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Saturday, 2 November 2019

The Empty Nest by Sue Watson @bookouture #book #review #BlogTour #NetGalley @suewatsonwriter

The Empty Nest by Sue Watson
Published by Bookouture
Publication Date: 1st November 2019
Psychological Thriller, Crime

Book Description:

‘Sometimes we can’t see what’s right in front of us, Kat. Everyone has secrets, even the people we love, the people we live with…’
Kat remembers the days when her only daughter Amy wouldn't leave her side. Amy was the baby who cried when you walked out of the room, the toddler who was too shy to speak to strangers, the small child who clung to Kat's legs in the school playground.

But now Amy is grown up, and Amy is gone – to university in a town several hours away. Kat's house – which once felt too full, too noisy, too busy – is deathly quiet, and Kat awaits the daily phone call to tell her that her beloved daughter is thriving and happy.

Until the day Amy doesn’t call, sending Kat into a panic. Her husband and friends say she’s being paranoid – surely Amy is just out, having fun? But Kat feels sure something is very wrong – she knows her daughter, and she would never just disappear.

As the hours turn into days, her fears are confirmed: Amy is missing. But there are secrets about her daughter that Kat doesn't know about yet. And the truth about Amy's whereabouts may be closer to home than Kat could ever imagine...

A gripping and suspenseful psychological thriller with more twists and turns than a rollercoaster and an ending that will blow readers’ minds. Fans of The Wife Between UsThe Girl Before and Gone Girl will be gripped by this unputdownable story about a mother’s obsessive love for her child.  

My Review:

Huge thanks to Sarah Hardy and Bookouture for the opportunity to read this book ahead of publication ready for the blog tour. The opinions I give here are honest and unbiased.

Amy and her mum Kat are very close. As a single mum for the best part of Amy's life it's understandable that Kat can be seen to be a tad over protective. But Kat has her reasons for being protective of Amy, as her best friend Zoe knows.  But does she know the truth?

Kat's second husband, lawyer Richard is a quirky character. He and Zoe don't see eye to eye and tend to avoid one another however when Amy goes away to university and Kat doesn't get a call or text from Amy for over 24 hours they are in agreement for once that maybe Kat is overreacting. Amy will be out with her newfound uni friends, living it up into the small hours then recovering from the hangover from hell the next day. But Kat's instinct as a mother tells her something is wrong and she won't settle until she knows Amy is safe.

Kat does come over as being very full on as a parent - has her overbearing nature actually pushed Amy away?  As the chapters move on and we find out more about Kat and Amy's history it becomes clear why Kat is the way she is, so I kind of understood her a bit more. But then to cracks in her story start to show and we see that there could be more behind the events in their past. Ex husband Tony seems to hold a lot of power over Kat, she seems disproportionately worried that he will come back from Europe and take Amy away.

Eventually Kat persuades her loved ones that Amy really is missing and she goes to the police to ask for their help. Zoe and her daughter Jodie- one of Amy's closest friends since primary school - are there on hand to support Kat, Jodie even sets up a Facebook page to spread the word of Amy's disappearance. Then as the police start asking questions, the list of people who could potentially be involved in the disappearance. Who was the mysterious older man seen leaving Amy's room at uni? Was she involved with one of her tutors? Or does someone much closer to home hold the key?

The book tells the story of the search for Amy from Kat's point of view. She clearly knows all that has gone before but she has little knowledge of Amy's new life since she has moved away to Aberystwyth. Who are all these new people? Why hasn't Amy told her about them? The emotions obviously keep Kat awake at night, she can't settle to anything constructive and spends all her time moping at home with either Zoe or Jodie for company. Everyone comes under suspicion of being involved yet she has no proof of anything.

The tension builds and builds as the days go by and the reader is no more informed about what happened to Amy than Kat is. The possibilities were buzzing around my mind even when I wasn't reading the book and I was keen to keep on reading at every opportunity.

