Reading my Collection

2017 – WHOLE year without buying books


christopher brookmyre

Two girls went partying, only one came home.


BOOK FEELINGS: Through this whole experience, I have tried to get into different books and went through solid 6 months of binge listening to Steampunk (see Gail Carriger and CJ Archer), I read some Autobiographies (On your marks, Get set, Sue…) and even reread Harry Potter for the billionth time. The truth is I love a mystery, there I said it, I am a murder junkie. Different authors bring different twists to the genre, Elly Griffiths adds the archeological element, Chris Brookmyre is witty but clever and Ali Carter is my new detective love. I did not expect this to be so good, so gripping or brutal, I didn’t expect to want to turn it off as much as I wanted to turn it up. I needed to listen to this…and yes it is a psychological thriller!!genre-map-genres1

REVIEW: ‘Their Lost Daughters’ by Joy Ellis was brilliant. I’m worried my review won’t do it justice, so many twists, turns, and wonderful characters.

This starts with a missing girl found dead, a drugged shoeless girl found on the fens and the relentless pressure of a cold case by Kenya Black’s mother. DI Rowan Jackman and his DS, Marie Evans are suddenly in the spotlight and tracking a series of illegal parties rife with underage drinking.

Jackman and Evans are trying to work out if the girls are linked, why a local legend is haunting them and who is responsible for the ‘children’s ward’!


Rowan Jackman is honest, relentless and everything you want your detective to be; he looks after his team, works too hard and never gives up. Marie is astute, Amazonian and goes everywhere on a motorbike, she cares too much and wants to catch the killer just as much as Rowan. In this installment, local boy Gary joins their team and Rosie goes undercover with her great attention to detail crazy memory and baby face!

This team takes on a prolific case and takes the reader with them. The whole cast is strong, everyone adds something and I found this a great start to the series (although technically book 2). There were light elements to keep the tension real and I can’t wait to hear more!

I’m enjoying my birthday week off and its board games time so…

Happy (or not so happy in this case) Reading!

Iron Age Norfolk with a modern mystery


I had 2 credits sitting in my audio account, a rare and brilliant occurrence. I wanted something new, a series and something I had a connection with. I love the Jack Paralabane series because they make me laugh, I love Katy Reiches because I see Bones from the TV and I like finding a narrator who has good character awareness.

Brief pause while I rescue the pink mouse from under sofa because my cat is walking across my laptop until she gets the pink mouse back.

I downloaded ‘The Crossing Places’ after checking out the sample, and instantly I was transported back to my childhood. I grew up very near the Norfolk Broads, so many of the places mentioned I know and understand. The introduction of Dr. Ruth Galloway was brilliant. She was instantly relatable and I couldn’t wait to find out more.

Dr. Ruth gets a visit from a northern DCI, working out of Kings Lynn. They have found some bones, DCI Harry Nelson is desperate for Ruth to date them, could they be the answer he has been waiting 10 years for? Within 10 minutes I was hooked and as we met Eric ‘the Viking’ who had been Ruth’s mentor at University, David the head of the Bird sanctuary that Ruth lives near and SParky and Flint her adorable felines, I knew this was a story and series I wanted to devour.

We learn about Ruth’s parents, her ex-husband and Harry Nelson’s perfect family, all through anecdotes that are weaved into the plot. Is the latest missing girl linked with the case that has plagued Harry for years?


The plot is a mix of a modern murder mystery, an archaeological dig, and an English lesson on referencing. We learn about Norse folk law, hear a fair few bible references and who knew Norfolk had druids? The history of the henge, the accuracy of the digs and the very intricate plot is gripping. I want to know more. I want to hear more.

The resolution of the main plot was unexpected, the affairs were not altogether predictable and 2 senseless murders later I was invested in Ruth’s world. I have already downloaded the second book, knowing there are 10 in the series I feel like Ruth’s world is only going to get more exciting.

So on that note, time to get on the bus home and listen to some more. Happy Reading!

Old favourites, New series and my ridiculous cat.

