Blog Tour! Review of The Story Keeper by Anna Mazzola ~ #TheStoryKeeper #RandomThingsTours

Blog Tours, Book Reviews, Headline, RandomThingsTours

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour today! I’m thrilled to share my review of The Story Keeper by Anna Mazzola!





The Story Keeper


Anna Mazzola




Audrey Hart is on the Isle of Skye to collect the folk and fairy tales of the people and communities around her. It is 1857 and the Highland Clearances have left devastation and poverty, and a community riven by fear. The crofters are suspicious and hostile to a stranger, claiming they no longer know their fireside stories.

Then Audrey discovers the body of a young girl washed up on the beach and the crofters reveal that it is only a matter of weeks since another girl disappeared. They believe the girls are the victims of the restless dead: spirits who take the form of birds.

Initially, Audrey is sure the girls are being abducted, but as events accumulate she begins to wonder if something else is at work. Something which may be linked to the death of her own mother, many years before.









Audrey Hart arrives on the Isle of Skye one dark, mizzly day, a carpet bag and a thirst for stories her only possessions. With the memory of her beloved mother, whose passion for stories fed her own, and a past in London that is lonely and starved of warmth, she is desperate to pave a new path in life, a life she wants for her own. Audrey’s father refuses to hear of her love of folklore and fairy tales, demands she abandon it; her stepmother, Dorothea, admonishes her drive and tries to force her into the role of a debutant. But Audrey won’t be forced. Stories run in her blood. And she won’t be made to forget them.



Hired by the wealthy Miss Buchanan of Lanerly to collect and document the local folk and fairy tales, Audrey is curious about her new employer, whose reluctance to see or be seen by the locals prevents her leaving the mansion. Stories have pulsed through Skye’s history for decades. Audrey’s job is to capture them, before they fade out and the people who tell them fade from the shores. A simple enough task. Or so it seems at first. The crofters are uneasy, reluctant to share their stories with a sassanach, a stranger. There is another reason for their suspicion though. Wicked tales swathe the land, of girls being taken, spirits who transform into birds, of a darkness that curdles Skye’s history.



When a body washes up on the shore, Audrey learns of a spate of recent disappearances. Young girls gone missing. Did they pack up their possessions and leave their homes for new lives? Or were they taken? Snatched from the people they loved? Audrey must untangle the mystery but it will come at a risk. To her, to the crofters, to everything she thought and everything she knows.



Audrey is fleeing a lonely life in London, where the fading memories of her mother are not enough to sustain her. Her father won’t speak of her mother’s mysterious death, fielding Audrey’s questions with his coldness, felling every hope with his firm refusals. Audrey is tormented by her mother’s absence and all that she doesn’t know. The stories are her only solace and on Skye she hopes to find some answers about her death and the woman she was before.



A brooding unease and power undulates through the prose, striking a strong combination of intrigue and fascination in the reader. I adore folk and fairytales and devoured them as a youngster. They were an instant source of fascination for me. When I started reading The Story Keeper, I felt that old intrigue and fascination return. The author exquisitely draws the reader into Audrey’s world, atmosphere and mystery cradled in every word. Absolutely wonderful!



Mysterious. Atmospheric. Chilling.




To purchase a copy of the book, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository





About Anna Mazzola



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(c) Lou Abercrombie



Anna is a writer who, due to some fault of her parents, is drawn to peculiar and dark historical subjects. Her novels have been described as literary crime fiction or historical crime. Anna’s influences include Sarah Waters, Daphne Du Maurier, Shirley Jackson and Margaret Atwood.

Her debut novel, The Unseeing, is based on the life of a real woman called Sarah Gale who was convicted of aiding a murder in London in 1837. Her second novel, The Story Keeper, follows a folklorist’s assistant as she searches out dark fairytales and stolen girls on the Isle of Skye in 1857.

She studied English at Pembroke College, Oxford, before becoming a human rights and criminal justice solicitor. She now tries to combine law with writing and child wrangling, to varying degrees of success.

Anna loves to hear from readers, so do say hello on social media or via her website.




Follow the bloggers on #TheStoryKeeper Blog Tour!


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Huge thanks to Anne Cater and Tinder Press for my review copy and blog tour invite!


Blog Tour! Red Snow by Will Dean ~ #RedSnow #BlogTour #DarkPines #TuvaMoodyson #TeamTuva #RandomThingsTours


Welcome to my stop on the blog tour today! I’m over the moon to share my review of Red Snow, the next installment in the Tuva Moodyson series by Will Dean!



Red Snow Cover


Red Snow


Will Dean




One suicide. One cold-blooded murder. Are they connected?
And who’s really pulling the strings in the small Swedish town of Gavrik?
Black Grimberg liquorice coins cover the murdered man’s eyes.
The hashtag #Ferryman starts to trend as local people stock up on ammunition.
Tuva Moodyson, deaf reporter at the local paper, has a fortnight to investigate the deaths
before she starts her new job in the south. A blizzard moves in. Residents, already
terrified, feel increasingly cut-off. Tuva must go deep inside the Grimberg factory to stop
the killer before she leaves town for good. But who’s to say the Ferryman will let her go?










