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Category: Rating: 5/5

  1. Kat's Review of Maybe This Time by Jill Mansell

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    41h398AEUjL Synopsis: Mimi isn't looking for love when she spends a weekend in Goosebrook, the Cotswolds village her dad has moved to. And her first encounter with Cal, who lives there too, is nothing like a scene in a romantic movie - although she can't help noticing how charismatic he is. But Cal's in no position to be any more than a friend, and Mimi heads back to her busy London life.

    When they meet again four years later, it's still not to be. Cal is focusing on his family, and Mimi on her career. Then Cal dives into a potentially perfect new romance whilst Mimi's busy fixing other people's relationships.

    It seems as if something, or someone else, always gets in their way. Will it ever be the right time for both of them?

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

    Kat's Review: I have been reading Jill Mansell for many years and am rarely dissapointed, this latest book being no exception. Mimi is the star of the show and in the opening few chapters her home situation changes drastically. She promptly leaves London and makes her way to Goosebrook in the Cotswolds where her Dad Lives. With no clue what path her life will take she almost seems to be starting afresh. She ends up moving in with her Dad and his partner Marcus. Mimi is instantly likeable as is her Dad and Marcus. Goosebrook is described perfectly by Jill Mansell and it seemed like a beautiful and very friendly village to live in.

    What surprised me was that the timeline in this book is not what you expect and threw me as it's done over a number of years which means it doesn't have the 'traditional' feel of a timeline from this sort of genre (if that makes sense). No rushing involved and all the characters evolve over time. Mimi soon makes friends in the village and the host of characters that appear are varied and I loved absolutely all of them. Cal is a neighbour who is married with a daughter Cora, then there is Paddy, Lois and Felix and Felix mother Henrietta! The list goes on and before long I was invested with all the characters in the village.

    We see Mimi's life evolve and progress over the years and various friendships and relationships emerge. One of my favourite characters from the book was a character named CJ and I though this element of the story was absolutely brilliant. I found myself surprised at a book that was written with it's usual skill and depth but that felt so original and fresh. I can genuinely say I think this is one of the best books that Jill Mansell has written in a long time (and to be fair most of her books are 5 star anyway) but this had a really unique feel to it. I absolutely loved this and would highly recommend it

  2. Kat's Review of Fatal Promise by Angela Marsons (Kim Stone #9)

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    51u4lWvS3iL._SY346_Synopsis: Eeeny meeny, miney, moe. Who lives, who dies only I know.

    When the body of a doctor is discovered brutally murdered in local woodland, Detective Kim Stone is shocked to discover the victim is Gordon Cordell – a man linked to a previous case she worked on involving the death of a young school girl. Gordon has a chequered past, but who would want him dead?

    As the investigation gets underway, Gordon’s son is involved in a horrific car crash which leaves him fighting for his life. Kim's sure this was no accident. 

    Then the body of a woman is found dead in suspicious circumstances and Kim makes a disturbing link between the victims and Russells Hall Hospital. The same hospital where Gordon worked.

    With Kim and her team still grieving the loss of one of their own, they’re at their weakest and facing one of the most dangerous serial killers they’ve ever encountered. Everything is on the line. Can Kim keep her squad together and find the killer before he claims his next victim?

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

    Kat's Review: I actually feel sad that I don't get the time to read as often as I once did, especially when you read a book as good as this one. I ready this straight off the back of book 8 and am so pleased I did so I am not up to date with all the Kim Stone books. After what happened in book 8, I wondered how this book would fare and if we would see any additional characters. Sure enough with the loss of Dawson still fresh in everybody's mind, Penn arrives as the new boy. Bryant, Kim and Stacey all have their own way of dealing with the loss of a close friend but this book feels like it strips back all the characters to their bare bones and I absolutely LOVED that.

    The case they are working on is the murder of  Gordon Cordell who coincidently appeared in the last book. It feels like Marsons is wrapping up the last book and getting all the characters ready for the next new chapter. If I am being totally honest I enjoyed the storyline surrounding the murders but the character stories were just so much more appealing in this latest installment. I also loved the second thread running through which is that of a missing teenager and Stacey decides to pursue this in addition to the current case.

