New Releases – June 2021

Check out June’s NEW RELEASES! Start your summer off right with a few good books perfect for lounging.

The Secrets of Us by Lucinda Berry

Description

Dangerously addictive, The Secrets of Us is a pulse-pounding exploration of a disturbed psyche and the bond between two sisters desperate to escape a troubled past.

Foster sisters Krystal and Nichole have always been there for each other, so when Nichole is committed to a psychiatric hospital after trying to kill her husband, Krystal drops everything to defend her.

Scarred by a hard upbringing, Nichole and Krystal managed to construct comfortable lives for themselves. Krystal became a respected lawyer, and Nichole was happily married to an architect—until Nichole starts raving that her husband isn’t her husband, believing that he’s an imposter.

Driven by fierce loyalty, Krystal starts asking questions, but she’s not sure she can bear the answers. Her investigation leads to the sisters’ dark shared past…to a horrible tragedy and a well-guarded lie that cemented their sisterly bond.

But that lie can’t kill the truth—the battered, gasping, clawing truth that’s coming for them both. Now Krystal and Nichole must both fight for the lives they’ve built before they’re consumed by the one they left behind.

A Note From the Publisher

Dr. Lucinda Berry is a former psychologist and leading researcher in childhood trauma. Now she writes full-time, using her clinical experience to blur the line between fiction and nonfiction. She enjoys taking her readers on a journey through the dark recesses of the human psyche. If Berry isn’t chasing after her son, you can find her running through Los Angeles, prepping for her next marathon. To hear about her upcoming releases, visit her on Facebook or sign up for her newslet­ter at https://lucindaberryauthor.com.

Advance Praise

PRAISE FOR LUCINDA BERRY

THE BEST OF FRIENDS

“A mother’s worst nightmare on the page. For those who dare.” Kirkus Reviews

The Best of Friends gripped me from the stunning opening to the emotional, explosive ending. In this moving novel, Berry creates a beautifully crafted study of secrets and grief among a tight-knit group of friends and of how far a mother will go to discover the truth and protect her children.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Weight of Silence and This Is How I Lied

“In The Best of Friends, Berry starts with a heart-stopping bang—the dreaded middle-of-the-night phone call—and then delivers a dark and gritty tale that unfolds twist by devastating twist. Intense, terrifying, and at times utterly heartbreaking. Absolutely unputdownable.” —Kimberly Belle, international bestselling author of Dear Wife and Stranger in the Lake

THE PERFECT CHILD

“I am a compulsive reader of literary novels—but this has been a terrible year for fiction that is actually readable and not experimental. I have been so disappointed when well-known writers came out with books that, to me, were just duds. But there was one book that kept me reading, the sort of novel I can’t put down…The Perfect Child, by Lucinda Berry. It speaks to the fear of every parent: What if your child is a psychopath? This novel takes it a step further. A couple, desperate for a child, has the chance to adopt a beautiful little girl who, they are told, has been abused. They’re told it might take a while for her to learn to behave and trust people. She can be sweet and loving, and in public she is adorable. But in private—well, I won’t give away what happens. But needless to say, it’s chilling.” —Gina Kolata, New York Times

“A mesmerizing, unbearably tense thriller that will have you looking over your shoulder and sleeping with one eye open. This creepy, serpentine tale explores the darkest corners of parenthood and the profoundly unsettling lengths one will go to to keep a family together—no matter the consequences. Electrifying and atmospheric, this dark gem of a novel is one I couldn’t put down.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Timesbestselling author

“A deep, dark, and dangerously addictive read. All absorbing to the very end!” —Minka Kent, Washington Post bestselling author


The Disposables by Greg Jolley

Description

In the jungles of coastal Mexico, twelve-year-old Kazu Danser is on the run, his bloody past haunting and attempting to be his ruination. Hot on his heals is journalist Carson Staines, a deadly madman full of blood thirst and greed, determined to first chronicle Kazu’s criminal life – and then end it. Staines must nail him down, dead or alive; the boy being worth a huge payoff.

Making a perilous crossing of the border into the States, Kazu fights for his life, desperately heading east. Entering sunburnt Florida, he teams up with a gang of Floridian street urchins, known to the authorities as, “The disposables.” With Staines not letting up on the chase, Kazu and the other youths go on the run, fighting for their lives.

Can the Disposables and Kazu survive?


We Two Alone by Jack Wang

Description

Praised as “utterly remarkable” and “deeply resonant” by Pulitzer Prize-winning authors Viet Thanh Nguyen and Robert Olen Butler, a bold and brilliant debut collection, in the vein of The Refugees, which dramatizes the Chinese diaspora across the globe over the past hundred years.

Set on five continents and spanning decades, We Two Alone traces the arc and evolution of the Chinese immigrant experience. A young laundry boy risks his life, pretending to be a girl to play organized hockey in Canada in the 1920s. A Canadian couple is caught when Shanghai succumbs to violence during the Second Sino-Japanese War. A family sttempts to buy a home in South Africa in the early years of apartheid. An actor in New York struggles to keep his career alive while yearning to reconcile with his estranged wife.

From the vulnerable and disenfranchised to the educated and privileged, the characters in this extraordinary collection embody the diversity of the Chinese diaspora past and present. In these deeply affecting stories, Jack Wang subverts expectations as he captures the hope, pain, and sacrifices of the millions who journey into the unknown to create better lives, and explores the shifting boundaries of morality, the intimacies and failings of love, and the choices circumstances force us to make.


The Street Party by Claire Seeber

Description

The party was supposed to be the highlight of the summer. If only I’d known that night would destroy our lives…

All the neighbours were laughing, drinking out of plastic glasses and getting along. I almost felt happy. Almost forgot about the terrible argument earlier and the sinister messages I’d been receiving from a strange address all week, threatening to expose the lies behind my perfect life.

As we finished with the red and gold fireworks and welcomed everyone back to our house, I believed that everything would be okay.

