#FridayFreebie: The Paris Affair – Pip Drysdale

The Paris Affair

Pip Drysdale 

Simon & Schuster

 

https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/The-Paris-Affair/Pip-Drysdale/9781760854324 

She thinks love can kill you. It turns out she might be right. The dark and sexy new thriller from the bestselling author of The Sunday Girl and The Strangers We Know.

Harper Brown is an expert at picking locks, breaking her way out of car boots, talking her way out of trouble and she could run a masterclass on escaping relationships – her record for losing a guy is three minutes flat. She’s addicted to true crime podcasts and is the genius behind a micro-column called ‘How to not get murdered’.

After having her heart broken helping her ex follow his dreams, Harper has moved to Paris to fulfill hers. She’s talked her way into a job as an arts journalist, a stepping stone to her dream role as an investigative journalist. All she has to do is whatever it takes to get there. But then one night she meets the artist Noah X, and everything she thinks she knows is turned upside down.

Soon Harper finds herself entangled in a web of lies, hot on the trail of a murderer and the scoop of a lifetime. This is the story that could make her career – if the killer doesn’t catch her first.

*** I have one copy of the fabulous The Paris Affair  to give away – for your chance to win simply  leave a comment on this post with the title of another book written by Pip Drysdale. How easy is that? Entries open to Australian residents only, entries close  28th February 2021.  Thanks to the lovely people at Simon & Schuster and to the author for providing  this giveaway. ***

Review: The Paris Affair – Pip Drysdale

The Paris Affair

Pip Drysdale

Simon & Schuster

ISBN: 9781760854331

RRP $32.99

 

Description:

She thinks love can kill you. It turns out she might be right.

Meet Harper Brown…

Occupation: Arts journalist

Dream job: Hard-hitting news reporter

Location: Paris

Loves: True crime podcasts, art galleries, coffee, whiskey

Does not love: fake people, toxic positivity, being told how to live her life by smug workmates who have no life (that’s you, Stan), her narcissistic ex

Favourite book: 1984

Favourite artist: Noah X. Sometimes.

Favourite painting: Klimt’s Schubert at the Piano

Special skills: breaking out of car boots, picking locks and escaping relationships.

Superpower: She can lose any guy in three minutes flat. Ask her how.

Secret: She’s hot on the trail of a murderer – and the scoop of a lifetime.

 

That’s if the killer doesn’t catch her first.

 

My View:

I loved this sassy, modern, exciting, captivating mystery. Set in Paris, this read makes you feels like you are in the city, at the art gallery, in the office, walking along the streets…the settings are brilliant. And the characters are just as well written. Visit the office and recognise some of the character traits Drysdale has instilled in Harper’s colleagues, you will recognise them.  Examine the friendships, the relationships are credible and some familiar.

Flawed yet resilient and strong, the protagonist Harper Brown is gutsy and likeable in a sometimes cringeworthy way. But you will like her. And a bonus – she has a great knowledge of art (or if not, she certainly talks the talk) 😊. And Noah X is …worth reading about.

The murders/mystery elements will keep you guessing.  There are so many well-placed red herrings you will not guess who did.

 

A great read.

 

Review: Trust – Chris Hammer

Chris Hammer

Trust

Allen and Unwin

ISBN: 9781760877415

RRP $32.99

 

Description:

He violated her past and haunts her present.

Now he’s threatening their future.

She breathes deeply, trying to quell the rising sense of panic. A detective came to her home, drugged her and kidnapped her. She tries to make sense of it, to imagine alternatives, but only one conclusion is possible: it’s her past come to claim her.

Martin Scarsden’s new life seems perfect, right up until the moment it’s shattered by a voicemail: a single scream, abruptly cut off, from his partner Mandaly Blonde.

Racing home, he finds an unconscious man sprawled on the floor and Mandy gone. Someone has abducted her. But who, and why?

So starts a twisting tale of intrigue and danger, as Martin probes the past of the woman he loves, a woman who has buried her former life so deep she has never mentioned it.

And for the first time, Mandy finds denial impossible, now the body of a mystery man has been discovered, a man whose name she doesn’t know, a man she was engaged to marry when he died. It’s time to face her demons once and for all; it’s time she learned how to trust.

Set in a Sydney riven with corruption and nepotism, privilege and power, Trust is the third riveting novel from award-winning and internationally acclaimed writer Chris Hammer.

