#BookReview: THE SHADOW FRIEND by Alex North @writer_north @MichaelJBooks

The Shadow Friend

Publication: 9th July 2020 – Michael Joseph

The victim was his friend. So was the murderer.

Twenty-five years ago, troubled teenager Charlie Crabtree committed a shocking and unprovoked murder.

For Paul Adams, it’s a day he’ll never forget. He’s never forgiven himself for his part in what happened to his friend and classmate. He’s never gone back home.

But when his elderly mother has a fall, it’s finally time to stop running.

It’s not long before things start to go wrong. A copycat killer has struck, bringing back painful memories. Paul’s mother insists there’s something in the house.

And someone is following him.

Which reminds him of the most unsettling thing about that awful day twenty-five years ago.

It wasn’t just the murder.

It was the fact that afterwards, Charlie Crabtree was never seen again…

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/3ifyJ9Y

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One of my favourite novels last year was The Whisper Man, the debut novel by Alex North, so I have been really looking forward to reading his second book, The Shadow Friend, and I wasn’t disappointed.

Twenty-five years ago, the small village of Gritten was shocked by the horrific murder of a high-school student and Paul Adams, shocked and feeling guilty about the tragedy, swore he would never return home until, one day, he receives a call that informs him that his mother is dying in hospital so he has no choice but to go back and face the past. Many miles away, in the village of Featherbank, detective Amanda Beck is investigating another gruesome murder of a student. Is this connected to what happened in Gritten all those years ago?

The story is very well-written and addictive. It has supernatural elements that perfectly fits with the dark and creepy atmosphere. The tension is always high so that I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I was reading and it’s full of surprising twists, especially one that make me jump from the couch and yell “WHAT???”.  The story is set in Featherbank with the reader is already familiar with if they’ve read The Whisper Man, but mostly in Gritten which the author describes as occupied by run-down houses, industrial estates, and neglected neighbourhoods and with a dull and gray air that made me feel claustrophobic.

The Shadow Friend is told from the points of views of the two protagonists. Paul and Amanda are very intricate and well-developed characters. I loved reading Paul’s flashbacks of his teen years, how he took care of his friends and wasn’t afraid to stand up to bullies and take action. Adult Paul was also an interesting and realistic character and I really felt for him. Amanda also feels authentic and relatable and I really liked her.

Alex North is a brilliant author. He creates unforgettable and chilling plots that makes it nearly impossible to put the book down. Like The Whisper Man last year, The Shadow Friend is one of my favourite books of 2020 and I am already looking forward to reading book number 3!!!

A huge thank you to Michael Joseph and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of the novel.

 

#BookReview: GIRL, SERPENT, THORN by Melissa Bashardoust @melissabooknews @HodderBooks

Girl Serpent Thorn

Publication: 7th July 2020 – Hodder & Stoughton

There was and there was not, as all stories begin, a princess cursed to be poisonous to the touch. But for Soraya, who has lived her life hidden away from everyone, apart from her family, safe only in her gardens, it’s not just a story.

As the day of her twin brother’s wedding approaches, Soraya must decide if she’s willing to step outside of the shadows for the first time. Below in the dungeon is a demon who holds knowledge that she craves, the answer to her freedom. And above is a young man who isn’t afraid of her, whose eyes linger not with fear, but with an understanding of who she is beneath the poison.

Soraya thought she knew her place in the world, but when her choices lead to consequences she never imagined, she begins to question who she is and who she is becoming . . . human or demon. Princess or monster.

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2Boe16S

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Girl, Serpent, Thorn is getting a lot of raving reviews and there is a reason for that. A captivating story mixing fairy tales, magical creatures, and Persian culture with well-developed characters and a fantastic world-building.

Soraya is a princess, but she is a princess with a curse. Her body is full of poison that can kill at the touch so she is kept isolated from everyone. Feeling alone and rejected from her family, Soraya tries to put an end to her curse, but the consequences are worse than she imagined…

Girl, Serpent, Thorn is a compelling story of diversity and acceptance and also a story of self-discovery as Soraya’s search for normalcy and inclusion leads her to question who she is and who she wants to be. Soraya and the other main characters are deeply flawed and they make many mistakes that make them more human. Even the villain of the story, who makes horrible things, has its own humanity and the more you find out about him, the more you get to understand him and feel (a bit) sorry for him. I liked how the characters develop as the story progresses and they try to correct their mistakes, especially Soraya, whose choice at the end of the book I found perfect, emotional, and very well-thought.

