The Power Game by Meg and Tom Keneally

‘The Power Game’ is the 3rd novel in the Monserrat series by father and daughter team Meg and Tom Keneally. The series is set in colonial Australia and Monserrat is an ex-convict who along with his housekeeper Mrs Mulrooney has a natural ability for solving crimes.

After successfully solving cases in Port Macquarie and Parramatta, Monserrat is now being sent to Van Dieman’s Land (Tasmania) to solve another case and his conditional ticket of freedom is dependent on his success.

A Penal colony has been set up on the small Island of Maria off the east coast of Tasmania. The Island is serviced by a regular boat, but now the boatman has been found brutally murdered. Monserrat has been sent to find the murderer and if possible to affix blame to the high profile Irish revolutionary convict Thomas Power. The authorities on the island are offended that someone has been sent from Sydney and would be happy to blame Power with no evidence. Continue reading

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Filed under Australian Author, Book Reviews, Crime, Historical, Keneally, Meg and Tom, Series Fiction

The Punishment she Deserves by Elizabeth George

‘The Punishment She Deserves’ is the 20th novel in Elizabeth George’s Inspector Linley series. And the title immediately made me wonder what DS Barbara Havers had been up to this time.

In the historic Shropshire town of Ludlow, a respected Deacon, Ian Druitt has died in police custody, apparently by suicide. The death has been investigated, but on the insistence of Druitt’s influential father (who has the ear of an MP), the Met has been called in to check the facts. DCC Isabelle Ardery and Havers travel to Ludlow. For Havers, this is a trial to see if she can follow orders. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Crime, Detective, George, Elizabeth, Mystery, Series Fiction

Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh

‘Let Me Lie’ is a thriller by Clare Mackintosh with more than one surprising twist.

One year ago Anna Johnson’s mother committed suicide, only 7 months after her father also committed suicide. Since then, Anna has met a man she loves and now has a 2 month old baby, but she is still traumatised and grieving. She didn’t think that either of her parents were likely to take their own lives.

Now on the anniversary of her mother’s death, Anna receives a card that makes her question her parents’ suicides even more. She approaches the police to have the investigation into their deaths reopened. But there are some who are prepared to go to any lengths to stop further investigation. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Mackintosh, Clare, Psychological, Thriller

Angels Flight by Michael Connelly

‘Angel’s Flight’ is the 6th Harry Bosch novel by Michael Connelly. The name refers to a trolley car loved by locals and tourists for navigating one of LA’s many hills.

Late one night, black civil rights lawyer Howard Elias is found murdered in one of the trolley cars. His specialty was suing the LAPD for abuse of their powers, particularly regarding black suspects. It seems that Harry Bosch is one of the few detectives he has never sued, so the case is assigned to Bosch and his two offsiders Kizmin Rider and Jerry Edgar. They are to be assisted by some internal affairs officers (including Chastain who Bosch hates) and the FBI.

But LA is on the brink of another riot and the population needs Elias’s murderer to be a cop. Bosch’s superiors are doing everything to keep the peace even if it hampers the investigation. Continue reading

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The Last Ballad by Wiley Cash

‘The Last Ballad’ tells the story of Ella May Wiggins, a young woman who became a symbol for workers’ rights in America in the late 1920s. This novel was inspired by the 1929 strike at the Loray Textile mill in North Carolina and the real Ella May Wiggins.

Ella May, like many young people at the time, was lured from the mountains to work in the textile mills, with the promise of riches. She was married at 16 and she and her husband hoped for a better life.

At the start of the story, Ella May has had 5 children, one of whom has died. Her husband has left. She works a 72 hour week over 6 days and barely makes enough money to feed her family. She has been threatened with the loss of her only means of support because she missed a shift to look after her sick child (she dreads losing another). When she receives a leaflet about a union meeting at the Loray mill where workers are striking, she dares to hope that her life can be better. She attends the meeting and becomes an important part of the union movement. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Cash, Wiley, Historical, Southern

A Darker State by David Young

‘A Darker State’ is the 3rd novel by David Young in the Karin Muller series featuring Karin Muller, a detective in the East German People’s police and set in the 1970s, a time when much of life in East Germany was controlled by State security – the Stasi.

Karin and her partner Werner Tilsner have both been promoted. Karin is now a major and in charge of a newly established serious crimes unit, set up to work closely with the Stasi. They soon have their first case when the body of a young man is found weighed down in a river. But as soon as they start to investigate, the Stasi shut down their investigation, declaring the death a suicide. The early parts of the investigation had already shown some unusual irregularities with the body. Has Karin just been promoted because the Stasi thinks that they can manipulate her easily? Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Crime, Detective, Historical, Series Fiction, Young, David

Emma Viskic Profile and Books

Emma Viskic has been a writer all her life but from her late teens, her career as a classically trained clarinettist took most of her focus. During this time she missed writing. Now she has a family, works part-time and writes when she can. She has written two award winning novels with a 3rd in the planning stages.

The main character in her series, Caleb Zelic is deaf and Viskic studied AUSLAN (Australian sign language) in preparation for writing the first novel.

She lives in Melbourne with her family. Continue reading

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Filed under Australian Author, Author Profiles, Viskic, Emma

Blood Work by Michael Connelly

‘Blood Work’ is the 1st novel by Michael Connelly featuring ex-FBI agent Terry McCaleb. He appears again in a later novel ‘A Darkness More than Night’ alongside Connelly’s main hero Harry Bosch.

Terry McCaleb was a very successful FBI Agent tracking serial killers and constantly living on the edge. Two years ago his job caught up with him and he experienced severe heart problems. Now he is recovering from heart surgery. He was incredibly lucky to receive a heart in time given his rare blood group.

McCaleb is living on and repairing his boat and avoiding stress when he is approached by Gaciella Rivers. Her sister was murdered, the police are stalled in the investigation and Graciella wants McCaleb to find the killer. McCaleb is reluctant to take the case but Gaciella has information that makes McCaleb feel obliged to investigate. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Connelly, Michael, Crime, Detective, Series Fiction

Missing, Presumed by Susie Steiner

‘Missing, Presumed’ is the first novel in a series by Susie Steiner featuring DS Manon Bradshaw.

Manon is a 39 year old detective who is very conscious of her single status and feels the ‘clock ticking’. During the novel she embarks on a number of amusing to the reader, soul destroying to her internet dates. But she is dedicated to her job and to the latest case. But Manon is certainly not the only well developed character in this novel.

The latest case is that of missing 24 year old Edith Hind. She went missing from her apartment one night with the door left open and signs of a possible struggle. She is the daughter of Sir Ian and lady Hind. He is a surgeon and includes the royal family among his patients. Manon and the team are very aware that the first 72 hours are critical in a missing persons case, after which they may as well look for a dead body. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Crime, Detective, Series Fiction, Steiner, Susie

The Hush by John Hart

I love John Hart’s writing and I loved his novel ‘The Last Child’, but ‘The Hush’, which continues the lives of Johnny Merimon and Jack Cross 10 years after the events of ‘The Last Child’ was not what I was expecting. I am not much of a fan of the supernatural. If the writing was up to John Hart’s normal brilliance, then unfortunately I missed it.

Johnny has been living on his beloved land of Hush Arbor (the Hush) for 5 years, but there are challenges to his ownership of the land and he no longer has the money to fight the legal battle. Jack is now a lawyer and tries to get Johnny the help he needs but things don’t go as planned. The wealthy William Boyd desperately wants the land for himself and he has the money to get his way. Continue reading

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Filed under Book Reviews, Hart, John, Mystery, Southern, Supernatural