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review 2017-05-18 08:00
Review: Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham
Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong: The perfect laugh-out-loud comedy - Gina Kirkham

Published by: Urbane Publishing (18 May 2017)


ISBN: 978-1911331711


Source: NetGalley


Rating: 4*



Meet Mavis Upton. As mummy to 7-year old Ella, surrogate to far too many pets and with a failed marriage under her belt, Mavis knows she needs to make some life-changing decisions. It's time to strike out into the world, to stand on her own two feet … to pursue a lifelong ambition to become a Police Officer. I mean, what could go wrong?


Supported by her quirky, malapropism-suffering mum, Mavis throws herself headlong into a world of uncertainty, self-discovery, fearless escapades, laughter and extra-large knickers. And using her newly discovered investigative skills, she reluctantly embarks on a search to find her errant dad who was last seen years before, making off with her mum's much needed coupon for a fabulous foam cup bra all the way from America.


Follow Mavis as she tackles everything life can throw at her, and revel in Gina Kirkham's humorous, poignant and moving story of an everyday girl who one day followed a dream.



Based on the author's experiences as a police officer, this book is funny yet touching in parts. Mavis herself is larger than life, getting herself into all sorts of mischief and is all the more likeable because of it. I'm not sure she's entirely believable, but that doesn't seem to matter one bit. 


I like that we get to see both sides of Mavis - the police officer and the mum/daughter. Her interaction with her fellow officers is great, I love the banter; it's like taking a step back in time into one of the British comedies of yesteryear. The interaction with her mum is fantastic too, had me laughing out loud!


I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a giggle, likes humorous books and likes a moving story. Thanks to Matthew at Urbane Publications and NetGalley for providing an ARC in return for my honest review.


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review 2017-05-09 06:08
Review: Electric Souk by Rose McGinty
Electric Souk - Rose McGinty

Published by: Urbane Publications (23rd March 2017)


ISBN: 978-1911129820


Source: NetGalley


Rating: 5*



Ireland's gone bust, and with it Aisling Finn's life. She flees austerity for adventure in the desert. But the Arabia she finds is not that of her dreams. Everyone is chasing a fast buck, a fast woman and another G&T. Expats and locals alike prickle with paranoia. Debonair fixer, Brian Rothmann, charms Aisling with champagne brunches and nights at Bedouin camps. But is Brian a hero or a desperate expat prepared to go to any lengths to get what he wants? Is this Aisling? Or is he using her as bait? Her only hope is Hisham, a local activist. But where do his loyalties lie? Aisling faces severe peril when the sleazy expat and blood-lusting desert worlds collide, as the Arab Spring erupts. She has to ask, whom can she trust? Can she trust her instincts?



Rose McGinty's debut novel is quite unlike anything I've read before. It's difficult to know what genre I'd class it as because it has elements of many, but I guess 'thriller' is as good as any. The description is breathtakingly good; I can almost taste the fragrant spices and see the jewel coloured pashminas in the hustle and bustle of the night time souk.

The characters are similarly brought to life. Aisling is likeable and believable throughout, Brian is in turn both charming and loathsome and there are plenty of other characters to like and dislike, Mozah and Laila in particular.

Electric Souk is fascinating, frightening, heartwarming, gripping, horrific, and hauntingly descriptive. I found out utterly compelling and read it in two long sittings as I was unable to put it down once I'd started! It will appeal to a wide range of readers.

Thanks to Matthew at Urbane for the ARC, via NetGalley, in return for my honest review.


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review 2017-04-23 16:05
Review: Imperfection by Ray Clark
Imperfection - Terry Ray Clark

Published by: Urbane Publications (30 March 2017)


ISBN: 978-1911331247


Source: Netgalley


Rating: 4*



Imperfection is a new crime series featuring D.I. Stewart Gardener and D. S. Sean Reilly, and set in the West Yorkshire city of Leeds.

A haunting message scrawled on the dressing room wall of a theatre: the scene of a murder. It had been written using the blood from the victim, previously drained in a separate location. At the autopsy, D.I. Gardener and D.S. Reilly are shown a riddle carved into the chest of the corpse, informing them there would be more. Their efforts to find out why are continually blocked by a wall of contradiction, with little in the way of evidence to support their cause. Steered back to the scene of the crime and a disused prop room, Gardener and his trusted sergeant find another puzzle. The murderer, it seems, is playing games.

It soon becomes clear to Gardener and Reilly that to find the killer they need to solve the clues, and to do that, they must tunnel their way into the past, where the streets were paved with gold, and to a man who had terrified people before either of them had even been born...