Of course, there is romance, but not the usual love story you would expect. I won’t say much about it to not spoil it, but it’s full of surprises that you won’t see coming and it splendidly grows throughout the story.

Girl, Serpent, Thorn is a beautiful and addictive novel. It’s just a bit more of 300 pages, but a lot happens in those pages and you won’t regret reading it.

A huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of the novel.

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Melissa Bashardoust received her degree in English from the University of California, Berkeley, where she rediscovered her love for creative writing, children’s literature, and fairy tales and their retellings. She currently lives in Southern California with a cat named Alice and more copies of Jane Eyre than she probably needs. Melissa is the author of Girls Made of Snow and Glass and Girl, Serpent, Thorn.

 

#BlogTour: THE GIRL FROM WIDOW HILLS by Megan Miranda @MeganLMiranda @CorvusBooks @theotherkirsty @annecater @RandomTTours #RandomThingsTours

The Girl From Widow Hills

Publication: 2nd July 2020 – Corvus

Everyone knows the story of the girl from Widow Hills.

When Arden Maynor was six years old, she was swept away in terrifying storm and went missing for days. Against all odds, she was found alive, clinging to a storm drain. A living miracle. Arden’s mother wrote a book, and fame followed. But so did fans, creeps and stalkers. It was all too much, and as soon as she was old enough, Arden changed her name and left Widow Hills behind.

Now, a young woman living hundreds of miles away, Arden is known as Olivia. With the twentieth anniversary of her rescue looming, media interest in the girl who survived is increasing. Where is she now? The stress brings back the night terrors of Olivia’s youth. Often, she finds herself out of bed in the middle of the night, sometimes outside her home, even streets away. Then one evening she jolts awake in her yard, with the corpse of a man at her feet.

The girl from Widow Hills is about to become the centre of the story, once again.

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2YdEL39

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Happy Sunday and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Girl From Widow Hills, the suspenseful new novel by Megan Miranda.

Meet Olivia. In her twenties, she is an hospital administrator in North Carolina. She lives in a semi-isolated house outside of town, next to a neighbour who constantly checks on her and keeps a shotgun ready to scare away intruders. She has a few friends who she keeps at a distance and don’t know anything about her past and she is estranged from her mother who exploited on a childhood trauma to earn money. Who is really Olivia? Her real name is Arden Maynor and she is remembered as the six-year-old child who went missing for three days and miraculously was found alive. She changed her name to keep away journalists, stalkers, fans, and her mother, but it seems that her past is catching up with her…

An unreliable and paranoiac protagonist who suffers from memory loss is my favourite kind of character when it comes to psychological thriller and Megan Miranda did an amazing job in creating the character of Arden/Olivia. Her childhood trauma, sleepwalking, her complicated relationship with her mother, the fear to be recognized… who wouldn’t be paranoiac? She may have committed a crime, but she has no recollection of the time. Since she doubts herself and she can’t trust herself, I didn’t trust her either and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time as Olivia tries to figure out what happened.

The isolated house miles away from population gave the story a claustrophobic atmosphere that at times gave me goosebumps (and made me check the locks twice at night before going to bed). The ending was AMAZING! I really didn’t see it coming and made me gasp in surprise.

Megan Miranda is definitely on my list of favourite authors and I always look forward to reading her latest novel. Do not miss this twisty and chilling read!

A huge thank you to Anne Cater and Corvus for inviting me to join the blog tour and providing me with a copy of the novel.

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Follow the rest of the blog tour:

FINAL Girl From Widow Hills BT Poster

Megan Miranda Author Pic

 

Megan Miranda is the author of All The Missing Girls, The Perfect Stranger, and The Last House Guest, which was the August 2019 Reese’s Book Club x Hello Sunshine pick. She grew up in New Jersey, graduated from MIT, and lives in North Carolina with her husband and two children. Follow @MeganLMiranda on Twitter and Instagram, or @AuthorMeganMiranda on Facebook.

#BookReview: QUEEN BEE by Jane Fallon @JaneFallon @MichaelJBooks

Queen BeePublication: 9th July 2020 – Michael Joseph

Welcome to The Close – a beautiful street of mansions, where gorgeous Stella is the indisputable Queen Bee . . .

It is here that Laura, seeking peace and privacy after her marriage falls apart, rents a tiny studio. Unfortunately, her arrival upsets suspicious Stella – who fears Laura has designs on her fiancé, Al.

When Laura stumbles on the big secret Al is hiding, suddenly Stella’s perfectly controlled world, not to mention Laura’s future, are threatened.

