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Blog Tour – Echoes In Death (In Death #44) – J.D. Robb

Published February 3, 2017 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

THE #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING SERIES . . . The chilling new suspense novel from the author of Brotherhood in Death.

After a party in New York, Lieutenant Eve Dallas rides home with her billionaire husband, Roarke, happy to be done with cocktails and small talk.

After another party, not far away, a woman retires to her bedroom with her husband—and walks into a brutal nightmare.

Their paths are about to collide…

When the young woman—dazed, naked, and bloody—wanders in front of their car, Roarke slams on the brakes just in time, and Eve, still in glittering gown and heels, springs into action. It’s been a long night for the tired homicide cop, and it’s far from over.

Daphne Strazza is rushed to the ER, but it’s too late for Dr. Anthony Strazza. A brilliant orthopedic surgeon, he now lies dead amid the wreckage of his obsessively organized town house, his three safes opened and emptied. Daphne would be a valuable witness, but in her terror and shock the only description of the perp she can offer is repeatedly calling him “the devil” . . .

While it emerges that Dr. Strazza was cold, controlling, and widely disliked—and that he treated Daphne like a trophy wife—this is one case where the evidence doesn’t point to the spouse as the first suspect. So Eve and her team must get started on the legwork, interviewing everyone from dinner-party guests to professional colleagues to caterers, in a desperate race to answer some crucial questions:

What does the devil look like? And where will he show up next?

What did I think?:

First of all, many thanks to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour and providing me with a copy of Echoes In Death in exchange for an honest review. Now, I love my crime fiction but so far haven’t actually read any of J.D. Robb’s novels – and there’s been a lot of them. This is the forty-fourth in the In Death series featuring Lieutenant Eve Dallas and her Irish husband Roarke and the author has written many more novels (more than two hundred to be exact!) under both the pseudonym J.D. Robb and her real name, Nora Roberts.

The novel follows our main character Lt Eve Dallas, her husband to a lesser extent, and her loyal partner Peabody as they deal with a frightening new evil. On their way home from a party, a naked, bloody and petrified young woman jumps out in front of Eve and Roarke’s car. After further questioning the woman, Daphne Strazza is found to have undergone a horrifying ordeal. A man has broken into her house, brutally raped and beaten her multiple times and killed her husband. The only thing she can tell Eve for certain is that he was “the devil.” Eve soon discovers that the assailant was wearing a mask and shortly forms a connection between two other incidents involving rich couples where the perp dressed up as a vampire and secondly as a ghoul. However, the previous two incidents didn’t involve any deaths and Eve worries that the incidents are escalating. Eve and her department must pull out all the stops to find the man responsible for these atrocities before he strikes again.

Echoes In Death isn’t like any other work of crime fiction that I’ve read before and I loved that about it. It’s actually set in the future, a mid 21st-century New York City where the landscape still feels quite familiar but technology has moved on in giant leaps and bounds. We have intricate  home security systems in place, machines that can identify a living person or corpse at the touch of a button, new drugs and treatments for things as simple as a headache and (my favourite) helpful household droids. There are a multitude of strong, interesting characters including the independent, compassionate Eve and her side-kick Peabody whom I instantly fell in love with. My only slight issue was that I guessed who the killer was pretty soon after he was introduced in the novel. I usually feel quite disappointed when this happens but I have to say that it didn’t affect my enjoyment of the story at all.

