Tag: crime novel

Audiobook Review: Three Widows by Patricia Gibney

Three Widows
Series: D.I. Lottie Parker #12
Author: Patricia Gibney

Narrator: Michele Moran
Published:  February 10, 2023
Audiobook: 13 hours 45 minutes

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: March 9-17, 2023
Jessica’s Rating: 2 stars

Book Description:

She kissed her daughter, turned out the light and entered her own room. Too late to run, she stood frozen as a figure stepped out from behind the door and a hand covered her mouth. Fear was a bomb in her chest ready to explode. Her children. They’d already lost their daddy; they couldn’t lose her too.

When young widow Éilis Lawlor disappears in the middle of the night, with her two little children asleep in their beds, it is a chilling case for Detective Lottie Parker. Since her husband’s tragic death, Éilis is all her children have, and when Lottie sees Éilis’s house keys and phone still lying on the kitchen counter, she is terrified for the vulnerable mother’s safety.

Then Éilis’s broken body is found by a nearby lake, wrapped in an unfamiliar yellow dress, her mouth sealed with duct tape – and Lottie’s worst fears are confirmed. Someone wanted this beautiful widow dead.

Desperate to find the person behind this brutal crime, Lottie discovers that Éilis was a member of a support group for widows. And when Jennifer, a close friend of Éilis’s from the group, is found on a rubbish heap, wrapped in a yellow dress, Lottie vows to get justice.

Lottie dives into Jennifer’s past, and learns that she had lived a reclusive life since her husband died. She hadn’t been seen at work for months and had sheltered inside her immaculate home, only emerging for meetings with the group. But when Lottie questions the other women about Jennifer’s isolation, they claim to know nothing.

Lottie is certain that the remaining widows are hiding something. Can she uncover the truth before another innocent life is lost?

Jessica’s Review:

I had the opportunity to listen to the audiobook for this one so I took it because it sounded intriguing. I did not realize that it was book 12 in a series, so I think I lost out because of that.  I don’t know the detective and her back stories in books 1-11.  I was not really invested in the story and was not really pulled in on this one. And it was way too long for me! The closer to the end it got, I got more intrigued but then we got to the motive…. And my thought was “Really?!?!”   It just did not work for me.     

This one was sadly a letdown for me. Many thanks to the publisher Bookouture for giving me an audio copy to listen to and review in my own time.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK 

Graphic Novel Review: Ghost Writer by Rayco Pulido

Ghost Writer
Author: Rayco Pulido

Published: August 18, 2020
96 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Date Read: September 27, 2020
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

Barcelona, 1943. As a scriptwriter for a popular radio advice column, Laia is embroiled in the romantic entanglements of others. Each day, she reads letters from troubled wives and girlfriends recounting their partners’ abuses and tries her best to counsel them. In contrast, her own life seems perfectly ordered, with a devoted husband and a baby on the way. But when the city is terrorized by a vengeful killer, who leaves behind cryptic messages in blood alongside the mutilated bodies of married men ― while at the same time, Laia’s husband goes missing ― her world begins to come apart. Desperate to find her husband, she turns to Mauricio, a private eye practiced in hypnosis. During the course of his investigations, Mauricio soon suspects that there may be more to this unassuming young woman than meets the eye. Rendered in a clean-line chiaroscuro style and masterfully paced, Ghostwriter takes the reader on a wild ride full of twists and turns right through to its thrilling conclusion. Black & white illustrations.

Jessica’s Review:

Ghost Writer is a graphic novel, so it is a different type of read for me.  It was a dark, disturbing read…. And I really enjoyed it!

This graphic novel is 96 pages   of black and white illustrations divided among 18 ‘acts’. This is a crime noir story/thriller that won Spain’s National Comic award in 2017, and it is well worthy of that win! This is also Pulido’s English debut. 

Ghost Writer is not for the ‘little ones’ as it is aimed for ages 16+.  As one that doesn’t usually read graphic novels, I wasn’t sure if I was ‘getting the reading’, and then BAM:  We get an unexpected twist.  From that point I knew I was ‘getting it’ and really enjoyed this ‘different form of reading.  I don’t think most readers will realize the twists, unless they read crime noir, then they might (well maybe….????) 

