Author Archives: Bairdy1985

BLOG TOUR! Hustle by Owen Mullen

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Hustle by Owen Mullen, book 3 in The Glass Family series.

Here’s the blurb

If you mess with the Glass family, don’t expect to live to tell the tale…

What was meant to be a straightforward jewellery heist goes horribly wrong, and the thieves are forced to take a hostage to make their escape. But when they discover their prisoner is the infamous Nina Glass – one of the bosses of the most dangerous criminal dynasty in London – they soon realise they have made a terrible mistake.

Greed wins out over good sense and the gang decide to make the best of a bad situation. They send Luke Glass a ransom note. But messing with London’s top crime dynasty is a serious error. Now Luke must track down the gang who abducted his sister before they carry out their brutal threats.

The Glass family have other problems. The crooked cop they have on their payroll – DCI Oliver Stanford – makes an unwelcome discovery. The insider they had all presumed dead, may in fact have survived, and still be feeding information to the police. 

Under attack from all sides, and desperate to save his sister, Luke has the reputation and survival of the crime dynasty in his hands – is this the end of the Glass family?

Three people can keep a secret – if two of them are dead…

Review

First things first, you don’t need to have read the first 2 books in the series to be able to follow this one. What I love about Owen’s work is how he easily slips in key info to remind readers of past events which is just the right amount for a new reader to be able to follow.. but at the same time I do recommend reading the rest of the series…it’s bloody good!

We are back with the Glass family and a new threat is about to hit the family hard.

During what should have been a straightforward robbery a hostage is taken.. that hostage is Nina Glass. The robbers didn’t know that at first but now they do they have a choice…and they decide its time to have a bit of fun with the Glass family..

They must be crazy as Luke Glass isn’t a man to cross but Luke might have his work cut out for him on this one… he doesn’t know who these people are.. or where they are.

Luke uses all his contacts to find Nina, even risking his inside man within the police force but will it be enough.

What I really enjoyed with this one was the development of Nina. She’s a tough cookie but we see deeper into her personality, more than we ever have before. Simply no other word for it than WOW!

With each instalment of the Glass family the tale goes deeper, darker and grittier than previous and it’s seriously too good not to read and love!

I also love how Owen manages to pack so much into his tales. Not only does Luke have to save his sister but there’s some wannabes looking for a piece of the action they feel belongs to them.. Should the family give ground or stand up to these fools.. again.. no one messes with Luke Glass. No one messes with the family.

Another 5* from Owen…I’m not sure how he manages to do it but he clearly knows the recipe for a good gangland thriller.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

My thanks go to Owen Mullen, Boldwood Books and NetGalley for providing a copy of this ebook in return for my honest review and Rachel from http://www.rachelsrandomresources.com for having me on the blog tour! I had the book pre-ordered from day one and look forward to having a paperback join my collection soon.

With book 4 in the series on the way I’m a very have man.

Author Bio –

Owen Mullen is a highly regarded crime author who splits his time between Scotland and the island of Crete. In his earlier life he lived in London and worked as a musician and session singer. He has now written seven books and his first gangland thriller for Boldwood, Family was published in January 2021.

Social Media Links –  

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/OwenMullenBooks

Twitter https://twitter.com/OwenMullen6

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/owenmullen6/

Newsletter Sign Up: https://bit.ly/OwenMullenNewsletter

Bookbub profile https://www.bookbub.com/authors/owen-mullen

David’s Book Blurg 2021 wrap up!

As we approach the new year David’s Book Blurg would like to share a little wrap up of 2021 including a sneak peak for what’s to come in in 2022!

My Top Ten Reads of 2021!

I’ve had the chance to read some brilliant books over the year. Here’s the top ten! I’ve linked back to my reviews but note I’ve 4 to write!! Tardy I know! I’ll update the links for those 3 asap! If anyone would like to watch the twins while I write just let me know ha.

For Lord and Land – Matthew Harffy

The Accused – Owen Mullen

Her Secret War – Pam Lecky – Review to follow

Gods of Rome – Gordon Doherty & Simon Turney

Assassins – Rob Sinclair

The Bear of Britain – Steven A McKay

Empires of Bronze – The Shadow of Troy – Gordon Doherty

Perfect Little Lies – S A Tameez – Review to follow

Medusa’s Shame – Robert Southworth – Review to follow

Reliquary – Prue Batten – Review to follow

2022 – What’s next?

I’m really looking forward to 2022! there’s so many good authors out there offering jems.. here’s just a couple I’ve already jumped on to review early next year!

12 Months 12 Books

I noticed a little trend on Twitter where your friends pick 12 books to read over the next 12 months. I love the idea of this. There’s so much choice out there and I’m terrible at knowing what to pick up next so thanks to some fellow book lovers here’s some of the books for me to look forward to!

I hope 2021 has been kind to everyone and that 2022 will be an even better year.

Do reach out and let me know what you think of my book choices!!

Until 2022 folks! have a good one!

The House in the Marsh by Steven A McKay – Review

Today I’m reviewing The House in the Marsh by Steven A Mckay, The House In the Marsh is a medieval Christmas mystery with a ghostly twist and is a novella in The Forest Lord series.

Here’s the blurb,

For generations, stories have been told about the ruined old house in the marsh outside Wakefield. Stories of hidden treasure, sinister night-time cries, and ghostly figures doomed to haunt the lonely estate for all eternity as punishment for some terrible crime.
This Christmas, it seems the old tales might just turn out to be true…

England, AD 1330
John Little, a bailiff living in Yorkshire, has little interest in ghost stories, having seen enough horrors among the living to bother much about the dead. The strange accounts from his fellow villagers have everyone talking though, and it’s not long before he’s asked to accompany a group of curious locals on nocturnal visits to the house in the marsh.
There are more worrying concerns in northern England however, as autumn gives way to winter and rumours of rogue bailiffs attacking, and even murdering people in their own homes, begin to circulate.
Along with his friends – ill-tempered Will Scaflock and the renowned friar, Robert Stafford – John is drawn inexorably into a dangerous adventure that will leave yet more people dead and only add to the eerie legends which will pass into English folklore for centuries to come.
Can John and his companions uncover the truth about the house in the marsh and its terrible secrets? And will they be able to forever exorcise the ghost haunting Wakefield, or will this Christmas be anything but merry?