I have to admit to being a bit concerned when I agreed to read this novel as I’m a bit of a stickler at reading things in order and not having read any of the other books in the series I was worried that I wouldn’t connect to certain things in the characters back stories. It’s true at points I did feel slightly ignorant, especially concerning Eve’s traumatic past (which  I won’t go into for fear of spoilers) but in a positive way, I am looking forward to having lots of books in the series to go back to and fill in the blanks for myself! This book surprised me in a lot of ways, it certainly wasn’t what I expected and I’m really looking forward to catching up with things right from the beginning of the series.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):

3-5-stars

AUTHOR INFORMATION

July 10, 2011 - Boonsboro, Maryland USA: Best-selling author Nora Roberts on the porch of the Inn at Boonsboro in historic Boonsboro, Maryland. Ms. Roberts bought the 1790s-era building and created an eight-room boutique hotel meant to cater to women's romantic sides. Rooms are named for famous literary couples, including Marguerite and Percy of "The Scarlet Pimpernel" and Jane and Rochester from "Jane Eyre." Ms. Roberts spent $3 million renovating the three-story inn. Roberts is the author of more than 209 romance novels. She writes as J.D. Robb for the "In Death" series (Evelyn Hockstein/POLARIS) ///

Nora Roberts is the number one New York Times bestseller of more than 200 novels. She published her first novel using the pseudonym J.D. Robb in 1995, with the In Death series, Robb has become one of the biggest thriller writers on earth, with each new novel reaching number one on bestseller charts over the world. With over 450 million copies of her books in print, she is indisputably one of the most celebrated and popular writers in the world.

Find Nora on her website at http://www.noraroberts.com/

Or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/norarobertsjdrobb

Thank you once again to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour, I’ve had a great time doing it. Echoes In Death was published on 7th February 2017 and is also available as an e-book. Why not check out some of the other stops on the tour?

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Blog Tour – Burned And Broken – Mark Hardie

Published January 27, 2017 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

An enigmatic policeman – currently the subject of an internal investigation – is found burned to death in his car on the Southend sea front.

A vulnerable young woman, fresh out of the care system, is trying to discover the truth behind the sudden death of her best friend.

As DS Frank Pearson and DC Catherine Russell from the Essex Police Major Investigation Team are brought in to solve the mystery that surrounds their colleague’s death, they’re under intense pressure to crack the case without damaging the force’s reputation.

When a dramatic turn of events casts a whole new light on both cases, the way forward is far from clear. Were the victims connected in some way? And just how much should Pearson and Russell reveal to their bosses as they begin to unearth some dark secrets that the force would rather keep buried?

Mark Hardie’s stylish and gripping debut introduces a brilliant new detective duo to the world of crime fiction, weaving together two suspenseful stories that end in a breath-taking finale.

What did I think?:

First of all, a huge thank you to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour and providing me with a copy of Mark Hardie’s debut novel in exchange for an honest review. I may have mentioned in previous posts that I used to read almost exclusively crime fiction, until I started broadening what I read as I found with many crime novels, they were getting a bit “samey,” to me. Therefore, it takes something quite special (usually terrific characters or an intriguing plot) to get me back into reading the genre. Luckily, Burned And Broken had both and I was captivated until the end.

Our two main characters are DS Frank Pearson and his partner DC Catherine (Cat) Russell who are working together to try and piece together the reasons behind the gruesome death of their colleague, DI Carragher killed in suspicious circumstances after his burned body was found in his car. Alongside this story is also the story of a dead young girl, Alicia whose case Carragher was working on before his unfortunate demise. Then there is Donna, best friend of Alicia who is certain that Alicia’s death was no accident and is determined to see her murderer brought to justice. She comes with her own set of issues, raised in the care system, a loner with mental health issues and an adoring friend, Malcolm who follows her like a little shadow. How and why are the two stories linked? And what murky secrets are about to be unearthed as Pearson and Russell go digging?

I really enjoyed many things about this novel. The style of writing was intense and brilliant that shifted from past to present to future without ever muddling or over-complicating the narrative. At times, the pace may feel slightly slow but it all builds up to an explosive finale with many twists and turns to savour. I liked how Pearson and Russell worked as a team but I don’t really feel we got to know them deeply as characters – perhaps this is all to come in further books in the series? My favourite character had to be troubled Donna who was written fantastically. She instantly drew me into her world, where just struggling to survive every day was a huge achievement. As always, it’s a bonus for me if I can’t see the ending coming or guess any of the possible motives/perpetrators and I certainly didn’t with this novel. This is a very promising start to a series from Mark Hardie and I look forward to where he takes the characters next.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):

3-5-stars

AUTHOR INFORMATION

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Mark Hardie was born in 1960 in Bow, East London. He began writing fulltime after completely losing his eyesight in 2002. He has completed a creative writing course and an advanced creative writing course at the Open University, both with distinction.