But I didn’t know who I was inviting in.

I never could have imagined what would happen here, in our home, after I’d gone up to bed.

Everyone saw something different.

It’s my daughter’s word against the story the boy from down the road is telling. But how can I find out what really happened that night without everyone finding out the truth about me?

An absolutely gripping story of the secrets you would do anything to keep hidden, with a twist you just won’t see coming. Perfect for fans of Gone GirlBig Little Lies and The Girl on the Train.


The Disappearing Act by Catherine Steadman

Description

From the New York Times bestselling author of Something in the Water and Mr. Nobody comes “an unputdownable mystery about the nightmares that abound in the pursuit of Hollywood dreams” (Caroline Kepnes, author of the You series).

ONE OF THE BEST THRILLERS OF THE SUMMER—Entertainment Weekly

Once a year, actors from across the globe descend on the smog and sunshine of Los Angeles for pilot season. Every cable network and studio is looking to fill the rosters of their new shows, enticing a fresh batch of young hopefuls—anxious, desperate, and willing to do whatever it takes to make it. Careers will be made, dreams will be realized, stars will be born. And some will be snuffed out.

British star Mia Eliot has landed leading roles in costume dramas in her native country, but now it’s time for Hollywood to take her to the next level. Mia flies across the Atlantic to join the horde of talent scrambling for their big breaks. She’s a fish out of water in the ruthlessly competitive arena of back-to-back auditioning. Then one day she meets Emily, another actress from out of town and a kindred spirit. Emily is friendly and genuine and reassuringly doesn’t seem to be taking any of it too seriously. She stands out in a conveyor-belt world of fellow auditionees. But a simple favor takes a dark twist when Emily disappears and Mia realizes she was the last person to see her. And when a woman knocks on Mia’s door the following day claiming to be Emily and isn’t the woman Mia remembers at all, Mia is deeply troubled.

All Mia has to go on is the memory of a girl she met only once . . . and the suffocating feeling that something terrible has happened. Worse still, the police don’t believe her when she claims the real Emily has gone missing. So Mia is forced to risk the role of a lifetime to try to uncover the truth about Emily, a gamble that will force her to question her own sanity as the truth goes beyond anything she could ever have imagined.

Actress and author Catherine Steadman has written a gripping thriller set in a world close to home that asks the question: In a city where dreams really do come true, how far would you go to make the unreal real?


The Hive by Gregg Olsen

Description

Glamorous messiah or charlatan? A mask of beauty hides deadly secrets in #1 New York Times and Amazon Charts bestselling author Gregg Olsen’s mesmerizing novel of suspense.

In the Pacific Northwest, detective Lindsay Jackman is investigating the murder of a young journalist found at the bottom of a ravine. Lindsay soon learns that the victim was writing an exposé. Her subject: a charismatic wellness guru who’s pulled millions into her euphoric orbit…

To hear Marnie Spellman tell it, when she was a child, a swarm of bees lifted her off the ground and toward the sunlight, illuming her spiritual connection with nature—an uncanny event on which Marnie built a cosmetics empire and became a legend, a healer, and the queen of holistic health and eternal beauty. In her inner circle is an intimate band of devotees called the Hive. They share Marnie’s secrets of success—including one cloaked in darkness for twenty years.

Determined to uncover the possibly deadly mysteries of the group, Lindsay focuses her investigation on Marnie and the former members of the Hive, who are just as determined to keep Lindsay from their secrets as they are to maintain their status.

A Note From the Publisher

Gregg Olsen is the #1 New York Times and Amazon Charts bestselling author of more than thirty books, including If You Tell, Lying Next to Me, The Last Thing She Ever Did, and The Sound of Rain and The Weight of Silence in the Nicole Foster series. He’s appeared on multiple television and radio shows and news networks, such as Good Morning America, Dateline, Entertainment Tonight, CNN, and MSNBC. In addition, Olsen has been featured in Redbook, People, and Salon, as well as in the Seattle Times, Los Angeles Times, and New York Post. Both his fiction and nonfiction works have received critical acclaim and numerous awards. Washington State officially selected his young adult novel Envy for the National Book Festival, and The Deep Dark was named Idaho Book of the Year. A Seattle native who lives with his wife in rural Washington State, Olsen’s already at work on his next thriller. Visit him at http://www.greggolsen.com.

Advance Praise

“Readers who relish the aftershocks of cult exploitation will turn every page with keen anticipation.” Kirkus Reviews

The Hive is Gregg Olsen at his finest. Exciting, anxiety provoking, and twisty…You will stay up all night reading…not wanting to put it down until the final and shocking conclusion. This book will take you right down a rabbit hole you never suspected.” Mystery & Suspense Magazine

“Mesmerizing! Gregg Olsen tautly reveals layer after layer of lies, secrets, and betrayals in an increasingly horrifying exposé of one cult leader and her terrible sway over others. Forget the evil men do. These women will have you fearing for your life.” —Lisa Gardner, #1 New York Timesbestselling author

The Hive is a riveting thriller, a tsunami of a story that starts out strong and absolutely knocks you over at the end. The characters are fascinating, their world so real and absorbing—I was transfixed from the very start. Gregg Olsen is such a compelling writer.” —Luanne Rice, New York Timesbestselling author

“In this gripping thriller, everything is not as it seems, and beauty is only skin deep. The Hive is a brilliantly engrossing read—exactly what we have come to expect from Gregg Olsen.” —Karin Slaughter, New York Times and internationally bestselling author

“A charismatic wellness guru, a dead young journalist, and a slew of secrets are the ingredients that make up this fiendishly fun thriller. The Hive will have readers buzzing.” —Greer Hendricks, #1 New York Times bestselling coauthor of The Wife Between Us

