I am slowly falling back in love with my Kindle.

Physical copies of books are the bomb, but they take up a lot of room. Especially if you read close to 100 books a year. I’m 23 – 2300 books is too many to store. The Kindle is definitely a method of space control. Oh, and it’s tangerine coloured which is also cool. This is one one of the first books I downloaded on my new Kindle and it’s a stunner. Shall we dive in? (Or surf in?)

The Wave at Hanging Rock

Blurb

Jesse tells the story of his coming-of-age on the wild Atlantic coast, where he fails to notice the disturbing behaviour of his best friend.

Natalie’s husband goes missing at sea in circumstances which don’t make sense. And while she searches for him, it seems she also has something to hide.

You’ll be shocked at how Jesse and Natalie’s stories come crashing together. And at the end, you won’t see the twist coming.

The Wave at Hanging Rock is a powerful and intelligent thriller that will grip you from the first line, and keep you guessing till the very last page.

The Wave at Hanging Rock

My Review

The book follows two seemingly unrelated stories. Jesse and his friends surfing in sublime Wales and Natalie a psychologist whose husband has oddly disappeared. We follow the first person perspective from Jesse during childhood. He spends most of his days surfing with Darren and John. Fishing for crabs and fighting for the best waves. Natalie’s story is told from the present. After her husband fails to arrive home she continues her life the best she can. Only for eight years later the disappearance of Jim raises its ugly head. Jesse and Natalie’s are about to collide and there’s nothing to stop it.

The writing is dark and foreboding. The sections of surfing really drew me into the writing and are writtrn really well. Throughout it has an intense feeling – Jesse has a cloudy and murky personality. John and Darren also have quirks. Darren struggles to keep up with the other two and John is downright terrifying. His dominating personality kept me on edge throughout. All of the character dialogue was written well – it felt real which I liked. Natalie’s character is well built too. She has bite and drive but also a vulnerability. The transitions from present to past work well and don’t jar. Thumbs up there.

At the beginning it’s slow read and takes time to build speed but it builds. The second half of the book I galloped through and found myself desperate to get to the end. The ending will probably upset you – it has many on Goodreads. I’m going to let you decide whether it works. (But let me know in the comments.)

The Wave at Hanging Rock

Final Thoughts

This is a dark psychological thriller. It will keep you second guessing and trying to put your finger on the final ending. The characters are dark and brutal but ultimately likeable. I definitely want to read into this author more. He’s one to watch I think.

Goodreads Amazon 

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Helllllllo readers, it’s another day, another dip into Lizzo’s Amazon history, which sounds a little odd. I’ve read so many books and yet I have reviewed so few of them. Not completely sure how I’ve missed so many but I’m getting round to then. This is a book I read in 2013 which is a long time ago but I really remember this one. It was one that I couldn’t finish when reading and that’s maybe why I chose not to. But I’m pretty sure of my final outcome so lets give it a go.

Days before their wedding, during their last separate nights of hard-partying singledom, Emma Holden’s fiance has gone missing. Not only has Dan disappeared without a trace, his brother is found beaten and left for dead, and may not wake up from a coma. Without any evidence, suspicion for the attempted murder falls on Dan – but Emma refuses to believe his guilt.

When crime scene photos get splashed across the pages of London tabloids, Emma knows that someone is following her. Watching her. It is an old, familiar feeling, though no less terrifying. A long-hidden family secret seems to unite Emma’s troubled past with her dangerous present. As time runs out her trust in her family, her friends — and Dan — faces an ultimate test.

So, as the blurb suggests the book follows the complete nightmare that happens to Emma Holden. One night her fiancé disappears, and all that is left is the battered and bruised body of his brother in their London apartment. To add to the horror she is now being stalked and is under the gaze of someone who is watching her every move. Emma must uncover the truth not only to find out what happened to her finance but also clear his name as to the attack of his brother (Richard.)

So how did this turn into a DNF at the time for me? Well, it’s just a bit confusing really. It looks like we’re in for a really exciting thriller/who dunnit. Well it just feels a little non-committal. Firstly the main characters are really tiring; Emma is so confusing, waspish and deluded to be completely honest with you. Her finance goes missing and our little Emma doesn’t contact any of her family or his family – for a minute you would be forgiven thinking Emma did it if she wasn’t so dim-witted. At times she flouts the law a number of times (not that the police notice,) and she constantly makes silly comments and she very rarely visits her fiance’s poor brother.