The outcome certainly surprised me, I didn't see it coming at all. Looking back at the story there aren't many clues along the way but there are some hints if you are looking for them. Overall I found this an engaging read - although Kat did frustrate me greatly at times.  Ex husband Tony remained a bit of an enigma and best friend Zoe seemed too keen to be on hand for Kat whether she wanted her there or not which I found really annoying. With plenty of red herrings to keep the reader's mind occupied, this is a book to get your grey matter working whilst Kat battled her demons.

About the Author:

Sue Watson was a TV Producer at the BBC until she wrote her first book and was hooked. 

USA Today bestselling author, Sue has written fifteen novels - many involving cake - which have been translated into several languages and involved tough 'cake research.' Sue is now exploring the darker side of life with her thrillers OUR LITTLE LIES, THE WOMAN NEXT DOOR and THE EMPTY NEST. Writing in this new genre doesn't involve the deep research of baked goods and Sue's hoping the change in direction will be reflected on the weighing scales.

Originally from Manchester, Sue now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in Worcestershire where much of her day is spent procrastinating, eating and watching 'My 600lb Life,' on the sofa.  

Social Media Links:

Twitter: @suewatsonwriter
Follow the Tour:

Thursday, 31 October 2019

What Fell From My Shelf - October

With a dose of the tummy bug which is doing the rounds at the moment and a general loss of my reading mojo, I haven't tackled so many books from my mountain which is waiting to be read.  Not having so many deadlines to reach for hasn't helped as much as I had hoped, as without the pressure of a target date I have been overwhelmed by the amount of choice I have. Here's a summary of what I read in October:

The Wife's Revenge by Deirdre Palmer

Fran made the biggest mistake of her life when she had an affair with Ben. Both families live in the village of Oakheart; their children are friends. Fran’s guilt shadows her days. But it’s no more than she deserves, or is it? At least she’s managed to protect her husband, Hector, from the harsh truth.
But for how long?

Tessa has left her troubles in the past and now has the perfect life. Ben might have his faults, but his life has not been easy. They need each other, and Tessa will do whatever it takes to eliminate any threats to her marriage.
Threats from women like Fran.

Faced with an ultimatum from Tessa, time is running out for Fran. She’s scared, every minute of every day.

The Six by Luca Veste

Six friends trapped by one dark secret.

It was supposed to be our last weekend away as friends, before marriage and respectability beckoned. But what happened that Saturday changed everything.
In the middle of the night, someone died. The six of us promised each other we would not tell anyone about the body we buried. But now the pact has been broken. And the killing has started again …

Who knows what we did? And what price will we pay?

Her Mother's Lies by Rona Halsall

Martha would do anything for her devoted mother, Fran. Now in her mid-twenties, Martha still lives with her in their remote, pretty cottage in the Cornish countryside. Fran paints illustrations, while Martha trains to be an animal nurse.
But then Martha sees a strange message on her mother’s phone – apparently from her estranged father.
He had been there for her first steps. He’d helped with her homework, and taken her for ice cream at weekends. And then, two days before her ninth birthday, he walked out. She never knew what went wrong, and she and Fran never heard from him again.
Desperate for answers, she tracks him down. But when they come face-to-face, she isn’t ready for the brutal truth.

In Her Eyes by Sarah Alderson

You're at home with your family.
You think you're safe.
You're wrong...
Ava's life is the kind other people envy: loving husband; great kids; beautiful house. Until the night a violent home invasion turns the dream into a nightmare, and leaves her beautiful daughter fighting to survive.
And then things get worse. Ava realises that the attack wasn't random. Someone is targeting her family. Why? Who could hate them enough to kill?

Twas The Nightshift Before Christmas by Adam Kay

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat . . . but 1.4 million NHS staff are heading off to work. In this perfect present for anyone who has ever set foot in a hospital, Adam Kay delves back into his diaries for a hilarious, horrifying and sometimes heartbreaking peek behind the blue curtain at Christmastime.
Twas the Nightshift Before Christmas is a love letter to all those who spend their festive season on the front line, removing babies and baubles from the various places they get stuck, at the most wonderful time of the year.

