#BlogTour The Reacher Guy by Heather Martin

 It’s an absolute pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Reacher Guy by Heather Martin. -The Authorised Biography of Lee Child.

About the Author

Heather Martin was born in West Australia. She grew up in Aix-en-Provence, Paris, and Perth, where she would fall asleep to the sound of the Indian Ocean. She left Australia for England to become a classical guitarist but found herself singing with a Venezuelan folk group and learning to speak Spanish instead. She read Languages at Cambridge, where she also did a PhD in comparative literature, and has held teaching and research positions at Cambridge, Hull, King’s College London, and most recently, the Graduate Center, City University New York. 

Heather is a long-time Reacher fan. While waiting to get her hands on the next in the series, she once read a Lee Child book in Spanish and wound up writing to the author about the fate of his character in translation. The Reacher Guy is her first biography. Follow @drheathermartin on Twitter

About the book

The Reacher Guy is a life of bestselling superstar Lee Child, a portrait of the artist as a young man, refracted through the life of his fictional avatar, Jack Reacher. It tells the story of how the boy from Birmingham reinvented himself to become the strongest brand in publishing, selling over one hundred million books in more than forty different languages across the globe.

Heather Martin interviews friends, teachers, colleagues and neighbours, including agents and editors. Based primarily on her conversations with the author over a period of years, together with readings of his books and research in his literary archive, this authorised biography reveals the man behind the myth, tracing his origins back through the generations to Northern Ireland and County Durham, and following the trajectory of his extraordinary career via New York and Hollywood until the climactic moment when, in 2020, having written a continuous series of twenty-four books, he finally floats free of his fictional creation.

Lee Child comments: “I met Heather Martin some years ago, and we started talking about why people love telling and hearing stories. To get more depth and detail we started talking about why I do. Eventually I said, ‘If you want to really get to the bottom of it, you’re going to have to write my biography.’ So she did. It was a fun and illuminating process. I had forgotten a lot, and it was fascinating to be reminded. Now it all makes sense.”


The thing about biographies, even authorised ones, they tend to hover just above the surface. You will get the top layers and the more personal moments the person is used to sharing – for whatever reason, and yes that is said with cynicism.

Martin doesn’t even bother with the peeling. It’s just right in and dig to the core, of course it only works because Child is open and willing. The two of them play off each other like tennis pros, they compliment each other, which in the long run makes this a better read.

That in no way should imply the book would be less of a great read if the cooperation between writer and subject had been a little less cooperative. Martin has clearly delved deeply into the mindset of the man behind Lee Child, and the creator of Jack Reacher. Somewhere in between there is a division, and yet if you go deep enough the three are the same on certain levels.

I imagine a non-authorised version would have a lot to say about the psychology behind it all, but that’s a topic for another book. This is a well-researched and written homage to the man behind the image. Martin absolutely does the man, the body of work and the legacy, justice. It’s an engrossing read, and I highly recommend it.

Buy The Reacher Guy at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Constable; pub date 29th September 2020 hardback £20.00 – also available as an eBook/audio. Buy at Amazon com. At Waterstones.

#BlogTour The Curator by M.W. Craven

It’s an absolute pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Curator by M.W. Craven.

About the Author

A brand-new voice in British crime fiction, M. W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle. He joined the army at sixteen, leaving a decade later to complete a social work degree and spent seventeen years as a probation officer in Cumbria, rising to the rank of assistant chief officer.

The first in the Washington Poe series, The Puppet Show, won the 2019 CWA Gold  Dagger, has sold in numerous foreign territories and has been optioned for TV by Studio Lambert. M. W. Craven has been shortlisted for the Goldsboro Glass Bell Award and an Amazon Reader Award. He is also the author of the Avison Fluke novels, Born in a Burial Ground (shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger) and Body Breaker. The second in the Washington Poe series, Black Summer was published in June 2019.

Follow @MWCravenUK @LittleBrownUK on Twitter, on Facebookon Instagramon Goodreads, Visit mwcraven.comBuy The Curator

About the book

Called in to investigate, the National Crime Agency’s Washington Poe and Tilly Bradshaw are faced with a case that makes no sense. Why were some victims anaesthetized, while others died in appalling agony?

Why is their only suspect denying what they can irrefutably prove but admitting to things they weren’t even aware of? And why did the victims all take the same two weeks off work three years earlier?

And when a disgraced FBI agent gets in touch things take an even darker turn. Because she doesn’t think Poe is dealing with a serial killer at all; she thinks he’s dealing with someone far, far worse – a man who calls himself the Curator.


The best Poe by Craven yet.