 

My View:

 This is an exceptional read from Chris Hammer – in fact I think it is the best in the series. The words that springs to mind is “smooth, like a fine whiskey” does that sound corny? It’s what popped into my head after I finished reading this one – how this writer’s style has really grown, matured, developed, progressed…it has a complexity that engages and carries the read along for this exciting ride. The writing appears effortless, smooth, intense.

 

This is a fantastic end (?) to the original premise – we now have fully developed back stories and characters, mysteries, suspense, some sadness and a very satisfying resolution. What more could you want except another drop? Hope there is another in the pipe line Chris Hammer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#FridayFreebie House of Correction – Nicci French

 

House of Correction 

Nicci French 

Simon & Schuster

Description:

‘So,’ said Mora Piozzi, her lawyer, looking down at her laptop. ‘In brief: you are charged with the murder of Stuart Robert Rees, on December 21st, between the hours of ten-forty in the morning and half-past three o’clock in the afternoon.’

Tabitha is accused of murder. She is in prison awaiting trial.
There is a strong case against her, and she can’t remember what happened on December 21st.
She is alone, frightened and confused.
But somehow, from the confines of her cell, she needs to prove everyone wrong.

House of Correction is beautifully written, clever, shocking, twisty, so believable and utterly compelling. This is another stunningly brilliant novel to relish from Nicci French.

 

 

**Thanks to the generous people at Simon & Schuster  Australia I have one copy of this magnificent read for you to win. ( I finished reading this a couple of days ago – it’s brilliant! ) Australian residents only – answer me this in the comments- who is Nicci French? I will randomly select the winner on the 2nd of September – publication day. **

Review: Torched -Kimberley Starr

Torched

Kimberley Starr

Panterra Press

ISBN: 9780648571537

 

Description:

An explosive, haunting and utterly compelling crime novel about mothers and sons and the ties that bind them.

 

A small Yarra Valley town has been devastated by a bushfire, and Reefton Primary School Principal Phoebe Warton can’t sleep. She’s the single mother of Caleb who is accused of starting the fire – on purpose. Twelve people are dead, students from her school among them; only a monster would cause such carnage. But where was her son that day? No one knows but Caleb, and he’s not talking.

 

Against mounting community rage, Phoebe sets out to clear her son. But every avenue leads back to Caleb. Why did he vanish from his Country Fire Authority shift? Who else was at the abandoned goldmine that day? Why is Caleb refusing to speak?

 

Phoebe will be forced to confront the nature of guilt and redemption, and decide what boundaries she is willing to cross to save the son she loves.

 

 

My View:

The publishing date for this read was changed a few times due to COVID- 19 issues of restrictions and the coincidental major bush fires in Australia- how difficult it must have been to be planning to release a book whose central character is a fatal bush fires and then an actual fire ravishes huge parts of Eastern Australia, devastating for the author and for the areas affected by the fires.

 

And so, I read this book, was fascinated, loved the tension packed pages, loved the family story and if you have ever wondered how it felt to actually be in the midst of a bush fires – well this read is so believable, so visual…I was “there”, smelling the fire, heat burning my nostrils… And then everything halted. The release was postponed and the book languished on my desk, pretty soon covered in various notes, other books to review…

 

This book is fabulous! It is on my list of “best reads of 2020” and I hope it will soon be on yours.

 

Review: The Long Shadow – Anne Buist

The Long Shadow

Anne Buist

Text Publishing

ISBN: 9781922268709

 

Description:

Write down something about yourself, as a mother, that worries you.

 

Psychologist Isabel Harris has come to the outback town of Riley because her husband Dean is assessing the hospital—the hub of the community—with a view to closing it down. Isabel, mostly occupied with her toddler, will run a mother–baby therapy group. But on the first day she gets an anonymous note from one of the mothers:

 

The baby killer is going to strike again. Soon.

 

Then a series of small harassments begins.

 

Is it an attempt to warn Dean off? Or could the threat be serious? A child was murdered in Riley once before.

 

As Isabel discovers more about the mothers in her group, she begins to believe the twenty-five-year-old mystery of a baby’s death may be the key to preventing another tragedy.

 

My View:

What did I love about this read? So much to enjoy if you stop and take the time to absorb the many themes presented in this read; motherhood, what is home, domestic violence, family violence, racism, small town attitudes, family dramas, sins of the past…for me this was a slow burn with so many fascinating aspects. I particularly liked hearing the voice of the protagonist – her many views on life in the town – as a psychologist  dealing with her clients, her insights into their issues are fascinating, as  an individual suffering her own stresses – again interesting, as a “new comer” to town she has a unique perspective.