Her Dark Heart by Carla Kovach

Susan Wheeler is a devoted mother. She would do anything for her three children. She drops them off and picks them up every single day. Until one day when Susan kisses them goodbye and then never comes to pick them up.
Susan’s mother Mary is worried. Susan is recently divorced and has been finding things hard recently, but she loves her kids – she’d never leave them.
Susan’s sister Clare is furious. It’s just like her to go missing. It’s not the first time, either. Susan has always been a troublemaker. Always seeking attention. She knows Susan has been lying to the family for years. And she knows that Susan has been sneaking out of her family home for weeks…
As the hours turn into days, even Clare becomes fearful for Susan. And, when Mary discovers Susan’s diary, she begins to uncover a dark secret from her childhood. Something no one in the family knew. When the final diary entry leads the police to a man who is discovered dead in a local park, they’re left wondering whether Susan has vanished because she is a victim. Or because she is a suspect…

Monday, 28 October 2019

Her Mother's Lies by Rona Halsall #Netgalley @bookouture #HerMothersLies @RonaHalsallAuth

Her Mother's Lies by Rona Halsall
Published by Bookouture
Publication Date 23rd October 2019
Psychological Thriller
332 pages

Book Description:

What if the person you trust most in the world, has been lying to you for your whole life?

Martha would do anything for her devoted mother, Fran. Now in her mid-twenties, Martha still lives with her in their remote, pretty cottage in the Cornish countryside. Fran paints illustrations, while Martha trains to be an animal nurse.
But then Martha sees a strange message on her mother’s phone – apparently from her estranged father.
He had been there for her first steps. He’d helped with her homework, and taken her for ice cream at weekends. And then, two days before her ninth birthday, he walked out. She never knew what went wrong, and she and Fran never heard from him again.
Desperate for answers, she tracks him down. But when they come face-to-face, she isn’t ready for the brutal truth.
Closing his eyes he says, ‘She hasn’t told you, has she? I’m not your father.’
Her mother has been telling lies.
And not just about who her real father is…

My Review:

Martha and Fran are as close as mother and daughter can be. They moved to an isolated part of Cornwall following the collapse of Fran's marriage to Martha's dad years before.  They live a very sheltered life but things tick along okay until the day that Martha loses her job with local vet Pete, a man she respects and holds very dear.  Her whole life seems to fall apart from that point on with her mother's health failing and the chances of finding another job seeming slim. In desperation Martha decides to visit her father in Wales to ask him for help in their hour of need.  She mentions her plan to visit to her friend Izzy who lives up north and nobody is more shocked than Martha when Izzy offers to accompany her on the trip.  Whilst very grateful to Izzy, Martha decides to set off on her own to face her father - decision she is glad of when the visit doesn't turn out anywhere near any of the scenarios that Martha had considered.
This is the point where the book really changes pace and the questions start to pile up: why did Martha's dad react the way he did? What did he mean when he told Martha to ask Fran for the answers she is seeking? And why is Izzy so intent on helping her?
The author has fed the reader a few tiny crumbs of information early on in the book regarding Fran's background and Martha's birth. We know Fran is hiding something but the vital clues are missing for us to be able to build up the complete picture.  I felt very mistrusting of Izzy - in some ways she's such a great help and support for Martha but in others she seems very controlling and a little bit spiteful in the way she speaks to her. Her hidden motive for helping had me turning the pages to find out more, and I stayed up much later than I had planned in my (and Martha's) quest for the truth.
The emotions both Fran and Martha are going through are described well by the author, with mum knowing far more than daughter and having information she really doesn't want to come to light. What is the secret she fears will take Martha away from her? It must be something big to break the tight bond they have.
The conclusion is explosive and there are curve balls from various directions, some which had been possibilities in my mind, others were big surprises to me but on thinking back once I had completed the book there were subtle hints in the relevant earlier chapters which I had completely misunderstood due to clever smoke screening.
The plotting in this book is good and the setting of the isolated location added to the storyline very well. The characters are well drawn, all of them had flaws and strengths which fitted the story perfectly. Rona's previous book The Honeymoon also had characters with a controlling behaviour. and I feel it is one of the strengths of her writing to be able to portray this behaviour in a realistic manner. Her ability to make the reader as convinced by the character's manipulation as the victim in the book is quite unnerving, but lets us see how easy it is to be taken in by a person like that.
Add Rona Halsall to your watch list as I feel she has many more tales in store to keep us entertained with.

