Friday 30 April 2021

Book Review | Lie Beside Me (Jonah Sheens #3) by Gytha Lodge | prettylittlewriter

 She's done it again.

Gytha Lodge has given us yet another thrilling, messy and down-right impressive detective novel in the shape of Lie Beside Me, the third instalment to the Detective Jonah Sheens series.

Now, I will say, there was less of Mr Sheens himself within this novel, which I was a little gutted about (I dream about him being this gorgeous man that I want to know A LOT more about), however, that certainly didn't take anything away from the plot, or the other characters that we had more of instead.

'Louise, a woman with a sad and lonely marriage and a taste for alcohol, finds herself in bed with another man after a night of heavy drinking. But this is no ordinary one-night stand. The man is covered in blood, and he isn't breathing.

With no memory of the night before, and how this stranger ended up in her bed, dead, Louise tries to piece together her memories before she goes to jail for his murder.

DCI Sheens and the team see her as their prime suspect, but it doesn't take long to discover that she's not the only person keeping secrets. And if she didn't do it, then who did?'

One part of this novel that I absolutely loved is how much more of DS Hanson's backstory we get. In the first two novels, it is touched upon, and you get the feeling that there's a lot more to her story, but we certainly get some answers in this one. Aside from DCI Sheens, she has become my favourite character (I also love Ben Lightman too, please can they get together Gytha?!).

The main storyline throughout this novel is pretty impressive. I was honestly kept guessing the whole, damn, time. One minute Louise had done it, and the next I was sure her husband had, and then I was even second-guessing her best friend (who sounds super-fun by the way).

The reason I said above that this book was messy, is because Louise is a pretty mess. She's all over the place, from her drinking, to her misplaced loyalty to her husband. You slowly learn her life with her husband, and then what actually happened that night at the same time Louise does.

I won't say anything else, as this is a spoiler-free zone, but I encourage everyone that reads this to pick up a copy of this book, and if you haven't read the first two either, then please grab those too!

I am so ready to see what's coming with book 4! 

4 and a half stars!

Thursday 22 April 2021

Book Review | The Girl With the Whispering Shadow by D. E. Night | prettylittlewriter

 I'm going to start by saying this is my new favourite book series.

I read the first novel, The Crowns of Croswald by D. E. Night back in March when the lovely Netgalley and Stories Untold Press gifted me an eARC. 
I was lucky enough to be gifted the second in the series also, The Girl With the Whispering Shadow, and yet again, I am thoroughly impressed.

The age range they give for this book is 13-17 years old, however, I honestly don't think you can give a maximum age limit on art, because no matter your age, you can be young at heart, and enjoy these things just as much as a child (if not more as you can appreciate the work that goes into it).

'After the events of the previous year, Ivy Lovely is anticipating her arrival back at the Halls of Ivy. However, with the Dark Queen still at large, Ivy has been told not to return to the Halls, and to stay somewhere hidden where the Dark Queen cannot find her. 
After arriving in a place called The Town, Ivy sets upon finding the remaining parts of the Kindred Stone, the only thing that can stop the Dark Queen from destroying everything she loves.'

I really enjoyed every single aspect of this book. The blossoming friendships between Ivy, Fyn, Rebecca and some new characters, such as Gretta and Glistle were heart-warming and left me aching for more (I really want some romance to happen, either Ivy and Fyn or Ivy and Glistle; either is fine with me!).

The description of The Town, the Quogo game and the creatures (including the Orbis) were magical and I could picture everything.

The world that D. E. Night has created is just beautiful. 

There are some similarities again to Harry Potter, but nothing at all that felt like she was copying it, everything has been made her own and unique and I am so impressed. 

I am so excited to read the next instalment in the series when I can get my hands on it; I need to know what else is in store for Ivy Lovely!

5 out of 5 stars!

Thursday 15 April 2021

Book Review | Eeny Meeny by M. J. Aldridge | prettylittlewriter

If you're a horror fan, this book is for you.

M. J. Aldridge has created a dangerous and sneaky villain that evades everyone until the very end.

'When two people go missing and end up locked in a room together with no food, no water, and no escape, they realise that they have been kidnapped and left for dead.
The only item left in the room with them is a gun, with a single bullet inside.

Only one person can leave that room alive.

DI Helen Grace is on the case when a young girl appears; dishevelled, malnourished and full of terror. After hearing of the brutal situation she was in, and more bodies being found along with other survivors, DI Grace realises this is a serial killer with a passion for games and a deadly motive.

It's a race against time to solve the murders and put a stop to the game before too many bodies drop.'

For a debut novel, it's absolutely brilliant.

DI Helen Grace is a great main character, with so much depth and mystery surrounding her, you desperately want to find out what has happened to her in the past that has impacted her life with such force that it show in her actions.

There are some good secondary characters also, especially Mark, a drunk, out of touch colleague that has family problems. You feel for him and his situation, and I was certainly hoping for a romance between him and DI Grace to blossom.

There are some pretty graphic scenes; think the SAW movies, with some gag-worthy moments that made me put the book down for a moment before I could carry on.

I was kept guessing the whole way through as to who the murderer was, and could NOT believe how it turned out. Incredibly shocking and brilliant.

Aldridge's writing style is easy, snappy and informative. The chapters are kept quite minimal, which means its quick and encourages you to read more as each chapter is often left on a cliff hanger.

I would highly recommend to anyone that loves a good crime thriller/horror (but please be aware it is quite gory, so if you have a delicate stomach, it may not be a suitable read).

4/5 stars

Thursday 1 April 2021

Book Review | The Last House on Needless Street by Catriona Ward | prettylittlewriter

I don't even know where to begin.
This novel has been mind-blowing. 

Catriona Ward is an absolute genius writer, and this is the most solid 5 star review I have ever given. 

The synopsis is as follows;
'This is the story of a murderer. A stolen child. Revenge.
This is the story of Ted, who lives with his daughter Lauren and his cat Olivia in an ordinary house at the end of an ordinary street.

All these things are true. And yet some of them are lies.

You think you know what's inside the last house on Needless Street. You think you've read this story before. But you're wrong. In the dark forest at the end of Needless Street, something lies buried. But it's not what you think...'
Initially when I started this novel, I told myself I knew how it was going to pan out. I knew Ted was going to be evil, blah blah; truth is, I knew nothing!

I loved that you had chapters from Olivia's point of view, something I personally have never seen before. She was a sassy little thing, and combine that with my love for cats anyway, I just adored her character.

Lauren was a character I found annoying, and I believe that is exactly how Catriona wanted to portray her, she was a child after all, and being kept away from the outside world with no human connection other than Ted, was bound to make her highly emotional.

Ted I completely misread. At first, I believed he was going to be one of these terrible men that kidnap young girls, killing them and moving on to the next.  
He was so completely and magnificently complex, and everything that happened to him as a child was completely horrifying and hardening. 

There were so many twists within this book that I honestly couldn't keep up. Every time there was a huge revelation, a few chapters later there was another! I was on the edge of my seat constantly, and I didn't want it to end.

It's also important to mention that some of the things within the novel may be triggering, there are parts which relate to child abuse and mental health problems, but each of these things were an integral part of the story that made it the incredible book that it is.

I won't say any more, as I do not want to share any spoilers, but I want to ask every single one of you that sees this, PLEASE READ THIS BOOK.

You will not regret it.

This book is also being adapted for film, so I am incredibly excited to see what comes of that!