“Gregg Olsen’s The Hive is a fast-paced, intriguing, intense, and suspenseful read that is as creepy as it is fantastic. Brilliant, thought-provoking, heartbreaking, and original, The Hive will keep you up at night and leave you reeling long after you’ve finished it. Every page carries weight in this novel. There are plenty of twists and turns to satisfy even the most seasoned crime fiction reader, and the characters feel authentic and alive in ways that only Olsen can achieve.” —Lisa Regan, #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Detective Josie Quinn series

“Die-hard Gregg Olsen fans will love The Hive; new readers will become fans. Olsen deftly guides the reader through the pages, cranking up the suspense as long-held secrets rise to the surface. The result is compulsively page turning as Olsen keeps the reader’s mind buzzing in suspense. He hooks the reader as a dark crime from the past collides with a crime from the present.” —Kendra Elliot, Wall Street Journal bestselling author

“Gregg Olsen’s The Hive begins with a fascinating premise and a spellbinding opening scene that held me in its grip as I flew through the pages. Olsen expertly weaves together a multilayered tale told by a complex array of unforgettable characters in his latest jaw-dropping thriller. In this dark and dangerously addictive read buzzing with secrets, betrayal, and murder, queen bees and wannabes take on a whole new meaning. Not to be missed.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of This Is How I Lied


The Art of Betrayal by Connie Berry

Description

In Connie Berry’s third Kate Hamilton mystery, American antique dealer Kate Hamilton’s spring is cut short when a body turns up at the May Fair pageant.

Spring is a magical time in England–bluebells massing along the woodland paths, primrose and wild thyme dotting the meadows. Antiques dealer Kate Hamilton is spending the month of May in the Suffolk village of Long Barston, enjoying precious time with Detective Inspector Tom Mallory. While attending the May Fair, the annual pageant based on a well-known Anglo-Saxon folktale, a body turns up in the middle of the festivities.

Kate is even more shocked when she learns the murder took place in antiquity shop owner Ivor Tweedy’s stockroom and a valuable Chinese pottery jar that she had been tasked with finding a buyer for has been stolen. Ivor may be ruined. Insurance won’t cover a fraction of the loss.

As Tom leads the investigation, Kate begins to see puzzling parallels between the murder and local legends. The more she learns, the more convinced she is that the solution to both crimes lies in the misty depths of Anglo-Saxon history and a generations-old pattern of betrayal. It’s up to Kate to unravel this Celtic knot of lies and deception to save Ivor’s business.


The Doomsday Book of Fairy Tales by Emily Brewes

Description

An astounding tale about a dangerous quest in an eerie post–climate collapse world.

A long time ago, the Vanderchucks fled the growing climate disaster and followed their neighbours into the Underground. Jesse Vanderchuck thought it was the end. Of the world. Of life. Eventually, Jesse’s little sister, Olivia, ran away and Jesse started picking through trash heaps in Toronto’s abandoned subway tunnels. Day in, day out.

Then, years later, Jesse meets a talking dog.

Fighting illness and the hostile world aboveground, Jesse and Doggo embark on a fool’s errand to find Olivia — or die trying. Along the way, Jesse spins a series of fairy tales from threads of memories, weaving together the past, present, and future into stories of brave girls, of cunning lads, of love in the face of wickedness, and of hope in the midst of despair.


A Dark and Secret Place by Jen Williams

Description

For fans of Kathleen Barber and Julia Heaberlin comes a chilling psychological suspense from award-winning author Jen Williams about a woman who discovers her late mother had a decades-long secret correspondence with a serial killer, begging the question: how well do we know our own family and even ourselves? 

When prodigal daughter Heather Evans returns to her family home after her mother’s baffling suicide, she makes an alarming discovery–stacks and stacks of carefully preserved letters from notorious serial killer Michael Reave. The “Red Wolf,” as he was dubbed by the press, has been in prison for over twenty years, serving a life sentence for the gruesome and ritualistic murders of several women across the country, although he has always protested his innocence. The police have had no reason to listen, yet Heather isn’t the only one to have cause to re-examine the murders. The body of a young woman has just been found, dismembered and placed inside a tree, the corpse planted with flowers. Just as the Red Wolf once did.

What did Heather’s mother know? Why did she kill herself? And with the monstrous Red Wolf safely locked inside a maximum security prison, who is stalking young women now? Teaming up with DI Ben Parker, Heather hopes to get some answers for herself and for the newest victims of this depraved murderer. Yet to do that, she must speak to Michael Reave herself, and expose herself to truths she may not be ready to face. Something dark is walking in the woods, and it knows her all too well.

Scent of Sins

Sins of the flesh 
Filled with holy water and covered in mesh
Fire on the inside, behind the eyes 
Cool to the touch she’s almost too much
She’ll burn you with a stare
Light you up without a care. 

You’ll turn inside out 
Get caught in her orbit
Way before you ever know it
Breathe her in, before she bares her teeth
Dark soul, silver heart
She’ll tear you apart
Open you up and spit you out 
Discarded

Leaving nothing behind but the husk, the shell
You’ll want more like a thirst you can’t quench 
Except she’s gone and left nothing but the scent 

House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland- #bookreview

Pure perfection! I felt like I was drawn to a hive of honey bees by the sweetness they make only to be stung over and over again and still wanting more!

Pure perfection! I felt like I was drawn to a hive of honey bees by the sweetness they make only to be stung over and over again and still wanting more!

This book was beyond anything I’ve read in a long time and loved every page. While most of us sometimes feel out of place in our own skin these three sisters literally come back after a month different in ways that only their parents realize. Each with their own unique personalities and same magic, living in a world familiar and yet strange at the same time.

I wanted to be them, to intoxicate others with my scent and kiss and started believing in the in-between place where we go when we’re not-yet dead and sometimes left just on the other side.

It was horrific, magical, beautiful and beyond any words I could use to explain the pure enchantment this books leaves with you. Krystal’s writing leaves nothing untouched or unraveled. It was bliss.

Description

Seventeen-year-old Iris Hollow has always been strange. Something happened to her and her two older sisters when they were children, something they can’t quite remember but that left each of them with an identical half-moon scar at the base of their throats. 

