Monday 22 July 2024

The Silence In Between by Josie Ferguson BLOG TOUR #TheSilenceInBetween @Inky_Josie @DoubledayUK @RandomTTours #BookReview




Imagine waking up and a wall has divided your city in two. Imagine that on the other side is your child...

Lisette is in hospital with her baby boy. The doctors tell her to go home and get some rest, that he’ll be fine.

When she awakes, everything has changed. Because overnight, on 13 August 1961, the border between East and West Berlin has closed, slicing the city - and the world - in two.

Lisette is trapped in the east, while her newborn baby is unreachable in the west. With the streets in chaos and armed guards ordered to shoot anyone who tries to cross, her situation is desperate.

Lisette's teenage daughter, Elly, has always struggled to understand the distance between herself and her mother. Both have lived for music, but while Elly hears notes surrounding every person she meets, for her mother - once a talented pianist - the music has gone silent.

Perhaps Elly can do something to bridge the gap between them. What begins as the flicker of an idea turns into a daring plan to escape East Berlin, find her baby brother, and bring him home....

Based on true stories, The Silence in Between is a page-turning, emotional epic that will stay with you long after you finish reading.




The Silence In Between by Josie Ferguson was published on 20 June 2024 by Doubleday. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review as part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour. 



I honestly believe that 2024 has been one of my best reading years to date. I've discovered some wonderful books by such talented authors and The Silence In Between is another one of those. It is a story that left me reeling at times, the emotional pull of this novel is astonishing. Not only does this author write beautifully, but she also clearly researches her subject with skill and compassion. This is a novel that has touched me deeply, and one that I will recommended for years to come. 

I love a dual timeline story and especially when it is quite recent history that is being written about, the two parts of the novel flow seamlessly together, both parts are so well executed, leaving the reader wanting so much more as one part finishes and we are taken back to the former. 

This is Lisette's story, it is also Berlin's story and the comparisons between a woman and a city are magnificent. The gradual downfall of Berlin and its people, along with Lisette's trauma from child to woman are matched perfectly. Berlin becomes a character in itself, that major city, filled with people living together quite happily that is turned into a ghetto where nobody is sure of anyone else, where homes are destroyed and neighbours are exiled. Alongside a girl who loves music, who is deeply in love and who becomes a mere shadow of herself. She experiences so many losses, so much grief, terror and pain. However both Lisette and Berlin survive, with enormous scars, and with more horror to come. 

The story begins in 1961 as the Berlin Wall is erected overnight. Lisette's baby son is in hospital in West Berlin, she went home to the East for some rest and collect some clothes. When she woke the next day, the wall was there. Lisette couldn't return to the West. Soldiers barred the way, with guns. Her baby was alone and Lisette was distraught. Her teenage daughter Elly cannot bear to see her mother in so much pain, their relationship has always been fraught, but Elly is determined that she will cross to the West and rescue her brother. 

We are then taken back to 1938. Lisette is a music loving teenager, with many friends and one special boy Julius who has taken her heart. It is clear that war is looming, with friends and neighbours wearing badges that depict their allegiance to H*tler and his army, and many of her Jewish neighbours disappearing, times are changing. 

What follows is an extraordinary story woven together with care and compassion. It certainly does the reader good to realise that ordinary German people were just that ... ordinary. They did not all support what was happening, and what their country was doing throughout Europe, and at home. We follow Lisette as she matures too quickly, as she and her mother wait patiently for their loved men to return home from the battlefields. As they barter for food, as they deal with suspected informers and then as they deal with what happens when Germany is defeated. 

This is an eye-opening story of recent history. The horrors that ordinary people faced both during the war, straight afterwards and then again in the 1960s and 1970s when the Wall was erected is shocking but perfectly portrayed. 

A story of a woman, and her family and a city that endured the worst that anyone could imagine.

An incredible story. Highly recommended by me. 





Born in Sweden, to a family of writers and readers, Josie Ferguson moved to Scotland when she was two. 

She returned to Sweden in her twenties, where she completed a vocational degree in Clinical Psychology (MSc). 

Upon graduating, she moved to London to pursue a career in publishing, something she had dreamed about since delving into fictional worlds as a child, hidden under the duvet with a torch.

She later moved to Asia in search of an adventure and a bit more sun and currently works as a freelance book editor in Singapore, where she lives with her husband and two young children. 

While training to become a clinical psychologist, Josie learned about the complexity of human nature, something she explores as a writer. 

She believes books about the past can change the future and she aspires to write as many as possible. 

