Book Bingo – Written by An Author I have Never Read – The Silent Patient: Alex Michaelides

The Silent Patient

The Silent Patient

Alex Michaelides

Hachette Australia

Orion

ISBN: 9781409181620

 

Description:

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

 

Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.

 

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him….

 

My View:

 

“Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive, and will come forth later, in uglier ways. Sigmund Freud”

― Alex Michaelides, The Silent Patient

 

This is an exceptional debut.

Alex Michaelides “ studied English literature at Cambridge University and got his  MA in screenwriting at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. He wrote the film The Devil You Know (2013) starring Rosamund Pike and co-wrote The Con is On (2018), starring Uma Thurman, Tim Roth, Parker Posey and Sofia Vergara. THE SILENT PATIENT is his first novel.” https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17621440.Alex_Michaelides

 

Alex Michaelides writes a terrific psychological thriller that plays like a film in your head; visual, compelling, surprising. A narrative told in two voices – that of Alicia – whose thoughts and actions are explored via her diary (and art), before and after committing the crime that has her incarcerated in a secure unit, and the voice of her therapist.

 

I love the trope of the unreliable narrator – and in this book we are privileged to experience two such narrators! What a powerful tool this is in the hands of such a skilled story teller. And there is a magnificent twist that I didn’t see coming.

 

A great read.

 

 

 

 

Book Bingo- Themes of Justice- The Rip – Mark Brandi

The Rip

The Rip

Mark Brandi

Hachette Australia

ISBN: 9780733641121

RRP $29.99

 

Description:

‘It’s funny how quick it happens and without you really noticing. Anton said once that it’s like walking out into the sea, and you think everything’s fine and the water’s warm, but when you turn back you’re suddenly miles from shore. I’ve never been much of a swimmer, but I get what he means. Like, being caught in a current or something. A rip.’

 

A young woman, living on the street has to keep her wits about her. Or her friends. But when the drugs kick in that can be hard.

 

Anton has been looking out for her. She was safe with him. But then Steve came along.

 

He had something over Anton. Must have. But he had a flat they could crash in. And gear in his pocket. And she can’t stop thinking about it. A good hit makes everything all right.

 

But the flat smells weird.

There’s a lock on Steve’s bedroom door.

And the guy is intense.

 

The problem is, sometimes you just don’t know you are in too deep, until you are drowning.

 

 

My View:

Mark Brandi has a special talent, a super power, he is able to insert poignant, authentic characters into his narratives that tell urban, contemporary stories that have great social impact.  Subtle yet powerful, what an amazing voice he and his characters have.

 

Bravo! Encore!

 

What’s next Mark? I can’t wait to find out.

 

Book Bingo – Book Set In An Exotic Location: Gone By Midnight – Candice Fox

Gone by Midnight

Gone by Midnight

Crimson Lake #3

Candice Fox

Penguin Books

Bantam Australia

ISBN: 9780143789154

Description:

Ex-cop Ted Conkaffey is slowing rebuilding his life in Crimson Lake, and getting to know his three-year-old daughter, Lillian. But when he and his PI partner Amanda take on the case of a boy who seems to have literally disappeared into thin air, his job once again threatens everything . . .

 

Crimson Lake is where bad people come to disappear – and where eight-year-old boys vanish into thin air . . .

 

On the fifth floor of the White Caps Hotel, four young friends are left alone while their parents dine downstairs. But when Sara Farrow checks on the children at midnight, her son is missing. The boys swear they stayed in their room, and CCTV confirms Richie has not left the building. Despite a thorough search, no trace of the child is found.

 

Distrustful of the police, Sara turns to Crimson Lake’s unlikeliest private investigators: disgraced cop Ted Conkaffey and convicted killer Amanda Pharrell. This case just the sort of twisted puzzle that gets Amanda’s blood pumping.

 

For Ted, the case couldn’t have come at a worse time. Two years ago a false accusation robbed him of his career, his reputation and most importantly his family. But now Lillian, the daughter he barely knows, is coming to stay in his ramshackle cottage by the lake.

 

Ted must dredge up the area’s worst characters to find a missing boy. And the kind of danger he uncovers could well put his own child in deadly peril . . .

 

 

My View:

An outstanding work of crime fiction/mystery!

 

This is an excellent read, this series just gets better and better. I think this has to be my favourite Candice Fox read thus far. Candice has provided the reader with exciting plot lines, some great empathetic characters, wonderful eerie settings (crocodiles and swamps are a spine chilling combination), some great twists and turns and a conclusion that is spiked with hope.

 

I love this series! More please.

 

 

 

Review: Hangman – Jack Heath

Hangman

Hangman

Timothy Blake #1

Jack Heath

Allen & Unwin Australia

ISBN: 9781760297473

 

Description:

A 14-year-old boy vanishes on his way home from school. His frantic mother receives a disturbing ransom call. It’s only hours before the deadline, and the police have no leads.

