Categories
Monthly Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up – March 2021

March has come to an end and it’s time for another monthly wrap up. I had a great month and managed to read a total of thirteen books.

Out of these thirteen book, seven were are debuts and ten are by new to me authors. I enjoyed revisiting characters I loved with A Court of Silver Flames and Nighthawking, and finding new series’ to enjoy with The Abduction and Mystery by the Sea. I also enjoyed taking part in my first audio book tour with The Abduction and hope to do more in the future.

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With so many great books, as you can imagine choosing a favourite wasn’t simple. There were five that particularly stood out: The Lost Apothecary, Body of Stars, Dangerous Women, The Asylum and Nighthawking. But after some deliberation, I managed to get my book of the month down to two: Body of Stars and The Asylum.

Did we read any of the same books in March? Let me know in the comments.

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Thanks for reading Bibliophiles. Until next time, Emma xxx

Categories
Blog Tours book reviews

Blog Tour: The Wedding by Ruth Heald

Published: March 3rd, 2021
Publisher: Bookouture
Format: Kindle, Audio, Paperback
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Psychological Thriller

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for this gripping thriller. Thank you to Bookouture for the invitation to take part and the eBook ARC.

SYNOPSIS:

Just four words were printed in the card. He doesn’t love you.

I’ve been dreaming about this day – marrying Adam, my childhood sweetheart, who I’ve loved for eighteen years.

I didn’t realise the perfect day would turn into the perfect nightmare.

I was so excited to send out the wedding invitations, carefully writing everyone’s names on thick cream paper in beautiful cursive script.

I had no idea I was inviting someone to destroy our marriage.

I couldn’t wait to say ‘I do’ surrounded by loved ones clinking champagne glasses.

I couldn’t imagine that one of them would try to hurt me.

It was meant to be the first day of the rest of our lives.

I never thought it would be the end of my life as I knew it.

We were meant to share our vows, to toast our future. But when the truth comes out, shocking the onlooking guests and ripping my heart out, is a happy ever after possible?

A completely gripping and totally addictive read that will get your blood pressure rising and send shivers down your spine. Fans of Date NightThe Sister-in-Law and The Girl on the Train will devour this twisty, dark and gasp-worthy page-turner in one swift gulp!

MY REVIEW:

“And then it hits me. I’m going to die here… On my wedding day. All because of her.”

Husband and wife-to-be Adam and Lauren narrate this story that takes place in the months and weeks leading up to their wedding day. The childhood sweethearts have been anticipating this moment for years. Eighteen years to be exact; ever since those first sparks flew between on a holiday to Thailand that we see in flashbacks from Adam’s perspective. 

But someone doesn’t want the couple to get their happily-ever-after and begins to try to sabotage both their wedding and their life together. Could till death do us part come sooner than they expect?

This is another first rate thriller from Ruth Heald, who has now secured a place on my must-read authors list. I devoured this book in just a few hours, the author holding me in the palm of her hands as she took me on one hell of a wild ride. I loved the darkly atmospheric world she crafted; the whisper of menace that hovered in the shadows sending shivers down my spine and making it impossible to stop reading. As the author slowly unveiled jaw-dropping twists that turn everything you thought you knew on its head, the story shifts to a much more nuanced and intricate thriller than it first appeared to be. I found this utterly addictive and it ensured I kept reading until ridiculous o’clock. I was totally invested and there was no way I could sleep without knowing who was behind all of this and what would happen to Lauren and Adam. 

Enthralling, taut, twisty and suspenseful, this packs a punch from the first pages and doesn’t let go. A spectacular and electrifying thriller that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys the genre.

Rating: ✯✯✯✯✰

MEET THE AUTHOR:

Ruth Heald is the bestselling author of psychological thrillers I KNOW YOUR SECRET, THE MOTHER’S MISTAKE and THE WOMAN UPSTAIRS, and the relationship drama 27: SIX FRIENDS, ONE YEAR.

Ruth studied Economics at Oxford University and then worked in an eclectic mix of sectors from nuclear decommissioning to management consulting. She worked at the BBC for nine years before leaving to write full time. Ruth is fascinated by psychology and finding out what drives people to violence, destruction and revenge. She’s married with two children and her novels explore our greatest fears in otherwise ordinary, domestic lives.

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BUY THE BOOK:

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Please read the reviews from other bloggers on the tour.

Thank you for reading. Until next time Bibliophiles, Emma xx

Categories
Blog Tours Monthly Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up – June 2020

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Another month has passed and we’re now half way through the year. It has flown so quickly. I just hope that the rest of the year isn’t as crazy as 2020 has been so far.

