#BlogTour Games People Play by Owen Mullen

It’s my turn on the Blogtour Games People Play by Own Mullen.

About the Author

Owen Mullen is a highly regarded crime author who splits his time between Scotland and the island of Crete.  In his earlier life he lived in London and worked as a musician and session singer. He has now written seven books and his first gangland thriller for Boldwood, Family will be published in January 2021. Sign up to his newsletter here

Follow @OwenMullen6 on Twitter, on Instagramon Facebookon YoutubeGoodreads Author pageBookbub page,

About the book

When a baby is stolen from a Scottish beach, private investigator Charlie Cameron reluctantly agrees to take the case.
While her parents are just yards away, thirteen-month-old Lily Hamilton is abducted from Ayr beach in Scotland. Three days later, her distraught father turns up at private investigator Charlie Cameron’s office. Mark Hamilton believes he knows who has taken his daughter. And why.

Against his better judgment, Charlie takes the case—and when bodies are discovered, he suspects this may not be an isolated crime. Is there a serial killer whose work has gone undetected for decades? Is baby Lily his latest victim? Charlie won’t be able to give up on this case. Memories and guilt from his childhood won’t let him…

Review

 Private Investigator Charlie is reluctant to take on the case of a missing baby. It sails too close to the home of his nightmares and his feelings of despair and doubt. Choosing to help the parents of a young baby, an innocent child with not so innocent parents – it’s a case that stirs up trouble and emotions.

Charlie Cameron is driven by his own baggage, the memories and flashbacks that dictate his emotional state of mind. This new case is too close to previous experiences, perhaps it’s also the reason he can’t let it be until he knows the truth.

The fact Charlie is unable to leave his own trauma in the past is very much what flavours the entire story. He is this straight talking PI and yet at the same time he is the child who wants to – needs to know the truth. The question is whether he will ever get a satisfactory answer.

I think truth is the commodity around which the story revolves. Different versions of it and yet also the one that is beyond the truth – that dangerous layer of thin ice between assuming and actually having your suspicions acknowledged is the basis of everything.

It’s a slow burner written with a certain style and voice Mullen brings to the table. It gives readers the crime, mystery and also this snappy realistic vibe, and yet the emotional element is just as strong. This is the first in the series and hopefully one of many going forward. I also hope readers will finally get some answers about his sister, although a compelling drawn out cat and mouse game between the bad guy and Cameron would be equally as interesting.

Buy Games People Play at Amazon Uk or got to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher : Boldwood Books pub date 20 April 2021. Buy at Amazon com

#BlogTour The Rapunzel Act by Abi Silver

It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Rapunzel Act by Abi Silver.

 About the Author

Abi Silver is an author and lawyer who grew up in Leeds in a traditional Jewish family. Watching Granada TV’s ‘Crown Court’ in between lessons led her to study  Law at Girton College, Cambridge. Abi then worked in London at international law firm, Allen & Overy and at RPC, before spending five years in Israel, where her husband, Daniel, was posted. 

During her time there, alongside raising her three young sons, Abi completed an MBA by distance learning, learned Hebrew and pottery on the wheel and began to write fiction, usually late at night. On returning to the UK, she went back to law before quitting a permanent position in 2015 when she decided to try her hand at writing again which led to publication of The Pinocchio Brief. Based in Radlett, Hertfordshire, Abi works part-time as a legal consultant and author.

Follow @abisilver16 on Twitter, Visit abisilver.co.uk

About the book

When Breakfast TV host and nation’s darling, Rosie Harper, is found brutally murdered at home suspicion falls o her spouse, formerly international football start, Danny ‘walks on water’ Mallard, now living out of the public eye as a trans woman, Debbie. Not only must Debbie challenge the hard evidence against her, including the blood-drenched glove at the scene of the crime, she must also contend with the nation’s prejudices, as the trial is broadcast live, turning it into a public spectacle.

For someone trying to live their life without judgement, it might just be too much to bear. Legal duo Judith Burton an Constance Lamb are subjected to unyielding scrutiny as they strive to defend their most famous client yet.

Review

When Debbie’s ex-wife is killed she doesn’t expect to have all the fingers pointing at her and more importantly how guilty she makes herself look with her initial gut reactions to the news. legal team Lamb and Burton are put under a microscope when they decide to represent Debbie. It’s fair to say they are shocked by the reactions to their client.

