#Blogtour The Binding Room by Nadine Matheson

It’s my turn on the Blogtour The Binding Room by Nadine Matheson.

A small treat for you – Listen to an extract of the audiobook of The Binding Room by Nadine Matheson read by Diveen Henry: https://soundcloud.com/harpercollinspublishers/the-binding-room-by-nadine-matheson-read-by-diveen-henry

About the Author

Nadine Matheson was born and raised in Deptford (one of the murders in The Jigsaw Man takes place five minutes from her front door) and is a criminal solicitor. Nadine is also a winner of the City University Crime Writing competition and you can follow her on Twitter @nadinematheson, and on Instagram @queennads. The Jigsaw Man was her first crime novel and was loved by readers around the world. The Binding Room is Nadine’s second novel featuring DI |Henley and the Serial Crimes Unit.

About the book

In this room, no one can hear you scream… The Serial Crimes Unit are called in to investigate when a local pastor is found stabbed to death. As DI Henley assesses the crime scene, she discovers a hidden door that conceals a room set up for torture – and bound to the bed in the middle of the room is the body of a man.

When another body is found, also tied down, Henley realises there’s someone out there torturing innocent people and leaving them for dead. But why?

There’s nothing that connects the victims. They didn’t know each other. Their paths never crossed. But someone has targeted them, and it’s up to Henley and the SCU to stop them before they find another binding room…

Review

This is the second book in the Inspector Anjelica Henley series. A dead body accidentally reveals the true inhumanity people are capable of when they believe they are righteous and acting upon the word of a higher power. It opens up a can of depraved worms and the kind of abyss Henley and her team would rather not be confronted with.

I felt as if there was a slight difference in the writing this time. Where before the character’s lives and the main plot often seemed to compete with each other for the main stage, this time everything was balanced exactly right. It made for a smoother read – the author is honing her voice and style. That reminds me, if you haven’t read Jigsaw Man yet, you should.

There is this moment in the last chapter, an incredibly poignant one when Henley is opening up about something she is accused of doing. The expectation that a certain connection – sorry I have to be vague because of potential spoilers – means you are not doing your job, but rather working for the oppressor. Nice point, because it gives real depth to the main character, her interactions and experiences.

It will be interesting to see where the series goes and what else this author comes up with. Just getting started.

Buy The Binding Room at Amazon UK or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HQ pub date 7 July 2022. Buy at Harper CollinsBuy via Harper Collins.

#BlogTour The White Girl by Tony Birch

It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The White Girl by Tony Birch. It’s an excellent read. I highly recommend it.

About the Author

Tony Birch is the author of three novels: the bestselling The White Girl, winner of the 2020 NSW Premier’s Award for Indigenous Writing, and shortlisted for the 2020 Miles Franklin literary prize; Ghost River, winner of the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing; and Blood, which was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award in 2012. 

He is also the author of Shadowboxing and four short story collections, Dark As Last Night, Father’s Day, The Promise and Common People; and the poetry collections, Broken Teeth and Whisper Songs. In 2017 he was awarded the Patrick White Literary Award for his contribution to Australian literature. Tony Birch is also an activist, historian and essayist. His website is: tony-birch.com

About the book

“A profound allegory of good and evil, and a deep exploration of human interaction, black and white, alternately beautiful and tender, cruel and unsettling.”—Guardian

Australia’s leading indigenous storyteller makes his American debut with this immersive and deeply resonant novel, set in the 1960s, that explores the lengths we’ll go to save the people we love—an unforgettable story of one native Australian family and the racist government that threatens to separate them.

Odette Brown has lived her entire life on the fringes of Deane, a small Australian country town. Dark secrets simmer beneath the surface of Deane—secrets that could explain why Odette’s daughter, Lila, left her one-year-old daughter, Sissy, and never came back, or why Sissy has white skin when her family is Aboriginal.