 

Enter Timothy Blake, codename Hangman. Blake is a genius, known for solving impossible cases. He’s also a sociopath – the FBI’s last resort.

 

But this time Blake might have met his match. The kidnapper is more cunning and ruthless than anyone he’s faced before. And Blake has been assigned a new partner, a woman linked to the past he’s so desperate to forget.

 

Timothy Blake has a secret, one so dark he will do anything to keep it hidden.

 

And he also has a price. Every time he saves a life, he takes one…

 

Already sold into five territories, Hangman is a mesmerising dissection of the criminal mind and a bulletproof thriller.

 

 

My View:

Gruesome. Gory. More gore.

 

Jack Heath pushes the boundaries when it comes to the dietary habits of his antihero Timothy Blake. Blake is a challenged and dysfunctional character like no other I have read. This novel is equally compelling and repelling and if it wasn’t so convincingly written I would’ve stopped at the first bite.

 

There is no doubt Jack Heath is an accomplished writer who, in this instance, has pushed the boundaries of “acceptable” in this pitch black narrative that is served with a side of equally black humour, romance and mystery.  I don’t think I have ever read anything like this before. The book comes with a warning and it should be heeded.

 

The good news, the second book in the series, Hunter, accomplishes much more without the level of gross that Hangman celebrates.  Stay tuned for my review of Timothy Blake #2: Hunter.

 

PS – This is the perfect read for your book club – if you can stomach the contents 🙂  Guaranteed to get people talking.

 

 

 

Welcome Jack Heath to My Blog

Listen as this exciting new talent in crime fiction/thriller writing introduces his Timothy Blake series.

Jack Heath lives in Canberra and is the bestselling author of more than 25 acclaimed fiction titles for middle-grade and YA readers. His books include the real-time series 300, 400 and 500 Minutes of Danger, the choose-your-own-ending Countdown to Danger books (Scholastic), a collaboration with international illusionist Cosentino, and YA novels such as The Fail Safe and The Cut Out, a multi-award-nominated espionage thriller. His books have sold more than 200,000 copies worldwide and been translated into several languages. First published as a teenager, in the course of his research Jack has trained with firearms, performed street magic, visited morgues and prisons, travelled through eleven countries and read only books by women for a year. jackheath.com.au ”  https://www.allenandunwin.com/browse/books/fiction/crime-mystery/Hunter-Jack-Heath-9781760527082

 

PS -Thanks Jack for appearing on my blog. I cant wait to start reading the book – your enthusiasm is infectious. And on a different note-  love the art work in the background.

 

PPS:

follow @jackheathwriter on social media

free ebook at jackheath.com.au

My Most Anticipated Release of 2019

I so loved Wimmera by Mark Brandi that I have been waiting, waiting for his next release. The Rip has already garnered some wonderful 5 star reviews and I cannot wait to read it. Brandi has a way of writing social driven issues in contemporary settings with more than a hint of mystery that is engaging and evocative.

 

Watch out for this one – released in March.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review: Call Me Evie- J P Pomare

call me evie

Call Me Evie

J P Pomare

Hachette Australia

ISBN: 9780733640230

RRP$ 29.99

 

Description:

 In this propulsive, twist-filled, and haunting psychological suspense debut perfect for fans of Sharp Objects and Room, a seventeen-year-old girl struggles to remember the role she played on the night her life changed forever.

 

For the past two weeks, seventeen-year-old Kate Bennet has lived against her will in an isolated cabin in a remote beach town–brought there by a mysterious man named Bill. Part captor, part benefactor, Bill calls her Evie and tells her he’s hiding her to protect her. That she did something terrible one night back home in Melbourne–something so unspeakable that he had no choice but to take her away. The trouble is, Kate can’t remember the night in question.

 

The fragments of Kate’s shattered memories of her old life seem happy: good friends, a big house in the suburbs, a devoted boyfriend. Bill says he’ll help her fill in the blanks–but his story isn’t adding up. And as she tries to reconcile the girl she thought she’d been with the devastating consequences Bill claims she’s responsible for, Kate will unearth secrets about herself and those closest to her that could change everything.

 

A riveting debut novel that fearlessly plumbs the darkest recesses of the mind, Call Me Evie explores the fragility of memory and the potential in all of us to hide the truth, even from ourselves.

 

 

My View:

This must be the twistiest book I have ever read!

There is no way that I could have guessed any of the reveals, in fact I was totally caught by surprise each time the truth was exposed (and yes there are multiple twists, and no I am not telling)J.

 

If you are a lover of contemporary social issues, the unreliable narrator, and twists, twists and more twists then this book should definitely be on the top of your reading pile. Compulsive reading. What an amazing debut! I predict a film adaptation coming soon.