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My favourite book links

 

I thought I would share a few of my ‘Bookie’ links with you this month. Where I go to get inspired to read – a few of my sources of information

FANTASTIC FICTION is a wonderful source – having information on over 30,000 authors and 350,000 books. There are also list about new authors, new books, books coming soon, most Popular and top authors. A favourite of mine are the countries list (want to read a book set in Eritrea or Montserrat – they’re on the list) the years list (need an author who was born or died in 1943 – it’s on the list) and the awards (which includes a list of most awarded books). The site is just information and there is no forum or chit chat – but you will spend hours wandering through it.
http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/

GOODREADS is the place to go if you want to talk about books with other people. Not only will you find reviews about books – you can make friends, discover which of your friends are already there and if you like chatting books then you will find a group to suit just about every reading scenario you would like. Within the groups are reading related games, reading challenges (oh be still my beating heart) and there are even some giveaways and lists of books. You like dragons – search Listopia and there will be dragon book suggestions coming out of your ears!!! It is free to join and you can track your books on your own set of shelves – and there is an Apple application so you can tell at a glance what books you already own so there is no double ups when you’re in a book shop. I belong to a few groups and I am kept very busy reading and discussing books and off topic subjects.
https://www.goodreads.com/

STOP YOU’RE KILLING ME – if you like reading mysteries the ‘Stop You’re Killing Me’ is my favourite go to page. There is a list of authors each with a chronological list of their books which covers both their series and stand-alones. There are also indexes to help you find characters who live in particular countries (a PI from Mexico maybe) or by occupations (an investigator who is a dancer – or an Interior decorator maybe) there is even an area to search for elderly people or Amish; historical era (Ancient Egyptian mystery anyone?) as well as type of mystery – cosy, hard boiled, vampire, physiological Triller. This site will certainly fill up your notebook with new suggestions to follow up on.
http://www.stopyourekillingme.com/

PACK A BOOK – Are you an armchair traveller? Then Pack-a-book is the site for you. Pick a country – click on the link and you will get a list of books set in that country – both fiction and non-fiction. They also have a face book page and have one country one book email travel sessions, which sound interesting but I’ve never taken a plunge – maybe this year:

If you were to join us right now you would be standing at the natural harbor in the town of Poole on England’s south-coast, ready to begin the journey. Your bags are packed, mainly with books of course, and your spirits high, as you prepare to board the ferry that will take you across the ocean.

But where will the first stop be? Well – we’re not giving out any secrets here. To find out – you’ll have to take the plunge and join us.
http://www.packabook.com/

You can also find this post over on Book Charmers

Reading why you should and when it is alright to stop.

A group of us were having a discussion the other day about books we wouldn’t read and why. As conversation are inclined to do it then meandered off onto a few tangents one of which was the fact that there are those who read books to the bitter end, even if they are not enjoying the experience, and then there are others, like me, who can easily put a book down if the author hasn’t managed to engage them and move onto the next one.

So why won’t people even attempt to read a particular book or even (hold onto your hats this is radical) not finish it at all because, in their opinion, it’s a waste of time!! This is hard to answer so I won’t even try it’s just the way things are. However a few ‘finishers’ told me they had to finish a book because it would upset the author. So I wrote to a few well-known internationally published Australian authors I know and asked what their thoughts were when a book is rejected deemed unfit to read by a reader did they mind were they wounded. I promised anonymity with their replies!

The first one wrote: “…I never pay any attention! I haven’t got time to go and check people’s reading progress. It’s never occurred to me to do so. And if someone told me they’d been unable to finish one of my books, I’d think that’s a shame but obviously the book was not for them. I certainly don’t expect everyone to like what I do! That’d be impossible…”

The next author responded: “…If someone marks my book as DNF, of course it hurts. If there is feedback, I’ll read it to see if there’s anything I should take on board…I don’t like everything I read, so I can’t expect others to…Getting good AND bad reviews and the occasional DNF is just part of being an author…constructive criticism is one thing, but abuse is not acceptable…”

Finally the third author said: “…Life is too short to finish a book you’re not enjoying…if I’m not enjoying the book I am reading the lure of another on my bedside table is too strong…don’t feel guilty…”

Their replies certainly contrast with another unnamed Australian writer who messaged me through Goodreads and demanded to know why I didn’t finish reading his/her book and then proceeded to lecture me as to how horrible I was and how much effort he/she had put into their work and how dare I reject it! Needless to say I have not picked up anymore of their books, which is one reason why people, well me anyway, won’t pick up particular books. The other reason is if a book is in a genre that the reader doesn’t like. For instance I won’t read anything in the horror genre a close friend would have her nails removed rather than read romance.