The Silence in Between is her debut.


www.josieferguson.com

X @Inky_Josie

IG @josie_ferguson_author







Thursday 18 July 2024

The Beaver Theory by Antti Tuomainen t. David Hackston Paperback BLOG TOUR #TheBeaverTheory @antti_tuomainen @OrendaBooks

 


Henri Koskinen, intrepid insurance mathematician and adventure-park entrepreneur, firmly believes in the power of common sense and order. That is until he moves in with painter Laura Helanto and her daughter…

 As Henri realises he has inadvertently become part of a group of local dads, a competing adventure park is seeking to expand their operations, not always sticking to the law in the process…

 Is it possible to combine the increasingly dangerous world of the adventure-park business with the unpredictability of life in a blended family? At first glance, the two appear to have only one thing in common: neither deals particularly well with a mounting body count.

 In order to solve this seemingly impossible conundrum, Henri is forced to step far beyond the mathematical precision of his comfort zone … and the stakes have never been higher…

 Warmly funny, quirky, touching, and a nail-biting triumph of a thriller, The Beaver Theory is the final instalment in the award-winning Rabbit Factor Trilogy, as Henri encounters the biggest challenge of his career, with hair-raising results…

 Soon to be a major motion picture starring Steve Carell




The Beaver Theory by Antti Tuomainen is published in paperback today, 18 July 2024 by Orenda Books. It is translated from the Finnish by David Hackston. 

I read and reviewed this one for the hardback publication back in October 2023 and I'm delighted to re-share my review today to celebrate the paperback publication Blog Tour 



I have really really enjoyed this magnificent series of books from author Antti Tuomainen. Beginning with The Rabbit Factor, followed by The Moose Paradox, and finishing dramatically, and hilariously (as always) with this gem of a read; The Beaver Theory. 

The whole series of books span just nine months in the life of Henri Koskinen, formally a quite boring and rigid insurance actuary, and now the proud, if incredibly stressed owner of an adventure park called YouMeFun, inherited from his brother. 

Over the course of the books, the reader has come to know and love Henri so very well, along with his supporting cast of characters; made up of the staff of the adventure park. Henri has had quite a few adventures along the way, but in The Beaver Theory he comes up against some devilish characters who will stop at nothing to put him out of business.

Henri and artist Laura have recently moved in together. They live in a flat with Laura's daughter, and Henri's cat. Henri finds it quite difficult to contemplate that he is now part of a family, this is a happy time for him, but will be marred by the antics of the owners of rival park Somerset City, whilst also dealing with becoming part of a local 'fathers' group. All so new to him, but Henri deals with it in is own special fashion. 

I think it took about 7 minutes before I laughed out loud!  Tuomainen's dry wit shines through this story, and whilst there are crimes a plenty, some violence, and an eye-watering scene of nudity and a horse whip, there are never ending laughs as Henri strives to make everything right in his world, whilst also protecting his new family, and his staff at YouMeFun. 

It could be called slapstick, but I think it's far cleverer than that. It's a crime novel, for sure, but it is populated with warm and wonderfully created characters with a plot that leads the reader around a maze of puzzles, and this is what makes this author so special. 

Needless to say, I will miss Henri and his strange little ways. I will also miss the camaraderie of the staff group, and the emerging craziness of the fathers group. I hope Henri and Laura find peace and live happily ever after. Maybe one day Antti Tuomainen will allow his readers to re-visit them, just to find out.
Highly recommended. 



Praise for the Beaver Theory


'A joyous, triumphant conclusion to Tuomainen’s trilogy … the comic thriller of the year' 
Sunday Times THRILLER OF THE YEAR
 
‘Quirky crime capers don’t come more left field than the Rabbit trilogy … extremely funny, with a wicked line in social satire’ 
Daily Mail
 
‘One of those rare writers who manages to deftly balance intrigue, noir and a deliciously ironic sense of humour’ 
Vaseem Khan



Finnish Antti Tuomainen was an award-winning copywriter when he made his literary
debut in 2007 as a suspense author. The critically acclaimed My Brother’s Keeper was published two years later. In 2011, Tuomainen’s third novel, The Healer, was awarded the Clue Award for ‘Best Finnish Crime Novel of 2011’ and was shortlisted for the Glass Key Award. The Finnish press labelled The Healer – the story of a writer desperately searching for his missing wife in a post-apocalyptic Helsinki – ‘unputdownable’. Two years later, in 2013, they crowned Tuomainen ‘The King of Helsinki Noir’ when Dark as My Heart was published.