Tuva Moodyson is back with a bang! A journalist for Gavrick’s only newspaper, she has just two weeks left in the job before she packs up her apartment, says goodbye to her colleagues and hightails it out of the town she has resided in for four years. A new job and a new life await her. Six months ago, she investigated a series of local killings which gave her the biggest story of her career but also put her life at risk. Now, with those memories still at the forefront of her mind, she is even more careful, taking precautions where she can. When she witnesses a local man, owner of the Grimberg Liquorice factory, commit suicide, alarm bells ring in her mind. Despite what they police say, Tuva is certain there is something suspicious about the tragedy. Determined to get to the bottom of it, she delves into the history of the Grimberg family but it is much darker than she could have ever predicted.



Not a week later, a factory worker is found dead, two liquorice coins deposited on his eyes, a tooth pushed into a slice in his neck, and no clue as to who the murderer is. Gavrick is in an uproar. Panic spreads through homes and fear mounts on the streets. The locals walk a little faster, throw an extra glance over their shoulders, even hurry to their cars in pairs. The words on everyone’s lips are ‘The Ferryman,’ a killer living somewhere among them.




Tuva is drawn into the lives of the Grimbergs, a family who have headed the business for decades. On the surface they are confident, astute. Proud of their accomplishments and determined to keep the factory ticking over for their workers and for the community. But on closer inspection, there is a lot more to them than meets the eye. The author brings these characters to life, every detail and nuance painting an ever growing portrait. As the story unfolds, new depths are revealed and for me the darker the book got, the more and more I enjoyed it. I was glued to the pages. Tuva is the sort of character you don’t want to miss a single second with. She’s brave, ambitious and intelligent but it’s her sarcasm, wit and fierceness that makes her stick in my mind and capture my heart. Such a remarkable character! I’m definitely #TeamTuva!



In both Dark Pines and Red Snow, the reader is afforded an exquisite sense of place. The author’s descriptions of the town and the way of life are vivid and atmospheric in detail. I loved not only following Tuva in this next instalment but also having another glimpse at that part of the world. The author’s writing is incredibly addictive as always. I can’t wait to read his next book!



Vivid. Gripping. Atmospheric.





To purchase a copy of this book, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository




About Will Dean



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WILL DEAN grew up in the East Midlands, living in nine different villages before
the age of eighteen. After studying at the LSE and working in London, he
settled in rural Sweden with his wife. He built a wooden house in a boggy
forest clearing at the centre of a vast elk forest, and it’s from this base that he
compulsively reads and writes. #RedSnow @willrdean @PtBlankBks





Follow the bloggers on the #RedSnow blog tour!



FINAL Red Snow Blog Tour Poster




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Huge thanks to Anne Cater, Will Dean and Point Blank for my review copy and blog tour invite!

Book Review: The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden ~ #WinterOfTheWitch #WinternightTrilogy


winter of the witch


The Winter of the Witch


Katherine Arden



One girl can make a difference…

Moscow is in flames, leaving its people searching for answers – and someone to blame. Vasilisa, a girl with extraordinary gifts, must flee for her life, pursued by those who blame their misfortune on her magic.

Then a vengeful demon returns, stronger than ever. Determined to engulf the world in chaos, he finds allies among men and spirits. Mankind and magical creatures alike find their fates resting on Vasya’s shoulders.

But she may not be able to save them all.












Following a devastating fire which ravaged most of Moscow, the smoke-filled streets are swarming with lost and broken voices, all needing help, all needing hope. Blamed for the tragedy that took countless lives, Vasya is condemned to death. To be burnt alive. Her ancient magic is labelled witchcraft and the weight of every lost soul is heaped onto her shoulders. The people of Moscow, desperate for retribution, are tricked and manipulated by corrupt priest Konstantin, whose own vendetta, leads him to a position of power. Vasya, caught in his grasp, only just manages to survive a grim fate by her courage and strength alone. Forced to flee her home and family, she travels between times, through a realm that could prove to be her triumph or her downfall.




Meanwhile, Konstantin, is governing Moscow, deceiving the prince and controlling the people with fear as his weapon. Despite all his power, he is only a puppet to an even deadlier foe. A demon, commonly known as the Bear, who is exulting in his new-found freedom. Together, their tyranny is ruthlessly murdering and tricking all those around them. A battle is fast approaching. A divide in allegiance is growing wider by the day. In the farthest corners, men and spirits are forced to pick a side. Vasya is the only one who can soothe differences and bind the good men and spirits to win against the brutality that rises to meet them.




