The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

THE LIGHTNING THIEF is the 1st novel featuring Percy Jackson. Percy is a demi-god – his mother is human and his absent father is a Greek god. But in the beginning he doesn’t know this. He suffers from ADHD and dyslexia and is often bullied. He has been expelled from several boarding schools. But the things that make Percy different in the mortal world are actually symptoms of his greatness. How could someone with godly blood in their veins sit still and concentrate. How could someone whose brain is hardwired for ancient Greek possibly read English. Continue reading

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American by Day by Derek B. Miller

AMERICAN BY DAY is a sequel to Derek B. Miller’s debut novel NORWEGIAN BY NIGHT. Within this novel, the events of the earlier novel are mentioned several times and Norwegian detective Sigrid Odegard appears in both novels.

When Sigrid’s father discovers that his son Marcus has gone missing in New York State, he convinces Sigrid to go to the US to find him. She has never travelled to the US and is in for a culture shock. She discovers that bigger is considered better, gun violence is rampant and despite a black man running for president, race relations still have a long way to go. Continue reading

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The Fire Court by Andrew Taylor

THE FIRE COURT sees the return of James Marwood and Cat Lovett who were introduced to us in THE ASHES OF LONDON.

James Marwood has been doing reasonably well financially with two clerkships under two different masters. He has moved to town with his traitorous father Nathaniel (suffering from dementia) and two servants husband and wife Margaret and Sam. Meanwhile Cat Lovett is living as a maid under the name Jane Hakesby and working for architect Simon Hakesby, her ‘cousin’. London is slowly being rebuilt after the great fire. A fire court has been established by the King to solve property disputes quickly so that rebuilding can proceed. Continue reading


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Helen Giltrow Profile and Books

Helen Giltrow was born in Cheltenham and studied Modern History at Oxford. She worked as a book seller, then as an editor in educational publishing and then as a freelance editor. Even though she has been a writer all her life, it took till her late 40s before her first novel THE DISTANCE was published. She has since written a 2nd novel which unfortunately I have not found published in English.

Giltrow divides her time between Oxford where she lives and Whitney where her lon-term partner lives. Continue reading

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One Virgin Too Many by Lindsey Davis

ONE VIRGIN TOO MANY is the 11th novel in the Falco series by Lindsey Davis which features Marcus Didius Falco, an informer in ancient Rome.

After Falco and Helena’s adventures in Africa in the previous novel, Falco has been promoted to Equestrian status by Emperor Vespasian and given the job of Procurator of the Sacred Poultry – he is now responsible for the sacred geese which symbolically guard the city of Rome. But the geese are not the only ancient ritual we come across in this novel – there are the many religious cults that existed in Rome in AD 70. Continue reading


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Gun Street Girl by Adrian McKinty

GUN STREET GIRL is the 4th novel in Adrian McKinty’s Sean Duffy series. Duffy is a Catholic cop in the almost exclusively Protestant RUC (Royal Ulster Constabulary) in 1985 at the height of the troubles.

Between endless rounds of riot duty, Duffy and his team of detectives attend a murder scene. A wealthy couple has been murdered in their home. When their adult son can’t be found, he is suspected to be the murderer. This is only reinforced when the son jumps to his death from a cliff. The son’s girlfriend then gases herself in her car.

But maybe things are not quite what they seem. Duffy continues to investigate the deaths and starts to uncover some interesting alliances that the son has made and coincidentally a major weapons theft. Continue reading


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The Distance by Helen Giltrow

THE DISTANCE is the first novel in a series by Helen Giltrow featuring Charlotte Alton. The 2nd novel in the series – IDENTITY was published in 2015 but unfortunately I have not been able to find this novel published in English.

Charlotte Alton lives a double life. As Charlotte she is an elegant, wealthy socialite while as Karla she specialises in obtaining information and in making people disappear. About a year ago she retired from her secret business, leaving the running of it to her colleague Craigie, but one of the few clients to have ever seen her face has returned to seek her help. Continue reading

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Macbeth by Jo Nesbo

MACBETH is one of the most violent novels that I’ve read for a while. This is Jo Nesbo’s version of Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Macbeth starts out as the head of the SWAT team in a town that is run by organised crime and has completely fallen apart. Most of the townspeople are addicted to ‘brew’ which is cooked up by drug lord Hecate. The corrupt chief commissioner has just been replaced by Duncan who is intent on cleaning up. The deputy chief is Malcolm. The Narcotics unit is run by Macbeth’s childhood friend Duff who loves his wife and children but is having an affair with the head of forensics Caithness. Macbeth is in love with Lady who owns one of the town’s two casinos. She is ambitious but plagued by her past. Macbeth also has problems with his past as a drug addict. Continue reading

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Two For The Lions by Lindsey Davis

TWO FOR THE LIONS is the 10th novel in the Marcus Didius Falco series by Lindsey Davis.

After the dreadful failure of the work partnership of Falco and his friend Petronius, Falco has now been forced into talking a new partner, a man he has always disliked, the imperial spy Anacrites.

Emperor Vespasian has hired the pair to follow up census declarations, find those who have understated their assets (almost everyone) so that they can be taxed more.

One of their first targets is Calliopus who provides gladiators and wild animals to entertainment events. When a trained man-eating lion owned by Calliopus is killed, Falco is distracted from his census work to investigate the death of Leonidus the lion. Continue reading


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The Day of the Dead by Nicci French

THE DAY OF THE DEAD is the 8th and final novel in the Frieda Klein series by the husband and wife duo known as Nicci French.

Frieda is in hiding. This was the only way she could think to protect her friends from psychopath Dean Reeve who has been fixated on her for about 10 years. But while in hiding she is continually looking for the events that will signal the end of her relationship with Reeve – their face to face meeting.

Lola Hayes is a criminology student looking for a topic for her dissertation. When she chooses Frieda as her topic she has no idea how much it will change her life. While trying to walk in Frieda’s footsteps she innocently meets and photographs Dean Reeve. When Lola finds Frieda and shows her the photos she’s taken, Frieda has trouble communicating to Lola how much danger she is in. Now the two are in hiding together. Continue reading


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