Mark lives with his wife Debbie in Southend-on-Sea.

You can find Mark on Twitter @MARKHARDIECRIME

On his GoodReads page https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8452087.Mark_Hardie

Thank you once again to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour, I’ve had a really great time doing it! Why not check out the other posts today from my fellow bloggers? Burned And Broken has been released in e-book format and is due to be released in paperback in May 2017.

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Blog Tour – Relativity – Antonia Hayes

Published January 20, 2017 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

‘Relativity is wonderful, a beautifully written, heartbreaking novel that I feel certain will find the huge audience it deserves.’ SJ Watson, author of Before I Go to Sleep and Second Life

‘Relativity is a novel of assured and measured empathy, a story of familial love and familial hurt that is fair, honest and remarkably non-judgmental. Hayes is a convincing writer and a true storyteller: her characters are alive.’ Christos Tsiolkas, author of THE SLAP

Ethan is an exceptionally gifted young boy, obsessed with physics and astronomy.

His single mother Claire is fiercely protective of her brilliant, vulnerable son. But she can’t shield him forever from learning the truth about what happened to him when he was a baby; why Mark had to leave them all those years ago.

Now age twelve, Ethan is increasingly curious about his past, especially his father’s absence in his life. When he intercepts a letter to Claire from Mark, he opens a lifetime of feelings that, like gravity, will pull the three together again.

Relativity is a tender and triumphant story about unbreakable bonds, irreversible acts, and testing the limits of love and forgiveness.

What did I think?:

First of all, many thanks to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part on this blog tour and sending me a copy of Relativity in exchange for an honest review. On reading the synopsis, I was instantly intrigued. It sounded like a book packed with family drama, hidden secrets and interesting discoveries as well as something that would be touching to read. I got everything I was expecting from Relativity along with some surprises to boot so I can definitely count this as a great reading experience and one I recommend.

The novel tells the story of Claire and her son, Ethan who is highly gifted in physics and astronomy and a little bit different from other children his age, meaning that he goes through quite a tough time at school and struggles to make friends easily. Due to a traumatic incident in his past that also involves his absent father Mark, who left shortly after the incident occurred, Ethan is able to “see,” physics i.e. sound-waves, particles moving around in the air etc. This makes him very valuable to the medical professionals studying him when he undergoes a seizure but also very special to his loving mother, Claire who is just trying to do her best for him as a single parent.

Their life is turned upside down once more when Ethan’s father, Mark returns into his life and attempts to forge a relationship for them both. This is difficult for both Ethan and Claire to deal with for reasons I won’t divulge but moved me deeply as a reader. I think what surprised me most about this book is that how I assumed I knew how it was going to progress and end. Well, let me tell you, I was completely wrong and the part that I was wrong about is hugely shocking when the big reveal occurs.

I really enjoyed this debut novel by Antonia Hayes. It was written beautifully with just enough pace to keep me turning the pages and her strength for characterisation was outstanding. I loved Ethan, Claire and Mark to bits – for different reasons and, especially with the latter of these, my opinions kept changing throughout the story. I’m actually a scientist “by day,” but my field is biochemistry and I was slightly worried that the physics aspect would be quite overwhelming for me. In fact, it was all written so intelligently yet simply that I had no reason to worry and actually learned a lot more about a subject that terrified me in school! Antonia Hayes is already a expert at writing a story with so much heart and dramatic tension that I can’t wait to read anything else she writes.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):

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AUTHOR INFORMATION

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Antonia Hayes, who grew up in Sydney and spent her twenties in Paris, currently lives in London with her husband and son. Relativity is her first novel.