Whether it’s for her youth or for being a witch or for simply being a woman, Vasya is overlooked, condescended to, even spurned for who she is but always her bravery, courage and determination prove more powerful than what is thrown at her. This character has steel in her bones and spirit. I love the characterisation – the author brings Vasya, Shasha, Dimitri, Olga and of course, Morozko to life with a palette of vibrant colour and rich descriptions. The writing sizzles with its own kind of magic.




I fell in love with Vasya all over again in this book, the final instalment in the Winternight Trilogy. I feel a little bereft now but the ending was everything I could have hoped for. The author has conjured a fairytale that will sweep you up and inhabit a very special place in your heart. Rich with magic and atmosphere, this is a wonderful finale. I can’t wait to read whatever she writes next. A lyrical, literary feast of depth and adventure for fans new and old who are on the hunt for that something which is that bit extra special.



Magical. Atmospheric. Stupendous.





To purchase a copy of this book, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository





About the Author:


Born in Austin, Texas, Katherine Arden spent a year of high school in Rennes, France. Following her acceptance to Middlebury College in Vermont, she deferred enrollment for a year in order to live and study in Moscow. At Middlebury, she specialized in French and Russian literature. After receiving her BA, she moved to Maui, Hawaii, working every kind of odd job imaginable, from grant writing and making crêpes to guiding horse trips. Currently she lives in Vermont, but really, you never know.





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Huge thanks to Tess Henderson and Ebury Press for my review copy!

Blog Tour! Review of Changeling by Matt Wesolowski ~ #Changeling #SixStories #BookReview #BlogTour


Welcome to my stop on the blog tour today! I’m thrilled to share my review of Changeling by Matt Wesolowski!



Changeling cover





Matt Wesolowski


On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished in the Wentshire Forest Pass, when a burst tyre forced his father, Sorrel, to stop the car. Leaving the car to summon the emergency services, Sorrel returned to find his son gone. No trace of the child, nor his remains, have ever been found. Alfie Marsden was declared officially dead in 1995.
Elusive online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the disappearance, interviewing six witnesses, including Sorrel, his son and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened that fateful night. He takes a journey through the trees of the Wentshire Forest – a place synonymous with strange sightings, and tales of hidden folk who dwell there. He talks to a company that tried and failed to build a development in the forest, and a psychic who claims to know where Alfie is…
Intensely dark, deeply chilling and searingly thought provoking, Changeling is an up-to-the-minute, startling thriller, taking you to places you will never, ever forget.










Thirty years ago, young Alfie Marsden disappeared into Wentshire Forest and was never found. In the back seat of his father’s car one moment, safe and sound. Then he vanished. A desperate search of the forest and the surrounding area unfolded, drawing news coverage and inspiring outlandish theories. Every available person joined the search but despite their best efforts, no trace of him was found. Some labelled it a devastating tragedy, a young boy who lost his way, others claimed it was something more sinister, a hand dealt by the forest’s dark inhabitants. Some years later, Alfie was declared officially dead and his disappearance passed out of the public’s mind. Until Scott King, broadcaster for the Six Stories podcast, receives a letter urging him to take a closer look.




Scott delves into the thirty year old case and begins his investigation, recording the perspectives of six different people with ties to the Marsden family. Six stories which, piece by piece, shed light onto the events of that Christmas Eve. And which carry him closer to the truth. A truth that pricks at your mind and delivers fear into your heart with just a few exquisitely defined words. One of (the many) aspects I adored about this book, is the way the author seamlessly draws the supernatural into his story. The folktales about the ‘wood-knockers’ tap tap tapping away chilled me to the bone.




Scott King was a bit of an enigma for me in the previous two books and I was desperate to know more about him. Changeling has definitely answered a few of my questions but I can’t say anymore for fear of ruining the story for anyone and this is a book that shouldn’t be missed. Mystery, suspense and intrigue converge across the pages, reeling in the reader like a fish on a hook. The author explores the weight a past can carry and the damage it can do. A startlingly dark, scintillating new episode of Six Stories!




Just wonderful! I absolutely loved it!



Suspenseful. Chilling. Brilliant.




To purchase a copy of the book, you can follow the links below

Amazon UK

Book Depository





About Matt Wesolowski



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Matt Wesolowski is an author from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the UK. He is
an English tutor for young people in care. Matt started his writing career in
horror, and his short horror fiction has been published in numerous UK- an
US-based anthologies such as Midnight Movie Creature, Selfies from the End
of the World, Cold Iron and many more. His novella, The Black Land, a horror
story set on the Northumberland coast, was published in 2013. Matt was a
winner of the Pitch Perfect competition at Bloody Scotland Crime Writing
Festival in 2015. His debut thriller, Six Stories, was an Amazon bestseller in the
USA, Canada, the UK and Australia, and a WH Smith Fresh Talent pick, and TV
rights were sold to a major Hollywood studio. A prequel, Hydra, was published
in 2018 and became an international bestseller.




