Thriller Thursday

Bringing you Thriller Thursday again, and this one was meant to go up in October, you know, before the move threw everything up in the air and laughed at my plans.

So.

Let me present to you one of my newly faved thriller series that I’ve had the joy to start this year.

The Reprobation Series

 

Catherine Fearns is an amazing author and she has put so much research and creativity in these books that there’s no way I couldn’t love this series. So, prepare to hear me fangirl screech…you know as usual when I love a book.

I mean it’s got murder mysteries, demonic occult, supernatural, metal bands, and more!

ARE YOU NOT INTRIGUED?!

The reason I’ve waited on posting about these books on my blog is simply because I was waiting to read the third book, and now that I’ve finished it, it’s time!

We’ll start with book one!

Reprobation

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GoodReads:

Are you one of the elect?

Dr. Helen Hope is a lecturer in eschatology – the study of death, judgement, and the destiny of humankind. She is also a Calvinist nun, her life devoted to atoning for a secret crime.

When a body is found crucified on a Liverpool beach, she forms an unlikely alliance with suspect Mikko Kristensen, lead guitarist in death metal band Total Depravity. Together, they go on the trail of a rogue geneticist who they believe holds the key – not just to the murder, but to something much darker.

Also on the trail is cynical Scouse detective Darren Swift. In his first murder case, he must confront his own lack of faith as a series of horrific crimes drag the city of two cathedrals to the gates of hell.

Science meets religious belief in this gripping murder mystery.

 

My Review

 

I hadn’t heard of this book before and how much I regret not reading this sooner! I loved so much about this. Firstly, we have a Calvinist Nun and the lead singer of a Norwegian Metal band solving crimes together, it’s like the metalhead version of Father Brown haha, and in the best ways.

We have a few characters at play and the way Fearns hints at the supernatural and otherworldly is perfect, she combines Christian mythology/theology with a police procedural to give you a spectacular murder mystery and the set up for a great set of books. Not to mention she keeps the length of the novel perfect, not overwhelming you or bogging it down unnecessarily so the pacing is just right. All too often a great thriller can be diminished by carrying on too long but Fearns doesn’t make this mistake.

What I really enjoy is Fearns giving us a new twist to murders/murder mysteries, she keeps it fresh which for someone like me who reads a copious amount of thrillers, well, it’s so nice!

Fearns provided me a copy of her awesome novel in exchange for my honest review.

 

Onto Book 2…

Consuming Fire

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GoodReads:
What Has Been Seen Cannot Be Unseen.

Liverpool is in the grip of an intense heatwave, and strange things are happening.

A woman dies in an apparent case of Spontaneous Human Combustion; a truck explodes on the dock road; the charred corpses of pets litter the city; forest fires ravage the pinewoods…and there are birds everywhere, silent flocks drawing in ominously.

Detective Inspector Darren Swift thinks there are connections, and his investigation delves into the worlds of football, nightclubs and organised crime. But is he imagining things?

Dr. Helen Hope doesn’t think so. And she believes the key lies in a mysterious seventeenth-century occult book which has gone missing from Liverpool Library.

In the blistering sequel to Reprobation, DI Swift is forced to confront some inconvenient ghosts from his past, as a terrifying shadow lies over his city’s reality….

 

My Review

Another knockout novel by Catherine Fearns! In this one, we continue with this thread of the unknown and supernatural that was introduced so wonderfully in book one and Fearns expands on it while keeping true to this also being a mystery as well. There’s once more a lot of theological ideas and they’re all put in a way for the readers to understand but it’s clear that Fearns has done her research.

This time the focus was more on Darren and even his partner Matt rather than Dr. Helen Hope. I do admit to missing Helen and Mikko interacting but I was also so happy to get to know more of Darren and the rest of his ‘squad.’

The ending for this was such an epic ending that I cannot wait for the next book, I am left waiting on pins and needles.

What I really enjoy is Fearns giving us a new twist to murders/murder mysteries, she keeps it fresh which for someone like me who reads a copious amount of thrillers, well, it’s so nice!

Can’t wait to read the next one!

Fearns provided me with a copy of this in exchange for an honest review which I am very happy to give. 

 

Finally, Book 3!

Sound (The Reprobation Series Book 3)

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GoodReads:
Can you hear it?

A professor of psychoacoustics is found dead in his office. It appears to be a heart attack, until a second acoustician dies a few days later in similar circumstances.

Meanwhile, there’s an outbreak of mysterious illnesses on a council estate, and outbursts of unexplained violence in a city centre nightclub. Not to mention strange noises coming from the tunnels underneath Liverpool. Can it really be a coincidence that death metal band Total Depravity are back in the city, waging their own form of sonic warfare?

