Buried Under Books

REVIEW: ‘I am Dust’ by Louise Beech

Be careful: you might get what you wished for… I’m not usually a fan of supernatural tales, but this is a novel by Louise Beech, and it’s so beautifully done that I’m entranced. What’s it about? A haunted theatre. A murdered actress. Three cursed teenagers. A secret that devastates them all… The Dean Wilson Theatre […]

REVIEW: ‘Sanctuary’ by V. V. James

The best fiction is almost fact. The persecution in James’ novel is sadly familiar: a girl and a woman who others see as different from them becomes feared, reviled and hunted. Increasingly subjected to hate crimes and condemned without evidence, a mother and daughter struggle to clear their reputations in a town which is no […]

REVIEW: ‘The Turn of the Screw’ by Henry James

What’s more entertaining than a ghost story in which a child sees a ghost? A ghost story in which two children see two ghosts. Obviously. Such is the conclusion reached by the eager aristocratic circle of guests who sit sharing ghost stories at the opening of Henry James’ gothic novella, who are desperate to hear […]

REVIEW: ‘The Evidence Against You’ by Gillian McAllister

Trust. Doubt. Ultimately even a court’s conviction is based on a handful of opinions. What damage might it do to a family if those opinions were wrong? If that conviction were unmerited? Would you know? Would you doubt? And would you risk everything to find out? Gillian McAllister’s fourth psychological thriller explores this question through […]

REVIEW: ‘Call me Star Girl’ by Louise Beech

I have been lucky enough to meet Louise Beech in person, and she is lovely. Really lovely. But my word, her characters can be thoroughly horrible to each other! Expect child neglect and abandonment, dark, (consenting adult!) sex games and the brutal murder of a pregnant woman – and those are just the secrets and […]

REVIEW: I know who you are…and I know what you did.

‘I know who you are’ by Alice Feeney. Having read and LOVED Alice Feeney’s debut novel, ‘Sometimes I Lie’, I was delighted to spot her second book, ‘I know who you are’, at Crimefest this year. Would it live up to the twisty masterpiece of her first book? The short answer is, not quite, but […]

REVIEW: ‘The Lies We Told’ by Camilla Way

‘At first I mistook the severed head for something else. It wasn’t until I was very close that I realised it was Lucy.’ I do love an effective opening sentence, and my word this one grabbed me. To my delight, the words and chapters that followed were equally compelling, and all of a sudden it […]

REVIEW: ‘the last night out’ by Catherine O’Connell

Six friends. Three secrets. One murder. The strapline of this novel suggests a crime thriller, but if that’s what you’re seeking, you might not find it here. A woman dies, that’s true, but somehow her death immediately becomes less important than the sex lives of the living. What’s it about? Maggie’s hen party is a […]

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