The conversation continued and I was asked how come I average 140 books a year (one of the others managed over 200) did this mean I was indiscriminate in my reading? Was there actually anything I wouldn’t read because in their opinion there were books on my ‘to read’ shelf on Goodreads that they personally wouldn’t dream of picking up.

That was scary do I read books that are so ghastly that at least one person couldn’t bear to read it? What does that say about me? Well nothing we can’t all like the same things and thank goodness there are enough authors in the world all writing in a myriad of genre to keep we readers happy.

So why do we read what we read?

In her article 10 benefits why you should read everyday, Lana Winter-Hébert says we should read because it’s good for our health!!! I like Lana, I must be the healthiest person ever!!! She writes:

…But not all books are for everyone. A book might be a best-seller, but maybe you can’t stand the writing. Or maybe it’s not the right time to read a book

So don’t read a book just because it is popular, or it’s won an award so it must be good, or even because it is a classic and people will think I’m dumb if I haven’t read it. Read a book because YOU like the sound of it, not because you’re influenced by what people think about your reading choices. And while you’re reading a book you’re getting healthy, de-stressing and exercising your mind how cool is that?

…A book lying idle on a shelf is wasted ammunition. Like money, books must be kept in constant circulation… A book is not only a friend, it makes friends for you. When you have possessed a book with mind and spirit, you are enriched. But when you pass it on you are enriched threefold…

Henry Miller, The Books in My Life

This book is a treasure; I did not suspect it would be so good when I picked it up, but now I can feel the printed words seeping through my skin and into my veins, rushing to my heart and marking it forever. I want to savor this wonder, this happening of loving a book and reading it for the first time, because the first time is always the best, and I will never read this book for the first time ever again

Laura Nowlin, If He Had Been with Me

The following quote is about awarding a ‘star’ to a book – she thinks the same way I do

I am shocked to find that some people think a 2 star ‘I liked it’ rating is a bad rating. What? I liked it. I LIKED it! That means I read the whole thing, to the last page, in spite of my life raining comets on me. It’s a good book that survives the reading process with me. If a book is so-so, it ends up under the bed somewhere, or maybe under a stinky judo bag in the back of the van. So a 2 star from me means,yes, I liked the book, and I’d loan it to a friend and it went everywhere in my jacket pocket or purse until I finished it. A 3 star means that I’ve ignored friends to finish it and my sink is full of dirty dishes. A 4 star means I’m probably in trouble with my editor for missing a deadline because I was reading this book. But I want you to know . . . I don’t finish books I don’t like. There’s too many good ones out there waiting to be found.

Robin Hobb, author

If the book you’re reading doesn’t make you feel these emotions then please go and find one that does.

So if reading is good for us when we are reading a book of our choice that makes us happy in my opinion this translates to it’s doing us harm if we insist on finishing a book that is not making us happy but for some reason feel bound to not giving up. By golly, by gosh I will grit my teeth and keep on reading!

Sadie L. Trombetta gives us 10 signs that you should give up on the book you’re in the middle of no really she gives 10 of them!!! And while you will certainly laugh when you read her article you have to think very seriously about the message.

So, how can you know if you will like a book? Well it’s not always easy to know. Certainly if you love an author’s work, or a particular genre then chances are higher that you may enjoy it. I get my books from reading reviews written by people who have similar likes to me, Reading reviews in magazines, looking at book blurbs in bookshop catalogues. I certainly have tried and true authors so I am highly confident I will enjoy their work. Sometimes yes I judge a book by its cover! Especially when I am in the library or book store I pull a book off the shelf if it catches my eye and if I like the picture then I’ll read the blurb and if the two seem appealing I’ll borrow/buy the book.

Or you can let serendipity guide you – there are places on the web that will recommend books for you here are three, but there are many more:

Which book?This page lets you pick 4 things you want from a book to test it out I picked happy, lots of sex, bleak and gentle the recommended book? Boys and Girls by Joseph Connolly the blurb says Susan wants another husband. Which comes as a shock to the current one.

Next test was happy, safe, beautiful and gentle resulted in Companions of Paradise by Thalassa Ali the blurb for this is Mariana Givens, a brave, beautiful Englishwoman must face the repercussions of her marriage to a Punjabi Muslim, and choose between the people she calls her own—and the life that owns her heart.