About the Author:

Rona Halsall was a management consultant for twenty years, before dedicating herself to creative writing full-time. Her writing skills have been honed through the production of three novels and by reading anything and everything, as well as undertaking an open university creative writing course. She is a keen book reviewer and belongs to a number of on-line book and writing groups. She has three grown-up children of her own and two step-children and lives on the Isle of Man with her husband, two dogs and a couple of guinea pigs.

Social Media Links:

Facebook: RonaHalsallAuthor 
Twitter:    @RonaHalsallAuth
Instagram @ronahalsall.

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

The Wife's Revenge by Deirdre Palmer @rararesources @crookedcatbooks @DLPalmer_Writer #Review #BlogTour #Book

The Wife's Revenge by Deirdre Palmer
Published by Crooked Cat Books, Darkstroke Imprint
Publication Date: 22nd October 2019
Genre: Psychological Suspense

Book Description:

One mistake is all it takes

Fran Oliver made the biggest mistake of her life when she had an affair with Ben Grammaticus. Both families live in the Sussex village of Oakheart; their children are friends.  Fran handles the interaction between them as best she can, while she will never forgive herself for what she did. At least she’s managed to protect her kind, loving husband, Hector, and three beautiful daughters, from the unsavoury truth about her.
But that may be about to change.
Tessa’s marriage to Ben is sacrosanct, her life perfect.  She won’t sacrifice that for her husband’s indiscretions.  Besides, Ben needs her. She is his saviour, as he is hers.  That’s the way it’s always worked.
But if she won’t make Ben pay, then others must.
Armed with proof of the affair, Tessa issues Fran with an ultimatum – ‘Tell Hector, or I will’.  Fran’s carefully balanced life threatens to be destroyed as she desperately seeks an escape from an impossible situation. 
A cliff overlooks a disused chalk-pit. The locals call it High Heaven.  It’s a place of secrets. And it’s where Oakheart newcomer Maria Capelli died. When Fran discovers a link between herself and Maria, she feels compelled to know more.  As she begins to piece the story together, disturbing truths emerge that skew her version of what has gone before. 
Time is running out for Fran.  She’s running scared, every minute of every day.
But who does she need to be most afraid of?

My Review:

Fran and Hector have a lovely life together. They both have fairly secure jobs, okay so they aren't rich and own the least attractive house in their street but they are happy and have 3 wonderful daughters. There are challenges with youngest daughter Caitlin having been diagnosed with Aspergers but the family embrace her differences and do their best to accommodate them in their every day life. Older girls Hazel and Kitty are excellent with her and, despite the usual sibling teasing, are very protective of her.

So what made Fran go against everything she believes in and risk all she has for an ill-advised fling with Ben, father of Hazel's friend Zoe? This is the question Fran asks herself as she struggles to come to terms with what she did the previous year.  The two families can't help but bump into each other in the course of school events and the girls' friendship which doesn't make avoiding Ben since their affair finished any easier.

Ben's wife Tessa is a pillar of the local community, busy organising charity events and the like on a regular basis. But she suddenly starts recruiting Fran to be part of her fundraising efforts more and more often and it becomes obvious that Tessa knows. She is holding Fran to ransom and it's not long before she issues her with an ultimatum to tell Hector what she and Ben did last year.  Tessa wants to ruin all that Fran holds dear, and there's a timescale involved. The only person who knows what has happened yet doesn't seem bothered by any of it is bad boy Ben. He has made it clear that he didn't want the relationship to end - something that Tessa fears the most, and unsettles Fran all the more.