Good Morning readers,

the last time I wrote to you I was in fact off work. so you guessed it. I have taken a study day and rather than doing my essay I decided it was blog time. I have a big cup of tea and several books and audiobooks to tell you about. I have decided to write a few and publish them over the next few weeks rather than you guys getting loads today and then nothing for weeks (uh…months).

So I was working in Bath delivering training about 3 weeks ago and the weather was glorious. it was reaching 31 degrees every day, so in the evenings I was reading in the garden. I got so engrossed I realised I was going to finish before my train journey home, so I utilised my free Amazon Prime trial (other book subscriptions are available) and ordered 3 more books to be delivered to my hotel. I slightly overdid it but I am loving reading proper books in this heat.

I have been on a reading mission, so Dear Reader let us talk about some of those stories. I have read Vinyl Detective book 3, The custard protocol Book 3, ‘Want you gone’ another Jack Paralabane book and last night I finished ‘The Crossing Places’ by Elly Griffiths.  Apparently, I’m back on a murder mystery kick!!


So time to write my reviews. My cat isn’t going to make this easy but Happy Reading!

I thought I knew what was coming…


I love Christopher Brookmyre and the plots of the Jack Parlabane are always fun with unexpected twists. This did not disappoint…

Jack is full of emotions in this and is definitely back on form. The newly married, Diana and Peter seem like the perfect couple but all is not what it seems. When Peter’s car is found on a freezing night in the river, Diana is blamed for his murder. The missing knife, the ‘business’ and Blade Bitch all add to the plot. Ali and her new partner Rodriguez are called to the scene and have to deliver the bad news, but Diana isn’t overcome with grief and her eye has a nasty bruise…Are you going to jump to the same conclusions?

The story flows so easily and most of the plot is easy enough to have a guess at (for someone like me who reads a stupid amount of this kind of story). Wow…the last bit, not so much. The final twist was awesome and almost beyond belief. I liked the parallel narration across time and characters.

There are so many great characters in this, Diana, Lucy, Callum and I do very much enjoy this narrator. I listened in the car, whilst walking and even as I was packing up to move. I found that people talking to me when I was listening caused me to rewind 30 seconds or so as I didn’t want to miss ANYTHING. Burglary, Kidnap, Murder…What more do you want?

Having read all of the Jack Parlabane series, this definitely up there as one of my favourites, it is funny, gut wrenching and full of twists. Time to return to the packing mission this time with Genevieve Cogman and ‘The Burning Page’. Happy Reading.

An Old Classic…

Just to let you all know I spent most of yesterday in the car, so naturally I started another audiobook. The reason I call this an old classic is because I have read most of his books and this is with one of the long standing characters. I’m talking about ‘Black Widow’ by Christopher Brookmyre, and lead character is disgraced investigative journalist Jack Parlabane.


Now I started reading Christopher Brookmyre when I lived in the highlands so a fair few of the places were known to me. I love Edinburgh and have seen a fair bit of Glasgow, but this latest venture is set in Inverness, oddly enough the town I spent the most time in when i lived there, so it feels very familiar. I like knowing the actual streets referenced and the romantic ‘literal’ spin put on descriptions of the local area.

Jack has had many peculiar and dangerous adventures but it some ways he’s just a middle aged man trying to find his place in the world. He’s funny, relatable and is more a friend than a father figure in these books. He typically needs to grow up but definitely pulls it out of the bag when he needs too. THIS IS AN APOLOGY FOR TOO MANY CLICHES IN ONE SENTENCE.

As for Christopher Brookmyre, I find that when he sticks to comedic mysteries with Jack, Angelique de Xavia and Jasmine Sharp and Catherine McLeod, the books flow are more enjoyable and feel real. Whereas the books that test the boundaries of reality like Bedlam and Pandaemonium I found harder to get into and I didn’t like the structure as much.


These are just a few of his titles, I really liked a ‘Snowball in hell’ and ‘The unsinkable Rubber ducks’. I have been reading ‘The Sleeper and the Spindle’ and today hopefully I will finish that and get anther review up.

Happy Reading!

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