What should I read next? – With this page you start by typing in your favourite author’s name I typed in Enid Blyton it then comes up with a list of a few of her books for you to choose from I clicked on one of her ‘Famous Five’ titles and the web page suggests I might like Alone on a Wide Wide Sea by Michael Morpurgo the blurb for this is When orphaned Arthur Hobhouse is shipped to Australia after WW II he loses his sister, his country and everything he knows. Actually I have taken note of this one sounds pretty good!

The literature map is another one I use a lot using Enid Blyton as my chosen author for this one it comes up with a pageful of suggested authors I might like to read as well not sure about some of the connections Jackie Collins, Monty Python for example!!!!

Another idea for finding books you’ll enjoy is to find your favourite authors facebook page, or blog, and see what they are reading .

In the end immersing yourself in a book that takes you away from the world for a few hours is one of the greatest pleasures in this world. Add a glass of wine and life is indeed good!

Of course there is also the added bonus of annoying a librarian:

“…The Librarian considered matters for a while. So…a dwarf and a troll. He preferred both species to humans. For one thing, neither of them were great readers. The Librarian was, of course, very much in favour of reading in general, but readers in particular got on his nerves. There was something, well, sacrilegious about the way they kept taking books off the shelves and wearing out the words by reading them. He liked people who loved and respected books, and the best way to do that, in the Librarian’s opinion, was to leave them on the shelves where Nature intended them to be…”

Terry Pratchett, Men at Arms

You can also find this post over on Book Charmers

Title: Big Little Lies

Author: Liane Moriarty

Genre: Mystery

Opens:

Blurb: Pirriwee Public is a beautiful little beachside primary school where children are taught that ‘sharing is caring.’ So how has the annual School Trivia Night ended in full-blown riot? Sirens are wailing. People are screaming. The principal is mortified. And one parent is dead.

Was it a murder, a tragic accident or just good parents gone bad? As the parents at Pirriwee Public are about to discover, sometimes it’s the little lies that turn out to be the most lethal. Big little lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, school-yard scandal, and the big little lies we tell ourselves just to survive.

My Thoughts: As the blurb states, when the story opens the reader learns one main thing – someone has died at a noisy school fund raising night! That is all we’re told – we don’t know who has died, or how they’ve died, or who caused the death to happen. So for me the mystery of the story is not just finding out who did it – but who had it done to them. Whilst the delight of the story is not only finding out what lead to the events of that night – but spending the time trying to figure out who was going to be the victim, and who was going to be the killer, and hoping beyond hope that neither of them was one of my favourites.

The three main characters, Celeste, Jane and Maddie are all very different women, but I loved each of them. Maddie and Celeste are married, Jane is a single mum. Maddie is with her second husband and they have two young children, she also has her teen daughter living with them from her first marriage. Her ex-husband and his alternative lifestyle wife have recently moved into the area with their youngster. Celeste is very well off, drop dead gorgeous and her husband that makes all the other ladies swoon when he appears; they have twin boys. Finally the single mum, Jane, has just moved into the area with her little boy called Ziggy. The three women meet at the Pirriwee Public Kindergarten orientation day, where the story kicks off with little Ziggy being accused of bulling one of the girls. The girl’s high-powered mother takes it on herself to punish Ziggy, and his mother, for his sin – accusing him of lying when he denies he bullied the girl. Yes you’ve guessed it Helicopter parents play a large part in the story; a mummy war quickly breaks out along with the alliances, side taking, gossiping and cattiness begins.

It took me a while to get into BIG LITTLE LIES, to get used to the writing style author Liane Moriarty used. I have read books that are written for more than one point of view before, but this is different because on top of the three main characters taking their turn in narrating there are also a multitude of snappy little one-liners from many supporting characters that appear between the main narratives. Each of these voices (let’s call them the Greek chorus) are trying to say what they think happened, what they heard happened, their opinion on why something happened and what caused it to happen – but like the main story at no point is the victim named, or who is accused, if anyone – no names are named. This chorus of voices provided a commentary on what was going in – filled in some of the gaps – or related utter untruths – exactly how a gossiping crowd of helicopter parents would act once they start hunting in a pack.

Once I realised the role they had to play I really, really enjoyed the experience. While the subjects covered are quite dark at times – the story rings with humour as the nice school gate chit chat is slowly stripped away and the underlying nastiness is revealed. When the truth comes out at the horrific climax that was oh so perfect to the story, it leaves many of the characters shaken and shame-faced as none of them were entirely blameless. While the mums and dads were battling it out – the kids involved just got on with it, quarrels forgotten within a day or two as they struggle to understand why their parents are doing what they are doing.