June has been a fantastic reading month for me. I read fourteen books, including my first ever audio book. It was almost fifteen books read but I didn’t quite finish Nine Elms. It was a big month for reading with others for me. I took part in a buddy read with my lovely friend Beth and three readalongs with the Tandem Collective, two of which are still going on. 

So here is what I read this month:

  1.  A Theatre For Dreamers ✮✮✮✮✰
  2.  The Split ✮✮✮✮. 5
  3.  The Lies I Tell ✮✮✮. 5
  4.  The Phone Box at the Edge of the World ✮✮✮✮. 5
  5.  I Know Your Secret ✮✮✮✮✰
  6. A Court of Thorns and Roses ✮✮✮✮✮
  7. Unbroken ✮✮✮✮✰
  8.  The Colours ✮✮✮✮✰
  9.  The Waiting Rooms ✮✮✮✮✮
  10.  The Miseducation of Evie Epworth ✮✮✮✮✰
  11. Monstrous Souls ✮✮✮✮✰
  12. The July Girls ✮✮✮✮✰
  13. The Silent Wife ✮✮✮✮✮
  14. Sadie ✮✮✮✮✰ (Audiobook)

You can read the reviews for all of the books except for Sadie by clicking on the title. My review for Sadie will be posted in the coming week.

My BOTM was a close call again but I have to give it to A Court of Thorns and Roses. I didn’t expect to love this book as much as I did and it’s opened up a whole new genre for me. That’s one of the things I love about Bookstagram though, it brings books to your attention you’d never have considered reading otherwise and it’s helped me discover a wealth of books and authors I doubt I’d have ever read without it. The other books that deserve a special mention this month are The Phone Box at the Edge of the World, The Waiting Rooms, and The Miseducation of Evie Epworth. These three outstanding novels were all contenders for my book of the month and are candidates for being in my favourite books of the year so far.

In July I have a busy month full of blog tours that I’m so excited about . I’m also looking forward to seeing what books the rest of the year brings and will be posting some of the ones I’m looking forward to most in the next few weeks.

Thank you to all the tagged publishers for the gifted copies of the books.

 

Categories
Blog Tours book reviews

I Know Your Secret by Ruth Heald

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Published: June 10th, 2020
Publisher: Bookouture
Format: Kindle, Paperback
Genre: Psychological Thriller, Suspense, Domestic Fiction, Noir Fiction

Trigger Warnings: Mental Health, Self Harm

Happy Publication Day to this gripping thriller. Thank you Bookouture for the invitation to take part and the eBook ARC.

SYNOPSIS:

You’re not who you say you are. Neither is she.

She thinks she knows me.

She believes my marriage is falling apart at the seams, that my husband can barely look me in the eyes. She thinks I’m desperate for a baby, that my longing for a family keeps me up at night. As much as I hate to admit it, all of this is true.

She thinks I listen to her advice, that I care about her opinion. That couldn’t be further from the truth.

Because she has no idea who I am. She has no clue that I know everything.

I know her secret. I know that she did the unforgivable. I know how many lives she ruined.

I know exactly what she did. And I’m here for her.

An utterly gripping, addictive and shocking read about the dark secrets we’re ashamed to admit, and the lengths people go to for revenge. Fans of K.L. Slater, My Lovely Wife and The Wife Between Us will be racing through the pages, gasping at the twists, and reeling from the explosive ending of this unmissable page-turner.

MY REVIEW:

Nothing is what it seems at first in this exciting and gripping thriller. Danielle tells therapist Beth that she needs help saving her marriage. While it may be true that she and husband Peter have problems, the real reason for Danielle being there lies beneath years of secrets. Danielle knows what she did and won’t stop until Beth has paid the price.

Wow! What a ride! An undercurrent of danger and foreshadowing runs through this multi-layered and fast-paced thriller. The story opens with an unknown arsonist starting a fire and fleeing the scene leaving us to try and decipher the clues to figure out who they were, if they got away with it, and who was the person they heard screaming as they left. As truths are slowly unveiled, I found that every time I thought I had things figured out the author would pull the rug from under me and take things in an entirely new direction.

Danielle and Beth are unreliable narrators, which I liked as it made them and the story harder to figure out. Beth is a newly single mum to four-year-old Charlie and is trying to come to terms with the end of her marriage when we meet her and I instantly related to her due to similarities in our stories. Danielle was harder to like. Even in situations where I had empathy for her I didn’t trust her and felt she was calculating and manipulating things, though I couldn’t be sure just how much. One big thing that Beth and Danielle have in common is their struggles with their mental health. The author examines how mental health can be affected when we go through something life-changing and traumatic. It felt like a timely subject to be reading about during PTSD Awareness Month and I liked that the author showed two very different, but real, ways of coping as we see how one character sought help while the other uses unhealthy coping mechanisms to deal with their pain.