Imperfection is a different kind of crime novel, as we are introduced to the killer early on; we just don't know his identity at first. From the outset, he leads Gardener and Reilly in a game of cat and mouse, leaving seemingly unsolvable clues for them at the scenes of his crimes. Although it doesn't give a specific time period in the book, it seems as though it is set in the past, as there is no reference made to googling the clues! That would have been the first thing I would have done, so I found it rather frustrating that Gardener and Reilly weren't doing so! I felt there was a Sherlock Holmes-type vibe to the story on the whole, which would also fit with being set in the past, but it's just my theory.

I really enjoyed the parts with the killer and all his different guises, but I found some parts rather slow and quite hard going. Usually it takes me a few days to read a book, but I kept losing interest, so it took me much longer to read this one. It didn't surprise me to learn that Ray Clark writes fantasy novels; I'll have to read some.

If you like lots of detail, prefer a train journey over a rollercoaster ride, and have a thing for Sherlock, I recommend Imperfection.

Special thanks to Matthew at Urbane Publications for providing me with an ARC via Netgalley in return for my unbiased review.

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review 2015-12-04 10:11
Sag nie ihren Namen - William James Dawson,Frank Böhmert

Tropf, tropf, tropf.

Tropf, tropf, tropf.

Tropf, tropf, tropf.



 Hatte mal wieder Lust auf ein bisschen klassischen Grusel, was ist da besser, als eine klassische Gruselgeschichte in neuer Umsetzung. Bloody Mary. Stell dich vor den Spiegel im dunklen Bad, halte eine Kerze und sag fünfmal ihren Namen. Dann kommt sie dich holen. Das Buch ist nichts Neues an der Front, aber kurzweilig.Durch die Bank sympathische Hauptfiguren, allen voran Bobbie, die erfrischend normal rüber kommt. Nicht girlie, nicht zu speziell. Atmosphäre regelt der Autor viel über Beschreibung des Wetters, - muss eine verdammt stürmische Ecke Großbritanniens sein,  - funktioniert unterm Strich.  Die erste große Teenagerliebe kommt auch vor, doch unaufgeregt, ohne sich ins Rampenlicht zu drängen und den Plot zu verlieren. 

Dawson bedient sich einiger Klischees, wie zum Beispiel dem des überlebenden Opfers einer vorangegangenen Attacke, das nun in einer Nervenheilansanstalt sitzt und zu Konsulatationszwecken besucht wird. Aber es bedient sich derer Klischees gut. Du erwartest die gute, alte Bloody Mary Geschichte, also bekommst du sie auch. 

Einzig am Ende fühlst du dich etwas stehengelassen. Der Schlüssel zu allem liegt in Marys Geschichte, aber wer sie letztendlich wirklich ist bleibt im Dunkel. Schade, das ist mit die spannendste Frage. 

Fazit: Nicht viel erwartet, positiv überrascht.



Nur bestimmte Buchstaben waren großgeschrieben und sie ergaben einen neuen Satz.

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review 2014-12-17 08:59
Review: Influence by Chris Parker
Influence - Chris Parker

Publication date: 1st March 2014


Publisher: Urbane Publications


ISBN: 9781909273061


Source: Publisher


Rating: 5/5



Marcus Kline is the world's leading authority on communication and influence. He can tell you what you are thinking. He can see inside you. He can step inside your mind. Yet when a series of murder victims bear the horrific hallmarks of an intelligent and remorseless serial killer, Detective Peter Jones turns to Marcus for help - and everything changes. As the killer sets a deadly pace, the invisible, irresistible and terrifying power of influence threatens friendships, reputations, and lives. When events appear to implicate the great Marcus Kline himself, everyone learns that the worst pain isn't physical...



Wow! This book is mesmerising, terrifying and engrossing - the carefully crafted characters are rich and multi-layered and this makes them utterly fascinating. The distinctly different sides of their personalities are revealed with shocking clarity as this rollercoaster of a read hurtles towards its conclusion, leaving the reader no option but to cling on for dear life, before being flung out like a piece of emotional rubbish as the ride ends. 

It's perfectly clear that the author has knowledge of interpersonal and intrapersonal communication in abundance. The great attention to detail leaves you in no doubt that these types of communication are supremely powerful, for better or for worse. 

In so looking forward to Believe, the second of Parker's Marcus Kline trilogy.


*I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher, in return for an honest review*


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