The conversations were so perfect, I have heard mothers and fathers talking like this, I have had my children attend ordinary schools like this with all these procedures in place that just don’t work in some cases. Teachers doing the best they can as parents use the system against them. There is the frustration from both parents and the teachers, which is balanced by total oblivion of the situation from the kids. But rarely does it end in death as it did in Pirriwee Public on that fateful night.

For more about the author – Click Here

B – Great – I really enjoyed reading it and it is a book I will be recommending to all my friends who like this genre.

Books around the web – Children’s/YA

There are lots of references to children’s literary matters on the web, but the word ‘children’ describes literature that ranges from Picture Books for the very little, through primary and middle school and on to teens, or YA, readers.

Legally a person is not considered an adult until they turn 18 – so regardless of what your 17-year-old is currently reading, books aimed at him, or her, are classed as Children’s literature.

Learning to read starts before a child can even read for themselves – the best start a child can have is for someone to read to them – and the reader gets as much pleasure as the readee!

Last year the blog ‘For Reading Addicts’ conducted a poll on the subject of what books their followers loved to read to their children. They got more than 1000 responses naming more than 300 books. Here are their top 20 favourite books.

So why should we read to our very young children and grandchildren? Well here are two views as to why picture books are useful and why we should read to the very small, as well as the not so small:

1. Picture books are important – What your child, and you, gets out of reading them

2. Getting the most out of picture books – a couple of hints to encourage your child to interact

I use to read to my kids, and now my kids are reading to my grandchildren, and I still read children’s literature and re-read old favourites – Charlotte’s Web and Harry Potter anyone?

My admission of reading Children’s literature brings up a very divisive topic on the various media outlets – Should adults be reading Children’s books at all?

Here is an argument for NO – Apparently I should feel embarrassed when what I’m reading is written for Children! Hmmm, Okay! (Carefully – I push my current book, written by Enid Blyton, out of view).

Fortunately there are sensible people out on the internet who think that reading children’s literature is not embarrassing and that children’s literature is never just for children! (yaaaay – my Enid Blyton Book is back out front and centre)

And while we are talking about the reading Nazis, the word killjoys, – if you have a child that is struggling to read – then maybe one way to get them started is by introducing comic books/graphic novels. At this point you may get a teacher who will throw up their hands in horror – it’s not real reading you see – apparently. My take on this when it happened to me and someone decided they knew better about my child reading was that children should be allowed to read comics – it is the written word in a freed-up context and as far as I am concerned they can read a cornflake packet if it means they’re reading. I am not alone in this opinion and here are ten reasons why children should be allowed to read comic books.

Finally – here is a huge list of Children’s Literary reading links

And – a list of Blogs dealing with Children’s literature to watch out for

This post can also be found over on the Book Charmers blog

Waiting on WWW Wednesday

Waiting on WWW Wednesday

The good thing about living in Australia is that we are ahead of the rest of the world by a big margin (apart from New Zealanders who are ahead of us by a couple of hours)! So this means we get to celebrate Christmas and New Year first each year but it also means that when I post day specific stuff, such as today’s Wednesday post – it is MY Wednesday – but some of you haven’t even gone to bed on your Tuesday yet so think I am mad!!! Well on second thoughts, I am probably mad – but that is not what this post is about!

This post is a combination of two memes, which are WWW Wednesdays which is hosted by Taking on a World of Words and Waiting on Wednesdays which is hosted by Breaking the Spine, so the name has been changed to waiting on WWW Wednesday to reflect this combination.

The Three Ws of WWW Wednesdays are: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next?

While “Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event, which spotlights upcoming releases that people are eagerly anticipating.

What am I currently reading?

I am currently reading Skin by Ilka Tampke, who is an Australian writer and this is her debut novel. Set in Iron Age Britain around AD 43. Britain is poised on the brink of Roman invasion and in the village of Caer Cad the locals look to their ancient rituals in order to guide them through the expected invasion. Ailia a fourteen-year-old girl who is on the brink of womanhood. Abandoned at birth, parents unknown, Ailia has no skin, or totem, as she had no known mother to pass one down to her. She is lucky though, taken in by the Cookmother who found the baby on her freezing doorstep, so now Ailia is working in the kitchens of the Tribequeen. I am only a little way into the story, but Ailia is now fourteen and she is preparing to join her first Beltane festival. Her lack of skin dictates she can’t be part of the rituals, and she is not allowed to learn – but for some reason she can join the Beltane ritual, and she is being taught about healing herbs by Cookmother. I am reading on to find out why.