For thirteen years, Odette has quietly raised her granddaughter without drawing notice from welfare authorities who remove fair-skinned Aboriginal children from their families. But the arrival of a new policeman with cruel eyes and a rigid by-the-book attitude throws the Brown women’s lives off-kilter. It will take all of Odette’s courage and cunning to save Sissy from the authorities, and maybe even lead her to find her daughter.

Bolstered by love, smarts, and the strength of their ancestors, Odette and Sissy are an indomitable force, handling threats to their family and their own identities with grace and ingenuity, while never losing hope for themselves and their future.

In The White Girl, Miles Franklin Award-nominated author Tony Birch illuminates Australia’s devastating post-colonial past—notably the government’s racist policy of separating Indigenous children from their families, known today as the Stolen Generations—and introduces a tight-knit group of charming, inspiring characters who remind us of our shared humanity, and that kindness, hope, and love have no limits.

Review

I’m not sure about other readers, but when I read a book about minorities, the indigenous of any country, the oppressed or the vulnerable – just as an example, I often presume the events are historical. When I say historical I mean over a century or more, and I am often dismayed by the reality of the actual truth. That for the majority we are talking recent events, in modern times when the world should have been condemning such oppression and atrocities.

Odette is a fictional example perhaps, but I think probably a softer version of the awful truth of the way the colonisers have treated the indigenous people of Australia. This story takes place in the 1960s – a long time after the first early colonial period of certain parts of Australia. In a Podunk rural town where white and indigenous are still segregated. The indigenous people live outside in a specified area and are only allowed into the white town on a specific day and for a short period of time. 

Odette takes care of her young granddaughter, who has now reached an age where her presence has become of interest to both the authorities, and she is also vulnerable to the predators who perceive indigenous women especially, as of no worth or chattel of the white man.

The young girl is fair-skinned, and the authorities feel it is their duty to remove those children – white passing – in order to place them in an environment conducive to a less native and savage environment. To save their souls. Odette starts to realise that the danger her family has always faced is starting to wander in the path of her granddaughter. 

This book should be on more prize lists –  I am surprised it isn’t and that it hasn’t had more traction this side of the pond. It is an incredible piece of work, which is only more admirable when you consider the subtlety of the approach to the sensitive topics in this story. The atmosphere is a stark reminder of reality, and indeed the reader almost walks alongside Odette, that’s how vivid a picture the author presents.

The displacement, essentially kidnap, of whole generations of indigenous of children has burdened further generations with generational trauma. Children who survived the system and never saw their families again, parents who never got over having their children stolen. At this point it is important to note that just recently the reality of what really happened to the majority of these children is being unearthed. The mass graves, the unmarked graves of so many abused and neglected indigenous children. It’s more than a tragedy, it’s a disgrace – absolutely unforgivable.

I wouldn’t hesitate to read or recommend this author after reading this. As I was reading I was envisaging the screen version of this – I would love to see Deborah Mailman make Odette come to life. Either way this story needs more circulation, so more people can read it. It’s poignant, it is a story that grabs you tightly as it tears you into the murky depths of colonial guilt and the criminal atrocities committed under the auspice of malevolent colonialism and white supremacy. And I might add – the author only skims the surface of the aforementioned.

Buy The White Girl at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HarperVia pub date 28 April 2022). Buy at Amazon comAt Harper Collins.

#BlogTour The Murder Rule by Dervla McTiernan

It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Murder Rule by Dervla McTiernan.

About the Author

Internationally bestselling and critically acclaimed writer Dervla McTiernan burst onto the writing scene with The Ruin, her crime debut set in Ireland. The Ruin is the first in the detective Cormac Reilly series and has been published in the United States, the UK and Ireland and in New Zealand and Australia, where it was a top ten bestseller.

Dervla spent twelve years working as a lawyer. Following the global financial crisis, she moved to Australia and turned her hand to writing. An avid fan of crime and detective novels from childhood, Dervla wrote a short story, The Roommate, which was shortlisted for the Sisters in Crime Scarlet Stiletto Competition. She went on to write The Ruin, and a string of other bestsellers. Dervla is a member of the Sisters in Crime and Crime Writers Association, and lives in Perth, Australia, with her husband and two children. Follow @DervlaMcTiernan on Twitter

About the book

First Rule: Make them like you. Second Rule: Make them need you. Third Rule: Make them pay.