Find her on Goodreads at: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8848755.Antonia_Hayes

On Twitter at: @antoniahayes

Her website at: http://www.antoniahayes.com

Once again, thank you so much to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour, I’ve had a great time doing it. Why not check out the other stops on the tour today from my fellow bloggers down below? Relativity was released on 17th January 2017 and is available from all good bookshops now!

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Blog Tour – A Boy Made Of Blocks – Keith Stuart

Published January 18, 2017 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

Discover a unique, funny and moving debut that will make you laugh, cry and smile.

Meet thirtysomething dad, Alex
He loves his wife Jody, but has forgotten how to show it. He loves his son Sam, but doesn’t understand him. Something has to change. And he needs to start with himself.

Meet eight-year-old Sam
Beautiful, surprising, autistic. To him the world is a puzzle he can’t solve on his own.

But when Sam starts to play Minecraft, it opens up a place where Alex and Sam begin to rediscover both themselves and each other . . .

Can one fragmented family put themselves back together, one piece at a time?

Inspired by the author’s experiences with his own son, A Boy Made of Blocks is an astonishingly authentic story of love, family and autism.

What did I think?:

I first heard about this book from my sister and fellow blogger Chrissi Reads who absolutely loved it. When my sister makes a recommendation, I take her up on it as she definitely knows the kind of books that I get excited about. Then when Little, Brown publishers asked me if I’d like to be part of the blog tour, I jumped at the chance. (thank you very much to them!) In my opinion, the more people know about this wonderful debut novel, the better as it’s just THAT GOOD. I haven’t been as moved or felt so emotionally wrung out for a while and I love when a book gets under my skin like that.

So, the story follows thirty-something Alex, married to Jody with a young son called Sam. When we first meet Alex, he isn’t having the best time of it. His relationship with both his wife and son appears to be slowly disintegrating and is incredibly fragile. Sam is autistic and Alex is not dealing with it very well. He seems at a loss with what to do regarding his behaviour, how to handle him in general and even how to communicate with him effectively. This leads to him sleeping at a friend’s house while desperately trying to repair the cracks that have appeared in his life and his marriage.

Luckily for Alex, something comes along, in the form of a computer game called Minecraft that just might change everything. Sam becomes obsessed with the game, and through it, so too does Alex as he learns that sometimes the right kind of communication can be begun by meeting that person on their own level, building slowly from there and simply learning to have fun together. Through Minecraft, Alex and Sam both learn a lot about each other, much more in fact than they ever have done previously. A strong relationship between the two begins to form and they learn to be friends as well as father and son, paving the way for a much happier and content family life in the future.

I don’t know where to start with telling you how beautiful and heart-warming this book actually was. The author was inspired by his own experiences with his son and this really shows in the writing. I think you can tell when an author is drawing from personal circumstances and we get an honest, authentic look into life with a child on the autistic spectrum which for our main character Alex, is both difficult and hugely rewarding. I did want to shake Alex at some points through the novel for decisions he has made but I loved how he developed throughout the story to become a real father, friend and support network for both his son and wife. It’s not often a book brings me to tears – I think I can count about three times in my entire life. Choked up, sad….for sure but actual tears? It’s very rare. Yet A Boy Made Of Blocks had me sobbing in the end, both happiness and sadness combined and it was an utterly magical experience that I won’t forget in a hurry.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):

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AUTHOR INFORMATION

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In 2012 one of KEITH STUART’s two sons was diagnosed on the autism spectrum. The ramifications felt huge. But then Keith and both boys started playing videogames together – especially Minecraft. Keith had always played games and, since 1995, has been writing about them, first for specialist magazines like Edge and PC Gamer then, for the last ten years, as games editor for the Guardian. The powerful creative sharing as a family and the blossoming of communication that followed informed his debut novel.

