Archive for the ‘Debut novel’ Category

Paperback Original &eBook Published: 23 February 2017


My Thoughts & Review: 

The discovery of tiny bones in the hem of a wedding dress is strange enough, but to then ascertain that they are a baby’s bones is enough to turn a simple break-in into a full scale investigation for the Guards in Dublin.
Detective Cathy Connolly and her boss Inspector O‘Rourke have their work cut out for them tracking down answers to solve this grisly case.
Throw in the mysterious appearance of a fugitive killer from Las Vegas, who is intent on tying up loose ends in Dublin and the Guards have more than enough to deal with.   This is the first of instalment of the Garda Cathy Connolly series and it definitely doesn‘t hold back.  The writing it superb, the plot is interesting and gripping, characters are multidimensional and easy to relate to.  The various elements of the story are well written.  Masterfully weaving together the tales of Mary‘s past and present dementia like struggles, Zoe‘s world slowly falling to pieces around her and the personal life of Cathy Connolly mixing with her professional duties.  It would be easy to assume that something would get lost in the myriad of characters and details but as far as I was concerned, nothing did.  The detail in this book was incredible, even the intricacies of the art work created by Zoe was thoroughly detailed, so much so that I could almost imagine the canvases. 

The chemistry and camaraderie between Connolly and O’Rourke is a delight to read, they are a great pairing, and the hints to their shared history open up the opportunity for Sam Blake to go so many ways with this series, I cannot wait to see what she has for us with book two.   

Secrets and lies rarely follow a linear path, the ones in this book scaled the chart of complexity and just when you thought that the secret was as dark as it got, another layer is peeled away and for some characters the truth was too much to bear.  
With so many twists and turns, both expected and unexpected, this book is entirely engrossing.

I enjoyed this book so much that at just over half way in I was already recommending it to friends that I thought would appreciate it.  

You can buy a copy of Little Bones here.  
About the Author:
Sam Blake is a pseudonym for Vanessa Fox O’Loughlin, the founder of The Inkwell Group publishing consultancy and the hugely popular national writing resources website Writing.ie. She is Ireland’s leading literary scout who has assisted many award winning and bestselling authors to publication. Vanessa has been writing fiction since her husband set sail across the Atlantic for eight weeks and she had an idea for a book.

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  Georgia bakes and writes.: A novella 

Georgia Bakes and Writes


Author: Grethe Tozer
Published: 19 November 2015
Reviewed: 26th November 2015
What Milo Saw by Virginia Macgregor

Read more at: http://www.london24.com/entertainment/book_review_what_milo_saw_by_virginia_macgregor_1_3750981
Copyright © LONDON24

Copy purchased via Amazon

  5 out of 5 stars 

Georgia is a divorced single mum trying to keep life going on as normal as possible for daughter Spencer. Spencer has needs that require careful consideration and time, for her things have to be a certain way for her to cope and Georgia is damned if she’ll let anything get in the way of her little girl’s happiness, so if that means she’s late for work because she has to put her daughter first then she will.
When Georgia loses her job she desperately tries to think of something that will keep her busy whilst Spencer is at school. A plan is made, a blog is started and things take off for Georgia.

Without ruining the story (or ending!) for anyone, I won’t say much more about the plot, other than to say I absolutely loved it. It felt so real to life, the misunderstanding, the confusion, the hurt feelings, the blunt honesty are all things we deal with and seeing Georgia soldier through them was heartwarming.

For a debut novella this was impressive writing, the characters were interesting, engaging and real, we all have that friend like Iris that brings a bottle of wine over, reminds us that idiots are always idiots but buoy us up and help us to move forwards.
Having not had any experience of children with any special or additional needs this was an interesting read, just a glimpse into the life that Georgia had with Spencer made me realise just how hard it must be on a parent caring for a child with autism, but how rewarding it can be when they can achieve something like Spencer did in the story.

