Latest Reviews

Having now listened to the first couple of books in the series, I think I'll stick with them in audio format as the dialogue, the place names, even the thought patterns of the characters are quintessentially Scottish and part of the enjoyment was hearing it in just the right accent.
Posted by Karen
There's plenty to this plot, to Sam Andie himself, and to events around the time that he was murdered to keep a reader involved and occupied.
Posted by Karen
ABSOLUTE PROOF is a rare thing in these parts - a "did not finish".
Posted by Karen
This is an embarrassingly overdue mention of the second novel in a series which is going from strength to strength.
Posted by Karen
On the lighter than air side of the cozy spectrum this is a series that will appeal to readers who like a bit of self-aware silly in their crime fiction.
Posted by Karen
Hard going, with an authentic voice that makes it emotionally challenging and confronting, COLOMBIANO is well worth pursuing - even if the size is off-putting. This reads, feels and is telegraphed in the prologue as something this author was passionately driven to produce.
Posted by Karen
When Ladd is exploring that central idea - "what happens when what is lost is found" - THE WAY BACK is indeed powerful. Moving, confronting, and very powerful.
Posted by Karen
There were so many reasons I wanted to love GET POOR SLOW.
Posted by Karen

Recommendations

Well paced out, populated by flawed but approachable characters, set in a location that doesn't feel manipulative or convenient, GREENLIGHT is about crime, greed, money, influence, bad decisions and human frailty and nastiness.
... this is good rural-noir. It comes from the place and the people that it's written about and it's got the authority, and the touch that comes from living in the world that it's describing.
Completing the AustCrimeFiction trifecta, my turn to read this excellent debut novel.
Cop-turned novelist, Nathan Blackwell (true identity hidden due to covert police operations) has written a debut novel, THE SOUND OF HER VOICE, which is intense, unsparing, realistic, brutal and will stay with the reader for a long time.
If you're a fan of any of Stuart MacBride's books - the Logan McRae series, the Ash Henderson series, his Christmas series (I kid you not), or his standalones then you will have hot footed it to the bookshop for this one already. If for some reason you missed it, then off you go.
THE FAMILY NEXT DOOR reinforces the notion that despite being constantly surrounded by people, you can often feel alone. Deep suburbia provides such a huge source of material and is finally in drama fiction being recognized for that richness.
Where are the women here? They support, they assist – and they prosecute. Accused of raping a young woman in an elevator at Parliament, James is suddenly no longer bullet proof. His wife is no longer by his side. His government may no longer be so benevolent. Those he crossed in the past will no longer be silent.
It has been a very long time since Anna has been able to put foot outside her own door. But this does not mean that she does not observe life outside.

