Source: Publishers Group Canada

#BookReview Catch the Rabbit by Lana Bastašić @PGCBooks @picadorbooks #CatchtheRabbit #LanaBastasic

#BookReview Catch the Rabbit by Lana Bastašić @PGCBooks @picadorbooks #CatchtheRabbit #LanaBastasic Title: Catch the Rabbit

Author: Lana Bastašić

Published by: Picador on May 27, 2021

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 272

Format: Hardcover

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 7.5/10

A moving story about loss, forgetting and female friendship: two women on a road trip across Bosnia head towards a lost brother and a collision with the lies they’ve told themselves about where they’re from.

Sara hasn’t seen or heard from Lejla in years. She’s comfortable with her life in Dublin, with her partner, their avocado plant, and their naturist neighbour. But when Lejla calls and demands she come home to Bosnia, Sara finds that she can’t say no.

What begins as a road trip becomes a journey through the past, as the two women set off to find Armin, Lejla’s brother who disappeared towards the end of the Bosnian War. Presumed dead by everyone else, only Lejla and Sara believed Armin was still alive.

Confronted with the limits of memory, Sara is forced to reconsider the things she thought she understood as a girl: the best friend she loved, the first experiences they shared, but also the social and religious lines that separated them, that brought them such different lives.

In Catch the Rabbit, Lana Bastašic tells the story of how we place the ones we love on pedestals, and then wait for them to fall off, how loss marks us indelibly, and how the traumas of war echo down the years.


Review:

Frank, pensive, and melancholic!

Catch the Rabbit is a dark, gritty, nostalgic novel that takes us into the life of Sara, a young woman who is more than content with her current life in Dublin and how she’s managed to reinvent herself after growing up in Bosnia during the 1990s, until her childhood best friend, Lejla contacts her out of the blue after more than a decade to ask her to drive from Mostar to Vienna in order to find her brother who has been missing for more than twenty years, and whose disappearance has had a lasting impact on both of their lives.

The prose is perceptive and expressive. The characters are scarred, multilayered, and self-absorbed. And the plot, using a past-present style, is a reflective tale about life, loss, tragedy, family, friendship, coming-of-age, shared experiences, differing perspectives, and elusive memories, all interwoven with an undercurrent of the ongoing dread and tension experienced by those who must live and grow up in war zones.

Overall, Catch the Rabbit is a poignant, weighty, toxic tale by Bastašić that delves into all the messiness of life and highlights all the enduring psychological and emotional ties that exist between friends.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

           

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lana Bastašić

Lana Bastašic is a Yugoslavborn writer. She has published two collections of short stories and one of poetry. Catch the Rabbit, her debut novel, was published in 2018 in Belgrade and was shortlisted for the NIN Award. Her short stories have been included in major regional anthologies and have won numerous awards throughout former Yugoslavia. She lives and works in Barcelona.

#BookReview Left You Dead by Peter James @peterjamesuk @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #PeterJames #LeftYouDead #RoyGrace

#BookReview Left You Dead by Peter James @peterjamesuk @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #PeterJames #LeftYouDead #RoyGrace Title: Left You Dead

Author: Peter James

Series: Roy Grace #17

Published by: Pan Macmillan on Jul. 1, 2021

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Pages: 512

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

NO BODY. NO TRACE.
NO CRIME?

Niall and Eden Paternoster start their Sunday the same way they always do – with a long drive, a visit to a country house and a quick stop at the local supermarket on the way home.

But this Sunday ends differently – because while Niall waits and waits in the car park for Eden to pick up supplies, Eden never returns. She’s not waiting for him at home, and none of their family or friends have heard from her.

Gone without a trace, Niall is arrested on suspicion of her murder. When DS Roy Grace is called in to investigate, it doesn’t take long to realize that nothing is quite as it seems – and this might be his most mysterious case yet . . .

Sunday Times number one bestseller Peter James returns with the latest installment in his award-winning Roy Grace novels – now a major TV series.


Review:

Intricate, twisty, and clever!

Left You Dead is a well written, perfectly paced police procedural that sees Detective Superintendent Roy Grace and his team investigating the sudden disappearance of Eden Paternoster, a young woman who seems to have vanished without a trace after her husband dropped her off at a local Tesco, and even though the husband seems to be the most likely suspect from the very start something just doesn’t seem to fit, and this case may actually be a lot more complicated than anyone could have imagined.