They think I’m a young, idealistic law student, that I’m passionate about reforming a corrupt and brutal system. They think I’m working hard to impress them. They think I’m here to save an innocent man on death row. They’re wrong. I’m going to bury him.

Review

There are a few great topics for discussion woven into this psychological thriller. The fact a flawed system still imprisons too many people who are innocent of the crimes they have been convicted of. Decades, life sentences ( I just want to point out that life only means a fraction – fifteen years sometimes) in certain countries, and the death sentence. Imagine spending decades in prison and being completely innocent.

The plot has an Innocence Project at the core. Legal experts, volunteers and loved ones of the incarcerated dedicated to picking individuals with cases layered with the distinct smell of wrongful conviction. Hannah has forcefully wrangled herself into this particular project. She has an agenda, not exactly one that is in line with the organisation in question. How far will she go to execute her plan?

It is a well plotted and written riveting psychological thriller with a legal angle. I’m going to stay tight lipped on a certain aspect that shows itself fairly early on and comes to a nice wicked conclusion at the end. It’s the kind of read that keeps you captivated from the start.

Buy The Murder Rule at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Harper Collins; 12th May 2022 | Hardback | Ebook | Audio | £14.99. Buy at Amazon comBuy at Harper Collins.

#BlogTour Guilty Women by Melanie Blake

It really is a pleasure to welcome back Melanie Blake with Guilty Women, which is the sequel to the fantastic Ruthless Women. ‘The cast of Ruthless Women is back, and this time they’re in trouble…’

About the Author

Melanie Blake is the bestselling author of Ruthless Women, which became a Number 4 Sunday Times hardback bestseller and an ebook bestseller in 2021, selling over 150,000 copies. Guilty Women is her second novel about the cast of Falcon Bay, and her first with HarperFiction. 

Growing up in a working-class household with severe dyslexia, Melanie has her own Rags to Riches story, just like that of her characters – at 15 she was told by her school career advisors that her decision to work at a record shop was ‘a clear example that she wouldn’t go far in her career’. They were wrong. 

By 19 she was working at the BBC’s iconic Top of the Pops show and by 26 she had built a reputation as one of the UK’s leading music and entertainment managers. She also created her own acting agency from scratch which became the most successful independent boutique agency in the UK. Melanie still represents a high-profile stable of actresses, but is also now enjoying success in her own right as a author, playwright and producer. Follow @MelanieBlakeUK on Twitter

About the book

Can they get away with murder? On a beautiful island off the English coast, four TV actresses gather. Their fifth member is missing – and only they know why she was killed.

As the secret between them threatens to come out, tensions on set run high. The women are determined that the show must go on – whatever the cost. But one of them is on the edge of telling the truth – and no soap opera in the world could survive this scandal…

All of the women have something to hide – but the question is, are they all guilty?

Review

The Ruthless Women are back, and now it’s all about making sure none of them get caught and get punished for the events in the first book. If you haven’t read it yet and have just found this hot new Collinesque like series, then I can only recommend you start at the beginning to get the full gist of it all.

The tension of their shared secret has an impact on each one of the women, but they all deal with it individually. The need to share and air, name and shame is quite strong with certain women. On the other hand what they all agree with is that none of them, their lives or careers should be destroyed because of a minor fish incident. So cover-up and carry-on it is.

Is it just me or was there a wee homage to soap opera, and the hilarious improve soap opera blow-up by Tootsie. A little pop culture reference there. I think that is the fun of this drama filled crime come contemporary women’s fiction. It brings the spice, the unpredictable and it also brings a specific kind of sisterhood to the table.

I think there might be a third book, there should absolutely be a third book – how about vengeful women? And let’s start casting! The actresses who slayed Jackie Collins mega dramas would be the right age for this, the potential is huge.