With a piercing and evocative style, Tuomainen was one of the first to challenge the Scandinavian crime genre formula, and his poignant, dark and hilarious The Man Who Died became an international bestseller, shortlisting for the Petrona and Last Laugh Awards. Palm Beach Finland (2018) was an immense success, with The Times calling Tuomainen ‘the funniest writer in Europe’, and Little Siberia (2019) was shortlisted for the Capital Crime/Amazon Publishing Readers Awards, the Last Laugh Award and the CWA International Dagger, and won the Petrona Award for Best Scandinavian Crime Novel. The Rabbit Factor is the first book in Antti’s first-ever series. The Rabbit Factor is also in development to become an Amazon Studios film starring Steve Carell.

Follow Antti on Twitter @antti_tuomainen, or on Facebook: facebook.com/AnttiTuomainenAuthor




Wednesday 17 July 2024

The Virtue Season by L M Nathan BLOG TOUR #TheVirtueSeason @lmnathanwriter @scholasticuk @TinaMories #BookReview @RandomTTours

 


Manon Pawlak has just turned eighteen, a debutant at the start of the Virtue Season: a process that will result in a match with a suitable genetic mate. Her best friend, Agatha, has been decommissioned, forbidden to partake in the season and unite with the boy who has had her heart since they were children.

When Manon's mother wades out into the waters of Penn Vale with stones sewn into the lining of her coat, Manon's genetic purity is called into question and she's forced to rely on the fisherman's son, Wick, to keep her secret. But as they dance, the truth about their world starts to unravel, and Manon finds herself at the centre of it all. And the council is watching.




The Virtue Season by L M Nathan is a Young Adult novel published by Scholastic on 4 July 2024. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review as part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour



Something a little different for me. It has been quite a while since I read a young adult novel. However, the blurb for this one was just so appealing that I could not resist. Set in a dystopian future, with hints of The Handmaid's Tale, I knew this one was going to be a hit. 

I have really enjoyed the experience and have much admiration for an author who can create a setting that appear so realistic and so lifelike. Add the carefully created characters and the fast moving plot and this one really is a winner. 

The story opens with a prologue that finds lead characters Agatha and Manon peeping through a window, looking in on the glittering ball that is the climax to the Virtue Season. These two girls will be taking part in the ball themselves in a the future and whilst Agatha is excited about the thought, it is clear that Manon has her doubts. 

This is not the world as we know it.  It is a land that has been ravaged by nature, with flooding that destroyed the land, followed by blistering heat and raging winds. Everything failed and the population suffered greatly, and then the final flood arrived. 

The remaining lands became divided, with wars and death. It was decided that only the healthy can survive and the decommissionings began. 

Agatha and Manon find themselves on opposite sides. Agatha's health issues means that she and Manon will not spend their adult lives as friends. They are now different. Manon will be paired with a partner to suit, whilst Agatha will be left to fend for herself. 

This is a story told from both points of view, and I have to admit that I did prefer Agatha. I guess I always shout for the underdog, but her journey felt much more of a struggle, more real and more interesting. 

Whilst nowhere near as brutal as The Handmaid's Tale, which should be expected for a novel aimed at young adults, this is a extremely well written story of speculative fiction. There are themes and issues that are explored well and most certainly relate to our current world. With a touch of romance to brighten the darkness, The Virtue Season is a story to savour. A quick read for me, but very satisfying. 





L.M. Nathan grew up in the East Midlands, moving from there to Bristol where she
studied English and Drama and then to Malta where she completed an MA in Literature. She also has an MA in Journalism which she studied for in Manchester.

She now lives in rural Lancashire, in the shadow of Pendle Hill, and teaches English.

Her first novel, The Virtue Season, was inspired by the wild landscape of home and completed when she was selected to be part of the Curtis Brown Creative novel course.

X @lmnathanwriter

Instagram @lmnathanwriter







Some Boys I Knew by Clea Myers BLOG TOUR #SomeBoysIKnew @MyersClea @RandomTTours #Giveaway #Win #Competition #Prize

 


What does it take for us to put our lives on hold and begin to heal? 

In the midst of a sequence of traumatic events―recovering from crystal-meth addiction, facing infertility, battling chronic fatigue, surviving breast cancer, rebuilding a relationship with her narcissistic mother only for it to fall apart again before her mother’s suicide―Clea realises she has to take a break from men. 