Follow the bloggers on the #Changeling #SixStories blog tour!



Changeling Blog Tour Poster








Huge thanks to Anne and Karen for my review copy and blog tour invite!

Blog Tour! Review and Guest Post ~ Puzzle Girl by Rachael Featherstone #PuzzleGirl #GuestPost #BookReview


Welcome to my stop on the blog tour today! I’m delighted to share my review of Puzzle Girl and a FABULOUS guest post from author Rachael Featherstone about her dream cast!



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Puzzle Girl


Rachael Featherstone



Love is a riddle, waiting to be solved…

Clued-up career girl Cassy Brookes has life under control until one disastrous morning changes everything. When she finds herself stuck in a doctor’s surgery, a cryptic message left in a crossword magazine sends her on a search to find the mysterious puzzle-man behind it.

Cassy is soon torn between tracking down her elusive dream guy, and outwitting her nightmare workmate, the devious Martin. Facing a puzzling love-life, will she ever be able to fit the pieces together and discover the truth behind this enigmatic man?








My Review



Cassidy Brookes has the perfect life. She loves her job, has a strong seven-year-old relationship with partner Seph and a homely flat where she can unwind after busy days in the office. She has a plan for every scenario and a check-list that will enable her to succeed both personally and professionally. Marriage and promotion are set firmly in her sights. But when partner, Seph, dumps her via text during an important meeting with her bosses, even Cassy’s preparation and efficiency can’t fix it. Feeling foolish, Cassy hurries home to try to salvage their relationship when she arrives, Seph is gone, taking everything with him, even the toothpaste. Cassy’s confidence is broken with one fell swoop and her life cut to shreds, the only saving grace her loyal friend and neighbour, Dan.



After taking some time getting her life back on track, Cassy returns to work, ever more intent on getting the promotion she deserves and refusing to get pipped to the post by her work rival Martin. Organising a crucial meeting with her bosses, Cassy’s chance at success might finally have arrived. But her hopes are scuppered when she misses it following an accident that sends her to a walk-in centre. There, she loses herself in a dog-eared puzzle book, creating her own on the back page. Returning a week later for a check-up, Cassy discovers her puzzle has been solved. But by who? Cassy must navigate countless disappointments, embarrassments and lost opportunities to find out if Puzzle Man is her Mr Right.



Dan, Cassy’s best friend and adopted brother, is the shining star for me. His mischievous personality and hilarious quips added a whole new layer to the book. He and Cassy are characters you instantly fall in love with. You can’t help but feel for Cassy, quirky and sweet, as she struggles through some very sticky situations. I think this book will appeal to a lot of readers, especially fans of Sophie Kinsella.



I thoroughly enjoyed following Cassy’s antics and discovering where her hunt for love would take her. Puzzle Girl has some stand-out characters and puns and quips that will have you grinning from ear to ear!



Engaging. Funny. Sweet.




To purchase a copy of the book, you can follow the links below

Amazon UK

Book Depository






Guest Post



It’s not something I think about often *cough* but very occasionally I like to imagine the Puzzle Girl movie cast. I’ve never dared to write it down before, but if you can’t fantasise about film deals on your blog tour when can you, eh? Okay, so here it is, my Puzzle Girl dream team. Hollywood, please take note!


In order of appearance:


Cassy: Lily James

Lovable Cassy is never knowingly without a notebook full of lists and a crossword. I can just imagine Lily portraying Cassy’s calamitous mishaps as she tries to find Puzzle-man, with each excuse to visit the doctor’s surgery becoming more absurd than the last.

IMDb Profile



Dan: Chris Hemsworth

Best friend Dan is every guy’s dream guy: cool, sexy and funny. Cassy and Dan grew up together and she would be utterly lost without him. The perfect muscly shoulder to cry on and never afraid to tell her how it is. Who better to play laid-back, video-game superhero Dan than Chris?

IMDb Profile



Mr Samuel: Hugh Grant

No romcom is complete without Hugh Grant! Cassy loves her slightly eccentric boss Mr Samuel. He’s brilliant, fair and a great mentor. But he’s also a flash business man with a soft spot for golf, something Martin is quick to capitalise on.

IMDb Profile



Martin: Tom Felton

Tom knows how to play the naughty boy, those years as Malfoy paid off, so there is no contest for who should play Cassy’s underhand, stop-at-nothing work rival, Martin. He’s handsome and slick and always seems to come up trumps. But watch out Tom, Cassy has a plan!

IMDb Profile



Gregory Peters: Will Smith

MediaTech CEO, Greg, is THE guy in the world of digital strategy. And who is THE guy of comedy? The man in black. The Legend. The Fresh Prince. The man who pursued happiness. The– I’ll stop now…

IMDb Profile



Janet: Helena Bonham Carter

Janet is the doctor surgery’s receptionist and she has her beady eye on Cassy. I can see Helena in the role of Janet so clearly in my mind (not that I’ve played out many scenes in my head *cough*).

