘A Perfect Cornish Christmas’ is the latest book by Phillipa Ashley.

But after last Christmas revealed a shocking family secret, Scarlett’s hardly feeling merry and bright. All she wants this Christmas is to know who her real father is. So Scarlett heads to the little Cornish town of Porthmellow, where she believes the truth of her birth is hidden. She just didn’t bargain on being drawn into the Christmas festival preparations – or meeting Jude Penberth, whose charm threatens to complicate life further. Everything will come to a head at Porthmellow’s Christmas Festival … But can Scarlett have the perfect Christmas this year, or are there more surprises on the way?

Like her previous novels, Phillipa has delivered another Christmas story that will warm the cockles of your heart.

When Scarlett and her sister Ellie surprise her family with a family tree, she has no idea of the can of worms that she has unintentionally opened and has split the family in part. The latest book in the Porthmellow Harbour series sees Scarlett visiting her birth home and discovering about her family life, whilst making new friendships and relationships along the way.

The book is a lovely and warm charming story, typical of Phillipa’s writing. Pulling the reader into the seaside town and engaging them in the story with an enchanting storyline and fascinating characters.

Filled with relatable and charming personalities that made for the perfect festive reading that really warmed your heart. ‘A Perfect Cornish Christmas’ is the perfect escapism read to accompany the dark Autumn nights.

You can buy ‘A Perfect Cornish Christmas’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.