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There were so many characters that did so many things I didn’t expect them too; very rarely the police stepped in, other than to clear up the mess Emma was making. Richard (the brother,) bless him, came very close to being killed in the hospital due to no-one seemingly noticing a complete stranger walking over to a potential murder victim and just you know bend completely over him – no one even noticed. The police, the nurses, no ID required – WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THIS BOOKISH WORLD.

In terms of the writing the author kept repeating and repeated what had happened as though the reader had simultaneously forgotten the last page they had read, or maybe it was for Emma’s lack of brain, seeing as she seemed to have forgotten her fiancés brother was desperately ill in hospital. It’s also very bitty – for example at one point Emma is in a rowdy pub and her phone rings; she thinks the conversation won’t be heard so she goes outside and then repeats this to the person on the end of the line of the phone; you can understand how frustrating that is. Allllll the way through.

The ending parts (which I read through before reviewing) are also equally odd; there were so many things to be said, so many people to reconcile and yet there was none of it; nothing was really said. There was so much potential to make the ending really warm and engaging but instead it fell completely flat. It was such a shame as well because there was space there to bring the book together and make the reader feel more engaged at the end but it was missed. 

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There were also lots of odd parts in the book that made little sense; at one point a character seems to talk to himself, one chapter makes no sense at all, the police tale reasoned an alibi safe from a woman that suffers from dementia and used her as a viable witness. The version I read was littered with mistakes, errors, spelling wobbles. These have since apparently been wiped out but at the time of reading this only added to the confusion.

I’ve gone on long enough; this book really struggled. I think there’s potentially a really good book here based on the really basic plot-line but for everything else, this really doesn’t work at all.

Liiiiiinnnkkks

Amazon

Goodreads

 

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Helllllllo readers, hope you’re well and all happy bunnies. I’m on day 5 of dry February which feels pretty damn awesome still although tomorrow could be a struggle after the week I’ve had. However, today, it’s still Thursday but I’ve got a fantastic book to tell you about. Without further Lizzo warbling, onto the review.

Women are turning up dead in the rural outskirts of Virginia, killed in grotesque ways, and when the FBI is called in, they are stumped. A serial killer is out there, his frequency increasing, and they know there is only one agent good enough to crack this case: Special Agent Riley Paige.

Riley is on paid leave herself, recovering from her encounter with her last serial killer, and, fragile as she is, the FBI is reluctant to tap her brilliant mind. Yet Riley, needing to battle her own demons, comes on board, and her hunt leads her through the disturbing subculture of doll collectors, into the homes of broken families, and into the darkest canals of the killer’s mind. As Riley peels back the layers, she realizes she is up against a killer more twisted than she could have imagined. In a frantic race against time, she finds herself pushed to her limit, her job on the line, her own family in danger, and her fragile psyche collapsing.

Yet once Riley Paige takes on a case, she will not quit. It obsesses her, leading her to the darkest corners of her own mind, blurring the lines between hunter and hunted. After a series of unexpected twists, her instincts lead her to a shocking climax that even Riley could not have imagined.

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I’m going to do something a little less Lizzy and going to go straight into the review because I think the blurb gives enough away already. The first thing I have to mention is this book was free, and I know what you’re thinking free books are normally a little bit watery. This is full on whack – immediately we are thrown into the action; there’s barely time to take a breath and we’re in the horrifying atmosphere, tied up with a young woman who is terrified for her life. From here we’re taking on a rip-rolling adventure, with red-herrings, murders, terrifying back-stories and intriguing characters.

In terms of the characters we follow the story of Riley and her partner in the FBI Bill. Riley is struggling with her past and a terrifying event that happened on her last case. Currently taking leave from the force she is pulled back to her job needed for her intense ability to put herself in the shoes of the murderer. Her past story is fed into the tale to add intrigue and interest and I did wonder whether I was reading the second book in the series (I wasn’t I must add.) Bill is her lovable partner who has a lot of respect for Riley and constantly supports her. Both help to give the tale depth.