Buy Guilty Women at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HarperCollins pub date 28 April 2022. Buy at Amazon comBuy via HarperCollins Uk.

#BlogTour Who’s Lying Now? by Susan Lewis

It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour Who’s Lying Now? by Susan Lewis.

About the Author

Susan Lewis is the internationally bestselling author of over forty books across the genres of family drama, thriller, suspense and crime, including I Have Something To Tell You, One Minute Later, My Lies, Your Lies and Forgive Me. Susan’s novels have sold over three million copies in the UK alone. She is also the author of Just One More Day and One Day at a Time, the moving memoirs of her childhood in Bristol during the 1960s. 

Susan has previously worked as a secretary in news and current affairs before training as a production assistant working on light entertainment and drama. She’s lived in Hollywood and the South of France, but now resides in Gloucestershire with husband James, two stepsons and dog, Mimi. Follow @susanlewisbooks on Twitter

About the book

You think you’re safe. You think you know your neighbours. But can you ever really know who’s telling the truth?

Jeannie Symonds is a force to be reckoned with – an eccentric, award-winning publisher, spending lockdown with her husband in a house near Kesterly-on-Sea. She seems to have it all: a high-flying career, a happy marriage, a niece she adores. – And then one day, she vanishes.

Cara Jakes is a new trainee investigator – young, intelligent and eager to prove herself. When she teams up with detective Andee Lawrence to look into the disappearance, she is determined to find out what has really happened to Jeannie. Cara begins to question the residents of this close-knit community, sure that someone has a secret to hide. – But how can she separate the truth from the lies?

Review

It’s a dark domestic psychological thriller with the cosy contemporary feel of a romance or chic-lit – a very interesting vibe. Think Midsomer Murder, but without the police as main characters and all the characters have skin in the game. Then to make things a little bit more interesting the story moves from past, present, recent past – before, after and during the event.

Jeannie Symonds has it all, husband, house, career and yet her eye likes to roam and she has also made plenty of enemies on her path of success and wealth. Enough enemies for someone to make her disappear perhaps? Or has she just taken herself off for a bit of me-time.

I enjoyed the way this sort of swayed from one end of the genre spectrum to the other, especially from a style perspective. Gossipy Dynasty like relationships with complex familial structures, interrogation and interview techniques that jump from Christie clue solving to methodical calculated moves, only to be thrown off by the erratic choices of certain characters.

Gotta say though, there is this bit at the end in the last few pages. Hmm it had me doubting the entire plot and solution – was that the intention? Just throw a red herring and see if it lands in the frying pan? Or is there more to come. Lewis can be just a tad wicked.

Buy Who’s Lying? Now at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HarperCollins pub date 14 April 2022. Buy at Amazon comAt Harper Collins.

#BlogTour Breakneck Point by T. Or Munro

Today it is a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour Breakneck Point by T. Orr Munro.

About the Author

T.Orr Munri was born in Aldershot in Hampshire to an English mother and a Greek-Armenian father who moved to deepest Devon after recognising it would be a great place to raise their children.

She has a degree in Economic and Social History from Liverpool University and a PGCE in History and English.

After university she trained as a CSI, then later became a secondary school teacher. She changed career at thirty-three to become a police and crime journalist and is currently freelance.

She has  since returned with her family to live in North Devon, the setting for Breakneck Point, but heads to Greece as often as she can. Her time as a CSI provided much of the inspiration for her novel, shining a light on what happens behind the crime scene tape. Follow @TinaOrrMunro on Twitter, Find out about Tina on linktree

About the book

CSI Ally Dymond’s commitment to justice has cost her a place on the major investigations team. After exposing corruption in the ranks, she’s stuck working petty crimes on the sleepy North Devon coast.

Then the body of nineteen-year-old Janie Warren turns up in the seaside town of Bidecombe, and Ally’s expert skills are suddenly back in demand.

But when the evidence she discovers contradicts the lead detective’s theory, nobody wants to listen to the CSI who landed their colleagues in prison.