Taking a chance on beating Al at his own twisted game, these two former strangers are fast becoming best friends.

But has Laura forgotten that revenge never comes without a sting in the tail?

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2Vt4nae

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Queen Bee is Jane Fallon’s brand new novel and its protagonist is Laura, a woman looking for a place to live after the unexpected divorce from her husband. She finds a studio in The Close, a posh neighbourhood of well-to-do families in which the husbands have important and well-paid jobs while the wives spend their days socialising, shopping, and having cosmetic procedures. And the queen and king of The Close are Stella and her soon-to-be husband Al. Stella’s disliking for Laura is clear from the very beginning, but things take a turn for the worst when Stella starts to wrongly suspect that Laura is interested in Al. In her eagerness to prove Stella wrong, Laura stumbles on a secret that could destroy Stella, but, instead, it leads to an unexpected alliance between the two women.

I really enjoy Jane Fallon’s novels because the protagonists are always women seeking revenge – usually against men who wronged them – and they are so good at getting it and very inventive. Her books are fun to read and Queen Bee is an entertaining and engrossing addition to her already fantastic list of novels. The characters are vividly drawn – I could picture the trophy wives in my head -, some are likable, some not so much, but I loved the protagonist, Laura, who I found authentic, honest, and relatable.

Queen Bee is another enjoyable and refreshing read from Jane Fallon and I am already looking forward to next year for her next novel. Highly recommended!!!

A huge thank you to Michael Joseph and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of the novel.

 

 

#BookReview: HEAD OVER HEELS by Hannah Orenstein @hannahorens @eternal_books

Head Over HeelsPublication: 23rd June 2020 – Headline Eternal

The stakes have never been higher – but is it time to take a leap, and tumble into love?

After training her entire life to make the Olympic gymnastics team, a disastrous performance ended Avery Abrams’ athletic career – for good. Seven years on, she’s still lost and, reeling from a breakup with her football star boyfriend, returns to her Massachusetts hometown.

In need of a job, Avery agrees to help new coach, Ryan Nicholson, train Hallie, a promising young gymnast with Olympic aspirations, despite her worries about the memories it will evoke.

Back in the gym, she’s surprised to find sparks flying with Ryan, and her long-buried love for her sport reemerging as she helps Hallie’s talent shine. But when a shocking scandal breaks, it has shattering effects on the world of gymnastics, Avery and everyone around her.

But Avery is not going to let history repeat itself – she’s ready to fight for those she loves – and win.

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Head Over Heels is the new novel by senior dating editor Hannah Orenstein and it’s an entertaining and refreshing novel set in the world of gymnastics.

Avery Abrams, a rising star gymnast, had a dream: going to the 2012 London Olympic Games as part of the American team, but an accident put a stop to years of hard work and sacrifices. Seven years later, she leaves LA with no job and no boyfriend to return home to Massachusetts. She has no prospects or any idea what to do with her future, but then she is offered the chance to coach promising gymnast Hallie in the same gym where she spent most of her childhood and her teenage years training. In Hallie, Avery sees the same energy and ambition that drove her years ago, so she throws herself in helping Hallie getting to the 2020 Olympic Games.

This is a beautiful, thought-provoking, powerful, and at times emotional story about abuse, #metoo movement, and self-discovery. Avery fell into depression following the accident that prevented her from going to the Olympic Games and it took her years to get over it. She feels realistic and relatable and I liked how she develops and grows throughout the novel. Returning home and finding a new job not only gives her a new purpose in life, but also a new romance. I liked Ryan and Avery’s chemistry, even though there were a few times that I wanted to punch Ryan for his behaviour. I also liked Avery and Hallie’s relationship and I found myself invested in Hallie’s outcome almost as much as Avery.

Head Over Heels is my first novel by Hannah Orenstein, but I already have her previous novels ready on my kindle and I am really looking forward to reading them. If you are looking for a feel-good and engaging story full of romance, humour and with fantastic characters, then I highly recommend this novel!

A huge thank you to Headline Eternal and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of the novel.

#BlogTour: THE SILENT WIFE by Karin Slaughter @HarperFiction @fictionpubteam @annecater @RandomTTours #RandomThingsTours

The Silent Wife Cover

Publication: 23rd June 2020 – HarperFiction

Atlanta, Georgia. Present day. A young woman is brutally attacked and left for dead. The police investigate but the trail goes cold. Until a chance assignment takes GBI investigator Will Trent to the state penitentiary, and to a prisoner who says he recognises the MO. The attack looks identical to the one he was accused of eight years earlier. The prisoner’s always insisted that he was innocent, and now he’s sure he has proof. The killer is still out there.