I Know Your Secret is a cleverly written, twisty and riveting thriller that had me on the edge of my seat. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a well-written and exciting psychological thriller.

Rating: ✮✮✮✮✰

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MEET THE AUTHOR:

Ruth Heald is a psychological thriller writer from a suburban Buckinghamshire town. She studied Economics at Oxford and then worked in an eclectic mix of sectors from nuclear decommissioning to management consulting.

Seeking a more creative environment, she found a role at the BBC and worked there for nine years before leaving to write full time. Ruth is fascinated by psychology and finding out what drives people to violence, destruction and revenge. She’s married with one daughter and her novels explore our greatest fears in otherwise ordinary, domestic lives.

Amazon |Twitter |Facebook

BUY THE BOOK:

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I Know Your Secret - BT Poster

Categories
Blog Tours book reviews

Blog Tour Review: ‘The Woman Upstairs’ by Ruth Heald ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Today is my stop on the blog tour for Ruth Heald’s new thriller and it’s a good one! This was my first read by this author but I can’t wait to read more after this. 

Thank you to Bookoture for my invitation to take part in the blog tour and to NetGalley, Bookoture and Ruth Heald for my eBook ARC in exchange for my honest review. 

SYNOPSIS:

You’d be lost without her..

She’s the shoulder you cry on when the father of your children disappears.

She’s the person you turn to when he comes back, begging for forgiveness.

She’s by your side when you discover his guilty secrets.

She helps you rock your babies to sleep when they cry.

She’s your friend when you have no one else.

She’s the woman upstairs, whose feet you hear treading around as you drift off at night, thankful you aren’t alone.

But what if you’re about to lose everything because of her?

One of the most twisted, heart-stopping psychological thrillers you’ll ever read! Fans of K.L. Slater, The Wife Between Us and The Girl on the Train, prepared to be kept up past your bedtime as you race through this addictive page-turner.

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MY REVIEW:

I devoured this unputdownable novel in under a day. The author had me hooked and I was quickly invested in the lives of Katie and her twins. I was up until the early hours of the morning, unable to stop reading until I knew how things worked out for them.

This is a book full of twists and it seemed every time I caught my breath from one twist another was revealed. There was an undercurrent of danger and foreboding that had me on tenterhooks the whole time, and the unreliable characters meant I couldn’t trust anything I thought I knew. 

Katie is vulnerable, isolated, and her whole world is turning upside down. The upheaval and confusion of new motherhood, sleep deprivation and an unreliable partner mean it’s hard for her to know if she’s really seeing what is happening clearly, therefore making it easy to gaslight or manipulate her. At times I liked her but her dimwittedness did begin to grate after a while. I did find it hard to accept she could be so trusting of someone she didn’t really know even though her past gave clues as to how that could happen. To  me it was so obvious how unstable and shady Paula was that I wanted to scream at her for handing over her defenseless children to her. I would also feel frustrated at how she let everyone walk all over her and I was internally begging her to stand up for herself many times. She needed to find her mama bear and fight.

Paula was a great character. Though she seems kind and like she just wants to help, there is something a bit off about her from the start. She was clearly troubled and I Katie could someone like her so blindly, however desperate she is. It isn’t long before we see the extent of her calculated, controlling, manipulative and nefarious character. I feared for Katie and her children. 

The story is told in dual timelines and the flashbacks to a frightened, unknown child, were heartbreaking and chilling. My ideas about who this child was changed many times over the course of the book but it was written so well that I was always second guessing myself right up until the last moment.  

The Woman Upstairs is a crazy, disturbing and gripping psychological thriller. I was never sure who we could trust and completely unprepared for the shocking finale. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys this genre.

Available now.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Ruth Heald is a psychological thriller writer from a suburban Buckinghamshire town. She studied Economics at Oxford and then worked in an eclectic mics of sections from nuclear decommissioning to management consulting. 

Seeking a more creative environment, she found a role at the BBC and worked there for nine years before leaving to write full time. Ruth is fascinated by psychology and finding out what drives people to violence, destruction and revenge. She’s married with one daughter and her novels explore our greatest fears in otherwise ordinary, domestic lives.

Social Media Links: 

Website:  www.rjheald.com

Twitter:  @RJ_Heald.   https://twitter.com/RJ_Heald

The Woman Upstairs - Blog Tour