 

Now I’ve sampled the thoughtful writing in this standalone I am very keen to read the Natalie King series of thrillers that Anne Buist is well known for.

 

 

#FridayFreebie – Wasp Season – Jennifer Scoullar

Wasp Season

Jennifer Scoullar

Pilyara Press

ISBN: 9780648308942

 

Description:

You’ll never see a wasp in the same way again …

When Beth’s marriage ends, she’s determined to build a new life in the country for herself and her children. A quiet life lived closer to nature. She thinks she’s achieved the impossible – a civilised separation, a happy home and a cordial relationship with her estranged husband, Mark. There’s even the promise of new love on the horizon. But when Mark tries to change the rules, Beth’s peaceful world is turned upside down.

Disturbingly, she also discovers that European wasps have invaded her garden. Beth’s obsession with them and their queen holds up a distorted mirror to the human drama. As the chaos in Beth’s life gathers momentum, connections between the two worlds come sharply into focus. The lives of Beth and the others are neither separate to, nor safe from, the natural world.

AUTHOR’S NOTE
In this series of Wild Australia Stories I tell tales of the people, wildlife and land that I love. But there is more to wild Australia than brumbies, dingoes, dolphins and the magnificent outback.

As a passionate conservationist and amateur naturalist, I’m interested in all aspects of nature. One thing I’ve learned is that it’s not always about the big things. Little creatures have a surprising impact on our lives. If you’re squeamish about insects, look away now. If you’re fascinated by the Australian bush and the way all creatures great and small are connected, then Beth’s story is for you.

– Praise for Wasp Season –

-There is an ironic twist to this tale, a violent and sudden twist that will leave the reader gasping. Wasp Season is a fascinating study of nature and humans.– Wendy O’Hanlon, Acres Australia

– ‘A thrilling story that describes both human and insect life in detail as they become intertwined … an unforgettable, unputdownable trip into a garden that, on the surface, seems like a quiet refuge.’ – John Morrow, World of Books and Music

– ‘Scoullar, it turns out, is a writer of documentary calibre.’ Australian Literary Review

 

** I have one copy of Wasp Season, courtesy of the author,  available to an Australian resident to win – it’s simple – in the comments name one other book Jennifer has written.  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4428836.Jennifer_Scoullar
Competition closes  8th August 2020. Good luck **

#FridayFreebie Face Value – Ian Andrew

Face Value

Wright & Tran #1

Ian Andrew

ISBN: 978-0992464127 Trade Paperback: 314 pages Trim: 13.3 x 2.0 x 20.3 cm

Publisher: The Book Reality Experience

Published: 11 May 2015

Winner of the Publishers Weekly Booklife Prize for Fiction, FACE VALUE by Ian Andrew, is the opening salvo in the detective thriller series that follows Kara Wright and Tien Tran, veterans of UK Military Intelligence, now trying to scrape by as Private Investigators.

 

With taut writing, bone-crushing action, and a pace that never relents, this was a difficult read to put down and a worthy winner.
Mark Dawson, USA Today bestselling author.

Featuring gripping action and tight plotting, this supercharged novel keeps readers on the edge of their seats.

Publishers Weekly

 

Description:

When ex-intelligence operative Tien Tran finds civilian life lacking, she teams up with her hot-headed fellow vet Kara to become private investigators. Even with her hard-as-nails partner by her side, Tran struggles to afford the London rent on their office. The computer genius agrees to take on a well-paying case of two clients’ missing parents to keep the lights on. But when the rookie PIs learn the siblings’ father is ex-intelligence too, they suspect the questions of his disappearance may lead to sinister answers.

 

Kara Wright has no problem taking her combat skills to the streets, but her lack of empathy tends to get her in deep trouble. When she takes one counterattack too far, Wright’s aggression puts her and her partner at risk in the middle of their investigation. As they follow the case of violence and abuse to the heart of the criminal underworld, the Metropolitan Police may put a stop to their search before it starts.

Can Tran keep Wright in check long enough to close the case, or will the pair of PIs fall victim to a dark and deadly game?