Find Keith on GoodReads at: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/441866.Keith_Stuart

On Twitter at: @keefstuart

Visit the website at: http://www.boymadeofblocks.com/

A huge thank you again to Little, Brown publishers for inviting me to take part in this blog tour, I’ve had a great time doing it. Why not check out all the other stops on the blog tour today? A Boy Made Of Blocks was released in paperback on 5th January 2017 and is available from all good bookshops and as an e-book now.

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Blog Tour – Guest Post by Andy Briggs, author of Gravity (The Inventory #2)

Published October 26, 2016 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

Eeek! Think that’s a monster? Nope: it’s a person. What terrible weapon could do this…? Errr – well, that used to be top-secret. Problem: it’s not quite so secret anymore. Dev messed up big time the day he let the ruthless Shadow Helix gang into the Inventory. What is the Inventory, we hear you ask? Well, it’s the secret lockup for all the deadly battle tech the world is NOT ready for. Which is why letting it get nicked was a REALLY BAD IDEA. Now the Shadow Helix have Newton’s Arrow: a terrifying weapon that messes with gravity, causing … well, you get the picture from this book’s cover. Dev and his mates HAVE to get it back – even if it means crossing the entire globe. To stop this evil, no trip is too far!

Hi everyone and welcome to a very special post on bibliobeth today. The second book in The Inventory series, Gravity has been released (for a review on the first book, please see my post HERE) and the author, Andy Briggs has kindly agreed to provide a guest post about his favourite scenes in the novel. Hope you enjoy!

My Favourite Scenes in Gravity – Andy Briggs

Writing any story appears to be, in my experience, a case of creating the characters and plot, then try to wrap them around various scenes and scenarios that have been festering in the back of my mind. The problem with that is the new story often surprises you by demanding scenes of its own, meaning those long-planned events need to be parked and perhaps used elsewhere.
This is particularly pertinent when it came to writing The Inventory: Gravity. I not only had a fairly clear idea of where the story was heading, I also had the luxury of scenes and plot elements that I wanted to put in the previous book (Iron Fist), but just couldn’t fit them in. Of course, most of those scenes then got pushed into book three, which I have just completed…

The Inventory series is one of those global adventures that requires my characters to visit exciting locations – and many of these locations are ones I have visited. There is nothing more inspirational than wondering around a potential location and think what could I do here?
An early scene in Gravity takes place in Tokyo. All the locations, buildings and little details are all real, which was a great help in structuring Dev’s little adventure there. I would love to tell you more about the sequence… but as it’s integral to the plot, my lips are sealed!

Another moment in the book comes when Dev, Lot and Mason have to sneak into… a place I can’t mention… using some technology called ‘Phantom-Suits’. Now, you may try to hazard a guess about what these suits do… but I’m pretty confident that you will never get it exactly right. As with everything in the Inventory there is always a sting in the tail. However, when writing this sequence I was torn between really wishing I could do it in real life, and realising that I would be utterly terrified to take the first step. Writing the sequence was one of those moments writers enjoy as they find themselves cringing at the dire consequences their characters are about to face and, because of the nature of the technology involved, it was a joy to imagine new perils that I have never seen in a book before.

The more I think about this, the harder it is to reveal anything that won’t become a plot spoiler… you’ll just have to read the book and then ask me!

AUTHOR INFORMATION

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Andy Briggs is a screenwriter, producer and author of the Hero.com, Villain.net and Tarzan series. Andy has worked on film development for Paramount and Warner Bros, as well as working with Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee and producer Robert Evans. With a strong social media following, Andy tours the UK regularly, doing festival, school and library events.

Website: http://www.andybriggs.co.uk
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/aBriggswriter

A huge thank you again to Andy Briggs for giving up his time in writing this guest post for me today. Gravity (The Inventory #2) was released on 6th October 2016 by Scholastic Books and is available from all good bookshops NOW. If you’re interested, why not check out the other stops on the blog tour?