If you like graphic novels and stories with a noir-ish detective story with some dark humor then Ghost Writer  will be for you!  Read Ghost Writer and meet a new to the USA author! 

Many thanks to the publisher for granting me a copy via Amazon Vine.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


Blog Blitz: The Note by Andrew Barrett

Today Kim and I are participating in the Blog Blitz for the short story The Note by Andrew Barrett: We are reviewing it! This is a short story introduction to CSI Eddie Collins! Bloodhound Books is the publisher.

 Short Story Description:

Have you ever had that feeling of being watched but when you turn around no one’s there?

I have.

It was raining, and I was working a murder scene around midnight when that prickle ran up my spine. If I’d listened to that feeling, if I’d thought back to my past, maybe I could have prevented the terror that was to come.

Back at the office, I found a death threat on my desk.
I had no idea who sent it or why they wanted to kill me.

But I was about to find out.

I’m Eddie Collins, a CSI and this is my story.

The Note
Author: Andrew Barrett
Published: May 5, 2017
80 pages

Reviewed by: Jessica and Kim
Jessica and Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Jessica’s Review:
Dates Read:
June 7-8, 2018

The Note is my introduction to CSI Eddie Collins and it is quite the introduction! This is part of a series that is being re-published by Bloodhound Books. Eddie tells the story himself and it pulls you in from the beginning as Eddie is at a crime scene!  You can see that Barrett took his experience of being a CSI to the page for his readers. I am sure the rest of the series is just as good as The Note.  I would be interested in reading more of his stories in the series.  It can also stand by itself as a standalone story, but why stop here? Keep on reading!

The Note is dark and disturbing: Eddie is a far from perfect person, but this is why you end up liking him.  The description intrigued me which was why I wanted to read it; and I had no idea that it was going to go in the direction it that it did!   This short story makes me want to know more about Eddie.

If you like crime stories, give The Note a try! It’s short and can be ready very quickly, so you have nothing to lose.

Kim’s Review:

This was a really great novella! Y’all know that I love a good creepy read! Plus, I’m a Criminal Minds fan so a book like this is right up my alley! The story was interesting, and the length was perfect! If it had been any longer, it would have been too predictable, but it wasn’t and the little twist at the end made me gasp! I will admit that the first confrontation with Dibble confused me when Eddie gave a false name . . . because I didn’t see the cover when I started reading and I didn’t realize his name was Eddie, but that was my fault so I can’t blame the author! Overall, I really liked this story! Eddie isn’t the most likeable character, but I think that’s why I like him. He’s a great forensic investigator with a great work ethic who is content being in his own company. I would absolutely recommend this to anyone who loves and good detective crime story.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

About the Author:

Andrew Barrett has enjoyed variety in his professional life, from engine-builder to farmer, from Oilfield Service Technician in Kuwait, to his current role of Senior CSI in Yorkshire.

He’s been a CSI since 1996, and has worked on all scene types from terrorism to murder, suicide to rape, drugs manufacture to bomb scenes. One way or another, Andrew’s life revolves around crime.

In 1997 he finished his first crime thriller, A Long Time Dead, and it’s still a readers’ favourite today, some 200,000 copies later, topping the Amazon charts several times. Two more books featuring SOCO Roger Conniston completed the trilogy.

Today, Andrew is still producing high-quality, authentic crime thrillers with a forensic flavour that attract attention from readers worldwide. He’s also attracted attention from the Yorkshire media, having been featured in the Yorkshire Post, and twice interviewed on BBC Radio Leeds.

He’s best known for his lead character, CSI Eddie Collins, and the acerbic way in which he roots out criminals and administers justice. Eddie’s series is four books and two short stories in length, and there’s still more to come.

Andrew is a proud Yorkshireman and sets all of his novels there, using his home city of Leeds as another major, and complementary, character in each of the stories.

Contact Andrew:
Email: andrew@andrewbarrett.co.uk
Twitter @AndrewBarrettUK


Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/andrewbarrettauthor