It’s good to see some diversity in fiction, but perhaps more so when it comes to LGBTQ plots. Debbie is not only a transgender character, she also represents the fears of many transphobes, because before she transitioned she was a sport hero worshipped by many in a sport which is the definition of male stereotypes. Football hero – national treasure. How can the embodiment of masculinity and testosterone suddenly be a woman?

The author delves into these misconceptions and the way society seems to believe they own their celebrities and sport idols, and of course that means they also have the right to question Debbie’s existence. It’s easy to crucify what you neither understand or are willing to accept.

Anyone else get  O.J. Simpson crime vibes? Chased through the streets by the police, the nations favourite sport star and a glove at the scene of the crime. Combining that with an interesting transgender character, and the misconceptions and transphobia that go along with it unfortunately, and you have a compelling courtroom and crime read.

Buy The Rapunzel Act at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Lightning Books: pub date 15 April 2021 – Paperback Original – £8.99. Buy at Amazon comAt Hive.

#BlogTour Hollywood Hero by Madelle Morgan

It’s my turn on the BlogTour Hollywood Hero by Madelle Morgan.

About the Author

Growing up, Madelle enjoyed nineteen summers at her grandparents’ cottage on Georgian Bay in the beautiful District of Muskoka, Ontario, Canada, named by National Geographic Traveler magazine as one of their top 20 Best of the World Must-see Places.

Muskoka is Canada’s summer playground for many wealthy families and Hollywood celebrities. The Hollywood in Muskoka series updates the upstairs/downstairs trope: successful people in the film industry on vacation fall for service providers.

Madelle lives in Ottawa, Canada’s capital, with her husband and their labradoodle Raven. She dreams of owning a waterfront cottage. Or at least a pool.

Follow @madellemorganon Facebookon Pintereston Goodreadson Amazon, Visit madellemorgan.com

About the book

Unrequited love is hell on earth. Personal assistant Wendy Davila is in love with her boss, Halden Armstrong, megastar of the Apollo superhero film franchise. But she can’t compete with the succession of stick-thin blond beauties he’s caught and released. Or can she? When Halden asks Wendy to accompany him on a fishing trip to Muskoka, it’s her chance to remake her dark-haired, curvy Latina self into his ideal woman and cast her hook for Halden. Can he trust her?

Halden has been burned by love. The last thing he wants is a woman like his ex who faked it until she landed him. Wendy is special, and the private trip is an opportunity to explore his feelings for her. However, the Greek god has an Achilles’ heel. Can he trust Wendy with a secret that could ruin his career? And will she still care for him when she learns the truth?

 When Apollo falls off his pedestal, Wendy must decide if the man she adores is a keeper.

Review

Wendy has got the hots for her boss, who just happens to be a movie star. Realistically that means no chance, especially because he tends to like his women wafer thin and blonde. Wendy doesn’t tick any of his boxes at all.

When the two of them take a trip together they have to deal with the leftover baggage from previous relationships, the pressures of being in the public eye and the insecurities both carry around with them. Will they connect and become more than just personal assistant and handsome star?

I think it’s fair to say there is a bit of bonk, rumpy pumpy, clenching and unloading of loads – if you catch my drift. However the story leading up to said bonkety bits is what you would expect from a romance with an eventual crescendo or not, as it may be.

It’s a romance, pure escapism – pulling and tugging of two people who have an physical connection. The question is whether it can be more than just that.

Buy Hollywood Hero at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: McBride Publishing Group pub date 8 Mar. 2021. Buy at Amazon comAmazon Ca. KoboApple.

#BlogTour After the One by Cass Lester

It was a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour Bound by Cass Lester.

About the Author

Cass Lester spent many years at CBBC having a fabulous time making award-winning programmes including Jackanory, Big Kids, Kerching! and the Story of Tracy Beaker. She has published a number of children’s books and is now having a fabulous time writing adult fiction. 

Follow @TheCasInTheHat on Twitter, Visit caslester.com

About the book

April 16th is always one of Charley’s worst days of the year. It’s her husband’s birthday, a painful reminder of his death four years ago. So naturally, her car breaks down. She nearly gets run over trying to catch the bus. And then she’s made redundant.

Her friends see the redundancy as a chance for her to start again and live the life she always wanted, but since being widowed Charley has clung to familiarity and avoided change like the plague. Then, out of the blue, her mother-in-law Pam pitches up in need of a place to stay after walking out on her 40-year marriage.

Together, Charley and Pam find themselves at a crossroad. It’s not easy to move on after The One, but they can’t stand still forever.

Review

There are certain days in the year that Charley finds hard to cope with. She shuts down completely on any kind of anniversary that reminds her of her husband and his premature death. Her friends are eager to try and awaken her from her deepest despair.