There had been too many disasters beginning with the Adonis-like Old Etonian, Luke, who can’t stop cheating. What unites her with darkly handsome Tarquin, who follows Clea to the USA, only to rob her? Gordon, a dumpster-diving tweaker who deserts her for a porn star; Saint Peter who persuades her into rehab; sexually confused Brent; violent Conrad and self-obsessed Alfie? Why does she turn down decent Nat who is just too nice? 

As Clea digs through the evidence, she exposes learned behaviours that keep her dependent. 

Denial is a powerful drug and the endorphin rush of apologies, promises and make-up sex fix things over and over… until they don’t. 

Rich, powerful and authentic, Some Boys I Knew takes us on a raw, insightful journey to becoming the person Clea most needs: Herself. 

A vivid memoir from the writer of Tweaking the Dream.




Some Boys I Knew by Clea Myers was published on 10 April 2024 by Cinnamon Press. As part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour I have one copy of the book to give away. Entry is simple, just fill out the widget in the blog post. UK entries only please. 

GOOD LUCK! 




One copy of Some Boys I Knew by Clea Myers




Clea Myers was born in London and spent her peripatetic childhood in Canada, Dubai, London and the Home Counties where she attended three different boarding schools from age 9. 
By age 18 she was relieved to escape the rigidity of boarding school life and travelled round India, a place she still adores and visits often. Due partly to connections with extended family, and to escape her immediate family, Clea attended university in the USA, where she eventually landed at Brown. Possibly not the best fit, but she did graduate with Honors- she is still rather mystified by this- and then rather unwisely decided to move to Los Angeles. 

Hollywood was where her life truly unraveled due to her commitment to a well-known devil, aka Crystal Meth. She wrote her first memoir, Tweaking the Dream: A Crystal Meth True Story to explain its' power and understand it better herself, while also sending out a clear message of awareness in the UK. Clea has been a spokeswoman for FRANK (drugs awareness charity) for many years. She is now writing the screenplay for Tweaking the Dream, with a partner based in LA.

Based now in London for many years, Clea also works as an actress & casting associate. She recently published her second book, Some Boys I Knew about her many disastrous relationships with men, and her complicated relationship with her narcissistic mother. 
Having recently trained as a mental-health peer-support worker she is organizing ‘memoir-writing workshops’ within her local community in west London with MIND,OpenAge and other organisations.

Some Boys I Knew is published by Cinnamon Press, a small independent publisher in April 2024. 







Tuesday 16 July 2024

True Love by Paddy Crewe BLOG TOUR #TrueLove #PaddyCrewe @DoubledayUK @RandomTTours #BookReview @Millsreid11

 


What does it mean to love and be loved?

It is the 1980s and Finn and Keely are growing up in the North East of England.

Keely is a fighter. Even in the face of loss she strives to seek connection, but finds that she’s not always searching in the right places.

Finn is quiet, sensitive, distant. He spends much of his time alone, yet deep down he wants to discover the thrill of relating to others.

When the two finally meet, everything is changed. Love – with all of its attendant joys and costs – is thrust upon them, and each must decide if they will bend or break under its pressure. True Love is a story of the trials of youth, the bonds of family and friendship, and of how much we are willing to risk to have ourselves be seen.






True Love by Paddy Crewe was published on 4 July 2024 by Doubleday. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review as part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour




True Love by Paddy Crewe has catapulted itself right in to my list of favourite books ever. This is a story that I went in to almost blind, having read the blurb, but not really knowing what to expect. 

It is astonishing. It feels like the perfect book. A story about true love in all of its many forms; a story of two individual, very different people who do not even meet until towards the end of the book but we, the reader, know that their relationship is inevitable. 

Paddy Crewe is an extraordinary writer. His beautiful prose totally captivated me throughout the novel. He writes about ordinary people who lead lives that are filled with pain, he gets to the heart of what true love is. Love can be damaging, toxic, beautiful, exciting. It can be brutal and heartbreaking. The love for family members differs from the love we feel for members of our immediate community, and romantic love is absolutely another experience. 

Told from the point of view of two lead characters; Keely and Fin. Their stories are told separately, each one given their own part of the book. Keely is a young girl who lives in a caravan on a site by the sea, her father is a sea coaler, her mother is dead. Keely has a younger brother, Welty, she cares for him. Their father does care, but he too is broken and struggles to express his feelings. When the tragedy that will shape Keely's life forever happens, her life changes. She leaves school, she starts to gather sea coal, she becomes more insular, thinner, her spark goes out.