The writing is effortless and smooth. The characters are devious, astute, and committed. And the plot, including all the subplots, unravel and intertwine into a mysterious tale full of twists, turns, manipulation, deception, desperation, red herrings, police politics, familial drama, and personal tragedy.

Overall, Left You Dead is addictive, crafty, slightly emotional, and unbelievably already the seventeenth novel in the Roy Grace series and even though this one is a little meatier at just over 500 pages, I still have yet to read a book by James that didn’t captivate, satisfy, and highly entertain me and I’m happy to say this latest one is also no exception.

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

              

 

 

Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Peter James

Peter James is the international bestselling author of many award-winning novels. His Detective Superintendent Roy Grace series, set in Brighton, has been translated into thirty-seven languages with worldwide sales of over eighteen million copies, and has given him eleven consecutive Sunday Times number ones. In 2015 WHSmith customers publicly voted him the Greatest Crime Author of All Time and in 2016 he became the recipient of the coveted CWA Diamond Dagger lifetime achievement award for sustained excellence. Peter has also written a short story collection, A Twist of the Knife, and his standalone titles include Perfect People and The House on Cold Hill. He has also co-written a non-fiction account of Brighton’s toughest cases with former detective Graham Bartlett entitled Death Comes Knocking. The Perfect Murder, Dead Simple and Not Dead Enough have all been turned into smash-hit stage plays. All his novels reflect his deep interest in the world of the police. Three of his novels have been filmed and before becoming a full-time author he produced numerous films, including The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino and Jeremy Irons. He divides his time between his homes in Notting Hill, London and near Brighton in Sussex.

#BookReview The Promise by Lucy Diamond @LDiamondAuthor @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #ThePromise #LucyDiamond

#BookReview The Promise by Lucy Diamond @LDiamondAuthor @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #ThePromise #LucyDiamond Title: The Promise

Author: Lucy Diamond

Published by: Pan Macmillan on Jun. 29, 2021

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 480

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8/10

The Promise is an unforgettable story about finding love, hope and joy in even the darkest moments, by the Sunday Times bestseller Lucy Diamond, author of The Secrets of Happiness.

When faced with the sudden death of his brother, Dan’s mission is clear. He puts together a project to help pick up the pieces and support his grieving sister-in-law Zoe, plus her young children. This is Dan’s promise – to ensure his family’s happiness and to try and live up to the man his brother was.

But tying up loose ends brings a shocking secret to light, and calls into question everything Dan knew about his older brother. With more than just his promise on the line, Dan is faced with an ultimatum: Should he tell the truth and risk his family’s fragile happiness, or will his brother’s secrets end up becoming his own?


Review:

Touching, sweet, and poignant!

The Promise is a tender, moving tale that immerses you into the lives of the Sheppard family as they navigate the shock, heartache, sorrow, tears, guilt, regret, and shattering secrets that come to life after the sudden death of Patrick, their perfect husband, father, brother and son.

The prose is heartfelt and immersive. The characters are flawed, devastated, and torn. And the plot is an absorbing tale about life, loss, family, secrets, relationship dynamics, introspection, redemption, moving on, taking chances, and finding happiness.

Overall, The Promise is a captivating, hopeful, slightly mysterious tale by Diamond that could have been slighter shorter but was nevertheless a lovely, somewhat solemn reminder of all the messy, emotional, complicated ups and downs associated with unimaginable loss and grief uniquely told predominately from a male perspective.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links. 

          

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lucy Diamond

Lucy Diamond lives in Bath, England with her husband and their three children. She has penned numerous bestselling novels, including The House of New Beginnings, The Secrets of Happiness, Summer at Shell Cottage, and The Year of Taking Chances.

#BookReview Secrets at Bletchley Park by Margaret Dickinson @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #SecretsatBletchleyPark #MargaretDickinson

#BookReview Secrets at Bletchley Park by Margaret Dickinson @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #SecretsatBletchleyPark #MargaretDickinson Title: Secrets at Bletchley Park

Author: Margaret Dickinson

Published by: Pan Macmillan on Jun. 15, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 560

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

In Secrets at Bletchley Park by Margaret Dickinson, two young women from very different backgrounds meet in the Second World War and are plunged into a life where security and discretion are paramount. But both have secrets of their own to hide.