Iris has spent most of her teenage years trying to avoid the weirdness that sticks to her like tar. But when her eldest sister, Grey, goes missing under suspicious circumstances, Iris learns just how weird her life can get: horned men start shadowing her, a corpse falls out of her sister’s ceiling, and ugly, impossible memories start to twist their way to the forefront of her mind. 

As Iris retraces Grey’s last known footsteps and follows the increasingly bizarre trail of breadcrumbs she left behind, it becomes apparent that the only way to save her sister is to decipher the mystery of what happened to them as children. 

The closer Iris gets to the truth, the closer she comes to understanding that the answer is dark and dangerous – and that Grey has been keeping a terrible secret from her for years

The Trials and Tribulations of Social Media

As the Tiktok celebrities and Instagram influencers multiple, we’re more glued to our phones than ever but are we building valuable connections or just passing the time?

We’ve all been entertained by social media more this past year after being stuck at home trying to find ways to cope but at what cost.

As the Tiktok celebrities and Instagram influencers multiple, we’re more glued to our phones than ever but are we building valuable connections or just passing the time?

While we might giggle at the jokesters, dance like the entertainers, and envy what looks like the perfect photos, we’re not gaining much in the way of value. Instead, we’re trying out filters to alter appearances, using props as a way to bend our lifestyles into fake perfection and coming up short.

This past year my oldest daughter got rid of all social media and traded it in for really like and I couldn’t be prouder. I’m almost done myself but still hanging on to my favorite app, Instagram for reasons unknown. I keep telling myself I do it for me but the reality is I think I’m hanging on to the “likes”. If I were truly doing it for me, I would be taking photos because I enjoy it not hoping for as many likes as I can get.

If you asked yourself why you post to Instagram, what would the reason be? Are you staying connected to friends and family, sharing your business, or just wanting to garner as many interactions as possible?

I get the business thing, heck is its free advertising! I started in marketing before social media and we had to pay through the nose for trade shows, print ads, and TV commercials which is unrealistic for small businesses. It’s hard enough to turn a profit without overhead and important to use all the free tools you can to spread the word.

However, the rest of us are endlessly scrolling and liking an infinite amount of content without adding any value to our lives. We’re wasting time when we could be doing the things that need or want to be done. A goal of mine is to eventually write a novel but it certainly won’t get done when I open up any of the apps on my phone.

We’re getting close to detoxing and never going back. I, myself started with Facebook. It hasn’t added any value to my life in some time, if ever, and was an easy app to start with. I found myself opening it up only to be disappointed by the same memes, usually status updates and mean posts. In my opinion, I don’t think it should be used as a way to spread political opinions, but that’s just me. We’re all never going to agree or be on the same side and that’s OK, but it shouldn’t divide us or call people out for that.

The last straw was when a “friend” from high school asked those that support Biden to unfriend them. Can’t we have a difference of opinion without needing to disassociate ourselves from one another?

If it’s not the main post that causes trouble, it’s the comments that pose a problem. One after one is increasingly mean and just not needed. The result of this was to finally delete my account and call it a day. I haven’t regretted it or felt compelled to rejoin since and I’m sticking to it.

If you’ve been thinking about doing the same but haven’t yet pulled the plug, ask yourself what you gain from each of your accounts and why you stay connected. I guarantee there will be at least one account that you no longer need or want and if that’s the case, do the thing and get rid of it. Try it out for a week and see what you can accomplish or do instead. I don’t want to promise this but I have a feeling you’ll be much better off without it.

Let me know your struggles with social media and share your goals for what you’d rather be doing!

It’s Plant Season

Find your balance with houseplants.

One of my favorite things to collect for the house are plants and I’ve passed that trait along to my oldest daughter who is now a “plant-mom” herself. Not only can it add to the decor but getting the right species can enhance your environment and health too.

Reduce Stress
Sharpen Attention
Therapeutic
Recover from Illness
Boost Productivity
Improve Mental Health
Improve Indoor Air Quality

Here are some of my favorite finds –

The Perfect Nanny by Karen Clarke and Amanda Brittany #BOOKREVIEW

An utterly gripping and suspenseful novel that will have you turning the pages long into the night! Fans of The Mother-In-Law, Lies Lies Lies, and The Babysitter will love this heart-racing read.

Description

You trust her with your home, your husband, your baby… but she is about to destroy it all.

Sophy Pemberton is struggling to cope with the pressures of becoming a new mother. Her nine-month-old son never settles in her arms and the unrelenting tiredness from late-night feeds is all-consuming.

So, when Liv Granger from the mother and baby group offers her services as a nanny, Sophy is overcome with relief. Now she can finally get some sleep… She can stop failing at being a mother.

But Liv has a secret.

She is convinced that Sophy was accountable for her brother’s tragic death and she has been searching for her for years.

And now that Liv’s found her, she’s outraged Sophy seems oblivious to the pain she has caused her family.

Sophy’s perfect house, perfect husband, and perfect baby are too much for Liv to bear… and she’s going to make her pay.

An utterly gripping and suspenseful novel that will have you turning the pages long into the night! Fans of The Mother-In-Law, Lies Lies Lies, and The Babysitter will love this heart-racing read.

My Review

What a ride! I couldn’t get away from this one even when I put it down for a quick break I was thinking about it.

Fearing what Liv’s intentions were towards Sophy after securing a Nanny position for her and thinking that Sophy was the reason for Livs Brother’s death, kept me intrigued. At the same time wondering what had caused the concern, Sophy didn’t seem to be well and was suffering from something or someone worse than Liv. Complete with mystery and deceiving characters (yes, more than one) and totally not who you think would cause issues for the new mother.

Last Week of February is Here and So are the Latest New Releases

Get the latest new releases to end February and start March!

Something So Beautiful by Lee Dawna

Description

What would you do to save the man you love? What if his biggest danger was you?