Detective Inspector Darren Swift is convinced there are connections. Still grieving his fiancé’s death and sworn to revenge, he is thrown back into action on the trail of a murderer with a terrifying and undetectable weapon.

But this case cannot be solved using conventional detective work, and D.I. Swift will need to put the rulebook aside and seek the occult expertise of Dr. Helen Hope and her unlikely sidekick, guitarist Mikko Kristensen.

 

My Review

You may have noticed that the other two reviews were already on GoodReads but not this one, it’s being written here first. Wooo, celebrate.

This continues much where we left off with Darren. He’s been on leave after the crushing ending to ‘Consuming Fire’ and the events that seem too weird to be true continue to happen.

However this has nothing more to do with fire and everything to do with sound.

There’s a new case, two murders both staff, lecturers/experts in acoustics, one in psychoacoustics and also has synesthesia.

[I will say it was so interesting to have a character with synesthesia, it’s something we talked about a bit in Uni as part of the music program but I only knew of one person who had it, so that already caught my interest.]

The excitement I had in knowing Mikko was back was like a kid on Christmas, he is my favorite but also I love the chemistry between Mikko and Helen. This also means the band was back too, and it’s great.

The tension building from the last two books is palpable, it was coming off the page and making me sit hunched over in earnest as I read.

There’s another metal band, though, different sub-genre than our lovable gang, and they were such a cool part of the book, their concert definitely left me with some atmospheric chills.

There was a twist that I DID NOT see coming and I was SHOOK by it haha, like I can’t believe it happened, it was intricately weaved in from book one and I still had no inkling it was going to happen.

Forest was in this again and as horrible as he was, I was happy and satisfied with his ending but I’ll keep the spoilers to myself. This also has left a lot of questions though at the end of this book, wondering what will happen to my favorite trio next. Helen and Mikko especially, as I will go down with that ship.

Darren seems to be engaging in something that could prove to be a crazy awesome thread to continue on.

Another success by Fearns, and possibly my favorite of the three! Thank you to Fearns for providing me a copy of the book, and in exchange I’ve given my honest review.

 

 

 

 

October Rewind

 

A very busy month for me outside of books, so, not my usual amount of reads, and, I’m okay with that given how much I had to do. HOWEVER, I will say you can probably expect this to be the average amount of monthly reads until we hit January.

I’ll also be on holiday in a place with pretty sorry internet, so, for a couple of weeks in December all the posts will be scheduled ahead and I’ll be pretty quiet. Just like now. As I wait for my new charging cord. Still.

Anyway, onto the books!

 

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Shadows (Sapphire Smyth & The Shadow Five, #1)

 

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The Immortal City (The Magicians of Venice, #1)

 

 

Hood Academy

 

 

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The Christmas Holiday

The Art of Sherlock Holmes: USA 1 - Special Edition

 

Safe House

 

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The Gilded King (Sovereign, #1)

The Birthday House

 

War Girls (War Girls, #1)

 

The Widow Of Pale Harbour

The Deathless Girls

 

Gravemaidens (Gravemaidens, #1)

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Doing Time Cover .jpg

 

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The Winter of the Witch (Winternight Trilogy, #3)

 

Foxfire, Wolfskin and Other Stories of Shape-Shifting Women

 

Women's Weird: Strange Stories by Women, 1890-1940

Total Count: 17

 

Posts From Around the Book Blogger Verse

Guys. I have to say, through the month I save the links for the posts I like but right now I can’t access my bookmarks as my laptop is dead and I can’t log onto feedly…so… I will note my patron’s blog and I will update this post with the rest of the other bookblogger posts later on this month.

Fictionally Sam October Wrap Up

 

My Other Posts

BEAutumn – Spell List

Off Balance – Cover Reveal

BE Autumn – Every Witch Needs a Familiar

BE Autumn -Study Group

Be Autumn – Fall In Love

Bookending Autumn – Candy Tag

Book Ending Autumn – 13 Days of Halloween

Book Ending Autumn – Monster Mash

Bookending Autumn – Which Witch?

WWW Wednesday

Cover Reveal: Dark Skies

 

Now, what’s on for next month?

Well, I’ll have a post about the Leigh Bardugo event I went to, and I’ll have less blog tours, but I’ve got some great picks. For now I’m back to battling the endless war of not having enough bookshelves.

Just a huge shout-out to this community, you all have been so great and have made book blogging so much fun. Always supportive and understanding, and not to mention I’ve made some incredible friends through it all.

