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False Witness – Karin Slaughter

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I have read most of Karin Slaughter’s previous novels and have loved every one of them and this was no exception. False Witness is the story of two sisters, Leigh who is a successful defence attorney, and Callie who is an addict. They have a dreadful secret together of something which happened when they were young and have managed to move on from this although Callie is the one who seems to be suffering the most.

One evening Leigh is called into the office by the head of the law firm she currently works for and comes face to face with the Andrew, or Trevor as he used to be known, and his mother who have both changed names and Andrew knows their secret. He threatens to disclose everything to the world and the police, which would put them in prison. Andrew is charged with serious sexual assault and rape and wants Leigh to defend him.

The two sisters and Leigh’s husband, Walter, fight back against Andrew and his girlfriend, Sidney in a fast-paced read which covers some serious issues surrounding dysfunctional families.

Many thanks to NetGalley, HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction and Karin Slaughter for my ARC of False Witness in return for my honest review.

Excellent from start to finish. Highly recommended.

Hostage – Clare Mackintosh

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I have been lucky enough to read some great books this year so far and then I was given the opportunity to read this ARC of Hostage, thanks to NetGalley, Little, Brown Book Group UK and Clare Mackintosh in return for my honest review. I couldn’t wait. This is one of my favourite authors and this was yet another extraordinarily brilliant read. This author knows how to tell a story.

Mina is one of the cabin crew on the first non-stop flight from London to Sydney. The flight will last 20 hours, and Mina has swapped around with somebody to make sure she is on this flight. Married to Adam, a police officer and mum to Sophia she is avoiding her husband because she believes he has had an affair with their former child minder.

The story is told from different points of view and covers all aspects of what has previously happened and the current situation both on board the flight and back home where Adam is looking after Sophia. Incredibly well plotted the story develops from each person’s view and this adds to the tension and drama.

I loved every aspect of this incredibly realistic read and once again the ending was special.

I couldn’t recommend this highly enough, so if you have only one read this year then make it this one.

The Perfect Lie – Jo Spain

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About the author

Jo Spain is a full-time writer and screenwriter. Her first novel, With Our Blessing, was one of seven books shortlisted in the Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller competition and her first psychological thriller, The Confession, was a number one bestseller in Ireland. Jo co-wrote the ground-breaking television series Taken Down, which first broadcast in Ireland in 2018. She’s now working on multiple European television projects. Jo loves in Dublin with her husband and four young children.

Blurb

He jumped to his death in front of witnesses. Now his wife is charged with murder.

Five years ago, Erin Kennedy moved to New York following a family tragedy. She now lives happily with her detective husband in the scenic seaside town of Newport, Long Island. When Erin answers the door to Danny’s police colleagues one morning, it’s the start of an ordinary day. But behind her, Danny walks to the window of their fourth-floor apartment and jumps to his death.

Eighteen months later, Erin is in court, charged with her husband’s murder. Over that year and a half, Erin has learned things about Danny she could never have imagined. She thought he was perfect. She thought their life was perfect. But it was all built on a perfect lie.

My Review

I have read most of Jo Spain’s novels and they are always compelling. This one was no exception and I was riveted from the start. What an opening chapter. This made it one of those novels not to be put down.

This is the story of Erin, married to Danny, a homicide detective. Erin originates from Ireland but has been in the United States for four years and married Danny after a short, whirlwind romance. Erin believed everything was perfect and she was happy, thinking Danny was as well.

The story alternates between the present, where Erin is accused of murdering her husband, and the past where we hear of their relationship and how it developed and the trauma, they have both faced. Amongst this is a narrative of a situation which happened at the prestigious Harvard, to a couple of students which slotted into place as the story developed.

Cleverly plotted allowing the reader to make assumptions, go down blind alleys, follow the twists and turns, finally ending up smiling at the fact that there were no perfect characters in this one. In fact there was a real shocker with one of them.

Many thanks to NetGalley, Quercus Books and Jo Spain for my ARC of The Perfect Lie in return for my honest review.

Utterly brilliant, Highly recommended

For Your Own Good – Samantha Downing

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Having read her previous two novels, I was delighted to receive the ARC of For Your Own Good by Samantha Downing in return for my honest review. It did not disappoint.

Teddy Crutcher has won the ‘Teacher of the Year’ award at Belmont Academy which is a private school for the children of wealthy parents. It has an excellent reputation and is run strictly and all those who attend are expected to move on to Ivy League Colleges.

Zach is one of his pupils who he believes he is trying to encourage to get better grades, even though he marks him down to a B+ for one of his essays. He sets him an additional task to improve his grade but only gives him an A-.

Teddy has no real friends and his life revolves around Belmont Academy, the pupils, and the other teachers, many of whom he despises and we get to hear this from his perspective.

This is cleverly planned with numerous twists and turns and an awful lot of unsavoury characters plotting against each other. Once again, the ending is sublime.

Thank you to NetGalley, Penguin UK, Michael Joseph, and Samantha Downing for my ARC in return for my honest review.

Another exceptional read.  Highly recommended.     

The Hollows – Mark Edwards

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Having read a few novels from Mark Edwards I was delighted to be given a chance byNetGalley, Amazon Publishing UK and Mark Edwards to read The Hollows prior to publication. This is yet another great read from this author.

Tom has travelled to America from England to collect his teenage daughter, Frankie, from his ex-wife who lives in the States. He has booked a cabin in ‘Hollow Woods’ and soon discovers that there had been a double murder years ago. Not only that, it appears some of those who have booked the other cabins are there to visit the crime scene on the twentieth anniversary of the killings.

There is no internet connection or 4G network leaving Frankie annoyed with her father for booking such a place. Then strange things begin to happen and both Frankie and Tom are caught up in the middle.

This sent shivers down my spine at times with the atmospheric setting and weird individuals who occupy the other cabins as well as the locals from the nearest town. Many twists and turns from beginning to end and brilliantly descriptive writing which made me feel as if I was there as the story unfolded.

Great read.  Highly recommended.