As Will digs into both crimes it becomes clear that he must solve the original case in order to reach the truth. Yet nearly a decade has passed – time for memories to fade, witnesses to vanish, evidence to disappear. And now he needs medical examiner Sara Linton to help him hunt down a ruthless murderer. But when the past and present collide, everything Will values is at stake.

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/3fwaItW

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Today, I am super excited to take part in the blog tour for The Silent Wife, the 20th novel by Karin Slaughter and the 10th novel featuring my all-time favourite federal agent, Will Trent.

I am addicted to the Will Trent series. I love it. I love the characters, the twisty plots, the constant high tension that spills through the pages, and Karin Slaughter’s sharp prose captures you and doesn’t let you go. When my request on NetGalley was accepted (thank you so much HarperCollins) I read it right away and finished it in less than two days.

A prison riot leads Will Trent to an eight-year-old case about the murder of young women. The killer had been caught and he’s jail, but now he has proofs of his innocence so Will and the GBI have no choice but to reopen the case.  The problem? The lead investigator in the old case is none other than Grant County Chief of Police, Jeffery Tolliver, the late husband of Sarah Linton, Will girlfriend and GBI pathologist. So, with a narrative that switches between present day Atlanta and Grant County a decade earlier, we see doctor Sarah Linton’s two loves trying to find the man behind the horrific murders of young women around Georgia.

I had high expectations before going into this novel and they were met and much much more. The gripping and riveting plot made me want to race through the pages and get to the brilliant and perfect ending. I loved how the protagonists’ personal lives merge with the cases (both in the past and in the present). If you’ve read the Grant County series you will recognize some of the characters and there are new ones that will keep you engrossed. Of course, Will and Sarah’s relationship is affected by this blast from the past and they have a few obstacles to go through, but I love how they develop throughout the story.

The Silent Wife is twisty, suspenseful, compelling, graphic, and at times emotional and a fantastic new addiction to this series. Once again, Karin Slaughter proved that she is the master of suspense. So, do yourself a favour and buy a copy of this thrilling read… you won’t regret it!

A huge thank you to Anne Cater and HarperCollins for inviting me to join the blog tour and providing me with a copy of the novel.

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Follow the rest of the blog tour:

The Silent Wife BT Poster

Karin-Slaughter-Alison-RosaKarin Slaughter is one of the world’s most popular and acclaimed storytellers. Published in 120 countries with more than 35 million copies sold across the globe, her 20 novels include the Grant County and Will Trent books, as well as the Edgar-nominated Cop Town and the instant Sunday Times bestselling novels Pretty Girls, Pieces of Her, and The Good Daughter.

Pieces of Her is soon to be an eight-part Netflix adaptation, starring Toni Collette, directed by Lesli Linka Glatter (Mad Men), and produced by Charlotte Stoudt (Homeland) and Bruna Papandrea (Big Little Lies). Grant County and Will Trent series are in development for television.

Hugely respected by her peers: 

Passion, intensity and humanityLee Child

I’d follow her anywhere’ Gillian Flynn

A great writer at the peak of her powers’ Peter James

‘Fiction doesn’t get any better than this’ Jeffery Deaver

Karin is the founder of the Save the Libraries project – a non-profit organisation established to support libraries and library programming.  A native of Georgia, Karin Slaughter lives in Atlanta.

Silent Wife 3D cover

#BookReview: THE OTHER PASSENGER by Louise Candlish @louise_candlish @simonschusterUK @jessbarratt88 @BookMinxSJV @TeamBATC

The Other PassengerPublication: 25th June 2020 – Simon & Schuster UK

It all happens so quickly. One day you’re living the dream, commuting to work by riverbus with your charismatic neighbour Kit in the seat beside you. The next, Kit hasn’t turned up for the boat and his wife Melia has reported him missing.

When you get off at your stop, the police are waiting. Another passenger saw you and Kit arguing on the boat home the night before and the police say that you had a reason to want him dead. You protest. You and Kit are friends – ask Melia, she’ll vouch for you. And who exactly is this other passenger pointing the finger? What do they know about your lives?

No, whatever danger followed you home last night, you are innocent, totally innocent.

Aren’t you?