    This latest book is pure magic and is probably one of my favourites that Angie has produced. I think after the last book I wondered where she would take the story and characters but she has raised the bar once again for herself (not sure she can reach any higher) with a tense and utterly compelling read. I cannot WAIT for the next book and think the team has a real fresh start ready for the next case now. An absolute corker of a book and an amazing series, one which I would highly recommend!

  3. Kat's Review of Our Little Lies by Sue Watson

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    41kbesu2jeL._SY346_  Synopsis: Marianne has a life others dream of. A beautiful townhouse on the best street in the neighbourhood. Three bright children who are her pride and joy.

    Sometimes her past still hurts: losing her mother early, growing up in foster care. But her husband, Simon, is always there. A successful surgeon, he’s the envy of every woman they’ve ever met. Flowers, gifts, trips to France: nothing is too good for his family.

    Then Simon says another woman’s name. The way he lingers on it, Caroline, gives Marianne a shudder of suspicion, but she knows it’s nothing – she can’t entertain this flash of paranoia.

    In the old days, she’d have distracted herself by excelling at work, but Marianne left her glamorous career when she married. She’d speak to a friend, but she’s too busy with her children and besides, Simon doesn’t approve of the few she has left.

    It’s almost by accident that Marianne starts to learn more about Caroline. But once started, she can’t stop, because what she finds makes her wonder: is the question she should be asking not ‘should she be jealous’, but... ‘should she be scared?’

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

  4. Kat's Review of Coming Home to Maple Cottage by Holly Martin

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    Holly MArtin - Coming Home to Maple Cottage Synopsis: Isla Rosewood is creating a new life for herself and her sweet nephew Elliot in their cosy, yellow-brick family cottage, brimming with special memories. Living in Sandcastle Bay was never part of Isla’s plan but, after her brother Matthew’s tragic accident, her whole world changed as she unexpectedly became a mother to the little boy she adores so much.

    Leo Jackson was always known as Matthew’s fun-loving and wild best friend. But now Matthew is gone, it’s time to put his colourful past behind him. His role as Elliot’s godfather is the most important thing to him. And even though Leo and Isla are two very different people, they both want to give Elliot the childhood he deserves.

    As the three of them enjoy time together watching fireworks, baking cakes and collecting conkers, Isla begins to see a softer side to charming Leo, with his twinkling eyes and mischievous sense of humour. And, despite herself, she begins to fall for him.

    But does Leo feel the same way? Isla knows their situation is complicated but is it too complicated for true love… or will the year end with a happy new beginning for them all?

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

  5. Kat's Review of The Forgotten by Casey Kelleher (Byrne Family #3)

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    Casey Kelleher The Forgtotten Synopsis: Nancy Byrne might be the head of the notorious Byrne crime family, but she’s determined to give her little daughter, Scarlett, the best start possible.

    After the death of her beloved father, the notorious gangster Jimmy Byrne, nothing’s stopping Nancy from making money on her own terms – even if she has to combine motherhood with providing for her entire family. But with enemies at their door, she’ll do whatever it takes to protect her loved ones.

    But then comes the day when Scarlett goes missing, snatched by a stranger during a trip to the local park, and Nancy’s world is torn apart. Amidst the terror of losing her precious daughter, Nancy is sure of only two things. Someone has taken her daughter … and when she finds them, there’s going to be hell to pay.

    Can she find Scarlett – before it’s too late? Or will Nancy’s life of crime come back to haunt her in the worst way possible?

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

    Kat's Review: I am massively behind with so many authors and books and considering I was desperate to read this and have had it so long it has taken me ages! However, when I finally did get around to it (last night) it soon became apparebt I was in for a late night. For those that maybe haven't read the previous 2 books, could you read as a standalone? I guess so, but I would also hazard a guess that the book would seem slightly over the top in parts and slightly confusing in places. I think to really appreciate this you have to have read the backstory in the previous two books.

  6. Kat's Review of The Deep Lonely by Sean Black (Ty Johnson Novella)

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    41XxuaAjVPL._SY346_Synopsis: Ty Johnson has made the transition from the US Marine Corp to a succesful career as a private security specialist. But not all of his former comrades have been so lucky.

    When the news of an armed siege at a nearby emergency room flashes on screen, Ty recognizes Pete Green, one of his old Marine buddies. Ty knows that he has to move fast if he’s to save his friend’s life.