Time is running out to catch a killer no one is looking for – no one except Ally. What she doesn’t know is that he’s watching, from her side of the crime scene tape, waiting for the moment to strike.

Review

When your reputation is in tatters because you did the right thing and colleagues keep treating you like the unwanted guest. It gets a bit tedious and perhaps the reason Ally can be a little short-tempered, but then you would be a wee bit annoyed if a so-called expert was intentionally misreading the evidence at crime scenes, just because the CSI has been delegated to the dog house.

I really enjoyed the moral and indeed legal conundrum Ally’s introduction is built upon. Yes, one could argue there isn’t one at all, but hey that’s exactly what the instability of her character is built on. The way colleagues react to and treat her, the way her career falls into a pit with no ladder. 

Doing the right thing, when those around you believe the right thing is protecting the boys in blue, as opposed to doing your job correctly. If telling the truth means a guilty person walks free and your colleagues end up behind bars, but the flipside means the system has no meaning, justice is null and void.

The author writes a strong character who is torn between professionalism, frustration and anger at the way a wall has been built around her. It sets her in a position many women find themselves in, where the men around her treat her like a child, a voice to be silenced, instead of acknowledging her expertise. A playbook straight out of real life. It’s a good read.

Buy Breakneck Point at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HQ pub date 14 April 2022. At Harper CollinsAt Waterstones.

#BlogTour The Mother Fault by Kate Mildenhall

It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour to celebrate the #PaperbackPublication of The Mother Fault by Kate Mildenhall. Definitely a read you don’t want to miss.

About the Author

Kate Mildenhall is a writer who lives on the outskirts of Melbourne with her family. Her debut novel, Skylarking, was published in Australia by Black Inc. in 2016 and in the UK by Legend Press in 2017. Skylarking was longlisted for the Voss Literary Prize 2017 and the Indie Book Awards 2017. Kate has received residencies at Varuna, the Writers House and at Bundanon. With friend and author Katherine Collette, Kate co-hosts The First Time podcast, a podcast about the first time you publish a book.

Kate’s second novel, The Mother Fault, was published by Simon & Schuster in 2020 and Harper Collins in the UK in May 2021. Follow @katemildenhall, Visit katemildenhall.com

About the book

To keep her children safe, she must put their lives at risk … – In suburban Australia, Mim and her two children live as quietly as they can. Around them, a near-future world is descending into chaos: government officials have taken absolute control, but not everybody wants to obey the rules.

When Mim’s husband Ben mysteriously disappears, Mim realises that she and her children are in great danger. Together, they must set off on the journey of a lifetime to find Ben. The government are trying to track them down, but Mim will do anything to keep her family safe – even if it means risking all their lives. – Can the world ever return to normality, and their family to what it was?

Review

Ben is missing. It’s a mistake, they have the wrong person right? How is Mim supposed to tell their young children that their father is missing. Suddenly his disappearance starts having very real consequences for the family he left behind, and Mim has to make a choice to either be quiet and let the system take over or fight for her family.

In this very realistic dystopian read it’s easy to imagine a future just like this, and I believe that in itself is the power of the story. The fact the suggested scenarios are already part of mass fears and easily implemented going forward, is what makes this the kind of read you don’t want to miss.

I can imagine quite a few readers shouting out – I told you so! And others rolling their eyes at the paranoia. The integral details surrounding the premise, the basis of the not too far in the future dystopian setting – they are grounded in the realms of possible future scenarios. The author cleverly plays on the fears induced by the last few years and combines it with conspiracy theories, political and economical climates, draws on the environmental impact or foreseeable consequences of said impact, and has created a cracking read.

Mildenhall has captured the slowly encroaching methods of the powers that be. The logical explanations of why certain Big Brother methods are necessary are a manipulation tool to convince everyone to come to heel, the long-term consequences of being a non-questioning sheeple are not only detrimental they are also dangerous.

I loved the amount of information that is thrown at the reader, but in such a subtle way that you blink and it’s gone. How important each rule, regulation and nugget of information is, doesn’t become clear straight away. It’s a powerful modern futuristic plot – a very realistic one.