What did I recently finish?

I have just finished The Accidental Empress by Allison Pataki. It is the story of Elizabeth – mostly known as Sisi – Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary in the late 1800s. I am going to be visiting her palaces in Vienna and Budapest very soon so was very curious as to her history. Sisi was the daughter of a Bavarian duke, who allowed his daughters to roam around outside, ride horses, and partake in other "un-lady" like activities. The story opens as her older sister, Helene, is summoned by their Aunt Sophia to the Hapsburg Court in Vienna to marry her son the Emperor Franz Joseph. But Helene is not interested in becoming an Empress. She is shy, a bookworm, and wants to be a nun. Against her will Helene is taken to Vienna along with Sisi and their mother. The girls soon find out that Aunt Sophie is the power behind the throne and is overbearing, opinionated and controlling. Uncharacteristically Franz temporarily emerges from his mother’s control and falls in love with the vivacious, unconventional and charismatic Sisi, and insists on making her his bride, much to his mother’s dismay.

Once the wedding takes place though, Sisi is gradually suffocated by the rigid unyielding protocols of the imperial Hapsburg court. She realizes that the rebellion of marrying her is the only rebellion Franz is going to be allowed to get away with. He is firmly controlled by his mother. Her children are taken away from her at birth by Sophia, and Sisi is thwarted at every step to access them on a permanent basis. Franz takes on mistresses and one of them passes on a disease to Sisi and she almost dies, once she recovers she is never the same health wise and becomes obsessed with being thin. Gradually Sisi takes control of her own life – but it is one away from the court. Strangely once she takes this step of independence Franz learns to appreciate, and listen to, her political strategies and the story ends as he gives her permission to remain in Hungary while he returns to Vienna. There is a second book about Sisi and the second half of her life. But for now I am content with what I have read and will visit these palaces with interest seeing where she lived, and suffered.

What will I read next?

I have a few lined up to read, all needed for various reading challenges I am on:

The Copper Gauntlet by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare – the second in the Magisterium series

Sweet Inspiration by Penny Watson – It has elves in it – I need elves!!!

Winter in Full Bloom by Anita Higman

What am I waiting on?

I have a few books on pre-order at the moment that I am on the edge of my seat waiting to come out, all by authors who… well let’s just say that I’d buy their shopping list if it was published:

2 Australian Authors:

Outback Sisters by Rachael Johns – release date 01/03/16

Dastardly Deeds by Ilsa Evans – release date 10/03/16

2 non-Australian Authors:

Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs – release date 08/03/16

Britt-Marie was Here by Fredrik Backman – release date 05/05/16

(also posted over at Book Charmers)

Title: Their Fractured Light

Author: Aime Kufman and Meagan Spooner

Genre: YA/Romance/Science Fiction

Opens: The dappled sunlight through the grass is beautiful, though I know it’s not real

Blurb: A year ago, Flynn Cormac and Jubilee Chase made the now infamous Avon Broadcast, calling on the galaxy to witness for their planet, and protect them from destruction. Some say Flynn’s a madman, others whisper about conspiracies. Nobody knows the truth. A year before that, Tarver Merendsen and Lilac LaRoux were rescued from a terrible shipwreck—now, they live a public life in front of the cameras, and a secret life away from the world’s gaze.

Now, in the centre of the universe on the planet of Corinth, all four are about to collide with two new players, who will bring the fight against LaRoux Industries to a head. Gideon Marchant is an eighteen-year-old computer hacker—a whiz kid and an urban warrior. He’ll climb, abseil and worm his way past the best security measures to pull off onsite hacks that others don’t dare touch.

Sofia Quinn has a killer smile, and by the time you’re done noticing it, she’s got you offering up your wallet, your car, and anything else she desires. She holds LaRoux Industries responsible for the mysterious death of her father and is out for revenge at any cost.

My Thoughts: THEIR FRACTURED LIGHT is the third and final book in the Starbound Series and while it gathers all the threads started in the two previous stories and brings them all to an explosive ending, I couldn’t help but feel I wanted more out of it.