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

    Kat's Review: Okay people, if you haven't read the Ryan Lock and Ty Johnson series by Sean Black then there is seriously something wrong...this is one of the best series of books written and is hugely under-rated. I am not necessarily a lover of the short novella type books (in this case a 17,000 word short book) but for these guys...I make an exception.

    Not a lot to say about this particular little nugget of a book except that it's brilliant and will give you an insight into the sort of guy Ty Johnson is. I already know what sort of guy he is along with his partner Ryan Lock and this seems more like something to whet the appetite until the next full length novel comes out (which I think is October). I would highly recommend people read not only this novella but the whole series as it's awesome! One thing I will say is that Ryan Lock gets more airtime and it's great seeing Ty get all of the attention. I would always read a book about either character but their strength is when they work together!

  7. Kat's Review of A Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter (Will Trent #8)

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    download Synopsis: With the discovery of a murder at an abandoned construction site, Will Trent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation is brought in on a case that becomes much more dangerous when the dead man is identified as an ex-cop.

    Studying the body, Sara Linton—the GBI’s newest medical examiner and Will’s lover—realizes that the extensive blood loss didn't belong to the corpse. Sure enough, bloody footprints leading away from the scene indicate there is another victim—a woman—who has vanished . . . and who will die soon if she isn’t found.

    Will is already compromised, because the site belongs to the city’s most popular citizen: a wealthy, powerful, and politically connected athlete protected by the world’s most expensive lawyers—a man who’s already gotten away with rape, despite Will’s exhaustive efforts to put him away.

    But the worst is yet to come. Evidence soon links Will’s troubled past to the case . . . and the consequences will tear through his life with the force of a tornado, wreaking havoc for Will and everyone around him, including his colleagues, family, friends—and even the suspects he pursues.

    Kat's Rating: 5/5

    Kat's Review: Something VERY strange happened when I started reading this book. So I picked it up, read a couple of chapters and put it down. This happened on three occassions and with many months in between picking it up again. For some reason I just coudn't seem to engage, and thenf inally I just forced myself to continue reading. By the time I had got past those first few strangely non-engaging chapters (for me anyway) I was away as per normal. It was incredibly strange as I am a huge fan of this author, maybe I wasn't in the correct mindset the first few times. However, I am so glad I pushed on through my initial reluctance as this ended up being another cracking book in this brilliant series. 

    Will Trent is a very likeable character, as is his current girlfriend Sara. However his wife Angie is a different kettle of fish. I actually love reading about her but despise her as a character. However this time around she seems to be front and centre with this latest  storyline. A dead cop's body is found and when Sara, Will and his partner Faith and their boss Amanda are at the scene it becomes apparent that all the blood there is not from just the victim. 

    I absolutely love this series and it wasn't until the story startes to unfold that I was reminded of just why I love it so much. Sara and Will are a good match but I love the fact that Will has SO many issues one of which is his evil and manipulative wife Angie. In adiditon I'm a huge fan of Amanda and it was so great to catch up with all of them. The story (once past the first few chapters) was full of pace and grit and its usual dark and disturbing content all of which made me totally an utterly engrossed. This was another cracking book in the series and I am looking forward to reading another Karin Slaughter book. 

  8. Kat's Review of The Secret of Happiness by Lucy Diamond

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    Lucy Diamond The Secrets of Happiness Synopsis: The best things in life . . . can be just around the corner

    Rachel and Becca aren't real sisters, or so they say. They are stepsisters, living far apart, with little in common. Rachel is the successful one: happily married with three children and a big house, plus an impressive career. Artistic Becca, meanwhile, lurches from one dead-end job to another, shares a titchy flat, and has given up on love.

    The two of them have lost touch, but when Rachel doesn't come home one night, Becca is called in to help. Once there, she quickly realizes that her stepsister's life is not so perfect after all: Rachel's handsome husband has moved out, her children are rebelling, and her glamorous career has taken a nosedive. Worst of all, nobody seems to have a clue where she might be.

    As Becca begins to untangle Rachel's secrets, she is forced to confront some uncomfortable truths about 
    her own life, and the future seems uncertain.

    But sometimes happiness can be found in the most unexpected places . . .

    Kat's Rating: 5/5