When Charley is made redundant she and others believe it is time to move on to a different career, which is the start of the reboot of Charley’s life.

I liked the way the author combined Charley with Pam, giving the readers different versions of loss. The comparison of one helps the other person to deal with her own loss. Death, betrayal and having to reimagine a completely different life for yourself – those similarities are what draw them closer together and simultaneously help them to get on with their lives.

It’s a story about new beginnings, about understanding that the death of a loved one doesn’t mean your life comes to an end too. There has to be way forward. Equally it is also a story about grief and working through the stages of grief and then finding a way to cope.

It’s a heartfelt read with an emphasis on friendships, support and fresh starts.

Buy After the One at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Canelo pub date 5 April 2021. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour The Measure of Time by Gianrico Carofiglio

 It’s my turn on the BlogTour The Measure of Time by Gianrico Carofiglio.

About the Author and the Translator

Gianrico Carofiglio now a full time novelist was a member of the Senate in Italy and an anti-Mafia prosecutor in Bari, a port on the coast of Puglia. He is a best-selling author of crime novels and literary fiction, translated in 27 languages. This is the sixth Guerrieri novel is in this best-selling series.

Howard Curtis is a well-known translator from the Italian and has translated other titles in this series.

Follow Gianrico Carofiglio @GianricoCarof  and translator @HowardCurtis49 on Twitter, on Goodreads, Buy The Measure of Time

About the book

The latest in the highly successful Guido Guerrieri series, shortlisted for the 2020 STREGA prize, Italy’s most prestigious literary award. It is a tense courtroom drama set in Southern Italy, but also a tale about passion and the passage of time. Guerrieri had fallen in love decades earlier with Lorenza, a beautiful older woman who was in his eyes sophisticated and intellectual. She made wonderful love and opened his mind to high literature, but ultimately treated him as a plaything and discarded him.

One spring afternoon Lorenza shows up in Guerrieri’s office. Her son Jacopo, a small-time delinquent, stands convicted of the first-degree murder of a local drug dealer. Her trial lawyer has died, so for the appeal, she turns to Guerrieri. He is not convinced of the innocence of Lorenza’s son, nor does he have fond memories of how their relationship ended two decades earlier. Nevertheless, he accepts the case; perhaps to pay a melancholy homage to the ghosts of his youth. 

Review

The Guido Guerrieri series is an interesting combination of studiously calm and fiercely passionate, this straddling of both sides of his character is what makes the series. The inner dialogue, the questioning of self, the constant narrative with himself about past, present and future – it’s what makes Guido Guerrieri a man and character to remember.

Lorenza has come to Guido to request his help in getting her son some decent legal representation. She wants him to come to her rescue for old times sake to help save her troublemaker of a son.

His memories of their time together and Lorenza as a younger person are based on feelings of nostalgia at first, but the nostalgia is interrupted by flashbacks of the controversial anti-establishment rebel. How her experience influenced him as a younger man and perhaps shaped him in a way.

These interruptions to his inner flow and dialogue put a certain perspective on the whole scenario. It’s interesting how Guido is influenced by these spur of the moment gut reactions. Exactly the opposite of his professional exterior.

It’s an excellent legal thriller – a courtroom drama. A meticulously plotted back and forth tennis game of evidence, proof and whatever lurks in the middle of the two. Carofiglio has a very distinctive writing voice, very much like a tiger padding slowly towards its prey and ultimately a crescendo of the plot.

Buy The Measure of Time at Amazon UK or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Bitter Lemon Press pub date 18th March 2021. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour One by One by Helen Bridgett

Today it’s my turn on the BlogTour One by One by Helen Bridgett.

About the Author

Helen Bridgett lives in the North East of England. Outside of writing  feel good fiction, Helen loves the great outdoors and having a good laugh with friends over a glass of wine. Helen lives with her husband and their chocolate Labrador, Angus; al three can often be found walking the Northumberland coastline that inspired her romantic comedy, Summer at Serenity Bay.

Follow @Helen_Bridgett on TwitterBuy One by One

About the book

When practising what you preach is easier said than done… Professor Maxie Reddick has her reasons for being sceptical of traditional policing methods, but, in between her criminology lecturing job and her Criminal Thoughts podcast, she stays firmly on the side lines of the crime solving world.

Then a young woman is brutally attacked, and suddenly it’s essential that Maxie turns her words into actions; this is no longer an academic exercise – this is somebody’s life.