I really hope that some of the delicious recipes surface, my mouth was watering at the thought of some of them! And I can’t wait to try making my banana bread with some yoghurt to see the difference it will make!

Despite being a short read, this was wonderfully enjoyable. It held my attention all the way to the end, and it had an ending that brought a happy sigh and a smile. It’s the sort of read you could happily curl up with on the sofa (or other chosen reading place) with a cuppa (or hot chocolate) and just relax. The pace was good, things moved along well, narrative didn’t drag, plot was interesting and engaging, and as I’ve mentioned, I adored the characters (especially Spencer’s blunt honesty!), in all it was an enjoyable, heart warming read and I would definitely recommend it!

I would have no hesitation to recommend this to anyone that enjoys Romance, YA, Fiction or a short and sweet read.

If you would like to read this, a copy can be purchased via Amazon Georgia Bakes and Writes (UK Kindle Version)

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The Hidden Legacy

Author : Graham Minett
Published: 05 November 2015
Reviewed: 22 October 2015
What Milo Saw by Virginia Macgregor

Read more at: http://www.london24.com/entertainment/book_review_what_milo_saw_by_virginia_macgregor_1_3750981
Copyright © LONDON24

Copy kindly supplied by Bonnier Publishing / Twenty7 Books in return for an honest review via NetGalley.

5 out of 5 stars



1966. A horrifying crime at a secondary school, with devastating consequences for all involved.

2008. A life-changing gift, if only the recipient can work out why . . .

Recently divorced and with two young children, Ellen Sutherland is up to her elbows in professional and personal stress. When she’s invited to travel all the way to Cheltenham to hear the content of an old woman’s will, she’s far from convinced the journey will be worthwhile.

But when she arrives, the news is astounding. Eudora Nash has left Ellen a beautiful cottage worth an amount of money that could turn her life around. There’s just one problem – Ellen has never even heard of Eudora Nash.

Her curiosity piqued, Ellen and her friend Kate travel to the West Country in search of answers. But they are not the only ones interested in the cottage, and Ellen little imagines how much she has to learn about her past . . .

Cleverly weaving the past and the present together we read how a young boy commits a horrific crime in 1966, before moving to 2008 where we meet Ellen Sutherland, a recently divorced mother of two struggling to get her kids to move in the morning, wear a school jumper and handle the stresses of work and family.
When a letter arrives asking her to contact a solicitor in the West Country she is understandably confused and intrigued in equal measures.  She takes the advise of the solicitor and travels down to his office to hear that she’s been left a substantial inheritance in the Will of Eudora Nash.  Eudora Nash is not a name she knows, not someone she can recall ever meeting, or knowing through any friends or family.

As the story of Ellen and Eudora unfolds we weave cleverly back in time to the court case of the young lad, his subsequent life after that incident and how his family moved on with their lives, where they went mentally and physically from there. 

There is so much that could be said about this book, and I find myself struggling to say much more without giving anything away, this really is a fantastic book that screams out to be read. 

Both stories move along quickly, characters involved are engaging and interesting, and there is a definite sense of needing to read on to see what happens next.  The location descriptions are fantastic, I found myself imagining Eudora’s cottage and the breathtaking views, if only it were a place I could visit!
At no point did I feel I wanted to read ahead, this book thoroughly captured my attention and held it.  There were no points to me where it dragged or was dull to read, each page deepened the intrigue and mystery and I had to keep reading to find out what happened.

For a debut novel, this is impressive work, I really do hope that Minett can carry forward this level of writing into another book, he is definitely an author to add to the list and keep an eye out for future books! 
I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone that enjoys Fiction, Thrillers, and Crime Fiction genres.  In fact, I would go so far as to insist you buy this book. 
I would like to thank Joel Richardson and Bonnier Publishing / Twenty7 Books for the copy of this book in return for an honest review and if you would like to buy a copy, this book will be published on 5th November 2015, a copy can be purchased here The Hidden Legacy (UK Kindle Version)

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