 

July Rewind

 

MY JULY READS

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Ah…this one…this was my lowest rated read of the month, it had a nice idea just not my style.

 

 

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Life Ruins Cover

 

 

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Total Tally: 33 Books Read this Month

 

 

Favorite Posts from around the book blogger-verse

 

There was so much to pick from and I really enjoyed a lot of the reviews I read this month more than anything else but I’ve limited myself to the posts above!

 

What I’ve Posted

 

 

I had a lot of fun attending an author talk at my local Waterstones with William McIntyre, I’ve booked my tickets for the Edinburgh Book Festival, as well as a ticket to go here a certain Jay Kristoff talk in Glasgow in September.

I was also so honored to be nominated and in the running for best new book blogger for the awesome bba [book blogger awards] and just being on the list has meant so much to me! ❤

We are still waiting to hear when we can move into our house, which is driving me nuts, and I actually got rid of more books finally. I’ve got a few more blog posts in August but you’ll notice the number is not nearly as much as June and July as summer starts to wind down. I hope everyone’s had a great July!

June Rewind

 My June Reads

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  1. The Last Tsar’s Dragons

  2. Kennig & Gold

  3. Remeon’s Quest

 

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  1. The Path Keeper 

 

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  1. The Chosen

  2. Kingdom of Exiles

 

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  1. Random Attachment

  2. The Missing Years

  3. The Repenting Serpent

  4. The Sea Refuses No River

  5. Dream Angus

  6. Bride Squad Runaway

  7. The Van Apfel Girls are Gone

  8. The Starter Wife

  9. Akela

  10. The Red Labyrinth

 

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  1. The Disappeared

  2. Without a Trace

  3. The Ice House

  4. Finer Things

  5. Shadow of the Fox

  6. Heart of Stone

  7. Horizontal Collaboration

  8. Soul of the Sword

  9. Something to Live For

    [Review to Come]

Total Tally: 25 Books Read this Month

 

Favorite Posts from around the book blogger-verse

These are most certainly not all the great posts I’ve seen but they’re the ones that I did recall the most, and trust me, I’ve seen some amazing content this month, it was a bit overwhelming to try and pick lol.

 

What I’ve Posted

 

I had so much fun attending my first book event, Cymera Festival! I had a lot of blog tours and I came up with some new things, Thriller Thursdays and Comparing Notes (Comparing Notes will be monthly for now so July will have a new post to roll out on that) I also didn’t post for like 6/7 days out of the month and it was nice to have those days off! I can’t wait to see what July brings!

**And That’s a wrap! I’m off to go nap now. If you click on the pics this time you’ll be directed to my GR review, and clicking on the title of the book will give you my blog post review if there is one for the book. I know I read a lot of 4/5 star books this month, but it was a really good month for reading, and I have no regrets on loving so many reads this go!**

 

 

 

Thriller Thursday

 

 

Hey Guys! So, I’ve decided that with all the thrillers I’ve been reading lately I will use Thursdays when I feel like it to highlight and recap/review some of my favorite thriller reads.

That being said, I am going to do TWO this week. Why? Because I can. It’s my blog. I do what I want.

 

 

Also I read both of these ARCs and LOVED them, and since they came out this month, I want to share them both.

**Thank you to the publishers, Point Blank – OneWorld Publications for the ARC of The Van Apfel Girls Are Gone and to Hodder & Stoughton for a copy of The Starter Wife. I received these in exchange for my honest review(s).**

First up?

 

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Blurb: ‘We lost all three girls that summer. Let them slip away like the words of some half-remembered song and when one came back, she wasn’t the one we were trying to recall to begin with.’ 

Tikka Molloy was eleven years old during the long hot summer of 1992, growing up in an isolated suburb in Australia surrounded by encroaching bushland. That summer, the hottest on record, was when the Van Apfel sisters – Hannah, the beautiful Cordelia and Ruth – mysteriously disappeared during the school’s ‘Showstopper’ concert. 

Did they run away? Were they taken? While the search for the sisters unites the small community, the mystery of their disappearance has never been solved. 

Now, years later, Tikka has returned home and is beginning to make sense of that strange moment in time. The summer that shaped her. The girls that she never forgot. 

Brilliantly observed, spiky, sharp, funny and unexpectedly endearing, THE VAN APFEL GIRLS ARE GONE is part mystery, part coming-of-age story – a perfect summer chiller with a dark shimmering unexplained absence at its heart. 

My Review

 

Want an amazing summer thriller read?? This is pretty much it, I read this in a night, I couldn’t put it down and it was brilliant.