But as she delves deeper, the case takes a sickening turn, which leads Maxie to the horrifying realisation that the attack might not have been a one off. It seems there’s a depraved individual out there seeking revenge, and they’ll stop at nothing to get it … little by little … one by one.

Review

I think it’s fair to say that her relentless pursuit of the criminal is what brings Maxie into the sights of said criminal. Maxie is like a dog with a very tasty bone. She is convinced that the plain old police are not up to the job and she will have to do the job for them. Yes, her sense of entitlement and lack of humility are part and parcel of what make her character so memorable.

Whilst committing to the job of catching a predator she neglects everything else, including her family and marriage. Given what happens one wonders whether Maxie just instinctively knows the truth about her personal feelings and throwing herself into the world of crime solving isn’t merely a way of distracting herself from confronting the truth.

The author has penned the kind of main character who manages to annoy and captivate at the same time. Maxie can think of nothing else other than apprehending a dangerous individual, but to the detriment of everything else. This obsession is the starting point and simultaneously also a firm nod in the direction of the police. If they are lacking when it comes to solving sex crimes and helping victims of said crimes then perhaps new eyes and someone who is actually invested in truth and justice will get better results. Making a fair point there.

I’m guessing this won’t be the last time readers see Maxie back in the arena of crime solvers are us. It’s a fast-paced crime read with the kind of character readers tend to remember.

Buy One by One at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher : Ruby Fiction; pub date 26 Jan. 2021 – £8.99 paperback £2.99 ebook. 

#BlogTour Saving Missy by Beth Morrey

It’s my turn on the BlogTour Saving Missy by Beth Morrey.

About the Author

About Beth Morrey: Beth Morrey is currently the Creative Director at RDF Television where she has been involved in numerous productions – she helped create The Secret Life of Four Year Olds series on Channel 4 and devised 100 Year Old Drivers for ITV.

She was shortlisted for the Grazia-Orange First Chapter competition back in 2011, had her work published in the Cambridge and Oxford May Anthologies, and was Vice-President of the Cambridge Footlights. Beth lives in London with her husband, two sons and dog.

Follow @BethMorrey on Twitteron Goodreadson AmazonBuy Saving Missy

About the book

Prickly. Stubborn. Terribly lonely. But everyone deserves a second chance… Missy Carmichael’s life has become small. Grieving for a family she has lost or lost touch with, she’s haunted by the echoes of her footsteps in her empty home; the sound of the radio in the dark; the ticktick-tick of the watching clock.

Spiky and defensive, Missy knows that her loneliness is all her own fault. She deserves no more than this; not after what she’s done. But a chance encounter in the park with two very different women opens the door to something different. A new life beckons for Missy, if only she can be brave enough to grasp the opportunity. But seventy-nine is too late for a second chance. Isn’t it?

Review

It’s incredibly sad. I dread to think how many people like Missy are out there right now. Isolated, lonely and afraid to reach out because they think they are a burden. There is also an element of pride and shame to contend with. It’s difficult to be perceived as vulnerable and in need of help, friendship or any kind of attention.

Missy is buried deep inside her personal grief and heavy layers of loneliness. Sometimes she is willing to admit to herself how much she would rather be enveloped in the fold of a loving family, especially when she sees echoes of her life and loved ones in strangers. She yearns for the contact, the conversation and the small moments, and yet she is also the one keeping herself from reaching out to establish contact with others. It’s hard, it’s excruciatingly painful to envisage such emotional turmoil. Such a leaden weight of sadness. Just wandering slowly towards the end, right?

I found it lacked depth at times, especially the characters, and seemed a little disjointed and confused. There was no defining centre or pull, but rather a meandering of sorts. Then again perhaps that was the intention – to highlight the fact Missy could be one of many elderly people who go unnoticed in the steadily moving bustle around them. The invisible among us. The overall gist and plot are definitely a storyline plenty of readers will be able to relate to.

The author shines a light on this element of growing older in a so-called forward thinking society and also how we tend to be so busy with ourselves that wondering about the plight of others has become a forgotten courtesy. When you take Missy’s story out of the general plot then that is what remains, and of course that perhaps, as in this case, some of us will remember what it means to support and give a little.

Buy Saving Missy at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Harper Collins; pub date 6th February 2020 | Hardback £12.99 | Ebook | Audio. Buy at Amazon comHiveBookshop org. Waterstones.

#BlogTour #Audiobook Jailbird by Caro Savage

It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour for the Audiobook – Jailbird by Caro Savage, narrated by Genevieve Swallow. 