She does discover books, and Crewe's explanation of just what reading means to Keely really touched me, I felt it so much, it could have been written just for me;

    "She can't imagine her life without books and she thanks Miss Collins every day for dropping that         first bag off outside the caravan. She doesn't know how else she would fill her time, or what could         possibly feel as satisfying. She is filled up by words. Whatever pain she suffers in her own life, the         characters she reads about set to replenishing her, all of which has led her to treat books with a             reverence that she affords nothing else. They are sacred to her, and though in her care they all wind      up dog-eared, with pages folded down and spines cracked, she would mourn one if it was ever lost or     damaged beyond use."


Keeley finds herself living alone. She has no contact with her dad and begins to find solace in the local pubs and the bottom of a glass. 

Finn has lived with his grandparents for his whole life. His parents are never mentioned, he knows nothing of them, of where they are, why they left him. He is loved, but finds it very difficult to express his own love. Speaking very few words, he suffers the anguish of being bullied by his peers. Until the day that he finds music and suddenly his voice is being heard. 

It is a given that these two damaged yet incredibly intelligent people will meet and discover their own form of true love. It is an intense relationship, both of them wary, yet at the same time, exposing everything about themselves and it feels as though this frenzy of a relationship will always continue. 

But True Love is painful and they both cause pain and feel pain. Pain that hurts so much that they can not get over it and once more, they become individuals, having to find their own paths, deal with their own lives. They have to survive. 

I didn't read Paddy Crewe's first novel; My Name Is Yip, which won so many awards, but I am most certainly going to change that now. This author has created two characters that became part of my existence whilst I was reading about them. I cared about them so much, I felt their pain, I shared in their joys, I almost mourned them when I turned the final page.  This is utterly remarkable and highly recommended by me. 



Paddy Crewe was born in Middlesborough and studied at Goldsmiths. 

His debut novel, My Name Is Yip, has been shortlisted for the Betty Trask, the Wilbur Smith, a South Bank Sky Arts Award and the Society of Authors First Novel Award, and longlisted for the Walter Scott Prize.






Monday 15 July 2024

This Motherless Land by Nikki May #ThisMotherlessLand @NikkiOMay @DoubledayUK #BookReview

 


When Funke’s mother dies in an accident in Lagos, she’s sent to live with her maternal family in England. Against a backdrop of condescension and mild neglect, sensible Funke strives to fit in, determined to become one of them.

Free-spirited Liv has always wanted to break free of her joyless family, to be nothing like them. Fiercely protective of Funke, she at last has an ally. The two cousins give each other what they need most: love.

But the past casts long shadows and the choices made by their mothers haunt them, shaping the trajectory of their adult lives. Can they escape their legacy?

Witty, warm, hugely entertaining, This Motherless Land bridges three decades and two continents, delving into the thorny territories of race and culture and belonging. At its heart is a story about love and how it can make the difference between surviving and thriving.




This Motherless Land by Nikki May is published on 18 July 2024 by Doubleday. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review. 

I read and reviewed Nikki May's debut novel, Wahala in January 2022 and really loved it. I've been looking forward to her follow up for a long time. 

This Motherless Land is billed as a de-colonial retelling of Jane Austen's Mansfield Park. Don't judge me, but I have not read Mansfield Park! Jane Austen kind of passed me by, I had my nose stuck in glitzy novels from the likes of Jackie Collins, Penny Vincenzi and Judith Krantz when I was in school. Maybe I need to catch up?

Despite this, and despite not really knowing anything about Mansfield Park, I adored this novel. It is up to date and current, it is educational, it is sometimes funny and it is packed with characters that I loved so much. This author certainly creates characters to admire and to support, she did it in Wahala and she's done it again here. 

Funke has enjoyed a happy, quite idyllic upbringing in Lagos, Nigeria with her British mother and her Nigerian father. When tragedy strikes, and her mother is killed in a road traffic accident, Funke is sent to England to live with her mother's family. Not only is she grieving for her mother, and the life she's left behind, she also has to cope with the total difference in culture. Not helped at all by how dreadfully her Aunt Margot treats her. Her one ally is her cousin Liv, and the authors description of their beautiful relationship and how it develops and lasts is quite wonderful. 

Just as Funke begins to feel as though she is fitting in, Aunt Margot sends her back to her father in Lagos. Everything has changed there and once again Funke feels like an outsider. The depth and strength of her feelings are so well portrayed, it's often heartbreaking to read. 

Meanwhile, back in England, Liv blames herself for everything. Questioning her own lifestyle, she spirals out of control.