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2ZTRd9i

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The Other Passenger is the brand new novel by Louise Candlish and it’s out today. I was really lucky to receive a proof of the book and I was hooked from the moment I started reading it. For two entire days I read and read and when I wasn’t reading I was thinking about it. What happened to Kit? Is Jaimie responsible for his disappearance? Why did they fight?

The Other Passenger revolves around four friends, two couples: Jamie and his partner Clare and Kit and his girlfriend Melia. When one of them disappears, Jamie is interrogated by the police and, through Jamie’s point of views and many flashback, the author reconstructs from the beginning an inter-generational, dysfunctional, and unlikely friendship that will have dire consequences.

One thing that I really like about Louise Candlish’s novels is that she always creates a cast of detestable characters that manage to make you addicted to the story. As in her previous novels, I didn’t like the characters of this book. Sometimes I felt pity for them, often I didn’t trust them, but mostly I didn’t like them. They are vividly crafted, multi-layered, and very-well developed, and, despite my dislike for them, I wanted to know more about them, about their lives and their secrets while trying to figure out who was guilty, who was lying, who was innocent.

Louise Candlish really knows what she is doing. The Other Passenger features a claustrophobic atmosphere and an unpredictable and clever plot that takes you repeatedly by surprise. There are jealousies, lies and deception, and dreams that make you do the unthinkable to achieve them. And, as mentioned, there are detestable characters that draw you so much into the story that, despite everything, you want them to have their happy ending. Will they get it?

A huge thank you to Jess and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of this brilliant novel.

#BookReview: CUT TO THE BONE by Roz Watkins @RozWatkins @HQstories

Cut to the BonePublication: 25th June 2020 – HQ

A beautiful young social-media star goes missing.

But who took her?

When controversial internet celebrity Violet Armstrong vanishes in the middle of a scorching Peak District summer, the case sparks a media frenzy.

The clock is ticking for DI Meg Dalton and her team to find Violet before online threats explode into real-life violence. And then the blood and hair of a young woman are found in an empty pig trough at the local abattoir…

The more Meg finds out about this unnerving case, the more she becomes convinced that something very, very bad has happened to Violet. With temperatures rising and the press demanding answers, the case is about to take a terrifying turn…

In bestselling author Roz Watkins’ chilling new thriller, DI Meg Dalton must face her most disturbing case yet. Perfect for fans of Ann Cleeves, Susie Steiner and Val McDermid.

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2XTrAnI

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Cut To The Bone is the third book featuring DI Meg Dalton and I am really enjoying this series. Meg Dalton is a likable character, strong, smart, relatable, even funny at times. She has a complicated family history, a rough past that sometime still sneaks up on her, and she is surrounded by a team of mostly likable detectives (there is a bad apple in every group).

In this new novel, DI Meg Dalton is investigating the sudden disappearance of Violet, an eighteen-year-old vlogger famous for videoing herself in bikini while she cooks meat and she has quite a following of fans and even a few haters. Violet’s disappearance triggers a social media war between groups of activists and when the war goes beyond simple insults on Facebook, DI Meg Dalton and her team need to find Violet before things get much worse.

Cut To The Bone takes place in the Peak District village of Gritton, a place that everyone seems to want to stay away from, surrounded by a gothic and claustrophobic atmosphere that gave me the chills just reading about it. Making things more sinister is the myth of the Pale Child, the ghost of a murdered child wandering around the village.

The story is brilliant, twisty and very-well-written. I love that it is told in first person from Meg’s point of view because, as I mentioned, she is a fantastic character and, as a reader, I enjoy being inside her head. This series just keeps getting better and better and I will certainly keep reading it (I am already looking forward to book number 4!). If you enjoy a good chilling police thriller, this one is for you. A fantastic read!

A huge thank you to HQ and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the book.

 

#BlogTour: ALL FALL DOWN by M. J. Arlidge @mjarlidge @orionbooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n

51CiKOb4aeLPublication: 11th July 2020 – Orion

“You have one hour to live.”

Those are the only words on the phone call. Then they hang up. Surely, a prank? A mistake? A wrong number? Anything but the chilling truth… That someone is watching, waiting, working to take your life in one hour.

But why?

The job of finding out falls to DI Helen Grace: a woman with a track record in hunting killers. However, this is A case where the killer seems to always be one step ahead of the police and the victims.

With no motive, no leads, no clues – nothing but pure fear – an hour can last a lifetime…

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2Yy5Cpq

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Happy Sunday everyone and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for All Fall Down, the new novel by M. J. Arlidge and the ninth novel featuring DI Helen Grace.