Buy The Mother Fault at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: HarperCollins pub date 3 Mar. 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour Other Parents by Sarah Stovell

 It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlgTour Other Parents by Sarah Stovell.

About the Author

Sarah Stovell was born in Kent in 1977 and now lives in Northumberland with her partner and two children. She has an MA and a PhD in creative writing and is a lecturer in creative writing at Lincoln University. She is the author of four previous novels, Mothernight, The Night Flower, Exquisite and The Home. Exquisite was chosen by The Times as one of the top 40 crime novels of the past 50 years. Follow @sarahlovescrime on Twitter

About the book

They all have opinions. They all have secrets. – In a small town like West Burntridge, it should be impossible to keep a secret. But the problem with having your nose in everyone’s business is that you can miss what’s staring you in the face.

Rachel Saunders knows gossip is the price you pay for a rural lifestyle and outstanding schools. The latest town scandal is her divorce – and the fact that her new girlfriend has moved into the family home.

Laura Spence lives in a poky bedsit on the wrong side of town. She and her son Jake don’t really belong, and his violent tantrums are threatening to expose the very thing she’s trying to hide.

When the local school introduces a new LGBTQ+-friendly curriculum, Rachel and Laura find themselves on opposite sides of a fearsome debate. But the problem with having your nose in everyone else’s business is that you often miss what’s happening in your own home.

Review

This tells the story of the interconnecting lives of women with children at the same school. Nothing in common except that fact, which is actually the case for the majority of parents and carers. You have no idea what each person is pretending to be or is dealing with in real life.

What playground parents are unfortunately quite good at is gossip, rumours, reputation destroying conversations, but most importantly at changing the path of how their children experience school and their peers.

One of the scenes that had me muttering along in agreement was the hypocritical attitude of give and take of the sanctimonious parent brigade. Wanting to control every aspect of their children’s lives in the name of allegedly higher moral ground than the lesser people who walk among us, such as parents in same-sex relationships. Judging and pointing with one hand and holding out the other palm for silver at the same time.

And the way the PTA feels as if it has the power to change, decide and choose the curriculum and rules in school. They become a very loud, social media vocal, mob of angry judgemental people who become the tool that can be used for good and bad. Their last thought, if they think of them at all, are the children who are in the middle of these conflicts.

I thought the plot lost of bit of the initial drive and focus about three quarters way through, then too many cooks are in the kitchen in regard to the various threads or sub-plots. It takes the wind out of the sails for the storyline I felt was the most powerful and will hopefully leave the largest impact, then again stories like this will resonate differently with reader.

Stovell always brings an intriguing and captivating read to the table – hitting the nail on the head when it comes to relevant topics and very human interactions. 

Buy Other Parents at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Buy at Amazon comAt Harper Collins.

#BlogTour The Postmistress of Paris by Meg Waite Clayton

 It’s my turn on the BlogTour The Postmistress of Paris by Meg Waite Clayton.

About the Author

Meg Waite Clayton is a New York Times bestselling author of six novels, most recently Beautiful Exiles. Her previous novels include the Langum Prize–honored The Race for Paris; The Language of Light, a finalist for the Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction (now the PEN/Bellwether); and The Wednesday Sisters, one of Entertainment Weekly’s 25 Essential Best Friend Novels of all time. 

She has also written for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Forbes, and public radio, often on the subject of the particular challenges women face. Follow @MegWClayton on Twitter, Visit megwaiteclayton.com

About the book

The New York Times bestselling author of The Last Train to London revisits the dark early days of the German occupation in France in this haunting novel—a love story and a tale of high-stakes danger and incomparable courage—about a young American heiress who helps artists hunted by the Nazis escape from war-torn Europe.

Wealthy, beautiful Naneé was born with a spirit of adventure that transcends her Midwestern roots. For her, learning to fly is freedom. When German tanks roll across the border and into Paris, this woman with an adorable dog and a generous heart joins the resistance. Known as the Postmistress because she delivers information to those in hiding, Naneé uses her charms and skill to house the hunted and deliver them to safety.