When green-eyed charmer John Beller breaks through the chaos of her life, offering all the fruits of lust and love, thirty-two-year-old Mary Williams desperately wants to partake. On the verge of a mental break where footsteps echo from empty rooms and constant phone calls have no one on the other end, she craves the peaceful embrace of John’s arms. His confident sphere is the one place she can forget about her weakening grasp of reality. But he’s a demanding stranger she’s only recently met, one whose entitlement of wealth makes him dig into all her secrets. And she has no intention of letting anyone find out about her paranoid delusions.

Convinced she can control her descent into madness, Mary’s plan crashes around her when an insane driver intentionally forces her car off the road. Left for dead at the bottom of a ravine, she wakes to find herself hospitalized, then forced into confinement to recover at John’s house. And in his house, it’s his rules. While police search for the driver who nearly killed her, one detective questions whether or not John is isolating Mary for her protection or using her insanity against her. She’s sure it’s the former, and John insists it is.

One thing is certain—her nightmares are real. And the more John kisses her, the closer the threat looms. He may protect her, but who will protect him?

AUTHOR LINKS

The Broken Ones (Detective Gina Harte Book 8) by Carla Kovach

Description

Amber applies a dash of red lipstick and checks herself out in the mirror before heading out on a date. ‘Don’t wait up!’ she calls to her housemates as she leaves. But Amber never returns home that night. Amber Slater is never seen again.

The last person to see Amber was her housemate. He remembers everything she was wearing that night. He watched her leave. He listened to every word of her phone conversation with her friend before she left. He knows more about Amber’s movements than anyone.

At university, she is well-liked by her fellow students and teachers. Her tutor’s voice shakes when he is questioned by the police. Some say he and Amber were very close. Too close. Some say his wife had just found out about their relationship.

The manager at the restaurant where Amber was supposed to eat that night says she didn’t show up. Yet the chef at the restaurant is overly chatty about her. He wasn’t working that night. He wasn’t answering his phone. Nobody knows where he was when Amber went missing.

Rumours begin to circulate about Amber, it seems that everyone has a story to tell. But when the young girl’s lifeless body is found in a local park, with her blue lips glued shut, the gossip suddenly goes quiet. As the police trace the last few hours of Amber’s life, it seems that the girl simply vanished on her way to catch her bus. And when another woman goes missing in the dead of night, it’s a race against time to find her before she too is silenced forever.

Fans of crime books from Angela Marsons, Cara Hunter and Clare Mackintosh will love The Broken Ones.

Advance Praise

What readers are saying about Carla Kovach:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘I am completely hooked on this series. I read this in a single sitting, unable to put it down.’ NetGalley reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Wow!… Absolutely amazing!… An incredibly clever and gripping story. I was hooked from the first page.’ Goodreads reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Fantastic. Five stars from me.’ NetGalley reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Very hard to put down. I give this book five stars just because I loved it.’ NetGalley reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Wow! What a great read!! This was full of so many twists and turns… This book touched every possible emotion. Can’t recommend enough!’ NetGalley reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Carla has done it again. She’s written another riveting installment in what is one of my favourite police series.’ Emma’s Biblio Treasures

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘I really enjoyed this book, in fact I read it way too fast! Fast-paced and gripping… Read it! You won’t be disappointed.’ Goodreads reviewer.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘If you have never read this series, you, my friend, are missing out… I love how the author makes you feel as if you are there in each page as the story unfolds.’ Goodreads reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘What an amazing thriller! Absolutely loved the storyline and the heroes. The writer spins a beautiful tale and draws you in slowly but surely.’ Goodreads reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘I didn’t get much else done from the time I first picked it up, till the last page was read… one hell of a series.’ Nigel Adams Bookworm

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘This series just keeps getting better… Another fantastic read in a gripping and addictive series. An easy five stars and so highly recommended.’ Goodreads reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Engaging suspenseful plot with clever twists and turns and an ending that I never guessed.’ Goodreads reviewer

The Stolen Kingdom by Jillian Boehme

Description

“A bold girl, a kingdom under attack, magic everywhere—I devoured it in one sitting! This book is one wild ride!” —Tamora Pierce on Stormrise 

Nothing is quite as it seems in this thrilling YA fantasy adventure by Jillian Boehme, The Stolen Kingdom!

For a hundred years, the once-prosperous kingdom of Perin Faye has suffered under the rule of the greedy and power-hungry Thungrave kings. Maralyth Graylaern, a vintner’s daughter, has no idea her hidden magical power is proof of a secret bloodline and claim to the throne. Alac Thungrave, the king’s second son, has always been uncomfortable with his position as the spare heir—and the dark, stolen magic that comes with ruling.

When Maralyth becomes embroiled in a plot to murder the royal family and seize the throne, a cat-and-mouse chase ensues in an adventure of dark magic, court intrigue, and forbidden love.

The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner

Description

Named Most Anticipated of 2021 by Newsweek, Good Housekeeping, Hello! magazine, Oprah.com, Bustle, Popsugar, Betches, Sweet July, and GoodReads!

March 2021 Indie Next Pick and #1 LibraryReads Pick

“A bold, edgy, accomplished debut!” —Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network

A forgotten history. A secret network of women. A legacy of poison and revenge. Welcome to The Lost Apothecary…

Hidden in the depths of eighteenth-century London, a secret apothecary shop caters to an unusual kind of clientele. Women across the city whisper of a mysterious figure named Nella who sells well-disguised poisons to use against the oppressive men in their lives. But the apothecary’s fate is jeopardized when her newest patron, a precocious twelve-year-old, makes a fatal mistake, sparking a string of consequences that echo through the centuries.

Meanwhile in present-day London, aspiring historian Caroline Parcewell spends her tenth wedding anniversary alone, running from her own demons. When she stumbles upon a clue to the unsolved apothecary murders that haunted London two hundred years ago, her life collides with the apothecary’s in a stunning twist of fate—and not everyone will survive.