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Sofia: Nathalie Emmanuel

Beautiful, talented creative designer, Sofia, is Cassy’s right-hand-girl. I’d love to see the beautiful and talented Nathalie in this role.

IMDb Profile



Cassy’s mum: Emma Thompson

I love, love, love Emma Thompson, Sense and Sensibility and Love Actually wouldn’t be the same without her! Cassy’s mum, Ann, might drive Cassy crazy sometimes but she always has Cassy’s best interests at heart. Emma would be amazing in this role. Cassy, you’re welcome!

IMDb Profile



Cassy’s grandmother: Julie Andrews

There were a few contenders for this slot (Maggie Smith and Judi Dench were close runners-up) but Julie has a magical quality that I couldn’t resist. Who wouldn’t want Julie for a grandmother?!

IMDb Profile


Puzzle-man: ???
Now that would be telling…!


That was fabulous!!



About Rachael Featherstone



Rachael Featherstone Headshot.png


Rachael Featherstone was born and raised in Woodford. Her path to writing was a little
unorthodox. After reading Mathematics at Oxford University, New College, Rachael went
to work in research.
When Rachael’s mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2012, Rachael decided to
take a chance, quit her job, and fulfill a lifetime ambition to write a novel. She went back to
university and completed a Masters in English Literature and had several short stories
Rachael now lives in Hampshire with her husband and daughter.
Puzzle Girl was published by the Dome Press in ebook in August 2018 and in paperback in
January 2019.


Social Media & Links:

Twitter: @WRITERachael
Instagram: @rachael_featherstone
Facebook: @RachaelFeatherstoneAuthor




Follow the bloggers on the #PuzzleGirl Blog tour!


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Huge thanks to Rachael, Emily and the Dome Press for my review copy, blog tour invite and the fabulous guest post!

Book Review: I’ve Got My Eyes On You by Mary Higgins Clark ~ #BookReview #IveGotMyEyesOnYou #PublicationDayReview


got my eyes on you



I’ve Got My Eyes On You


Mary Higgins Clark



Eighteen-year-old Kerry Dowling is found fully dressed at the bottom of the family pool. She threw a party the night before, while her parents were away; her house was full of people. But no one saw anything.

The police immediately suspect her boyfriend, with whom she had a bitter argument at the party. But other people had a grudge against Kerry, too, including her twenty-year-old neighbour. Everyone knows he wanted to come to the party. Everyone knows how angry he was that Kerry didn’t invite him.

As the police flail about for answers, Kerry’s older sister Aline decides to take matters into her own hands. But by trying to solve her sister’s murder, Aline may be putting her own life in danger…







My Review




Kerry Dowling throws a house party for her fellow students. Groups of teenagers arrive and throw caution to the wind. The drinks flow, the excitement levels rise. None of them expect the party to end in disaster. After everyone has departed, Kerry Dowling is murdered. A blow to the head killed her instantly. Kerry’s body is found floating, fully clothed, by her sister the next day. Aline and her parents are distraught, caught in a web of disbelief and grief, unable to fully come to terms with the sudden absence of their daughter and sister, the space gauged from their lives.



The only witness to Kerry’s murder is next door neighbour, Jamie, who loved her dearly. But Jamie is special, different from every one else and his mother, Marge, is terrified he will be seen as a suspect. For years, she and her husband, Jack tried to have children, each failed attempt chipping away a little more of their hope. Then, a miracle happened and they were given Jamie. He is all she has left and she is determined to keep him safe. From the killer, from the police, from a world that won’t understand and will not be forgiving.



Homicide Detective Michael Wilson is investigating the murder. At every turn, he faces more and more questions. Who killed Kerry? What was their motive? She was an ordinary eighteen-year-old. Popular at school, had a circle of friends, loving family. What was the incentive for taking her life? Her mother thinks Alan, Kerry’s boyfriend is responsible but is he? They were seen arguing mere hours before her death? He sent her an aggressive text, lied to the police. But does that really make him the killer? Michael knows there is more to the case than meets the eye. He must delve into the past, into Kerry’s life, to find the truth.



I’ve Got My Eyes on You is a fabulously twisty, suspenseful read. I thought I had it sussed and I’d discovered who the killer was but I was completely wrong. At times, the book is quite emotional. I really enjoyed the different perspectives the author offered throughout. We’re given several opinions, insights and yet the author keeps the truth locked down tight until the end. I was really excited when I was given the opportunity to review Mary Higgins Clark’s new book. It’s one that fans, new and old, will love.


Suspenseful. Tense. Twisty.