Imagine you are about to leave the office and head for home, imagine you receive an anonymous call from someone saying “You have one hour to live”. Would you take it seriously or would you freak out? With the movie The Ring in mind, I would freak out and hide very far away, but when successful entrepreneur Justin Lanning receives the call, he gets into a car and goes home thinking that he will be safe there. Obviously that’s not the case and when other people start getting the same call, DI Helen Grace and her team know they have to find the killer before more people are murdered.

All Fall Down is a twisty, dark, and unpredictable novel. You think you have figure out the truth just to find out that, actually, you have not. The short chapters and the fast pace of the story make you turn page after page unable to put it down. I loved the “book within the book” structure as the author inserts extracts from a book that it’s central to the story. The tension is always high and the claustrophobic and chilling atmosphere gave me goose-bumps.

DI Helen Grace is a fantastic and complex character. She has never a moment of calm both in her personal and professional life, luckily she is surrounded by a fantastic team who support her, especially Charlie, who is struggling juggling motherhood and her job. I am not really fond of the new member of the team, DS Joseph Hudson, (I am not elaborating further about it to not spoil it) but I am looking forward to see how his story develops.

All Fall Down is an exciting and thrilling read that will make you hold your breath and it will keep you hooked from the first to the last page… a read not to miss!

A huge thank you to Tracy and Orion for inviting me to join the blog tour and providing me with a copy of the novel.

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all fall down blog

 

https://amzn.to/2XTrAnI

https://amzn.to/2XTrAnI

#BookReview: THE COURT OF MIRACLES by Kester Grant @kester_grant @HarperVoyagerUK #jointhecourt

The Court of MiraclesPublication: 18th June 2020 – HarperVoyager

Les Misérables meets Six of Crows in this page-turning adventure as a young thief finds herself going head to head with leaders of Paris’s criminal underground in the wake of a failed French Revolution.

Liberty

1828 and the citizens of Paris still mourn in the wake of their failed revolution. Among them, in the dark alleys and crumbling cathedrals of the city, the most wretched have gathered into guilds of thieves, assassins – and worse. Together they are known as The Court of Miracles.

Family

Eponine has lost more than most. When her father, Thénardier, sells her sister to the Guild of Flesh she makes a promise to do anything she can to get her sister back, even if that means joining the Court of Miracles, the very people keeping her sister a slave.

Treachery

Eponine becomes perhaps the greatest thief the Court has ever known, finding a place among them and gaining another sister, Cosette. But she has never forgotten the promise she made, and if she’s to have any hope of saving one sister, she will have to betray the other.

This beautiful reimagining of Les Misérables tells the stories of your favourite characters and what might have happened if the French Revolution had not come to pass.

Amazon.co.uk: https://amzn.to/2WdbEw0

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WELCOME TO THE COURT OF MIRACLES, where criminals are divided into guilds and there are rules to follow and loyalties to observe.

“Wretched is the name given to all children of the Miracle Court. What binds us is our guild. It is a bond stronger than family, thicker than blood.”

I was first drawn to this book by the blurb: “Les Misérables meets Six of Crows“. I instantly knew that I had to read it because Six of Crows is one of my favourite books. And then I saw the cover. Have you seen it? So beautiful, shiny, and sparkly… I could stare at it for hours. Finally, I was lucky and my Netgalley request was approved. I got the chance to read it earlier and I was hooked right away. I was catapulted in 1820s Paris, a Paris divided in half following the failure of the French Revolution, a Paris half belonging to aristocrats and half belonging to criminals.

“There are no family names in the Miracle Court, no race or religion.”

Thieves, assassins, crooks, and beggars are all reunited in the Court of Miracles and among them is the Black Cat. Nina would do anything to protect the people she loves, even join the Court of Miracles and becoming a thief, a favourite of the Court, the Black Cat of the Thieves Guild. She breaks into houses, she steals, she forms alliances with other criminals and princes to get what she wants… and she does.

I loved the characters in the story. They are strong, engaging, and very well-crafted and I am already looking forward to see what happens next to them. The story reminded me of Six of Crows, but it is still unique, completely captivating, and with a fantastic world-building. I loved how the Court of Miracles is structured, with its various guilds, its rules, and its alliances. Thanks to the beautiful descriptions and the author’s exceptional writing style I could imagine each scene in my head and it was really really hard to put the book down. The Court of Miracles is the first terrific novel in a fantastic new series and I can’t wait to read more. And you, are you ready to join the court?

A huge thank you to HarperVoyager and Netgalley for providing me with a copy of the novel.