What May does so very well is give such an insight into two very different cultures. She exposes the bigotry of some communities whilst also supporting her characters so well. The compare and contrast elements of this vividly written story are exquisite. It's an exploration of how we belong, it can be so emotionally draining at times, but always beautifully written. It's a bold, daring and clever story with characters to cheer for, oh and a parrot called Billy! Highly recommended by me. 




Born in Bristol and raised in Lagos, Nikki May is Anglo-Nigerian. Her critically acclaimed debut novel WAHALA won the Comedy Women In Print New Voice Prize, was longlisted for the Goldsboro Glass Bell Award and the Diverse Books Award, and is being turned into a major BBC TV drama series.

THIS MOTHERLESS LAND is her second novel.

Nikki lives in Dorset with her husband, two standard Schnauzers and way too many books. She should be working on her third book but is probably reading.

Twitter/X: @NikkiOMay

Instagram: @NikkiMayWriter





Friday 12 July 2024

Imposter Syndrome by Joseph Knox BLOG TOUR #ImposterSyndrome @josephknox__ @DoubledayUK @TransworldBooks @RandomTTours #BookReview

 


Lynch, a burned out con-artist, arrives, broke, in London, trying not to dwell on the mistakes that got him there. When he bumps into Bobbie, a rehab-bound heiress - and when she briefly mistakes him for her missing brother - Lynch senses the opportunity, as well as the danger…

Bobbie’s brother, Heydon, was a troubled young man. Five years ago, he walked out of the family home and never went back. His car was found parked on a bridge overlooking the Thames, in the early hours of the same morning. Unsettled by Bobbie’s story, and suffering from a rare attack of conscience, Lynch tries to back off.

But when Bobbie leaves for rehab the following day, he finds himself drawn to her luxurious family home, and into a meeting with her mother, the formidable Miranda. Seeing the same resemblance that her daughter did, Miranda proposes she hire Lynch to assume her son’s identity, in a last-ditch effort to try and flush out his killer.

As Lynch begins to impersonate him, dark forces are lured out of the shadows, and he realises too late that Heydon wasn’t paranoid at all. Someone was watching his every move, and they’ll kill to keep it a secret.

For the first time, Lynch is in a life or death situation he can’t lie his way out of.




Imposter Syndrome by Joseph Knox was published on 11 July 2024 by Doubleday. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review as part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour 


It is no secret that I am a massive Joseph Knox fan. I have read all of his books starting with his Aiden Waits series and of course, the utter triumph that was True Crime Story.

It seems so long since he's published a book and Imposter Syndrome has been one of my most anticipated books of the year. 

Let's cheer for Knox, he certainly has not let me down. He has delivered a dark, brooding character in Lynch; a man who admits that he is a con-man, who will do most things for some cash, but also has his own moral code. He's a bloke that you'd be wary of, but when he's on your side, you will trust him. 

Lynch arrives in London from Paris, there's a story behind his leaving. He has no money, an almost dead phone and no luggage. Bobbie Pierce, a wealthy young woman on her way to rehab spots Lynch and is immediately struck by the likeness to her brother Heydon. Heydon has been missing for five years, his family don't know where he is, they know that money was involved and they are aware of some shady characters that he was involved with. 

Lynch never turns down the offer of food and a bed for the night, but meeting Bobbie thrusts him into situations that he could not have anticipated. Sure enough, the lure of cash means that he agrees to take on a pretty dangerous task for the Pierce family. His aim is to discover where Heydon went, and why. 

Lynch is such a complex, multi layered character. The story is told in the first person by Lynch which enables the reader to feel even more closer to the action. However, it's not only the self-confessed con-man who is dangerous .... the Pierce family are made up of a bunch of suspicious, quite warped at times, members who are devilishly determined. 

This author always keeps his readers on their toes. The plot twists around many corners, it is multi layered and complex, often throwing curveballs but always entertaining. There's also some very dark humour, some one liners that will make the reader splutter. This is a fine touch, erasing just a little of the noir .... until it begins again. 

Expect some devious characterisation and lots of darkness. Expect a plot full of surprises and don't expect to work it out before the end.  I loved it. Highly recommended by me. 




Joseph Knox has lived in Stoke on Trent, Manchester and London.
In 2020, he became an Irish citizen.

His debut novel Sirens was a bestseller and has been translated into eighteen languages. The Smiling Man and The Sleepwalker are the second and third books in the Waits trilogy.

His first standalone novel, True Crime Story, was a Times number one bestseller.

X @josephknox__

Instagram @knobbth