Set on the planet, Corinth, where the doomed space ship Icarus from THESE BROKEN STARS was launched and the trilogy commenced, we meet the final two players – Gideon and Sofia. Both characters have apparently appeared in the previous books, but to be perfectly honest I couldn’t remember them – but that didn’t matter as enough background is given to understand what drives them. Their paths cross at the headquarters of LaRoux Industries where they have both infiltrated a shindig – they both have a goal to kill Monsieur LaRoux. Of course something goes wrong and they join forces to escape. The escape is not 100% successful though as they are soon being hunted and as they flee to various safe havens something happens at each location to make them less than safe and they have to move on. Eventually the intrepid due decide to make another effort to kill Monsieur LaRoux and all six characters meet up.

For me, this is when the story started to bog down and I lost interest to a certain extent. I think this might be because of the romance side of things. In each of the previous books the romance that developed between the two main characters got 100% of the focus. In THEIR FRACTURED LIGHT Gideon and Sofia had only half the book to develop because once they meet up with the other four they had to share the reader’s attention with Tarver, Lilac Flynn and Jubilee. In fact they almost seemed to disappear into the background, which I felt was to their disadvantage. They just never developed their full potential as characters for me.

I am glad that the series has now been finalised – that there is closure – an end; and it was a very good ending as well. But I think I should have stopped at the first book as it was an ‘A’ read for me, while THEIR FRACTURED LIGHT is an above average ‘C’ read – I’m sorry but it came over as just being written to finish things off – the heart had gone and the authors maybe moved on to new characters. Loved the first half but by the three quarter point I was skimming to get to the end.

For more about the author Amie Kaufman Click Here and then Click here for Meagan Spooner.

C – Above average – was very readable and I really liked it but was easily able to put it down and walk away for a while..

With thanks to Allen & Unwin and the author for this copy to read and review. Allen & Unwin recommended retail price is $18.99

Title: Murder on the Island

Author: Brian Kavanagh

Genre: Mystery

Opens: “…’Mark, I would say dear Mark but since your recent attitude and behaviour, I think not’…”

Blurb: Belinda travels to the island of Guernsey to meet up with her fiancé Mark and his mother Lady Melba Sallinger to make plans for the upcoming wedding. Her best friend Hazel is at her side. When they arrive there are other guests in residence – Belinda’s parents, who are expected, along with some additions – a handsome interior designer, a Jesuit priest, and Catherine, a writer who is researching the German occupation on Guernsey.

My Thoughts: MURDER ON THE ISLAND is the 6th in the Belinda Lawrence mystery series, and is every bit as good, if not slightly better, as its predecessors! There are some really spooky shenanigans going on this time. Belinda is infuriated when her future mother-in-law starts taking over the wedding plans – insisting on a huge society wedding against Belinda’s wishes. Expecting some support from Mark, she is very upset when he scampers off to the USA for an important ‘business trip’ leaving her alone to face his mother. Thankfully Hazel is with her and she and Belinda soon get distracted by the feeling that something is amiss with some of the other guests. For a start the writer didn’t seem to be doing much research into, or write about, WWII which she was there to do. The priest doesn’t seem to know very much about Catholic sacraments, but is very knowledgeable about the island’s history. He tells the story of the Guernsey Martyrs, who burned alive in 1556 for theft and the baby of one of the martyrs was thrown alive into the fire as well. The next day the skeleton of a baby is found in the garden where some earth has washed away – Hazel insists on reporting the find to the police and Mark’s mother is horrified. That night guests are pondering on the story they have been told by the priest and the discovery of the child – cue scary scene with a storm hitting the island – wild winds and torrential rain lash the house, trees come down, the power goes out and a scream is heard outside! A body of one of the staff members is found, and next to the where the baby’s skeleton was found.

Oh I SO loved this atmospheric chapter. Because of the storm communication is cut off and Belinda and Hazel decide to investigate the baby’s death as well as that of the staff member until the police can get there. I had to confess while I was reading no-one was above suspicion. From creepy housekeepers, a child crying in the night, cooks who couldn’t cook and the haughty Lady of the realm who is furious because she just wanted to bury the child again and not report its discovery. Then there was a scruffy bookstore owner who rocked up in the middle of the storm and an interior designer who knows little about house interiors – as you can see there were quite a few possible suspects.

MURDER ON THE ISLAND is a quick and extremely enjoyable read. I loved the plot and the setting and the tension ensured I staid glued to the pages until it reached its conclusion. You can read it as a stand-alone – but I strongly recommend that you do yourself a favour and read the previous 5 books/

For more about the author – Click Here

B – Great – I really enjoyed reading it and it is a book I will be recommending to all my friends who like this genre.

With thanks to the author for my copy to read and review

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