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In terms of plot it does move quickly and I have seen a number of reviews that have commented it moves too fast. For me, I don’t think it does although I think an extra 150-200 page wouldn’t have hurt I’m not sure that it wouldn’t have reaaaaly added anything and could have been a little bit of over-waffling so I’m not complaining. The writing is really excellent; it builds suspense and mystery and also weaves in a number of sub-plots that are well-written and add to the drama. The writing is gutsy, full of intrigue and exciting elements. It honestly drew me and kept me there.

The only wobbles come towards the end which I will try to explain without spoiling the plot. We see the backstory of the main character and how it affects her and yet she follows the complete same actions knowing how dangerous it is. I did actually take a minute to stop and say to myself ‘girl – what are you doing’ because it felt like exactly the same actions all over again. Additionally there are parts that feel a little over the top and we do spend a lot of time in the main characters mind for me it worked but only just. It’s a little bit dense.

However the ending is superb and will 100% be tuning in to the next book, if it’s half as good as this one, this reader will be a happy bunny.

Linnnnnks

Amazon

Goodreads

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Hello readers, hope you’re well. It’s been a bit of a crazy week so apologies if I’ve been a little quiet. Getting my head back in the blogging game after Christmas took a little longer than I thought and I’ve just has 564758385757 post ideas but no time to get them all down. Saying that having the time off has meant lots more reading time (despite the reading slump) and I’ve been reading some stunning books – today’s is pretty wonderful, enjoy!

Independent troubleshooter, Alex Leksin, is recruited by Prime Minister Saidov when the plan to reduce Russia’s reliance on an ever more hostile Europe is put at risk. Hell bent on expansion, President Karpev’s strategy is first to shift the markets for his country’s vast energy resources to the East and Saidov has been charged with overseeing a planned pipeline for Russia’s oil through Turkmenistan and Afghanistan to access these markets. Failure could mean catastrophe, spreading the conflict raging in the Middle East to Russia’s own borders.

Against a background of political corruption, state-sponsored terrorism and increased Taliban insurgency, Leksin moves on to Turkmenistan, one of the world’s most sinister countries, right at the heart of Central Asia. Initially his enquiries reveal nothing to cause alarm. Other factors, though, suggest otherwise: wherever Leksin goes, someone tries to kill him; people in a position to help him are assassinated; and information turns out to be misinformation.

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So you’ll have to forgive me a little because this is the second book in the series and I don’t believe I’ve read the first – it’s been one of those days. This book follows the protagonist Alex Leksin who is a trouble-shooter working for both Prime Minister Saidov and President Karpev. His job is simply to investigate and monitor the deal that will see Russia moving its vast energy resources to the East. Leksin is put in charge of making sure everything is above-board so to speak. However, there’s a bit of a time constraint, as Leksin only has twelve days to report back before Karpev needs to sign the contract with the President in Ashgabat – you still following? As Leksin continues his investigations he finds that there are people on his trail that will stop at nothing to take him off the grid and assassinate him and the knowledge that he has collected.

So now we’ve got through the nitty-gritty plot onto the good bits. Did I enjoy this book? Yes, although I’m not sure I understood all of it. When it comes to political, action books I do struggle sometimes. There is a lot of plot to understand and to keep your finger on and at times I did find myself confused as to what exactly was going on. However Eccles has created a really strong character in Leksin. Easy to warm to and a strong exciting character I really enjoyed reading along and learning more about the corruption of powers and the dangers that were constantly playing with our main characters.

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It is also important to know that this book is incredibly well-researched. It appears that Eccles has spent a large portion of his life living and working in Kazakhstan Russia and it really shows. The descriptions and the detail put in is of a wonderful quality and it adds flair to the writing – you can tell that this really is a passion of the authors and it comes through strongly on the page. It’s not just seen in the action and the political parts but also in the parts that talk about culture and the lifestyles that are found in the different locations of the book – whether we’re in Russia or in Turkmenistan it’s got so much flavour and understanding that can only come from real-life experiences.