The author leads us through the turmoil of emotions from both women's points of view. Tessa comes across as becoming more and more unpredictable while Fran's mental health begins to suffer. How far will Tessa go to expose the couple? Can Fran talk sense into her before it all blows up in her face?
The tension builds over the course of the book until we reach the point where things have to be resolved.  I was quite shocked with the way the author took the final direction of the story, and while there were hints of this conclusion along the way I was really hoping it would take another path. Despite Ben being cast as the villain of the piece I actually felt a little bit sorry for him once I understood him a bit more. Whether this excuses his behaviour is the subject for some quite emotive discussions should this book be the subject of your local book club I would imagine and with this in mind I would recommend it for group readers. There's some good subject material here.

My thanks to Rachel Gilbey of Rachel's Random Resources for the opportunity to review this book for the blog tour ahead of publication day.

About the Author:

Deirdre lives in Brighton, on the south coast of England, the town where she was born.   Brighton and the surrounding Sussex countryside are a great source of inspiration for her novels. At the age of nine, having learned the word ‘author’ and liking the sound of it, she banged out Enid Blyton rip-offs on an old typewriter.  The writerly ambition went into hibernation after that, but it was always there, through life in general and a career in university administration, at which point it emerged pretty much unscathed and clamouring for attention. Deirdre is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, having ‘graduated’ from the association’s New Writers’ Scheme on publication of her first novel, Remarkable Things. She was twice a major prize-winner in the Mail on Sunday Novel Competition.  As well as novels, she enjoys writing short stories and is published by D C Thomson in The People’s Friend magazine.

Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Something In The Water by Catherine Steadman @simonschusterUK #book #review @CatSteadman #SomethingInTheWater

Something In The Water by Catherine Steadman
Published by Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 8th June 2019
Crime Thriller

Book Description:

Erin is a documentary filmmaker on the brink of a professional breakthrough; Mark a handsome investment banker with a bright future. They seem to have it all. But do they?

On a dream honeymoon to the tropical island of Bora Bora, Mark takes Erin scuba diving. Everything is perfect. Until they find something in the water. Something that will change their lives forever. 

Erin and Mark decide to keep their discovery a secret. No one else need know; they trust each other implicitly.
But someone else does know. And in situations like these, it is far better to trust no one, not even those closest to you …

My Review:

The opening paragraph of this book is one of the best I have ever read. If ever there are words to intrigue you sufficiently to want to read the rest of the story these are they.  "Have you ever wondered how long it takes to dig a grave? Wonder no longer."

Bombshell dropped, I was into this book straight away. Especially as the scenes then change to the run up to a young professional couple's wedding. Mark works in the respected world of finance, Erin is an up and coming documentary maker.  Surely the initial chapter can't be anything to do with them? Then the possibilities start to open up, with the couple's circumstances changing significantly enough for them to have to rethink their whole wedding. My brain was buzzing with questions as to what could possibly link them to the opening paragraph.

The one part of the wedding they decide not to compromise on is their honeymoon: the trip of a lifetime to Bora Bora.  With their accommodation being a stunning water bungalow, the white sandy beaches and scuba diving opportunities this trip is just what they need after the uncertainties of the previous weeks. The relaxing atmosphere doesn't last long though when a diving expedition throws up more than they ever could imagine.

The tension quickly rises from their hasty retreat from their honeymoon destination, back to the streets of London where Erin tries to get answers to what has happened, all the while trying to think up solutions to the dilemmas they face. It's not the life she imagined for the start of her marriage to the love of her life.  Yet with all that's going on, Mark is keen to stay in the back seat and let Erin be more pro-active. Why would a man let his new wife take all the risks? And why is high profile criminal Eddie getting in touch with Erin from behind bars? What on earth have the young couple got themselves into?