About the Author

Caro Savage knows all about bestselling thrillers having worked as a Waterstones bookseller for 12 years in a previous life. Now taking up the challenge personally and turning to hard-hitting crime thriller writing. Sign up to Caro’s newsletter here

Follow @CaroSavageStory on Twitteron InstagramBuy Jailbird 

About the book 

Detective Constable Bailey Morgan has been out of the undercover game since her last job went horribly wrong, leaving her with scars inside and out. When her colleague Alice is found dead whilst working deep cover in a women’s prison, Bailey steps in to replace her.

Working alone, Bailey embarks on a dangerous journey through the murky underbelly of the prison and soon discovers that Alice’s death was part of a spate of brutal murders. Surrounded by prison officers, criminals and lowlifes, the slightest mistake could cost Bailey her life.

Illicit drug trafficking, prison gangs and corruption are just some of the things she’s up against… and behind it all lurks a sinister and terrifying secret that will truly test her survival instincts.

Heart-stopping and gripping. Perfect for the fans of hit TV shows such as Line of Duty, Orange is the New Black and Bad Girls.

Review

Saying that Bailey’s last undercover job didn’t go exactly as planned is absolutely the biggest understatement of the century. Going back into deep cover again should be the last thing on her mind, and yet when her friend is killed on the job, she decides it’s the only way to find out who killed her.

She is sent into prison as an inmate, without any lifeline I might add, to find and take down the network at the centre of the aforementioned murder. Once in there Bailey finds there are more questions than answers and that it is harder to stay alive inside prison than it is outside.

At times you can feel the way Bailey drifts from one side of the fence to the other. When you are used to living a completely fake life during a deep cover assignment it’s easy to sink too deep into said cover. There are certainly moments when she waivers between crossing the line to keep her cover and revealing all to keep her sanity.

The author delivers a gritty urban crime story with a damaged main character. A character who is willing to do what it takes to bring the monsters, deviants and criminals of this world to their knees. An honest and perhaps worrying look into the world behind bars and the crime that lurks within prisons.

Although I listened to the audiobook, which is narrated by Genevieve Swallow, I also read the digital version via KU. Both versions absolutely convinced me and I wouldn’t hesitate to read or listen to another one by this author.

Buy Jailbird at Audible Uk or Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Boldwood Books pub date 15 October 2019. Buy at Amazon com. HiveWaterstones.

Listening Length – 13 hours and 6 minutes, Author – Caro Savage, Narrator – Genevieve Swallow, Whispersync for Voice – Ready,  Audible.co.uk Release Date – 15 October 2019, Publisher – Boldwood Books, Program Type – Audiobook, Version – Unabridged, Language – English.

#BlogTour Under the Light of the Italian Moon by Jennifer Anton

 It’s my turn on the BlogTour Under the Light of the Italian Moon by Jennifer Anton.

About the Author

Jennifer Anton is an American/Italian dual citizen born in Joliet, Illinois now living between London and Lake Como, Italy. An advocate for women’s rights and equality, she hopes to rescue women’s stories from history, starting with her Italian family.

In 2006, after the birth of her daughter, Jennifer suffered a life-threatening postpartum cardiomyopathy, and soon after, her Italian grandmother died. This tumultuous year began a 14-year journey to capture the stories of her female Italian ancestors and develop them into a historical/biographical fiction novel. In 2012, she moved with her family to Milan, Italy. Later, she moved to London where she has held leadership positions with companies including Revlon and Tory Burch.

Under the Light of the Italian Moon is her first novel, based on the lives of her Italian grandmother and great grandmothers during the rise of fascism and World War II.

Follow @boldwomanwrites on Twitteron Goodreadson Amazon, Visit boldwomanwriting.comBuy Under the Light of the Italian Moon

About the book

Set in Fonzaso, Italy between two wars, Under the Light of the Italian Moon tells the story of Nina Argenta, the daughter of the town’s strong-willed midwife. Nina seeks to define her own destiny but when her brother emigrates to America, she promises her mother to never leave. When she falls for childhood friend, Pietro Pante, during his brief visit from America, she has to find a way to be with the man she loves.

Pietro and Nina begin a long-distance relationship that continues as Mussolini forces political tensions to rise and his fascists throw the country into chaos. When Hitler’s Nazis occupy and terrorise their town, Nina struggles to survive and her dreams of a life with Pietro are threatened by an enemy she must face alone…

Review

Nina Argenta doesn’t realise that she lives in the shadow of her impressive mother and actually has become the mother to the family her mother tends to abandon, even if it is to help others and their babies. Being the local midwife means having a lot of people rely on you day after day. It also means having to neglect your own loved ones at times.