 

Face Value is the gripping first book in the Wright & Tran crime thriller series. If you like electrifying action, breathless pacing, and three-dimensional characters, then you’ll love Ian Andrew’s award-winning special ops detective novel.

 

 

**This week I have 5 Ebooks of  Face Value the first book in the Wright and Tran series – a book I highly recommend. In the comments tell me which city this book is set in.  5 Winners will be randomly selected on 25 July 2020. Good luck. **

#FridayFreebie: The Bluffs – Kyle Perry

The Bluffs

Kyle Perry

Michael Joseph

Penguin Random House 

ISBN: 9781760895679

RRP $32.99

 

Description:

At the bottom of the world, there is an island. It is a land of rugged wilderness, of ice and snow and blistering heat … They say extinct tigers still roam there. They say other things roam, too.

When a school group of teenage girls go missing in the remote wilderness of Tasmania’s Great Western Tiers, the people of Limestone Creek are immediately on alert. Not long ago, six young girls went missing in the area of those dangerous bluffs, and the legends of ‘the Hungry Man’ still haunt locals to this day.

Now, authorities can determine that the teacher, Eliza Ellis, was knocked unconscious, so someone on the mountain was up to foul play. Jordan Murphy, father of missing student Jasmine and the town’s local dealer, instantly becomes prime suspect, but Detective Con Badenhorst knows that in a town this size – with corrupt cops, small-town politics, and a teenage YouTube sensation – anyone could be hiding something, and bluffing comes second nature.

When a body is found, mauled, at the bottom of a cliff, suspicion turns to a wild animal – but that can’t explain why she, like all victims past and present, was discovered barefoot, with her shoes found nearby, laces neatly tied.

What happened up there on the bluffs? Somebody knows… unless the local legends are true…

 

 

**Today I have one copy The Bluffs to giveaway  thanks to Penguin Random House Australia  (Australian residents only) To enter in the comments let me know where this book is set. I will randomly select a winner on the 18th of July 2020**

 

##Check your emails – winner notified##

Review: The Patient – Jasper DeWitt

The Patient

Jasper DeWitt

Harper Collins Australia

ISBN: 9781460759462

 

Description:

“A clever cocktail of psychological thriller and supernatural horror.” Kirkus

 

The Silent Patient by way of Stephen King: Parker, a young, overconfident psychiatrist new to his job at a mental asylum, miscalculates catastrophically when he undertakes curing a mysterious and profoundly dangerous patient.

 

In a series of online posts, Parker H., an ambitious young psychiatrist, chronicles the harrowing account of his time working at a dreary mental hospital in New England and his attempt to cure the facility’s most difficult, profoundly dangerous case.

 

Originally admitted to the hospital as a child, the man has no known diagnosis. Every person who has attempted to treat him has been driven to madness or suicide.

 

Parker, brilliant and overconfident, takes it upon himself to discover what ails this mystery patient and finally cure him. But things quickly spiral out of control …

 

Fans of Sarah Pinborough’s Behind Her Eyes and Paul Tremblay’s The Cabin at the End of the World will be riveted by Jasper DeWitt’s astonishing debut.

 

PRAISE FOR THE PATIENT:

 

“A stunning debut! DeWitt’s The Patient is a thrilling, compulsive page-turner that will appeal to fans of F. Paul Wilson, Sarah Pinborough, and Alex Michaelides.” Brian Keene, bestselling author and World Horror Grandmaster Award winner

 

“‘Insidious evil’ is such an overused term, but there is no other way to describe what prowls the hallways of this riveting novella. A compulsive read I devoured in one day. And the ending … it still haunts me.” F. Paul Wilson, New York Times bestselling creator of the Repairman Jack series

 

“The Patient is a fascinating and frightening read that comes at you like the monster under your bed.” Reed Farrel Coleman, New York Times bestselling author.

 

 

My View:

Scene 1:  Pan in…Dark lighting…long, eerie, cold bare “industrial” styled corridor…closed door at end of corridor.

Enter Left: Dr in white coat, holding file/clipboard, hesitantly moving toward the door….Looking around, looking behind him, nervous movements.

Music – heavy foreboding…slowly building to crescendo as door opens….

 

I have taken artistic licence and “adapted” my intro script for The Patient to reflect the evocative, moody, “black and white” horror show that I visualised as I read this book. It’s a quick read, an easy read but there is something of those old school black and white horror films that stays with you long after you have finished reading.

 

If you like a little touch of horror then this book is for you.