Although it has a very real feeling to it there are parts that are a little, over-the-top. For me, this added to the plot because there were parts that were quite heavy and with these more exciting, action style interludes it helped to break-up the heavier bits of text. The book does include a lot of twists and turns and I enjoyed the juxtaposition between the two governments in Russia and Turkman and I think the author did a great job in explaining it in a way that was interesting and  exciting. I’m sure there are bits that I missed in terms of detail but I felt I got a very rounded experience from the book as a whole.

So would I recommend this? Yes, definitely. I not only really enjoyed this book but I felt that I learnt something. It’s been sold as a thriller but it is more than that. It’s a literary experience and one I really, really enjoyed. Thumbs up and can’t wait to see what the author writes next.

Linnnnks

Goodreads

Amazon

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Helllllllo readers and happy Thursday – it’s an odd day of the week for me because it’s so close to the weekend but still so far away. It’s been an interesting week – a lot of ups and downs and still trying to slowly get through this quarter life crisis. I’m currently using the excuse of not yet passing my driving test but I’m getting closer and closer to passing and then I have to start making life decisions – like nuh-uh, still not ready. For now imma going to ignore all of that and bring you a review – enjoy bookworms.

It’s been eight years since Gen Loxley lost her daughter, Beth: eight years of grief in which nothing’s really moved forward, for all that her husband, Art, wills it to. Gen, once a writer of novels, has settled in to a life of half-hearted teaching, while Art makes his name and their fortune – and pressures her into trying IVF once again. For Gen, it seems a cruel act of replacement; life without Beth is unthinkable, unbearable – but still it goes on. And then a woman arrives on Gen’s doorstep, saying the very thing she longs to hear: that her daughter was not stillborn, but was spirited away as a healthy child, and is out there, waiting to be found…So why is Art reluctant to get involved? To save his wife from further hurt? Or something much more sinister? What is the truth about Beth Loxley?

As the blurb suggests the book follows the life of Gen and Art who terribly lost their little girl when she was born stillborn; something that Gen is yet to recover from. As Art moves on with his life Gen is trapped in the grief of her daughter’s death – however when a lady arrives on her doorstep tell her, her sister was there at the birth and the little girl was fine alarm bells start ringing. As Gen starts to dig into the history of the birth, her life is turned upside down as she struggles to come to terms with the fact her baby may be alive – is Art involved? How could the doctor have orchestrated anything like that? What did happen the day her daughter was born – read le book to find out.

Did I like this book? Difficult question – it did at the start pull me in, Gen is written with gusto and understanding although quite a tiring character at the beginning she begins to grow with every page turn – gutsy and determined she really grew on me as a character. Art is also really well written – mysterious, a total gentleman but quick to act he really gave this book strength and helped to cement my interest. In terms of plot the book the book does move with pace; the story kicks in very quickly and immediately we start pulling together clues as we discover what really happened in the hospital that night and I did find myself gabbling through.

Although predictable there is an original storyline and the plot moves with pace. The writing is evocative and mixes in a number of interweaving character plot-lines and the secondary characters are built up so that they become more involved with the main premise of the book. One major wobble though was the author tended to really build up a scene in a couple of chapters and then the actual scene would be over maybe in a couple of lines. I think if these scenes had been slowed down it would have created a much stronger impact and helped to tell the story better on the whole.

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However, and this seems to be the same as many of the readers I’ve seen review this book it is mindbogglingly far-fetched lapsing on pretty ridiculous. As the plot grows we encounter a number of murders, attempted kidnaps and a whole lot of mixed up character relationships. It felt a little like the author thought how the hell do I sort all of this mess out. I did enjoy it but the ability to believe what was happening meant I read it without really investing in the plot or the characters which was a little tiring because I had made it so far through.

Once the story is over it’s a very abrupt ending which although underwhelming was the only way it could have really ended – we then suddenly fly a number years later and Gen is  recounting all that has happened – the ending is a little dark which I liked but it was overwhelmed with the feeling of it all being too over-dramatised to really make me feel anything at all.

Overall I did enjoy reading this – but almost from the sense of what on earth is going on towards the end. Would I recommend buying a copy of this book and searing it out no, but if you saw in the library and thought I want something a little dramatic and over the top with touch of romance and suspense – maybe.

Linnnnnnks

Amazon

Goodreads