I found this book totally engrossing, and couldn't wait to see just how deep the couple had fallen into the criminal world they found themselves in.  The answers were way off anything I had considered at the beginning of the book and I was shocked and proud at just how brave Erin was.  Husband Mark never ceased to amaze me with the ugly side to his personality.

This is a completely different book to anything I have read before and I enjoyed it from the first page to the last. Knowing who the author is in her other day job I was extremely impressed by this, her debut novel and can't wait to read her future work.

About the Author:

Catherine Steadman is an actress and writer based in North London, UK. She is best known for her role as Mabel Lane Fox in Downton Abbey and is currently filming on the new Starz television series 'The Rook'. She grew up in the New Forest, UK, and lives with a small dog and an average sized man. Something in the Water is her first novel.

Monday, 7 October 2019

Degrees of Guilt by HS Chandler #book #review #NetGalley #DegreesOfGuilt @orionbooks @TrapezeBooks @Helen_Fields

Degrees of Guilt by HS Chandler
Published by Trapeze
Publication Date: 5th September 2019
Mystery & Thrillers

Book Description:

When you read this book, you will think you know every twist in the tale.
Maria is on trial for attempted murder.
She has confessed to the crime and wanted her husband dead.
Lottie is on the jury, trying to decide her fate.
She embarks on an illicit affair with a stranger, and her husband can never find out.
You will think you know who is guilty and who is innocent.
You will be wrong.

My Review:

Edward Bloxham, ecologist, author and broadcaster lies broken on his kitchen floor. His wife Maria stands over him clutching the broken chair leg with which he was struck in her hand as his life blood slowly drains from him.  She calmly picks up a mobile phone and rings the emergency services, telling the operator at the end of the line "I've killed my husband".  Maria confessed what had happened to the officers who arrived at the house, yet once in custody at the police station she refused to respond to their questions.
This is the scenario presented to the jurors in court who are to decide Maria's fate.  We are introduced to Lottie from who's perspective the trial is related. She's a housewife with a 3 year old son, disillusioned with the life her controlling husband Zain has manoeuvred her into. After her initial reluctance to do jury service Lottie settles in and starts to feel she is making a contribution so something outside her home environment.  In the time the jurors have outside the courtroom Lottie finds herself making judgments about the personal lives of her fellow jurors and it's clear that there are going to be strong differences of opinion among their group.  After a first day clash with self employed Cameron, which he makes the effort to apologise for the following day, Lottie finds herself in his company more and more.  Others in the group are drawn to outspoken Tabitha, the foreperson for the jury, but Lottie and Cameron aren't keen to be in her company so end up spending time outside the court together and get much closer than perhaps is advisable. My instinct told me that Lottie really didn't know what she was getting involved in with Cameron and was getting out of her depth very quickly.

While we are hearing events from the jury's side of the courtroom, we also have Maria's thoughts being presented as the trial progresses.  There's definitely something we're not being told but with Maria having made a full confession of guilt and been found with the weapon in her hand it's not clear what the missing information could be.  She seems quite willing to take any punishment the court finds appropriate so what are we missing...?

The court proceedings with lawyers Imogen Pascal prosecuting and James Newell defending are typical of this type of novel, with the usual challenges and protestations to the judge. The prosecution manages to get a rise out of the defendant as the case is presented which proves that there is a hidden fire inside Maria and it's not until the defence puts its case that we start to understand Maria much more.  The whole case is so well written, with the author demonstrating a strong knowledge of the court system and the tricks used by the law teams on both sides.

The book has a great balance of the relationships between the jurors and those involved in the case being tried.  Lottie definitely learned some life lessons during her time on jury service and there is a strong message coming across to the reader in respect of making judgments about people's circumstances and personalities at face value. The truth of events which happened in Edward Bloxham's kitchen that day will have you raising your eyebrows at the very least - and while I had a smidgeon of a gut feeling that all was not as it seemed I don't think you will work out the mystery. Sometimes a case hinges more on what isn't said rather than what is.