In 1929, life for ten-year-old Mattie Price, born and raised in the back streets of Sheffield, is tough. With a petty thief for a father and a mother who turns to the bottle to cope with her husband”s brutish ways, it is left to the young girl and her brother, Joe, to feed and care for their three younger siblings. But Mattie has others rooting for her too. The Spencer family, who live at the top of the same street, and Mattie”s teachers recognize that the girl is clever beyond her years and they, and Joe, are determined that she shall have the opportunity in life she deserves.

Victoria Hamilton, living in the opulence of London”s Kensington, has all the material possessions that a young girl could want. But her mother, Grace, a widow from the Great War, is cold and distant, making no secret of the fact that she never wanted a child. Grace lives her life in the social whirl of upper-class society, leaving Victoria in the care of her governess and the servants. At eleven years old, Victoria is sent to boarding school where, for the first time in her young life, she is able to make friends of her own age. Mattie and Victoria are both set on a path that will bring them together at Bletchley Park in May 1940. An unlikely friendship between the two young women is born and together they will face the rest of the war keeping the nation”s secrets and helping to win the fight. They can tell no one, not even their families, about their work or even where they are. But keeping secrets is second nature to both of them.


Review:

Captivating, sentimental, and cosy!

Secrets at Bletchley Park is a heartwarming, uplifting tale that takes you into the lives of two main characters who come from completely different backgrounds but whose shared work at Bletchley Park during WWII makes them the unlikeliest but best of friends. Victoria Hamilton, a young girl who has all the things money can buy but lacks the love she so desperately desires, and Mattie Price, a girl from an impoverished, broken background who blossoms under the support and kindness of those who surround her.

The writing is sweet and tender. The characters are intelligent, helpful, and kind. And the plot is an engaging tale of life, loss, love, family, secrets, heartbreak, community, romance, and the power of friendship.

Overall, Secrets at Bletchley Park is a charming, compelling, nostalgic tale by Dickinson that I think is a lovely choice for anyone looking to be swept away into a heartfelt storyline with rich characterization.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

           

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Margaret Dickinson

Born in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, Margaret Dickinson moved to the coast at the age of seven and so began her love for the sea and the Lincolnshire landscape. Her ambition to be a writer began early and she had her first novel published at the age of twenty-five. This was followed by many further titles including Plough the Furrow, Sow the Seed and Reap the Harvest, which make up her Lincolnshire Fleethaven Trilogy. She is also the author of Fairfield Hall, Jenny's War and The Clippie Girls. Margaret is a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller.

Photo courtesy of Author's Facebook Page.

#BookReview City of Vengeance by D. V. Bishop @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #CityofVengeance #DVBishop #CesareAldoSeries

#BookReview City of Vengeance by D. V. Bishop @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #CityofVengeance #DVBishop #CesareAldoSeries Title: City of Vengeance

Author: D. V. Bishop

Series: Cesare Aldo #1

Published by: Pan Macmillan on May 4, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 416

Format: Hardcover

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 9/10

City of Vengeance is an explosive debut historical thriller by D. V. Bishop, set in Renaissance Florence.

Florence. Winter, 1536. A prominent Jewish moneylender is murdered in his home, a death with wide implications in a city powered by immense wealth.

Cesare Aldo, a former soldier and now an officer of the Renaissance city’s most feared criminal court, is given four days to solve the murder: catch the killer before the feast of Epiphany – or suffer the consequences.

During his investigations Aldo uncovers a plot to overthrow the volatile ruler of Florence, Alessandro de’ Medici. If the Duke falls, it will endanger the whole city. But a rival officer of the court is determined to expose details about Aldo’s private life that could lead to his ruin. Can Aldo stop the conspiracy before anyone else dies, or will his own secrets destroy him first?


Review:

Mysterious, gritty, and atmospheric!

City of Vengeance is a dramatic, alluring tale that takes us back to Renaissance Florence in the winter of 1536 and into the life of Cesare Aldo, an officer of the Otto, as he struggles to investigate the murder of Jewish moneylender, Samuele Levi, expose a coup to once and for all remove Alessandro de’ Medici from power, and protect himself from a bigoted coworker intent on exposure.

The prose is authentic and fluid. The characters are complex, relentless, and intriguing. And the plot is a compelling, sinister tale full of life, loss, duty, friendship, coercion, deception, dissension, conspiracies, discrimination, political strife, violence, and murder.

Overall, City of Vengeance is a richly described, absorbing, well-written tale by Bishop that grabs you from the very first page and is a wonderful start to a series, Cesare Aldo, that blends two of my favourite genres, historical fiction and mystery, and interweaves it with a thread of all the weaknesses and vulnerabilities that ultimately make us human.