With crackling suspense, unforgettable characters and searing insight, The Lost Apothecary is a subversive and intoxicating debut novel of secrets, vengeance and the remarkable ways women can save each other despite the barrier of time.

Advance Praise

“In The Lost Apothecary, Sarah Penner convincingly weaves three heroines and two timelines into one tale of poison, revenge, and the silent network of women helping other women in a world stacked against them…. A bold, edgy, accomplished debut!” —Kate Quinn, New York Timesbestselling author of The Alice Network and The Huntress

Dark, clever, and wickedly funThe Lost Apothecary is a true page-turner. Sarah Perry has given us a puzzle box of women’s lives, betrayal, power, and history. It’s a book that slyly asks what any of us deserve and if, sometimes, that might not be a little poison.” —Erika Swyler, bestselling author of The Book of Speculation

“Penner’s debut had me completely under its spell. The women of The Lost Apothecary, separated by centuries, seek both revenge and truth in this powerful story. Riveting and utterly original.” —Fiona Davis, bestselling author of The Dollhouse

“Sarah Penner kept me guessing until the last page of this addictive, atmospheric novel about an apothecary, who concocts poisons to help women exact revenge on their men, and the woman who uncovers her secrets over 200 years later. Meticulously researched, The Lost Apothecary is both a cure for idleness and a recipe for intrigue. Prepare to be consumed by this carefully plotted, propulsive debut.” —Amy Meyerson, bestselling author of The Bookshop of Yesterdays

Every Last Fear by Alex Finlay

Description

“This debut is gripping from the first bone-chilling line until the final page.”—Newsweek

One of the Most Anticipated Books of 2021: • Newsweek • Goodreads • BuzzFeed • PopSugar • BookBub • Bibliofile • Mystery and Suspense 

A LibraryReads Selection — A Top Book Voted by Librarians for March 2021
An Indie Next Pick — A Top Book Voted by Independent Bookstores for March 2021

In one of the year’s most anticipated debut psychological thrillers, a family made infamous by a true crime documentary is found dead, leaving their surviving son to uncover the truth about their final days.

“They found the bodies on a Tuesday.” So begins this twisty and breathtaking novel that traces the fate of the Pine family, a thriller that will both leave you on the edge of your seat and move you to tears.

After a late night of partying, NYU student Matt Pine returns to his dorm room to devastating news: nearly his entire family—his mom, his dad, his little brother and sister—have been found dead from an apparent gas leak while vacationing in Mexico. The local police claim it was an accident, but the FBI and State Department seem far less certain—and they won’t tell Matt why.

The tragedy makes headlines everywhere because this isn’t the first time the Pine family has been thrust into the media spotlight. Matt’s older brother, Danny—currently serving a life sentence for the murder of his teenage girlfriend Charlotte—was the subject of a viral true crime documentary suggesting that Danny was wrongfully convicted. Though the country has rallied behind Danny, Matt holds a secret about his brother that he’s never told anyone: the night Charlotte was killed Matt saw something that makes him believe his brother is guilty of the crime.

When Matt returns to his small hometown to bury his parents and siblings, he’s faced with a hostile community that was villainized by the documentary, a frenzied media, and memories he’d hoped to leave behind forever. Now, as the deaths in Mexico appear increasingly suspicious and connected to Danny’s case, Matt must unearth the truth behind the crime that sent his brother to prison—putting his own life in peril—and forcing him to confront his every last fear.

Told through multiple points-of-view and alternating between past and present, Alex Finlay’s Every Last Fear is not only a page-turning thriller, it’s also a poignant story about a family managing heartbreak and tragedy, and living through a fame they never wanted.

Advance Praise

Prepare yourself for twist after exciting twist. A standout novel plotted with surgical precision.”

—Karin Slaughter, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author

Explosive! A knife-edged thriller that explores the true meaning of family, including love, loyalty, and lies.”

—Lisa Gardner, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author 

“Brilliant. Finlay weaves a story as mesmerizing as it is heartbreaking. Hooks you from the very first page and keeps you guessing until the final explosive twist. Taut, smart, and compelling. A do not miss!” 

—Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

Every Last Fear is a hugely ambitious novel that satisfies on so many different levels. It’s a riveting mystery, a propulsive thriller, and a moving portrait of a family torn apart, and brought together, by tragedy.”

Lou Berney, bestselling author of November Road

“Alex Finlay’s jaw-dropping Every Last Fear, about a family found dead years after their true-crime Netflix documentary makes them infamous, is a powerful, standout thriller. Finlay is a masterful storyteller, seamlessly shifting perspectives and timelines to add layers of emotional depth and suspense to this fast-paced, expertly plotted, utterly engrossing novel. Hands down the best thriller I’ve read this year.

—Jennifer Hillier, author of Little Secrets and the award-winning Jar of Hearts

“I loved Every Last Fear. What elevates this thriller are the characters: real, flawed, heroic, driven. What would you do if someone you loved was convicted of a crime you were certain they didn’t commit? You won’t be able to put down this fast-moving, thoroughly compelling story until the very last page. A winner.”

—Allison Brennan, New York Times bestselling author

“Alex Finlay’s Every Last Fear reads like a bullet and had me hooked from the first few brutal pages.”

—Brian Panowich, author of Hard Cash Valley and the award-winning Bull Mountain

Too Good to Be True by Carola Lovering

Description

ONE LOVE STORY. TWO MARRIAGES. THREE VERSIONS OF THE TRUTH. 

Too Good to Be True is an obsessive, addictive love story for fans of Lisa Jewell and The Wife Upstairs, from Carola Lovering, the beloved author of Tell Me Lies.

Skye Starling is overjoyed when her boyfriend, Burke Michaels, proposes after a whirlwind courtship. Though Skye seems to have the world at her fingertips—she’s smart, beautiful, and from a well-off family—she’s also battled crippling OCD ever since her mother’s death when she was eleven, and her romantic relationships have suffered as a result.

