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The Watcher By Kate Medina

The Watcher‘The Watcher’ is the latest book by Kate Medina.

The Fullers are the picture-perfect family, a wealthy couple with a grand home in the middle of remote woodland. But even they have something to hide – and it will prove fatal. Psychologist Dr Jessie Flynn and DI Marilyn Simmons arrive at the Fuller’s home to find a suburban nightmare. A crime scene more disturbing than anything they have ever encountered. Jessie knows that this is no random act of violence. And if she can’t unlock the motivation behind the crime and shine a light into this killer’s mind, the Fullers won’t be the only family to die.

Like anyone else, I enjoy a good crime and police procedure book, but I have to admit that I did find ‘The Watcher’ to be an extremely unsettling and somewhat sad story.

The story is primarily is seen through the perspective of Psychologist Dr Jessie Flynn, as she tries to get into the head of a killer who has killed 5 people in a disturbing and gruesome fashion, with their eyes being removed and time is off the essence to prevent them for making another killing. But every time Psychologist Dr Jessie Flynn and DI Marilyn Simmons, think that they are getting somewhere with the case, they are thrown another curveball preventing them from making an arrest. The story is also seen from the perspective of the victims of the murderer and every time a new person is introduced, I found myself tensing up preparing for their unfortunate end.

This is the fourth book in the Jessie Flynn series but it’s actually the first book for me, but the author thoughtfully included some back story to the characters, so the reader wasn’t lost. Jessie is an interesting character and has had her own experience with tackling with mental health and that’s probably, why she chose that particular career path. But it’s obvious that this case isn’t going to be an easy one to solve, especially as the murderer doesn’t leave any clues behind. But as Jessie looks into building profile of the killer, she discovers that the killer has a connection with animals particularly dogs and she ends up adopting a Huskie called Lupo who was the pet of the killers’ first victim and this quiet dog becomes part of her small family and helps her solve some clues along the way.

Kate spent 5 years in the Territorial Army and studied Psychology and she has used her knowledge for both areas in this dark, psychological story. The story is filled with police procedures and a deep insight into the human psyche and what makes a person react in such a cruel way. This book is a tense and gruesome story from the start, with unlikable and sympathetic characters that made for disturbing reading but equally I found it hard to put down. A story of revenge and morality, ’The Watcher’ is a cleverly crafted story that is a perfect for fans of police procedures, but be warned, it’s not for the faint hearted!

Blurred Lines By Hannah Begbie

Blurred Lines‘Blurred Lines’ is the latest book by Hannah Begbie.

When Becky walks in on her boss with a woman who isn’t his wife, she’s horrified, but says nothing. She owes Matthew too much. But when the same woman accuses him of rape, Becky is trapped in a nightmare. Was what she saw rape – or is Matthew, her trusted mentor, telling the truth? Becky must try to ignore her own traumatic past and its terrible hold on her. As Becky attempts to untangle these blurred lines, she risks everything, even her home and family, to find the truth…

I’ve been fortunate to have read some fantastic books this year but I have to say that the twist in ‘Blurred Lines’ has been the best one yet!

The story is about Becky who’s a budding film writer, walks in on her boss having sex with another woman. This woman then claims that she was raped and is looking for the woman who saw them to come forward as a witness. This happens at a critical time in Becky’s career when her script has been picked up by both a director and actress and finally her dreams might become a reality.

Becky is the mother to a teenage daughter called Georgia and is best friends with Georgia’s dad called Adam.

The story is written in past and present tense. The present tense is when Becky is also a teenager and goes to a house party and taking some pills and waking up the following morning with no memory. As time goes by and the pressure is on Becky to come forward, Becky finds herself questioning her own history and trying to piece together what happened to her that night at the house party that changed her life forever.

I genuinely loved this story, it was addictive reading with such a well written and crafted story story that I spent my Sunday absorbed in this book. Becky was a fantastic character, a strong woman who’s primary concern is her teenage daughter. As the story progresses and we see Becky explore her past and try to fill in the blank spaces, we see her realise her own worth and confront fears.

Fantastically written with one of the best twists of 2020, ‘Blurred Lines’ is a story of toxic masculinity, control and the pressures of society. With flashbacks, unreliable narratives and unlikable characters, this book is a compelling story, that’s prevalent to the #MeToo and is timely in its writing.

You can pre-order ‘Blurred Lines’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 20th August.

I Made A Mistake By Jane Corry

I Made A Mistake‘I Made A Mistake’ is the latest book by Jane Corry.