To purchase a copy of this book, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository




About the Author



mary higgins clark

The #1 New York Times bestselling author Mary Higgins Clark has written thirty-seven suspense novels, four collections of short stories, a historical novel, a memoir, and two children’s books. With her daughter Carol Higgins Clark, she has coauthored five more suspense novels, and also wrote The Cinderella Murder, All Dressed in White, The Sleeping Beauty Killer, and Every Breath You Take with bestselling author Alafair Burke. More than one hundred million copies of her books are in print in the United States alone. Her books are international bestsellers.





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Huge thanks to Harriett Collins for my review copy!

Blog Tour! Review of My Name is Anna by Lizzy Barber ~ #MyNameIsAnna #BlogTour #MyNameIs


Welcome to my stop on the blog tour today! I’m delighted to share my review of My Name is Anna by Lizzy Barber!



my name is anna



My name is Anna


Lizzy Barber



Two women – desperate to unlock the truth.
How far will they go to lay the past to rest?

ANNA has been taught that virtue is the path to God. But on her eighteenth birthday she defies her Mamma’s rules and visits Florida’s biggest theme park.

She has never been allowed to go – so why, when she arrives, does everything seem so familiar? And is there a connection to the mysterious letter she receives on the same day?

ROSIE has grown up in the shadow of the missing sister she barely remembers, her family fractured by years of searching without leads.Now, on the fifteenth anniversary of her sister’s disappearance, the media circus resumes in full flow, and Rosie vows to uncover the truth.

But will she find the answer before it tears her family apart?









Anna Montgomery has grown up in a religious house where her hopes and aspirations are somewhat stilted by a loving but extremely strict mother. Corners of life are out of bounds. Most activites and experiences are forbidden. She has never questioned her mother’s faith or her reasons for raising her the way she has. In their house, cleanliness and purity are the key to pleasing the Lord. Mary won’t even abide a single grain of dirt so Anna is forced to scrub her hands and nails until they are raw. With the threat of her mother’s ‘silences’, Anna daren’t put a foot out of line. But when her birthday rolls round, she is offered a rare chance at rebellion. Astroland, a futuristic theme park, a short drive away has always held a sense of wonder for her, ever since she was little so she lies to her mother and escapes there for the day. But when she arrives, a memory returns to her, one she wasn’t aware she had. And it starts a chain reaction that will see her finally learn the truth about her life.



Rosie Archer has grown up under an umbrella of tragedy. As a baby, her sister, Emily was kidnapped on holiday. A bright pulse of energy with blonde ringlets and wide smiles. There one moment, gone the next. The news of Emily’s disappearance spread far and wide, becoming international news. Strangers everywhere grieved with the Archers and shared the hope of finding her. But no one did. Emily was lost, taken. Her family, distraught, fractured. Over fifteen years, the search continued and a trust was set up in Emily’s name, a way of keeping their hope alive. On the fifteenth anniversary, Rosie finds a letter stating the trust will have to close. The only chance at finding Emily will be gone. As time runs out, Rosie determines a plan to find Emily for herself. A last desperate attempt. But the past and the reason for Emily’s disappearance is much worse than anyone could have predicted.



Raised in different parts of the world – London and Florida – Anna and Rosie both possess a desperation to untangle and understand the past. It was really interesting to see the contrast between the two girls and how the similarities and differences emerge through the book. Anna is cautious, reluctant to upset her mother. Rosie is lonely, struggling to exist with an empty space in her life. Another element I really enjoyed about this book is the cult that appears half way through and seeing the affect it has on the characters. It was incredibly chilling.



My Name is Anna is a fast-paced, gripping new slice of the psychological suspense genre. It snapped hold of my attention straight away. I was hooked into following the journey as Anna and Rosie dredge the truth from the murky past. I really, really enjoyed it!!


Fast-paced. Gripping. Chilling.




My Name is Anna is out TODAY in paperback! Happy publication day Lizzy!

To purchase a copy of the book,  you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository




About Lizzy Barber



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Lizzy Barber studied English at Corpus Christ College, Cambridge University. After ‘previous lives’ acting and working in film development, she is now the Head of Brand and Marketing for a restaurant group, working with her brother, a restaurateur.
Her debut novel, MY NAME IS ANNA, was the winner of the Daily Mail crime writing competition, and will be published in hardbook in January 2019 by Century, an imprint of Penguin Random House. The North American edition, retitled ANNA IN THE DARK will be published in December 2019.
She is currently hard at work on her next thriller. Lizzy lives in London with her husband, George, food writer and strategy consultant. They are expecting their first child in January 2019.




Follow the bloggers on the #MyNameIs #MyNameIsAnna Blog Tour!


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Huge thanks to Rachel Kennedy and Century for my review copy and blog tour invite!

Book Review: Dead Girls by Abigail Tarttelin ~ #DeadGirls #BookReview


dead girls



Dead Girls


Abigail Tarttelin



A quiet community is shocked by the murder of an eleven-year-old girl. As police swarm the village, fear compels parents to keep their children indoors. Unbeknown to her Mum and Dad, though, one girl roams free.