But now Burke—handsome, older, and more emotionally mature than any man she’s met before—says he wants her. Forever. Except, Burke isn’t who he claims to be. And interspersed letters to his therapist reveal the truth: he’s happily married, and using Skye for his own, deceptive ends.

In a third perspective, set thirty years earlier, a scrappy seventeen-year-old named Heather is determined to end things with Burke, a local bad boy, and make a better life for herself in New York City. But can her adolescent love stay firmly in her past—or will he find his way into her future?

On a collision course she doesn’t see coming, Skye throws herself into wedding planning, as Burke’s scheme grows ever more twisted. But of course, even the best laid plans can go astray. And just when you think you know where this story is going, you’ll discover that there’s more than one way to spin the truth.

The Cyanide Ghost by Linda Startmann

Description

Someone from Mina’s past has returned to plague her…

Brighton, 1872

Mina Scarletti is helping prepare for her brother Edward’s imminent wedding when she finds out Mr. Beckler – a man who previously courted her under false pretenses – is once more on the scene.

Mr. Beckler claims to be able to capture spirits when taking photographs, and with her brother Richard now working for him, Mina is curious to see his pictures for herself.

She is shocked when the ghost of her father does indeed seem to appear in a photo taken of her family, yet certain it must be a fraud.

Mina soon realizes that Beckler is targeting the families of the deceased whose spirits appear in his photographs, many of whom have died in mysterious circumstances.

And before long, Beckler’s claims attract her worst enemy back to Brighton…

Is Mr. Beckler genuine in his claims to be able to photograph the dead? What connects the families he is targeting?

And is he determined once again to try and ruin Mina’s reputation…?

First Comes Like by Alisha Rai #bookreview

Description

The author of The Right Swipe and Girl Gone Viral returns with a story about finding love in all the wrong inboxes…

Beauty expert and influencer Jia Ahmed has her eye on the prize: conquering the internet today, the entire makeup industry tomorrow, and finally, finally proving herself to her big opinionated family. She has little time for love, and even less time for the men in her private messages—until the day a certain international superstar slides into her DMs, and she falls hard and fast.

There’s just one wrinkle: he has no idea who she is.

The son of a powerful Bollywood family, soap opera star Dev Dixit is used to drama, but a strange woman who accuses him of wooing her online, well, that’s a new one. As much as he’d like to focus on his Hollywood fresh start, he can’t get Jia out of his head. Especially once he starts to suspect who might have used his famous name to catfish her…

When paparazzi blast their private business into the public eye, Dev is happy to engage in some friendly fake dating to calm the gossips and to dazzle her family. But as the whole world swoons over their relationship, Jia can’t help but wonder: Can an online romance-turned-offline-fauxmance ever become love in real life? 

My Review

A truly sweet read for today’s crazy times!

I loved the way Alisha incorporated today’s events into the story with a flair for making it still feel like a book that one could escape into.

Tsalix Silverthorn and the Desert of Desolation by Richard Siddoway #COVERREVEAL

Having retrieved the first talisman from the top of Mount Jinee, Tsalix and his friends are faced with another daunting task. They must cross Shayeksten, the Desert of Desolation to reach Mount Tsood and find the second talisman.


Tsalix Desolation - Cover Reveal.pngTsalix Desolation - Cover Reveal.png

Blurb 

Having retrieved the first talisman from the top of Mount Jinee, Tsalix and his friends are faced with another daunting task.  They must cross Shayeksten, the Desert of Desolation to reach Mount Tsood and find the second talisman.

Shayeksten is formidable, dry, hot, and covered with drifting sand.  Compounding their problem is their nemesis, Captain Nash Doitsoh and his band of soldiers, who are patrolling the desert and are determined to capture Tsalix and bring him to Prince Abadon. If they are successful in crossing Shayeksten and reaching Mount Tsood they must find where the talisman is hidden and then return to Mount Deschee to deliver it to the King.  

Author Bio
Having retrieved the first talisman from the top of Mount Jinee, Tsalix and his friends are faced with another daunting task.They must cross Shayeksten, the Desert of Desolation to reach Mount Tsood and find the second talisman. Shayeksten is formidable, dry, hot, and covered with drifting sand. Compounding their problem is their nemesis, Captain Nash Doitsoh and his band of soldiers, who are patrolling the desert and are determined to capture Tsalix and bring him to Prince Abadon. If they are successful in crossing Shayeksten and reaching Mount Tsood they must find where the talisman is hidden and then return to Mount Deschee to deliver it to the King

Week 2 of February – New Releases

Five new titles releasing this week!

An Extravagant Death by Charles Finch

Description

In what promises to be a breakout in Charles Finch’s bestselling series, Charles Lenox travels to the New York and Newport of the dawning Gilded Age to investigate the death of a beautiful socialite.

London, 1878. With faith in Scotland Yard shattered after a damning corruption investigation, Charles Lenox’s detective agency is rapidly expanding. The gentleman sleuth has all the work he can handle, two children, and an intriguing new murder case.

But when Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli offers him the opportunity to undertake a diplomatic mission for the Queen, Lenox welcomes the chance to satisfy an unfulfilled yearning: to travel to America. Arriving in New York, he begins to receive introductions into both its old Knickerbocker society and its new robber baron splendor. Then, a shock: the death of the season’s most beautiful debutante, who appears to have thrown herself from a cliff. Or was it murder? Lenox’s reputation has preceded him to the States, and he is summoned to a magnificent Newport mansion to investigate the mysterious death. What ensues is a fiendish game of cat and mouse.

Witty, complex, and tender, An Extravagant Death is Charles Finch’s triumphant return to the main storyline of his beloved Charles Lenox series—a devilish mystery, a social drama, and an unforgettable first trip for an Englishman coming to America.