In Poppy Page’s mind, there are two types of women in this world: those who are faithful to their husbands, and those who are not. Until now, Poppy has never questioned which she was. But when handsome, charming Matthew Gordon walks back into her life after almost two decades, that changes. Poppy makes a single mistake – and that mistake will be far more dangerous than she could imagine. Someone is going to pay for it with their life.

I’ve come to really love books by Jane Corry. She always writes a gripping first line that grabs the readers attention and ‘I Made A Mistake’ is no different.

The story is seen from the narrative of booking agent Poppy Page and her mother in law Betty and the two narratives from both women are extremely compelling.

Poppy never got over her first love called Matthew and when he reappears into her life after being away for years, she finds herself drawn to him. After one reckless tonight together, Poppy finds herself being terrorised by Matthew as he claims that he’s never gotten over her. Betty, thought she found her soulmate called Jock who she married in the 1960’s but instead she founds herself controlled, alone and longing for a better life.

The story goes through the narrative of both characters back and forth in the past and present tense and I found this fascinating reading. I loved Betty, this strong vibrant character who’s priority is her family but as the story flashes back to the past tense, we follow her as she transforms from a meek character to a strong woman. The story reflects on the controlling aspects of relationships but also how women were treated and expected to behave in the 1960’s.

Poppy was also an interesting character, unsatisfied by her relationship, she’s flattered when the once love of her life reappears claiming undying love for her. Her head’s turned and when tragedy strikes, she finds herself in the spotlight.

The steady pace of the story really pulls the reader in, with the dual narratives plus the inclusion of court appearances, this book made for gripping and fascinating reading. In this story, Jane concentrates on the darker themes of society, such abuse, infidelity and lies and this made the story for addictive reading.

Riddled with tension and suspense throughout, ‘I Made A Mistake’ is a genuinely gripping psychological thriller, filled with twists and turns, this cleverly written story was a fantastic twisty tale.

You can buy ‘I Made A Mistake’ from Amazon and will be available buy from good bookshops.

C.L Taylor Reveals New Book – Strangers

StrangersIf you loved ‘Sleep’ by C.L Taylor, then great news as she has revealed her new book for 2020 called ‘Strangers’.

What the back cover says –

Ursula, Gareth and Alice have never met before.

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.

I don’t know about you, but this is definitely one of the books of 2020 that I’m really looking forward to reading.

You can pre-order ‘Strangers’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 2nd April 2020.

I Dare You By Sam Carrington

I Dare You‘I Dare You’ is the latest book by Sam Carrington.

Mapledon, 1989. Two little girls were out playing a game of dares. Only one returned home. The ten-year-old told police what she saw: village loner Bill ‘Creepy’ Cawley dragged her friend into his truck and disappeared. No body was found, but her testimony sent Cawley to prison for murder. An open and shut case, the right man behind bars. The village could sleep safe once again.
Now. Anna thought she had left Mapledon and her nightmares behind but a distraught phone call brings her back to face her past. 30 years ago, someone lied. 30 years ago, the man convicted wasn’t the only guilty party. Now he’s out.

With the right amount of suspense and drama, Sam’s latest book is a thrilling story that keeps everyone on edge. The story is written in the past and present tense with multiple narratives, giving an insight into the people affected by the tragedy.

The story is essentially about a child who disappears 30 years ago never to be found and the village recluse, who didn’t fit with the mindset of the villagers being the prime suspect and later sent to jail. Now ‘Creepy Crawley’ has been released from prison and Anna returns home to the village, that her best friend died in and Lizzie has gone to the village with the mindset of getting the big scoop.

But neither of the women are prepared for what they discover on their return, as Anna and her mother become victims of harassment and Lizzie is determined to get some questions finally answered.

The story flows at a fast pace, with short chapters that leave the reader bursting for more. The characters are interesting and complex and even from the very outset you can see that not everything is as it seems. The community is tight knit and protective of its community and newcomers or those who don’t fit in with the village are not welcome.

With the story flowing between tenses, it gives a good background into the drama and I particularly found these scenes interesting as they really set the tone for the suspense and drama that was weaved throughout the book. I found the characters to be quite fascinating, as nearly everyone had something to hide and found Anna’s mother, Muriel quite interesting. She came across as the matriarch of the village with everyone siding with her, no matter the consequences.

A pacy and observational thriller about family secrets and betrayal, ’I Dare You’ is an engrossing tale filled with twists, drama and riddled with suspense that made for tense reading.

You can buy ‘I Dare You’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.