March 22, 2016
Anniversary of Death + The Dark Angel's Lover
I'm very thankful to have been sent copies of the following books by the lovely Emma at Wunderkind PR. Both of these books were published by Thomas & Mercer and are out now.
I jokingly referred to this book as Murder Murder Murder in homage to my mother and cousin who are seemingly obsessed with the ID channel. (Who knows why with those awful reenactments.) The book's actual title is Baggage and the author is S.G. Redling. Anna Ray has led what could be considered a cursed life. At 12 years of age, her father was murdered and her mother imprisoned as the perpetrator. That was on February 17th. Fast forward to another February 17 (generally spent in torturous remembrance) when she comes home to a ghastly sight…and so it continues. I have to say that I was genuinely surprised at the conclusion…and disappointed somewhat. I didn't get that satisfactory "just solved a case" feeling which generally accompanies this type of story. However, I was kept on my toes wondering whodunit (and giggling at the references to work in Higher Education as I know them to be all too true). If you're easily triggered by references to substance abuse and/or child abuse then I suggest you steer clear of this one. If you think you can stomach such things and enjoy a fast paced psychological thriller then this might be the book for you. (You know the feeling of gratification when you stumble upon the reference for the book's title? Yeah you're not gonna get that here.)
Also, sent to me was Journey to Death by Leigh Russell. This is another psychological thriller but I believed it was a supernatural mystery right up until the last few chapters. The story begins with George Hall who has arrived in Seychelles (it's an archipelago off the coast of East Africa) as the new accountant of the Garden of Eden Hotel. He meets a beautiful woman named Veronique and falls in love. They are separated and the story jumps to present day when George accompanied by his wife and daughter arrive in Seychelles on vacation. It seems that his prior stay has not been forgotten by everyone...I can't give away more than this because SPOILERS but there's quite a bit of drama, mystery, and walks along the beach. I wasn't a huge fan of this one to be honest. I found the narrative to be plodding and not all that interesting. The fact that it felt more like a supernatural mystery as opposed to a psychological thriller might be the key. I just didn't feel invested in the characters and as a result wasn't drawn into the story. If you like books that follow a straight trajectory from A to B then you'll probably like this one but if you prefer to have a lot of WHOA moments...this book will be a disappointment.
**If you're interested in buying these books or any books really, you can click here or here. The first will re-direct you to AbeBooks and the second will re-direct you to The Book Depository. These are great websites for purchasing books (AbeBooks carries inexpensive used and out-of-print books and The Book Depository ships free everywhere in the world). Full disclosure: I will receive a commission on all sales made by following either of these links. I wouldn't recommend a site that I didn't use and you are under no obligation to purchase anything. :-) **