First Comes Like by Alisha Rai

Description

The author of The Right Swipe and Girl Gone Viral returns with a story about finding love in all the wrong inboxes…

Beauty expert and influencer Jia Ahmed has her eye on the prize: conquering the internet today, the entire makeup industry tomorrow, and finally, finally proving herself to her big opinionated family. She has little time for love, and even less time for the men in her private messages—until the day a certain international superstar slides into her DMs, and she falls hard and fast.

There’s just one wrinkle: he has no idea who she is.

The son of a powerful Bollywood family, soap opera star Dev Dixit is used to drama, but a strange woman who accuses him of wooing her online, well, that’s a new one. As much as he’d like to focus on his Hollywood fresh start, he can’t get Jia out of his head. Especially once he starts to suspect who might have used his famous name to catfish her…

When paparazzi blast their private business into the public eye, Dev is happy to engage in some friendly fake dating to calm the gossips and to dazzle her family. But as the whole world swoons over their relationship, Jia can’t help but wonder: Can an online romance-turned-offline-fauxmance ever become love in real life? 

All Girls by Emily Layden

Description

“A striking debut.” ––Good Housekeeping
“Sharp, engrossing.”––Town & Country
“For fans of Gossip Girl and readers of Curtis Sittenfeld and Emma Straub.” ––Booklist

“Incisive, astute.” ––Publishers Weekly
“An exciting, innovative debut from a fresh new voice.” ––Taylor Jenkins Reid

A keenly perceptive coming of age novel for fans of Sally Rooney, Curtis Sittenfeld, and J. Courtney Sullivan, All Girls follows nine young women as they navigate their ambitions and fears at a prestigious New England prep school, all pitched against the backdrop of a scandal the administration wants silenced.

But as the months unfold, and the school’s efforts to control the ensuing crisis fall short, these extraordinary girls are forced to discover their voices, and their power. 

A tender and unflinching portrait of modern adolescence told through the shifting perspectives of an unforgettable cast of female students, Emily Layden’s All Girls explores what it means to grow up in a place that promises you the world––when the world still isn’t yours for the taking.

You grow to love a place… and then you grow up.

Where Ravens Roost by Karin Nordin

Description

‘A delicious slice of Scandi noir – such a dark, atmospheric and compelling story! And ahh, if only those ravens could talk…’ 
Jackie Kabler, author of The Perfect Couple

The raven cawed at him, craning its neck unnaturally. As it dug its hooked beak into the mess of dried grass and twigs that made up its nest, a shiny glimmer reflected off a low-hanging bulb. Kjeld edged closer to get a better look. It was a human tooth.

Detective Kjeld Nygaard wants nothing more than to forget his family and Varsund, the small mining town he once called home, even exist. But while on suspension after his last case went disastrously wrong, his estranged father Stenar leaves a message on Kjeld’s phone claiming he’s seen a murder.

But with no evidence and Stenar suffering from Alzheimer’s, the local police think he must have imagined it. Kjeld can’t stop himself from investigating what actually happened, and soon discovers a body. But when the police start to suspect Stenar, it’s a race against time to discover the truth before it’s lost forever.

But will uncovering the truth expose family secrets that are best left buried?

Atmospheric and chilling, Where Ravens Roost is a gripping crime debut perfect for fans of J M Dalgliesh, Angela Marsons and Jo Nesbo.

Everyone LOVES Where Ravens Roost!

‘Brooding and atmospheric – full of mystery and twists where nothing is quite as it seems’
Catherine Cooper, author of The Chalet

‘Such a great thriller with superb characterization to boot. Hard to believe that it’s a debut’
Khurrum Rahman, author of Homegrown Hero

‘Absolutely loved it! If you like a slow burner, Scandi Noir this is the one for you!’
Laure Van Rensburg, author of The Downfall

‘The menacing, wintry heart of Where Ravens Roost gripped me from the very first page! Complex, layered characterisation, skilful writing and a twisty plot combine to create a Scandi-Noir thriller as dark as a raven’s wing. Hard to believe this is a debut!’
Louise Mumford, author of Sleepless

The Perfect Father by Charlotte Duckworth

Description

‘The perfect read. Surprising and original’ LESLEY KARA 

‘Masterful . . . a great twist’ HARRIET TYCE

Doctor Foster meets Gone Girl‘ BP WALTER

THE PERFECT HUSBAND . . .

After a difficult pregnancy, Esther is grateful that her husband Robin offers to put his career on hold so that she can return to the job she loves.

But Esther finds leaving her daughter Riley behind more challenging than she’d thought. And soon the new imbalance in her relationship with Robin brings old tensions to the surface.

OR A PERFECT LIE?

Then one day Esther arrives home from work to find Robin and Riley are missing. As the police investigate their disappearance, it becomes clear that nothing about this modern-day family is what it seems…

Is Robin the perfect father everyone thinks he is? Or was it all a perfect lie?

‘A real thriller of a ride with a twist I did NOT see coming’ NIKKI SMITH

‘An emotional and intelligently written thriller’ ELISABETH CARPENTER

‘Had me hooked from the first page’ RUTH HEALD

‘Realistic, gripping, emotional and distinctive’ NICOLA MOSTYN

‘Unpredictable, tense and engrossing’ REBECCA FLEET

‘I love Charlotte’s dark, messy takes on modern relationships’ CLAIRE MCGOWAN

‘Fresh, thrilling and packed with unstoppable tension’ LAUREN NORTH

**********

READERS ARE LOVING THE PERFECT FATHER

‘Deceit, ambition, suspense and betrayal: this book has it all’ *****

‘Gripping and nuanced’ *****
‘Totally twisty, dramatic and addictive’ *****
‘The best thriller I have read this year’ *****

Advance Praise

PRAISE FOR UNFOLLOW ME

‘A timely, page-turner of a novel’ Araminta Hall 

‘Taut, chilling, with a killer twist’ Sun

‘An intriguing slow burner that reveals the dark side of social media’ Heat

‘Brilliantly dark, twisty thriller’ Vikki Patis