Latest Postings

Books
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
From the shamefully overdue pile (turns out I have quite a few shameful piles...)
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Having now listened to the first couple of books in the series, I think I'll stick with them in audio format as the dialogue, the place names, even the thought patterns of the characters are quintessentially Scottish and part of the enjoyment was hearing it in just the right accent.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
There's plenty to this plot, to Sam Andie himself, and to events around the time that he was murdered to keep a reader involved and occupied.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
ABSOLUTE PROOF is a rare thing in these parts - a "did not finish".
Posted by Karen
Book Review
This is an embarrassingly overdue mention of the second novel in a series which is going from strength to strength.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
On the lighter than air side of the cozy spectrum this is a series that will appeal to readers who like a bit of self-aware silly in their crime fiction.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Hard going, with an authentic voice that makes it emotionally challenging and confronting, COLOMBIANO is well worth pursuing - even if the size is off-putting. This reads, feels and is telegraphed in the prologue as something this author was passionately driven to produce.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
When Ladd is exploring that central idea - "what happens when what is lost is found" - THE WAY BACK is indeed powerful. Moving, confronting, and very powerful.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
There were so many reasons I wanted to love GET POOR SLOW.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The second novel in the Monsarrat series, THE UNMOURNED is set in Sydney, based around the Parramatta Female Factory - the epitome of appalling institutions in a line up that you'd think would be hard to lead.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
When it comes to sensationalism though I reckon HANGMAN has it all over every single book that it's obviously a homage to ... in blood soaked, gore dripping, dented from over-use, spades.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
The Last Brother takes a really fascinating corner of history and vividly brings it to life. From the hum of the sewing machines, to the rattle of machine guns to the New York dancehalls.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
Parry creates a great feel of the Edinburgh of the time, including the upper class New Town and shady Old Town.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
Seeking an explanation is the task of books like WEDDERBURN and it does this incredibly well, much better than that one quote [from the blurb] indicates.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
This is a series that started out with much promise, which alas hasn't been delivered in THIS I WOULD KILL FOR.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Funny, sad, honest and open as you can possibly be, the audio of this was recorded by Sue - so this is her story, in her voice. Highly recommended.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
For this reader at least, it's the personal stories of Heloise Chancey and her mother Amah Li Leen that leave me wanting this series to continue.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Well paced out, populated by flawed but approachable characters, set in a location that doesn't feel manipulative or convenient, GREENLIGHT is about crime, greed, money, influence, bad decisions and human frailty and nastiness.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
It's a scenario that plenty of families deal with every day. Teenager's off to spend their gap year travelling in far flung locations - in this case British backpacker Cassy heading to New Zealand with her boyfriend for a short break before returning to her best friend's wedding, study and a normal life.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Under Your Wings refreshingly explores a world that will be unfamiliar to most of its readers. Tsao uses the sisters’ interest in insects as a thematic metaphor for this world.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Blog entry
I remember very well when this triple murder occurred, so I'm hoping this book will cast some light into dark places.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Another from the was reading pile (I've been computer avoiding for a few days).
Posted by Karen
Book Review
THE OTHER SISTER reinforces that our childhoods will always impact upon our future selves, and that everyone around us harbours their own secrets and biases.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
THE ANOMALY is an utter hoot and stupendously good fun from start to finish. This is pretty much all you need to know...
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
NO TIME TO CRY is one of those crime novels where you feel you are in very safe hands only a few pages in. Scottish
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
The Boy at the Keyhole screams gothic from its opening pages.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
If you're in the market for something a little bit different with that historical perspective, then it's worth having a look at.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
After a lot of hints from others, I've finally gotten around to the Eddie Flynn series by author Steve Cavanagh and like an idiot I've started in at the fourth novel in the series.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Modern relationships are hideously complicated and hats off to BELIEVE ME, as this thriller takes that certainty to a whole new level of dangerous complexity.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
We could perhaps say ‘plot twist’ or ‘pivot’ (you know, to be irritating like the cool kids) but either way you are getting a bit more bang for your buck than usual with THE RIVAL.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Book Review
Fitting neatly in a growing rural noir subgenre, Greenlight manages to explore issues that go beyond place in ways that are both interesting and which impact organically with the plot.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Book Review
... this is good rural-noir. It comes from the place and the people that it's written about and it's got the authority, and the touch that comes from living in the world that it's describing.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
After coming to it unconvinced by the cover / the comparisons to other books and franchises, which frankly were a turnoff, I'm happy to report that this is an impressive debut.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Sometimes it's good to step outside the fictional world and see where the form has come from, and the impacts had as a result.
Posted by Karen
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Flynn Berry burst on the crime thriller scene with her page-turning debut Under the Harrow, a book with a female narrator who may have been a little unhinged but was not unreliable.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Books
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Move over Scandi-crime and possibly even Aussie-crime – the next wave of page-turning, gut wrenching, crime fiction might well be coming out of Korea.
Posted by Robert Goodman
Blog entry
Backcountry mystery outshone big city crime at WORD Christchurch Festival on Saturday evening as Alan Carter and Jennifer Lane were named the winners of the 2018 Ngaio Marsh Awards.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Claire is someone who appreciates fully the value of her privacy. There are many good reasons for that; the least of it being that Claire is not the name the London doctor was born with.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Blog entry
This is the latest in the rural noir pile, and 50 or so pages in feels like a very good entry indeed.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
In our ears it’s all quietly confessed secrets and the discovery of lies as we move around with producer Jack Quick in the shadows of a country town. This is not necessarily a sleepy town. This is wine country.
Posted by Andrea Thompson
Blog entry
Post the #neddies it is sometimes hard to get back in the reading groove, so I'm starting with something rather different from what I'd normally contemplate going near. So far the plan is working...
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
From the just finished pile.
Posted by Karen
Book Review
Everyone is saying this is one for fans of Jodi Picoult.
Posted by Karen
Blog entry
Thank you Peter Corris, thank you.
Posted by Karen