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                  

 

 

Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About D. V. Bishop

D. V. Bishop is the author of the Cesare Aldo mysteries set in Renaissance Florence, and published by Pan Macmillan.

An award-winning screenwriter and TV dramatist, his love for the city of Florence and the Renaissance period meant there could only be one setting for his crime-fiction debut.

City of Vengeance won the Pitch Perfect competition at the Bloody Scotland crime fiction festival in 2018, and D. V. Bishop was awarded a Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship by the Scottish Book Trust while writing the novel.

He is currently finishing the second novel in the Cesare Aldo mysteries.

Photo by Paul Reich.

#BookReview The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheHiddenWife #JoannaRees #AStitchinTiime

#BookReview The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheHiddenWife #JoannaRees #AStitchinTiime Title: The Hidden Wife

Author: Joanna Rees

Series: A Stitch in Time #2

Published by: Pan Macmillan on May 4, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 496

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8/10

The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees is the second novel in A Stitch in Time – a sweeping historical trilogy.

Paris, 1928

Having fled London and been on the run around Europe, Vita Casey has established a new life for herself, keeping a low profile as a dresser at a cabaret hall where Nancy is part of the risqué dance troupe. It’s a vibrant world of wild parties, drugs and jazz music.

But despite the fun, hedonistic lifestyle they lead, Vita longs for a proper career and to re-kindle her dream of designing lingerie. When an opportunity to work for famous couturier Jenny Sacerdote presents itself, Vita grabs it with both hands and is soon exposed to an altogether different side of Paris society. Before long, romance blossoms in the unlikeliest of places.

However, left to her own devices, Nancy spirals into danger and drug abuse and Vita has to save her friend. But can Vita really trust the people who want to help her? When there are those back in England who wish to see her ruined and forced to pay for the past she ran away from . . .


Review:

Stylish, devious, and intriguing!

The Hidden Wife is a dramatic, menacing tale that picks up right where The Runaway Daughter left off, taking us back into the life of Anna Darton, aka Vita Casey, as with the help of her best friend Nancy and a whole slew of newcomers tries to forget her troubled past and settle into a new life in Paris complete with a highly-coveted position working for the esteemed couturier Jenny Sacerdote.

The prose is smooth and vivid. The characters are lively, troubled, and genuine. And the story sweeps you away to 1920s Paris, where glitz and glamour abound, indulgence is rife, romance is everywhere, and companions are not always as trustworthy as they first appear.

Overall, The Hidden Wife is an immersive, suspenseful, spirited sequel in the A Stitch in Time series by Rees, and I am eagerly awaiting the publication of the third book in this sinister, historical trilogy to see how this story will ultimately conclude.

 

This novel is available on May 4, 2021.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

             

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Joanna Rees

Joanna Rees, aka Josie Lloyd and Jo Rees, is a bestselling writer of twelve novels, including rom-coms, blockbusters and big- hearted adventures such as Come Together, Platinum and A Twist of Fate.The Runaway Daughter, published in August 2019, is the first in The Stitch in Time trilogy set in the 1920s and following the fortune of budding fashion designer and girl-about-town, Vita Casey. The second part, The Hidden Wife is out in 2020.Based in Brighton, Joanna is married to the author Emlyn Rees with whom she has three daughters. They have co-written seven novels, including the Sunday Times number one bestseller Come Together, which was translated into twenty-seven languages and made into a film. They have written three bestselling parodies of their favourite children’s books, including We’re Going On A Bar Hunt and The Teenager Who Came To Tea as well as a light-hearted activity book encouraging people to stop being addicted to their technology called Switch It Off.

Photograph from www.curtisbrown.co.uk.

#BookReview The Secret Path by Karen Swan @KarenSwan1 @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheSecretPath #KarenSwan

#BookReview The Secret Path by Karen Swan @KarenSwan1 @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheSecretPath #KarenSwan Title: The Secret Path

Author: Karen Swan

Published by: Pan Macmillan on May 3, 2021

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Every step leads me back to you.

At just twenty years old, Tara Tremain has everything: a trainee doctor, engaged to the man of her dreams—a passionate American biology student called Alex Carter. But just when life seems perfect, Alex betrays her in the worst way possible.

Ten years later, she’s moved on, with a successful career, good friends and a man who loves her. But when she’s pulled back into her wealthy family’s orbit for an unmissable party in the heart of Costa Rica, she finds herself flung into crisis: a child is desperately ill and the only remedy is several days’ trek into the heart of the jungle.