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32571679-gravity
Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gravity-Inventory-Andy-Briggs/dp/1407161806

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Blog Tour – Introducing The Ninja Book Box

Published October 1, 2016 by bibliobeth

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Hello everyone! I recently did a post on the Ninja Book Swap which I’m an eager participant of but today I’d like to tell you about a new venture run by the lovely Bex who organises the Ninja Book Swap. She began a Kickstarter campaign to fund her idea, a quarterly subscription box – The Ninja Book Box, that ships worldwide, featuring books from independent publishers. Bex says:

“We aim to introduce excellent books (both backlist and new releases) particularly those which our team & the publishers we work with feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve, and help you find favourites in genres you wouldn’t necessarily pick up for yourselves. Supporting primarily UK based small businesses, each box will contain a book (often signed by the author & with additional material) plus at least two gift items and lots of other fun extras and will take its theme from the book. We want to support excellence and promote exploration and discovery in all aspects of the box. Subscribers will also gain access to lots of additional community perks.”

She first came up for the idea for the box when she couldn’t find a book subscription box service in the UK that didn’t primarily focus on young adult fiction. The point of The Ninja Book Box is that it will span a wide variety of genres from science fiction, historical fiction, mystery, graphic novels etc… and include books from authors or publishers that you may not necessarily notice or pick up on your own. Back to Bex:

“As you might expect from the co-founder of a book swap, I love getting books in the post. Subscription boxes particularly are the best, because while nobody enjoys getting random stuff they don’t want, receiving a box of books and related goodies based on a theme and genre which interests you can be a really great thing. The fun of opening the box and discovering all the goodies inside along with the added bonus of a surprise book is something that I really get excited about, but when I looked around I couldn’t find any boxes based in the UK which didn’t focus primarily on young adult fiction. There are many ‘one book a month’ type subscriptions available, but I wanted to have the more immersive experience of a box of things which relate to and teach you about the world of a book, rather than just another great book to add to my shelf. I like to have context for a book, particularly if it features an event, country, character or period I don’t know much about.”

Sounds awesome, right? I’ve been thinking about signing up to a book subscription box for a while and this one got all my bibliophile senses tingling. I’m happy to announce that Bex has surpassed her original target of £500 on Kickstarter and has at the time of writing, 40 backers for the project. For more information sign up to her newsletter, or check out the website for details of how to get the first box! To back Bex’s project (deadline OCTOBER 2ND) please visit her Kickstarter site HERE. I’m an enthusiastic backer of the project myself and am so excited to get the first box in November so look out for a special post sometime next month as I open the very first box.

Convinced yet? Well, how about this teaser of a potential box?? Click HERE.

Final words from Bex:

“With this project I am making something that I not only really want to exist but also which I absolutely believe in and think will make people happy. This box could be a thing of greatness. I will do my utmost to make it a phenomenal experience each quarter, with lots of awesome and crazy extras, but there’s no point in me doing that for nobody. I need you to support the project with your finances, your blogs, social media, and word of mouth, your recommendations and your belief. If you’ve been involved with any of my past and ongoing projects then you know that I can make this great, and if you haven’t then please check out the hashtags and the websites and trust me. Get behind me and the project and add a little bit of Ninja Joy to your life.”

A huge thank you to Bex for coming up with this brilliant idea and all her hard work in preparing for it. She has also arranged a fantastic giveaway for us lucky individuals where you can get The Ninja Book Box FOR FREE. What are you waiting for? Click the link below:
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Why not visit some other bloggers to get their take on the Ninja Book Box?

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Blog Tour – The Puppet Master by Abigail Osborne

Published October 1, 2016 by bibliobeth

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What’s it all about?:

Manipulated by fear and love…could you cut the strings and take back control?