Perhaps that is why one of Nina’s brothers has decided to go forth and travel – to settle somewhere else in the world. even Adelasia realises that somehow it must mean she has failed him in some way. The fact her children have been raised to find their own independence doesn’t occur to her. Even Nina eventually pushes forth from the ties that bind her to find her own path.

It’s a captivating family saga and historical fiction, a story that the author connects viscerally with the moon. The surroundings, the emotions, the people and the trials they endure. They are all influenced by the ever watchful presence above them, which sometimes reminds us of its subconscious sway and at other times of its silent power.

Anton does an excellent job of taking the reader back through the generations of strong women who defined her family and their paths. It is meticulously researched and ends on the perfect note of reverence and nostalgia.

Buy Under the Light of the Italian Moon at Amazon Uk or Gooreads for any other retailer.  Publisher: Amsterdam Publishers pub date March 8, 2021. Buy at Amazon comHive.Waterstones.

#BlogTour The Mind’s Eye by Miles Hudson

 It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Mind’s Eye by Miles Hudson.

About the Author

Notionally, I’m a school physics teacher. I’ve worked in a variety of schools in north-east England and started recently as the PGCE Physics tutor at Newcastle Uni. I also write a whole load of textbook materials for schools, my biggest titles being A Level Physics books for Edexcel exam board courses.

And I’m the inventor of the Best Fit Line Ruler. I ran a small business making and selling those but after ten years and 50,000 rulers, I’ve stopped making them.

I have a major passion for writing fiction. My future-set series of novels, starting with 2089, is about a gently post-apocalyptic, Orwellian future England. You could say ‘sci-fi’, but it’s not really lasers and spaceships; ‘dystopian’ catches the themes well.

I’ve also developed a great series of detective novels featuring the duo Penfold and DS Tony Milburn. Based in Durham City CID, DS Milburn and his civilian foil, the kiwi surfer, Penfold, solve cases that take in high stakes such as murder and big heists, but in a very cerebral way. Holmes and Watson for the 21st Century, if you will.

Follow @milesmhudson on Twitteron Facebookon Goodreads, Visit mileshudson.comBuy The Mind’s Eye

About the book

Everything anyone sees and hears is recorded and available to view online. Our eyes and ears are remotely wiretapped. There can be no secrets. But… what if the surveillance system had been hacked, and you weren’t actually committing the crimes people saw you committing? Jack Smith and Vicky Truva are on the run, again.

In 2089, Jack was banished to an island in the Bristol Channel for blowing up the old GCHQ building to destroy the surveillance computers. 18 months later, those responsible for his conviction suffer arson, assault and explosion. Eye witnesses attribute these crimes to Jack. The surveillance system is fixed, but he appears to be evading it. That should be impossible.

With his friend, Vicky, Jack returns from exile to try to prove that he is not the criminal. A militia posse, including Vicky’s brother, pursue them across climate-changed Gloucestershire. The surveillance system functions erratically. Can Jack and Vicky outrun the posse long enough to work out what’s wrong with it? And find out who really committed the crimes? And can they catch them?

Review

After being banished to an island for blowing up a building, is Jack the perfect patsy for someone looking to make trouble? Makes sense to pick a troublemaker, but is it just a ruse, a distraction technique or is there something more nefarious afoot?

How is Jack supposed to prove that he isn’t committing crimes when he is being seen committing said crimes? When the surveillance system everyone trusts is giving clear information and yet Jack knows it isn’t him. How do you prove it isn’t you when the fail proof system says it is without a doubt – you.

It’s a kind of dystopian deep state Big Brother techno thriller. A society immersed in technology, governed and influenced by it, watched by it. People who live in this dystopian future trust the technology implicitly – the question is whether they should?

This leads back to something our own era has sunken into, the deep fake and misinformation era. The way technology is used to drive false news, propaganda and misinformation. The way it is used to track and monitor. One can only imagine how it will evolve, but it isn’t much of a stretch to imagine a future decimated by human fuelled climate change.

This is actually one of the more intriguing elements of the read, the way the author envisages the world if the predictions about climate change come true. How humanity learns to survive in an entirely different landscape and atmosphere with a high dependency on a reality created for us by AI and those at the tip of the technology iceberg. 

Buy The Mind’s Eye at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher : Penfold Books pub date 1 Feb. 2021. Buy at Amazon com.