That girl is Thera Wilde.

Thera was the murdered girl’s best friend. Together they were unstoppable and, even alone, Thera is not afraid: it’s 1999. Girls can do anything.

And Thera reckons she can find the killer before the police do.








My Review




Thera Wilde and Billie Brooke are best friends. They know each other through and through. Thera is loyal and clever, Billie is funny and imaginative. The two girls are inseparable. ‘Best, true, forever friends.’ They think nothing can or ever will part them. The future stretches out before them and their fates are tightly entwined. Then something terrible happens. Billie goes missing. At first Thera thinks she has run away, left her behind but as police sweep into her town and whispered words are passed about the school, she comes to a grim realisation. Billie is dead.



When her body is found, fear stamps a path through the village. Doors are locked, curtains drawn, streets are lined with police. Parents urge their children to take care, demanding the detectives find the killer, desperate for the nightmare to end. The only one who isn’t scared is eleven year old Thera, who sets on a course of action to find him. As the weeks roll by, she begins to see other girls, dead girls, who were brutally attacked and murdered like Billie. They don’t speak. They don’t need to. In their silence, are their stories. Their pleas for help. As loud as sirens. Determined to bring justice, Thera picks out the clues, guided by the dead, to find the killer. For herself. For Billie. For the girls who lost their lives.



This isn’t a fast paced book, it’s more of a slow burner. For me it worked perfectly because it gives the reader time to ‘meet’ and get to know Thera, to understand her and who she is becoming. She’s a unique character and I was both fascinated and intrigued by her. She possess oodles of determination and courage, which drives her forward on her hunt. The author depicts the unforgettable characters and the emotion in the pages with ease. The book sizzles with atmosphere and tension. My eyes were glued to the pages.




The author handles issues such as rape and murder with care and sensitivity. There is a thread of darkness that weaves through the story and at times it could be difficult for some but it asks relevant questions about your own beliefs and knowledge on some of its subjects and themes. Combined with this is an almost morbid sense of humour from Thera that is enjoyable as it is surprising. I found myself grinning away at her quips and sarcasm. A fabulously refreshing, dazzling book that gripped me from cover to cover.



This book will shock and shake you. I’m really, really looking forward to reading more from the author!



Tense. Atmospheric. Thrilling.




To purchase a copy of this book, you can follow the links below

Amazon UK

Book Depository





About Abigail Tarttelin



abigail tarttelin


Abigail is the author  of feminist crime thriller DEAD GIRLS.

“Gripping doesn’t begin to cover it. Feminist, bold, shocking, packed with little epiphanies.” Shelley Harris, author of Vigilante and Jubilee

Abigail’s second novel, GOLDEN BOY, about intersex teen Max Walker, won an American Library Association ALEX Award and was shortlisted for LAMDBA’s Best LGBT Debut.

“A grippingly innovative take on coming of age, sexuality and family dynamics … [with] a radical non-binary, pro-intersex message.” Hida Viloria for Autostraddle

She loves talking to readers and regularly speaks at schools, reading groups and book clubs. Find out more at Tweet her @ajktarttelin or follow on Instagram @abigailtarttelin_




dead girls pic


Huge thanks to Abigail Tarttelin, Rosie Wilson and Picador for my review copy!

Book Review: The Binding by Bridget Collins ~ #TheBinding #BookReview



The Binding


Bridget Collins



Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a letter arrives summoning him to begin an apprenticeship. He will work for a Bookbinder, a vocation that arouses fear, superstition and prejudice – but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse.

He will learn to hand-craft beautiful volumes, and within each he will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there’s something you want to forget, he can help. If there’s something you need to erase, he can assist. Your past will be stored safely in a book and you will never remember your secret, however terrible.

In a vault under his mentor’s workshop, row upon row of books – and memories – are meticulously stored and recorded.

Then one day Emmett makes an astonishing discovery: one of them has his name on it.








My Review




When Emmett Farmer receives a letter from a local bookbinder inviting him to be her new apprentice, he is reluctant and afraid, begging his parents not to send him away. He has only just recovered from an illness that ravaged his senses and cloaked everything he knew in darkness. For those long months, he was just a husk, a fevered body with no sight to see his mother’s fear or strength to peel himself from bed. When his parents ignore his pleas and demand he leave the following day, Emmett pacts his meagre belongings and departs his family home. The bookbinder’s shop is a cold, silent space, standing amid a desolate marshland. And the woman herself, distant and elusive, superstition and rumours surrounding who – or what – she is.



Emmett is put to work and gradually he finds a rhythm, derives a little comfort from the quiet work and the paste and paper. He is taught to make the most beautiful books, covers with gold foil and delicately cut pages. But he is lonely, mourning the absence of his sister and parents. His only distraction is the customers, the men and women who arrive haunted, tears smudged down their cheeks, then leave quiet, blank, as if they have been emptied, drained of their woes.