There’s only one person who can help—but it’s the man who shattered her heart a decade before. And how can she trust him, of all people?


Review:

Absorbing, escapist, and heartwarming!

The Secret Path is an atmospheric, passionate tale that sweeps you away to the lush wilderness of Costa Rica and immerses you into the life of Dr Tara Tremain as she tries to juggle a successful career, a handsome boyfriend, a well-deserved vacation, a friend’s severely sick son in serious need of medical intervention, and the one man who shattered her heart to pieces ten years ago.

The prose is smooth and seamless. The characters are altruistic, resourceful, and scarred. And the plot is a beguiling, twisty tale of life, loss, love, familial drama, friendship, deception, heartbreak, forgiveness, danger, and romance.

Overall, The Secret Path is another emotional, entertaining, enticing tale by Swan that keeps you engaged from start to finish with its beautiful depictions of island living, tantalizing adventures, and complex, romantic entanglements.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                   

 

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Karen Swan

Karen Swan began her career in fashion journalism before giving it all up to raise her three children and a puppy, and to pursue her ambition of becoming a writer. She lives in the forest outside Sussex, England, writing her books in a treehouse overlooking the Downs.

An internationally bestselling author, her numerous books include The Rome Affair, The Paris Secret, Christmas Under the Stars, and The Christmas Secret. 

Photograph by Alexander James

#BookReview Jack & Bet by Sarah Butler @PGCBooks @picadorbooks #Jack&Bet #SarahButler

#BookReview Jack & Bet by Sarah Butler @PGCBooks @picadorbooks #Jack&Bet #SarahButler Title: Jack & Bet

Author: Sarah Butler

Published by: Picador on Apr. 13, 2021

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 272

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Even the longest marriages have their secrets . . .

Jack Chalmers is a man of few words, married to a woman of many. He and Bet have been together for seventy years – almost a lifetime – and happily so, for the most part.

All Jack and Bet want is to enjoy the time they have left together, in the flat they have tried to make their home. Their son Tommy has other ideas: he wants them to live somewhere with round-the-clock care, hot meals, activities. Bet thinks they can manage just fine.

When they strike up an unlikely friendship with Marinela, a young Romanian woman, Bet thinks she has found the perfect solution – one that could change Marinela’s life as well as theirs. But this means revisiting an old love affair, and confronting a long-buried secret she has kept hidden from everyone, even Jack, for many years.

Tender, moving and beautifully told, Sarah Butler’s Jack & Bet is an unforgettable novel about love and loss, the joys and regrets of a long marriage, and the struggle to find a place to call home.


Review:

Touching, sentimental, and bittersweet!

Jack & Bet is a heartwarming, affecting story that sweeps you away to London, England, and into a tale where long lives lived are pondered, a 70-year marriage is celebrated, friendships are developed and savoured, memories are cherished, secrets are unearthed, tears are shed, lives are remembered, and love is forged and shared.

The writing is smooth and heartfelt. The characters are sincere, genuine, and lovable. And the plot is a delightful blend of heart, hope, humour, nostalgia, drama, and emotion.

Jack & Bet is, ultimately, a story about life, love, loss, dreams, heartbreak, friendship, family, ageing, and finding happiness, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It made me laugh, it made me cry, and in the end, it left me smiling.

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

               

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Sarah Butler

Sarah Butler is the acclaimed author of Ten Things I've Learnt About Love, Before the Fire and Jack & Bet. Her writing has been translated into fourteen languages. She is also the author of a novella, Not Home, written in conversation with people living in unsupported temporary accommodation. Sarah is a part-time lecturer in Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University and lives in Manchester with her family.

Photo courtesy of Pan MacMillan website.

#BookReview Cathedral by Ben Hopkins @EuropaEditions @PGCBooks #Cathedral #BenHopkins

#BookReview Cathedral by Ben Hopkins @EuropaEditions @PGCBooks #Cathedral #BenHopkins Title: Cathedral

Author: Ben Hopkins

Published by: Europa Editions on Jan. 21, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 624

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

A thoroughly immersive read and a remarkable feat of imagination, Cathedral tells a sweeping story about obsession, mysticism, art, and earthly desire in gripping prose. It deftly combines historical fiction and a tale of adventure and intrigue.