Fingers are turning up left right and centre. Fingers that were severed while the victims were still alive. Poe and Tilly are determined to find out who is committing these atrocities, finding the victims identities and putting this monster, who has no scruples whatsoever, behind bars.

I suppose I am lucky I read the ecopy version of this book, because I highlighted a lot as I was reading, which I only do when the author writes the kind of points or ideas I want to refer back to eventually. I particularly liked the way Craven researched the whole BWC and BSC elements of the read – the psychological impact and how the victims go from a to b and finally to a very drastic z.

After reading this book there is no doubt in my mind that Craven is set to stay a successful fixture in the crime fiction world – it just gets better with each story. I really enjoy the way this author combines the ruthlessness of violent crime with an element of mystery, however it’s the crime duo of Washington and Tilly that makes this read and series for that matter.

At this point Poe feels protective towards Tilly and is quick to defend when others are critical of her. Tilly is concerned for his health and overall well-being. The two are symbiotic, and perhaps in a way they have become family. Either way they are a crime solving duo to be reckoned with.

Kudos to Craven for the ending. Nice one. In equal measures also the well-plotted perpetrator of the story. It really is a fantastic read.

Buy The Curator at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Constable- Little Brown Books Uk, pub date 4 Jun. 2020 – Hardback (£16.99), Ebook (£9.99) and Audio. Buy at Amazon com.

Read my reviews of The Puppet Show and Black Summer by M.W. Craven.

The Woman in the Dark by Vanessa Savage

Savage portrays the isolation of mental health in the middle of a family structure, and the blame game which often ensues. The ‘it’s your fault because, how could you do this or that’ ect ect blame game. It’s easy to point a finger in the direction of the most vulnerable person in the room instead of taking a closer look at our own faults and mistakes. It’s also easier than trying comprehend why someone would try to hurt themselves.

In a more understanding environment Sarah would be given support to deal with her grief after the death of her mother. Instead she has to deal with constant jibes, insults and a lack of respect from her children and her husband Patrick.

Moving to a new town and into Patrick’s old family home should alleviate some of the pressure of Sarah’s issues, according to her husband. If it wasn’t for the fact that the house is renowned for being the scene of a horrific crime, so it’s rumoured to be filled with ghosts and evil spirits, it would be perfect. Not exactly the right setting for a new start.

The reality is, Sarah has just taken a step into a dangerous situation, however she isn’t sure whether it is paranoia, her illness or something more sinister afoot. Her friends and family think she is slowly losing the plot, as the walls start to close in on her and her secrets.

There is no denying that the author knows how to keep the tension as taught as a bowstring, and also keep the reader looking under every stone and behind every corner. I particularly enjoyed the way she shows how outsiders are often unable to pinpoint and recognise abusive behaviour, even when it is happening right in front of them. It doesn’t always have to be a punch in the face or a hidden bruise. Sometimes it is something subtle which may make you feel slightly uncomfortable.

It’s a riveting whirlwind of darkness and suspicion with plenty of twists and turns to keep readers on their toes. You might not know who to trust, but you will definitely know who to dislike.

Buy/Pre-order The Woman in the Dark at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.

Publisher: Sphere (pub. date 10 Jan. 2019) Sphere is an imprint of Little, Brown book group.

Follow @VvSavage

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

little firesHands down Izzy wins best rebel move by a teenager.

I think this book will generate a lot of opinions and conversations, and I can guarantee the opinions will differ on a lot of the core issues raised in this book. In fact this is probably a little Molotov cocktail in the guise of an innocent little book.

When is a mother a mother and when is she not? I think it is fair to say that giving birth makes you a mother in the technical sense of the word and from a biological point of view, however not every bio mother or father is a parent.

This book wades into the murky, emotional and difficult waters of adoption, surrogacy and abortion. Ng also puts motherhood and relationships between mothers and daughters under close scrutiny.

It is a book full of controversial topics, however the author approaches all of them in a subtle non-controversial manner. There is no attempt to sway the reader one way or the other, both sides of the argument are presented in each situation. When I say both sides this includes uncomfortable facts like a rich white family creating a diverse environment and not raising a child of a transracial adoption in a colour-blind environment.

Also the presumption that financial stability is better for a child than a genetic connection or how a traumatic event can spiral into anxiety can end up voicing itself as a lifetime of criticism and dislike.

Again, I have to say that aside from the controversial topics, I also really enjoyed the way Ng didn’t flavour the soup in any way. She lets the reader pick the seasoning and the way they decide to imbibe the topics. I think the result will be an interesting variety of opinions.

Buy Little Fires Everywhere at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.

Follow @pronounced_ing (love the Twitter handle) @LittleBrownUk

Visit celesteng.com