Inspired by the real life Chicago heiress Mary Jayne Gold, who worked with American journalist Varian Fry to smuggle artists and intellectuals out of France, Meg Waite Clayton has fashioned a sweeping tale of romance and danger, set in a world aflame with personal and political passion. The Postmistress of Paris is the haunting story of an indomitable woman whose strength, bravery, and love is a beacon of hope in a time of terror.

Review

Naneé is woman who loves being one with the air and nature, and yet simultaneously also enjoys the way others embrace and then express the way they perceive life. As the evil ideology of the Nazi regime slowly encroaches upon her life and the lives of those around her, she makes a choice. She becomes part of the solution and part of the resistance.

A story born from an inspirational story leading into and during World War 2. The author takes that inspiration and creates an emotional, caring story around it. It’s not just about love, it’s about endurance and being willing to go that extra mile under extreme circumstances for the people you love or in this case people who are stuck in the eye of a deadly storm. The courage of individuals sometimes leaves the smallest footprint, but makes the most lasting and important impression.

It’s historical fiction with plenty of amusing and endearing moments, whilst giving the historical importance of this period in time due diligence. It also opens the door into less often discussed events during this period, especially in regards to the attitude and position towards the creative arts and their creators. 

Buy The Postmistress of Paris at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎ Harper pub date 30 Nov. 2021. Buy at Amazon com. At Harper Collins.

#BlogTour The Unravelling by Polly Crosby

An absolutely brilliant novel – it should definitely be on some award lists this year! Welcome to the BlogTour for The Unravelling by Polly Crosby.

About the AuthorPolly Crosby lives in Norfolk with her husband and son, and her very loud and much-loved Oriental rescue cat, Dali. The Illustrated Child is her first novel. Her second novel, The Unravelling, is out on 6th January ‘22. To Find more about Polly’s writing, visit pollycrosby.comSign up to Polly’s newsletter here. Follow @WriterPolly on Twitter

About the book

When Tartelin Brown accepts a job with the reclusive Marianne Stourbridge, she finds herself on a wild island with a mysterious history.

Tartelin is tasked with hunting butterflies for Marianne’s research. But she quickly uncovers something far more intriguing than the curious creatures that inhabit the landscape. Because the island and Marianne share a remarkable history, and what happened all those years ago has left its scars, and some terrible secrets.

As Tartelin pieces together Marianne’s connection to the island, she must confront her own reasons for being there. Can the two women finally face up to the painful memories that bind them so tightly to the past?

Atmospheric and deeply emotional, The Unravelling is the captivating novel from the author of The Illustrated Child.

Review

Marianne is crotchety solitary figure, who is bound to her home in both physical and an emotional way. The memories, experiences and relationships that lack the right kind of closure, which will allow her some peace, are destined to remain grains of dirt under her skin. Irritations that can be dismissed, but never quite forgotten.

She has hired yet another young girl as an assistant to aid her in the accumulation of a variation of species, mainly butterflies, in order to examine and prove a theory she is working on. Tarteline finds herself a little shell-shocked by her new residence and employer. Apparently living without the common comforts of a 21st century home and a wee bit like society over a century ago, is quite the norm on this peculiar and yet beautiful island.

A story told over the span of Marianne’s lifetime, we encounter her as the curious child eager to be the apple of her father’s eye, the young woman coping with mistakes borne out of hurt pride, and the older woman filled with dreams and regrets. Can young Tarteline, who is still grieving her own loss, begin to understand her remarkable and demanding employer.

I absolutely adored this book. Crosby is an amazing writer with an innate ability to create literary and storytelling magic, as she navigates emotions, nature, memories, trauma and the fragility of human relationships. I can only hope this book is recognised as the gem it is going forward. It will definitely be going on my best reads of ’22 list. I can’t wait to read whatever she comes up with next.

Buy The Unravelling at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎HQ pub date 6 Jan. 2022. Buy at Amazon comAt Harper Collins.