Three girls have gone missing, and in their wake they leave unanswered questions and one friend struggles I accept their disappearance. Going home again, will she unravel the mystery, will anything change after so long?

The ending to this is really what struck me the most. I won’t give anything away but it was not at all expected and Felicity McLean really impressed me. The story she weaves for us is quite the tangled web and in the end, there’s no black and white, just the facts as they are. I really love things that delve into the morally gray and better yet they have no clear answers. The point of this book wasn’t as much to solve a mystery as it was for Tikka to face her past.

The Van Apfel girls are all different and though they may all have blond hair, the similarities stop there. They are sisters and have to rely on each other more than their parents who are too embedded in their church and religion and only care about the daughters also becoming as ‘holy’ as they are. Except for the fact that our middle Van Apfel girl Cordelia who seems to attract her Father’s special attention.

Cordelia is complex, mature for her age and yet still ver much a young teenager (really a child at 13) and when you delve more into her own particulars you understand her more. I thought she was brilliantly written.

Even Ruth, the youngest, is so well fleshed out and McLean gives amazing descriptions for her (and the others). In fact as you read this, it’s hard not to imagine Australia, she paints a picture of the landscape and the suburbia perfectly.

McLean does a great job presenting all of the characters and describing what makes them all different, there are no hollow characters, even the side characters are given depth and everyone plays their part in this unsolved mystery.

Great debut novel and I can’t wait to see what else she has in store for us!

Content/Trigger Warning: Child Molestation/Rape (though not detailed, very very strongly hinted at), Child Abuse, death of a child.

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About the Author

FELICITY MCLEAN was born in Sydney Australia. She graduated at Sydney University with a BA in English and Australian literature and worked as a book publicist before embarking on a freelance career. Her journalism has appeared in the Daily Telegraph, the Courier Mail and the Big Issue, among others, and she has ghost-written celebrity autobiographies. She lives with her English husband and two young children in Australia. THE VAN APFEL GIRLS ARE GONE is her debut novel. 

 

Next…

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Blurb:

Can you ever really know what goes on between a husband and wife? 

Claire Westcott tries to be the perfect wife to Byron but fears she will never measure up to his ex, Colleen. After all, it’s hard to compete with the dead. 

Colleen went missing eight years ago. Her body was never found but the police ruled it a suicide. So when Claire receives a phone call from a woman she believes is Colleen, it opens up a million terrifying questions. 

Claire discovers the couple weren’t as happy as they would have people believe. And now she’s worried Byron hasn’t been completely honest with her. 

There are secrets in every marriage, but Claire is about to find out that sometimes those secrets are deadly. 

My Review

I love creepy reads, and this, this was a brilliant and creepy read.

A true thriller with a fabulously well done antagonist. So, be prepared. There was a nice twist that slowly worked its way in, you may be able to spot it early on but it doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Laurin also doesn’t give too much away, at the end you’re still left wondering with a couple of questions and I absolutely love that, though, all the important things are answered so don’t worry about having an unsatisfying ending.

There’s something about having a character that you just can’t quite tell if they’re the hero or the villain that just makes it great, and Laurin gives you more than one character to wonder about! The little ‘cut’ scenes are brilliant as Laurin uses them for her own benefit, and continually manipulates the reader and I absolutely love that! I think it speaks for a writer, especially a thriller writer if they can twist and turn a story to their liking and throw a reader off track, even if it’s only for a moment. For those who read this sort of book more often it may be an easy guess for you, but I think you’ll still enjoy the read. I know I really did.

This was another book I consumed in a night, I actually tried to put it down too! I saw it was getting late, set the book to the side and turned off the light. 30 minutes later, I was still awake and wondering what in the world was going to happen next, so I made my way to the living room to finish the book without disturbing the husband with the light, and it was completely worth it!

I love that even the ‘good’ characters aren’t even that good, like McLean, Laurin is giving us this sort of gray area, and you’re left wondering ‘what could this person have done to make things better.’ Honestly, I enjoyed Claire as a character, and thought Laurin did a great job hashing her out.

Content/Trigger Warning: Violence, deaths, psychological manipulation, drugged drinks, stalking.

About the Author

 

Nina Laurin studied creative writing at Concordia University in Montreal, where she currently lives. She arrived in Montreal when she was just twelve years old, speaks and reads in Russian, French, and English but writes her novels in English. 
Nina is fascinated by the darker side of mundane things, and she’s always on the lookout for her next twisted book idea.

 

Alright there we have it! My first thriller Thursday! Both of these books are out now, so go check out your local bookstore/book depository/amazon/whatever you cool cats use these days!

Toodles!