Great writing as always from this author, I found this to be the perfect book to snuggle down on the sofa and get engrossed in. Just the job if you're a fan of a good courtroom drama.

About the Author:

HS Chandler is the pen name of Helen Fields. AS HS Chandler I write psychological thrillers and legal thrillers. With a background as a criminal and family law barrister, I now run a media company and write the Callanach crime series. 

Social Media Link:

Twitter: @Helen_Fields

Friday, 4 October 2019

After Jessica by Morgen Bailey #BlogTour @BOTBSPublicity @morgenwriteruk #AfterJessica

After Jessica by Morgen Bailey
Out now on Kindle ebook
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
155 pages

Book Description:

Jessica is an ordinary girl who comes across extraordinary circumstances and pays for them with her life. As well as identifying her body, her brother Simon then has to wind up her affairs but gets more than he bargains for. Who is Alexis, and why are Veronica and Daniel searching for her? Why is there a roll of cash in Jessica’s house, and what’s the connection between his sister and Alexis?

My Review:

I'm not a big reader of short stories however the description of this book had me wanting to know more about Jessica, who she was and what her brother discovered in the aftermath of her demise.

We don't get to know Jessica very well before she meets her untimely death at the hand of train driver Andy Baker who unfortunately had very little say in the matter. He seemed like a really nice guy, and I liked the way Jessica's family treated him following the unfortunate events. Jessica however, I'm not so sure about. On face value she seemed like a very likeable person, always there to support others and put them before herself. But then there was the other side of her personality- very secretive, she seems to have held a lot back from her family in the years prior to her death.  Who was Alexis, and how did she come to share her life with Jessica?

I'm not going to reveal too much as it would ruin the whole book but there is definitely another side of Jessica which her family knew absolutely nothing about.  I was actually shocked that her brother did not get more angry or aggressive as he discovered the truth about her, I'm not sure I would be so calm and understanding in the circumstances.  Mum Marion I just wanted to hug the whole time as (understandably) she was just totally shell shocked.

With petty criminal Nate and his wife getting drawn into the story along the way, I would love there to be a follow up story to this novella as my mind wandered after I had finished the book, wondering what would happen to them and some of the other characters who feature.

Despite the content of this book it isn't overwhelmingly sad as could have been the case, although I did feel that Jessica's brother Simon lacked a lot of emotion - whether it be sadness or anger I wanted more of a reaction from him. Saying that though, the scene at the legal offices of Jessica's solicitor must have left everyone shocked.

To find out what exactly Jessica was hiding, grab yourself a copy of this quick read. Perfect for the poolside on holiday or a quiet, cosy night on the sofa now the night's are beginning to draw in.

Thanks to Sarah Hardy of Books On The Bright Side for the opportunity to be part of the blog tour for this novella.

About the Author:

Based in Northamptonshire, England, Morgen Bailey lives and breathes writing. ‘Morgen with an E’  is an author, speaker, tutor, editor, and podcaster. As well as being a competition judge, she is a columnist for Writers’ Forum magazine. 
Morgen’s fiction books include crime and mystery novels, and short story collections. They are mostly set against a Northamptonshire background, whether there is crime involved, a dog-detective that can talk, or a serial dater on a mission! 
Her non-fiction works are aimed at all levels of writers whether beginners or those who want to refresh their skills – Morgen also tutors in person and has several online writing courses available. She runs her own mentor group on Facebook, very much a collaboration, and she invites all authors to join. Her Writer’s Block Workbooks are a go-to for every author. 
When Morgen is not editing, speaking, reading, or writing, she’s walking her dog, out with friends or at literary festivals. The only time she sits down and does nothing is at the cinema but even then she’s making mental notes! 
Morgen Bailey on Social Media:Author Website: www.morgenbailey.comTwitter & Instagram: @morgenwriteruk
Facebook Page: Author Page: