Wolves In The Dark By Gunnar Staalesen #blogtour

wolves blog tour poster (1)

Synopsis

PI Varg Veum fights for his reputation, his freedom and his life, when child pornography is found on his computer and he is arrested and jailed. Worse still, his memory is a blank…

Reeling from the death of his great love, Karin, Varg Veum’s life has descended into a self-destructive spiral of alcohol, lust, grief and blackouts.

When traces of child pornography are found on his computer, he’s accused of being part of a paedophile ring and thrown into a prison cell. There, he struggles to sift through his past to work out who is responsible for planting the material… and who is seeking the ultimate revenge.

When a chance to escape presents itself, Varg finds himself on the run in his hometown of Bergen. With the clock ticking and the police on his tail, Varg takes on his hardest – and most personal – case yet.

wolves in the dark cover

My review

This was my first time of reading a Gunnar Staalesen novel. This is the eighth book in the PI varg Veum series and it can totally be read as a stand alone book, although saying this, in completing it I’m now really interested to find out more about Varg and will be downloading the other seven in the series. I must admit I am quite getting into Nordic noir novels and really starting to enjoy them.

I was slightly apprehensive about the subject of this novel, child pornography is obviously not a subject that sits comfortably as a bedtime read, it’s a very prickly, uncomfortable subject to read about. However, Gunnar manages to only go into enough detail for you to understand the plot without it being too harrowing to read.

The whole story is full of twists and turns that have you wondering, how on earth Varg Veum could have got himself into such a situation. It is obvious that the beginning of this book finds Varg in a very dark place after the death of his girlfriend Karin. This, in particular, made me want to find out more about the circumstances that surrounded her death and the path that leads Varg to where this story begins.

The story is fast moving and full of blood rushing, adrenalin pumping scenario’s, it’s finished off with a fantastic twist that has you thinking back over the story to see if there were any clues you had missed, I for one definitely did not foresee the ending. This is an absolute 5* review from me.

About the Author

Gunnar Staalesen was born in Bergen, Norway in 1947. He made his debut at the age of 22 with Seasons of Innocence and in 1977 he published the first book in the Varg Veum series. He is the author of over 20 titles, which have been published in 24 countries and sold over four million copies. Twelve film adaptations of his Varg Veum crime novels have appeared since 2007, starring the popular Norwegian actor Trond Epsen Seim. Staalesen, who has won three Golden Pistols (including the Prize of Honour), lives in Bergen with his wife. When Prince Charles visited Bergen, Staalesen was appointed his official tour guide. There is a life-sized statue of Varg Veum in the centre of Bergen, and a host of Varg Veum memorabilia for sale. We Shall Inherit the Wind and Where Roses Never Die were both international bestsellers. Don Bartlett is the foremost translator of Norwegian, responsible for the multaward- winning, bestselling books by Jo Nesbo, Karl Ove Knausgaard and Per Pettersen. It is rare to have a translator who is as well-known and highly regarded as the author.

Wolves in the dark is due to be published by Orenda books on 15th June 2017

I’d like to thank Orenda Books & Anne Cater for allowing me to review Wolves in the dark.

Click here to buy Wolves in the dark

 

The Sixth Victim By Tessa Harris

The sixth victim

Synopsis

London’s East End, 1888: When darkness falls, terror begins

The foggy streets of London’s Whitechapel district have become a nocturnal hunting ground for Jack the Ripper, and no woman is safe. Flower girl Constance Piper is not immune to dread, but she is more preoccupied with her own strange experiences of late.

Clairvoyants seem to be everywhere these days. Constance’s mother has found comfort in contacting her late father in a séance. But are such powers real? And could Constance really be possessed of second sight? She longs for the wise counsel of her mentor and champion of the poor, Emily Tindall, but the kind missionary has gone missing.

Following the latest grisly discovery, Constance is contacted by a high-born lady of means who fears the victim may be her missing sister. She implores Constance to use her clairvoyance to help solve the crime, which the press is calling “the Whitechapel Mystery,” attributing the murder to the Ripper.

As Constance becomes embroiled in intrigue far more sinister than she could have imagined, assistance comes in a startling manner that profoundly challenges her assumptions about the nature of reality. She’ll need all the help she can get—because there may be more than one depraved killer out there…

 

My review

I have never really read novels set in this era but the subject of this book intrigued me. I was captivated from the first chapter!

Set in 1888 as Jack the ripper has just begun his reign of terror the story is told from two perspectives, Constance and Emily’s. The story alternates between the two.