Billie’s hiding from the world, believing it to be the only way to take control of her life as she lives in fear of the man who nearly destroyed her. But what she doesn’t realise is that she’s exactly where he wants her; isolated and afraid. A chance meeting with budding journalist Adam sparks a relationship that could free her from the terror that controls her. But will Adam be able to see the real Billie buried under her terror and pain?

Adam knows exactly who Billie is and is determined to expose her and get justice for the lives she ruined. But first, he needs to convince her to open up to him but as unwanted attraction and feelings blossom between them, Adam is forced to realise that all is not as it seems.

Most of their lives have been unknowingly governed by the desires and needs of someone who considers himself their master. He has influenced and shaped them for years, meticulously weaving a web of lies and control around them. Can Billie and Adam survive the betrayals in store and cut the strings that bind them?

One thing is for sure. The master wants his puppets back – and he’ll do anything to keep them.

What did I think?:

I was delighted when Faye Rogers asked if I’d like to be part of a blog tour for Abigail Osborne’s first self-published novel, The Puppet Master, especially when I read the thrilling synopsis. I do enjoy a good psychological thriller and this novel ticks all the relevant boxes in that respect but also had a darker and much more disturbing side to it compared to anything I’ve read for a little while.

Without trying to give away too much about the plot (as believe me this has to be read for yourself to uncover the whole horror of what goes on!) this novel tells the story of a broken and very vulnerable woman, Billie. Something terrible has happened to her in her past that has led to her living the life of a virtual recluse, interacting with just enough people to hold down a job but apart from that, hiding herself away, jumping at the slightest noise, frightened of everything and building a hard shell to protect herself from anyone who tries to get close.

Her sole enjoyment in life seems to be a weekly trip to a bookshop and a cafe where even there, she has a set routine of what she buys, where she sits etc. It is here that she meets a journalist called Adam who, unknown to her, has actually engineered the meeting himself to try and get to know her. He is aware of parts of Billie’s past and believes that she deserves to be punished because of it. However, he doesn’t expect to start falling in love with her and as he learns more about her, he also discovers her murky past may not be everything he has believed it to be.

That’s all I’d like to say about the plot. I embarked on this novel after reading very few reviews as I didn’t want anything to potentially be “spoiled.” I’m glad I did as the beauty of this book lies in uncovering the full extent of the horror yourself. And believe me, it’s horrific. Written from the viewpoints of both Billie and Adam, the story is so much more than it initially seems and as certain secrets come to light, I really began to sympathise with both characters for the events that they have experienced, although very different in their own ways both Billie and Adam’s lives have been affected irrevocably from events in their childhood.

I loved how the author made me feel about certain characters, especially when certain secrets are unearthed. I realised how strong a character is that I may previously have thought of as slightly weak, I changed my mind about another character that I may have had a slightly bad opinion of and I remained completely repulsed and horrified by the actions of another. Even the more minor characters like Billie’s mother and grandmother and Adam’s father had their own role to play and evoked similar emotions and judgements. From the beginning to the end, the story was compelling and very difficult to put down and I sincerely hope this isn’t the last we’ve seen of Abigail Osborne.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):

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AUTHOR INFORMATION

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Abbie was born in the Lake District and has moved all around the UK since then until she met her husband at University. She lives with him and their two crazy cats in the West Midlands. She is a Needs Assessor for students with disabilities and has her own book reviewing blog called Many Books, Many Lives. Even though she did English Literature at University it wasn’t until she started reviewing books that she realised how much she loved to write. The Puppet Master is her first novel but it certainly won’t be her last.

You can follow her on @Abigail_Author or @MBequalsML.

Website: http://www.abigailosborneauthor.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/abigailosborneauthor
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Abigail_Author

A huge thank you to everyone involved in this blog tour, I’ve had a great time doing it. Why not check out the rest of the stops on the tour where you’ll find some fantastic reviews from my fellow bloggers? The Puppet Master was self-published on 30th August 2016 and is available in both paperback and e-book format from all good bookshops now!

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31422186-the-puppet-master
Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01JMA4USQ

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