The book binder, Seredith, captures any unwanted memories and binds them inside the pages of a book. A death, a heartbreak or a mistake can be captured and erased within mere moments. And the books, all the memories Seredith has been asked to take away, are put away in her vault. Protected. Safe. Emmett finally feels he understands this mysterious trade but then he finds a book – a memory – that belongs to him and his life ruptures.



The Binding is a unique and powerful novel that evokes emotion in the reader with the first hypnotic sentence. Brimming with magic and atmosphere, it pins you to the pages and snatches your breath away. I fell hook, line and sinker in love with the rich, well-drawn characters, the unique concept and the poetic, raw prose.




This is a tale of romance and magic, of courage and cruelty, discovery and secrets. I loved every moment of it. I can’t wait to get my hands on that beautiful hardback, when it publishes on the 10th! I envy anyone who hasn’t read this yet! A work of wonder!



Magical. Unique. Emotional.





To pre-order a copy of this book, out on the 10th January, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository





About Bridget Collins



bridget collins



Bridget Collins trained as an actor at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art after reading English at King’s College, Cambridge. She is the author of seven acclaimed books for young adults and has had two plays produced, one at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. THE BINDING is her first adult novel.







Huge thanks to Borough Press and Netgalley for my review copy!

Book Review: Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield ~ #OnceUponARiver #BookReview


 once upon a river



Once Upon a River


Diane Setterfield



A dark midwinter’s night in an ancient inn on the Thames. The regulars are entertaining themselves by telling stories when the door bursts open on an injured stranger. In his arms is the drowned corpse of a little child.

Hours later the dead girl stirs, takes a breath and returns to life.

Is it a miracle?

Is it magic?

Or can it be explained by science?

An exquisitely crafted multi-layered mystery brimming with folklore, suspense and romance, as well as with the urgent scientific curiosity of the Darwinian age, Once Upon a River is as richly atmospheric as Setterfield’s bestseller The Thirteenth Tale.









My Review




In the small village of Radcott, inns dot the banks of the river. There are inns for jokes and merriment, where men and women go for laughter and fun; inns for music, for fighting, for quiet contemplation. Inside all, good company and deep drinks can soothe sorrow and ease weary bones. But only at The Swan, an ancient family-run inn, can there be found the gift of storytelling. There, tales of faries, folklore, myths and magic are exchanged, captivating listeners in their seats. Small details are often changed – a place, a person, a piece of the puzzle altered to keep ears open but the true facts are never touched. Stories fill every corner of The Swan, drawing back locals time and again and enchanting newcomers. At the helm is Margot and her ailing husband Joe, who serve their guests with warmth on a chilly day and the best of stories to send them off on their travels.





One wet night a man struggles through the door, holding the body of a drowned girl. All eyes turn to him and all of a sudden the tales they tell so often are forgotten as one unfurles around them. Injured and on the cusp of death, the locals help the poor man and patch him back up. It will take time for him to heal fully but he will survive. The same cannot be said for the girl he arrived with. Her lifeless body is moved respectfully, all attention then taken up with the man’s care. When nurse, Miss Sunday, goes to examine the child’s body, she meets a shocking discovery. The girl is alive.

Concern descends on the inn. The locals try to guess at what tragedy must have befallen the two newcomers but arrive back where they started none the wiser. The biggest puzzle – one they can’t puzzle out – is the mystery surrounding the girl. Dead one moment, alive the next. An impossibility. Something belonging to fiction, a twist taken from one of their very own tales. But it is more than that. And the mystery will only thicken and grow as time goes on. On everyone’s lips, are the words, “Something is coming!”




Once Upon a River has a big cast of characters, all of who are distinct and memorable for different reasons. The author portrays them exquisitely, drawing the reader into their innermost thoughts and feelings. Love, loss, hope, fear, grief all tussle inside the characters’ lives and the emotion jumps from the page and into the palm of the reader.





I’m slightly embarrassed to admit that this is the first book I’ve read by Diane Setterfield. I’ve heard so many wonderful things about her books, in particular The Thirteenth Tale so before I began Once Upon a River, I had big expectations, and they were all surpassed. The author’s writing is imbued with magic – the magic to draw the reader in and the power to keep them firmly in her grasp till the end. I loved everything about this book. Really looking forward to diving into her other books!



Exquisite. Powerful. Magical.




To purchase a copy of this book, you can follow the links below:

Amazon UK

Book Depository



About the Author




diane setterfield


Diane Setterfield?s bestselling novel, The Thirteenth Tale was published in 38 countries, sold more than three million copies, and was made into a television drama scripted by Christopher Hampton, starring Olivia Colman and Vanessa Redgrave. Her second novel was Bellman & Black, and her new novel is Once Upon a River. Born in rural Berkshire, she now lives near Oxford, by the Thames.









Huge thanks to Doubleday and Netgalley for my review copy!