Constance is a flower girl and comes from a poor family, she and her sister make money by stealing from the rich, whilst Constance sells the flowers, Flo pickpockets the customers. She lives in Whitechapel, one of the poorest parts of London and the place where the Jack the ripper murders are taking place.

Emily Tindall is from a good background, she is a Sunday school teacher and has taken Constance under her wing, teaching her to read and showing her a life far removed from her own.

The sixth victim is one of those amazing books that pulls you into the pages, I connected with the characters and couldn’t wait to follow the twists and turns of the story. Very early on you find that Emily isn’t quite what you believe. I don’t  want to spoil the book for you, but when you discover the ‘secret’ it makes you see the story in a whole different light.

The book runs alongside the murders of Jack the ripper but they are very much in the background, the main story is Constance’s search for Emily who seems to have gone missing and how her psychic abilities slowly, to her amazement grow. Constance is also approached by a lady from the upper classes who fears her sister has been victim to Jack the ripper. The lady asks for Constance’s help to solve the mystery.

I loved the way the stories entwined and developed, how characters ended up linking.  The way Tessa portrays Emily’s story is beautiful, it is as if Emily is talking to the reader directly, here is a snippet of a piece of Emily’s story hat shows this perfectly;

Constance does sleep, albeit fitfully, so we shall leave her to return to my own story. For now, it is time to take you on a terrifying journey”

This is the first in ‘Constance Piper Mystery’ series, I’m waiting with baited breath for the second installment which Tessa tells me will be out in 2018.

About the Author
Tessa Harris is the author of the acclaimed Dr. Thomas Silkstone Mysteries, including Secrets in the Stones and The Anatomist’s Apprentice. A graduate of Oxford University with a History degree, Tessa has also been a journalist and editor, contributing to many national publications such as The Times and The Telegraph. She has also acted as a literary publicist for several well-known authors. Readers can visit her website at www.tessaharrisauthor.com

Thank you to Tessa harris for allowing me to review The sixth victim.

Click here to buy The Sixth Victim

 

 

A Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys

Dangerous crossing Synopsis

Sparkling cocktails, poisonous secrets …

1939, Europe on the brink of war. Lily Shepherd leaves England on an ocean liner for Australia, escaping her life of drudgery for new horizons. She is instantly seduced by the world onboard: cocktails, black-tie balls and beautiful sunsets. Suddenly, Lily finds herself mingling with people who would otherwise never give her the time of day.

But soon she realizes her glamorous new friends are not what they seem. The rich and hedonistic Max and Eliza Campbell, mysterious and flirtatious Edward, and fascist George are all running away from tragedy and scandal even greater than her own.

By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and life will never be the same again.

My Review

Where do i start with this fantastic novel! Firstly i love this era so for me it was off to a good start. By the second chapter i was hooked and drawn into the plot.

A Dangerous Crossing has a mix of everything, love, suspense, murder, mystery, as well as being a historic novel. The twist at the end……amazing and totally unexpected, but i’m not going to spoil it for you, instead i urge you to click on the link at the end of this review and read it for yourself, i promise you won’t be disappointed!

 

The first pages start where the story ends, 4th September 1939, Sydney, Australia. A woman is led down the gangplank of a ship which left Tilbury Docks five and a half weeks earlier. She is in handcuffs and fllanked by a policeman either side of her. What is her crime? Why was she on board the ship?

The story centres around Lily Shepherd. It’s 29th July 1939 she is leaving England to create a new life, the government are offering young women who are prepared to go into domestic work in Australia, a free ticket with a promise of  2 years of work. Lily is running away from life in England and the reason why slowly unfolds as you delve deeper into this book.

The other characters all have secrets they are trying to escape, the rich and damaged Max and Eliza Campbell. They are flamboyant, larger than life and not like anybody Lily has ever met or socialised with before. She is warned about the couple many a time but something draws her back to them.

Helena and Edward Fletcher are brother and sister, Edward’s health has been very poor, Helena has given up her life in England to travel to Australia to make a new life where hopefully Edward’s health will improve, but is there more to them than meets the eye?

Running through the story as an under current is the increasing threat of war and the effect it will have on everyone. As well as the divides of class and nationality.

Lily is a strong and very likeable characater. At the beginning of the story she is very naive, as you follow her journey you feel her changing yet still trying to stay true to who she is. The story has a main core of characters who’s individual stories and secrets slowly unfold.

The only down side of A dangerous crossing is it had to end! This book really does give you a taste of everything and has the ability to keep you up far to late ‘just reading one more chapter’

This is a definite 5 star read for me!

I’d like to thank Alison Barrow from Transworld for allowing me to discover this fab book.

Click here to buy A Dangerous Crossing