At the center of this story is the Cathedral. Its design and construction in the 12th and 13th centuries in the town of Hagenburg unites a vast array of unforgettable characters whose fortunes are inseparable from the shifting political factions and economic interests vying for supremacy. Around this narrative center, Ben Hopkins has constructed his own monumental edifice, a novel that is rich with the vicissitudes of mercantilism, politics, religion, and human enterprise.

Fans of Umberto Eco, Hilary Mantel, and Ken Follett will delight at the atmosphere, the beautiful prose, and the vivid characters of Ben Hopkins’s Cathedral.


Review:

Vivid, immersive, and fascinating!

Cathedral is a rich, compelling tale set in Hagenburg, Germany during the twelfth and thirteenth century that takes you into the lives of ship merchants, stonecutters, Jewish moneylenders, architects, pirates, priests, architects, sovereigns, and builders as they struggle for riches, stature, and survival.

The writing is sharp and alluring. The characters are bold, driven, and ruthless. And the plot is a sweeping tale of harsh living, unexpected friendships, domestic contentions, desires, debauchery, degradation, vanity, corruption, sacrifices, treachery, and entangled relationships, all set to the backdrop of the reconstruction of a mammoth cathedral, and the ongoing discord between the papacy and the Holy Roman Empire.

Overall, Cathedral is an absorbing, dramatic, enthralling saga by Hopkins that is quite a hefty endeavour at just over 600 pages, but with its short chapters, beautiful prose, vibrant characters, and lush descriptions this is one meaty, medieval tale that, in my opinion, is definitely worth the effort.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                

 

 

Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Ben Hopkins

Ben Hopkins is a screenwriter, film-maker and novelist. He has lived in London and Istanbul and now lives in Berlin. His films include features and shorts, fiction and documentary, and have won awards at festivals such as Berlin, Locarno, Antalya and Toronto Hot Docs. Cathedral is his first novel.

#BookReview The Art of Dying by Ambrose Parry @ambroseparry @blackthornbks @PGCBooks #TheArtofDying #RavenFisherSimpsonSeries #AmbroseParry

#BookReview The Art of Dying by Ambrose Parry @ambroseparry @blackthornbks @PGCBooks #TheArtofDying #RavenFisherSimpsonSeries #AmbroseParry Title: The Art of Dying

Author: Ambrose Parry

Series: Raven Fisher and Simpson #2

Published by: Black Thorn Books on Mar. 18, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 10/10

Edinburgh, 1849. Hordes of patients are dying all across the city, with doctors finding their remedies powerless. And a whispering campaign seeks to paint Dr James Simpson, pioneer of medical chloroform, as a murderer.

Determined to clear Simpson’s name, his protege Will Raven and former housemaid Sarah Fisher must plunge into Edinburgh’s deadliest streets and find out who or what is behind the deaths. Soon they discover that the cause of the deaths has evaded detection purely because it is so unthinkable.


Review:

Absorbing, informative, and remarkably atmospheric!

The Art of Dying is a rich, alluring tale that takes us back to Victorian Edinburgh and into the life of Will Raven, a young doctor returning from travelling abroad to accept the position of assistant to Dr James Simpson, a doctor infamous for using chloroform while treating patients. But when multiple people start to die, and others begin to question Dr Simpson’s abilities, Will, along with the help of the woman he let get away, Sarah Fisher, will have to quickly uncover what’s actually plaguing the city before Dr Simpson’s reputation is completely and irreversibly shattered.

The prose is smooth and authentic. The characters are steadfast, inquisitive, and clever. And the plot is a riveting, suspenseful tale of life, loss, duty, friendship, corruption, manipulation, deception, violence, murder, and the evolution and procedures of early medicine, especially in the field of obstetrics.

Overall, The Art of Dying is a beautifully written, mysterious, fascinating tale that grabbed me from the very start and did such an exceptional job of blending historical facts with compelling fiction I can honestly say I was enthralled, surprised, and thoroughly impressed.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                  

 

 

Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Ambrose Parry

Ambrose Parry is a pseudonym for a collaboration between Chris Brookmyre and Marisa Haetzman. The couple are married and live in Scotland. Chris Brookmyre is the international bestselling and multi-award-winning author of over twenty novels. Dr Marisa Haetzman is a consultant anaesthetist of twenty years' experience, whose research for her Master's degree in the History of Medicine uncovered the material upon which this series, which begun with The Way of All Flesh, is based. The Way of all Flesh was longlisted for both the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award and the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Book of the Year.

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