Reviews

We are back with Tuck, Will Scarlet and Little John for another gripping mystery.

The tale starts with a bailiff out to collect fines in the name of the king, the issue is this isn’t a real bailiff and his form of justice goes a step too far.

The news of the fake bailiff takes a while to circulate so before it reaches our heroes we find John, Tuck and Will intrigued with a reported haunting in an old Manor in the Marshes close to Wakefield. There’s even stories of treasure about. But is there any truth in the legend?

As the fake Bailiff edges closer to Wakefield Little John and the gang take notice. They are a little older but no less deadly. If the fake bailiff wants to dole out some harsh justice they are in for a nasty shock… to make matters worse there’s reports of this fake bailiff in numerous placed which wouldn’t be humanly possible..

Development wise I think Will stole the show, he’s still as sharp as ever but has a new family to watch over… he’s not going to let anyone harm his family.. not after last time!

The plot develops at a steady pace and both mysteries come to some surprising ends.

I love these Novellas and they are fast becoming a Christmas tradition for me to cosy up with a nice bottle of ale.

After being with these characters for so long I feel like I know them..I’m comfortable with them.. the relationships are naturally built and the flow and writing style is effortless brilliant you can’t help but get cosy and demolish this one.. it would be impossible not to.  When I pick up a book by Steven A. McKay I just know I’m going to love it and once again we’ve been given a cracking read perfect for Christmas Eve night!

5/5 Stars

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads.

BLOG TOUR – The Custard Corpses by MJ Porter

Today I’m taking part in the blog tour for The Custard Corpses, the 1st book in The Erdington Mysteries series by M J Porter.

As a fan of the author I jumped at the chance to be on the blog tour, no review copy needed.. I had this one already 😊

Keep reading for the chance to win a copy of the book too!!

Here’s the blurb

A delicious 1940s mystery.

Birmingham, England, 1943.


While the whine of the air raid sirens might no longer be rousing him from bed every night, a two-decade-old unsolved murder case will ensure that Chief Inspector Mason of Erdington Police Station is about to suffer more sleepless nights.

Young Robert McFarlane’s body was found outside the local church hall on 30th September 1923. But, his cause of death was drowning, and he’d been missing for three days before his body was found. No one was ever arrested for the crime. No answers could ever be given to the grieving family. The unsolved case has haunted Mason ever since.

But, the chance discovery of another victim, with worrying parallels, sets Mason, and his constable, O’Rourke, on a journey that will take them back over twenty-five years, the chance to finally solve the case, while all around them the uncertainty of war continues, impossible to ignore.

Review

MJ Porter is a master of style and wit. Porter manages to perfectly add her edge to a wonderful historical mystery.

Set during the war the people are suffering..suffering shortages, suffering grief..suffering fear…but that’s not all.

A body is found with striking similarities to a case back in 1923. Is this a 2nd chance to catch the killer?

The Custard Corpses is a well crafted tale showing the constraints of the time and shows gritty determination law enforcement would have needed at the time to solve crimes with little evidence.

Chief Inspector Sam Mason is on the case and must painstakingly look to the past to find clues.

The characters feel real, the relationships natural and the flow prefect.

As the case develops the plot thickens and takes a disturbing direction.. could there be more victims?

I’m a big fan of police procedural stories but this has MJ Porter’s style infused, which just kicks it up a notch and makes it unlike anything I’ve ever read before.

I’d certainly describe the book as delicious.. You’ll get hooked into the dark world and you’ll devour this tale in no time!

Grab a cup of tea and get stuck into this 5* read!

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

Why not follow the blog tour –

Author Bio – I’m an author of historical fiction (Early English, Vikings and the British Isles as a whole before the Norman Conquest) and fantasy (Viking age/dragon-themed). I’ve recently written a relatively modern mystery novel set in 1943. I was born in the old Mercian kingdom at some point since 1066. Raised in the shadow of a strange little building, told from a very young age that it housed the bones of long-dead Kings of Mercia and that our garden was littered with old pieces of pottery from a long-ago battle, it’s little wonder that my curiosity in Early England ran riot. I can only blame my parents!

I write A LOT. You’ve been warned!

Find me at http://www.mjporterauthor.com and @coloursofunison on twitter.

Social Media Links – https://twitter.com/coloursofunison

https://www.instagram.com/m_j_porter/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7163404.M_J_Porter

Giveaway to Win 2 x copies of The Custard Corpses (Open INT)

For a chance to win head to http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494455/?

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

The Bear of Britain (Warrior Druid of Britain Book 4) by Steven A. McKay – Review

Today I’m going to be reviewing The Bear of Britain, book 4 in the Warrior Druid of Britain series by Steven A McKay.

This review is well overdue so I hope it’s been worth the wait!

Here’s the blurb

AD 432. BRITAIN. The winter snows are melting at last, but spring will bring more than just rebirth this year. The Saxons are coming, and that means war.
Bellicus, Duro and Cai have travelled south to join the warlord, Arthur, and his growing army of Britons. New friendships have been made and exciting adventures await the warrior-druid and his companions, but the threat of Hengist and his invaders casts a dark cloud over all. For years, the Saxons have been content to remain mostly confined to the eastern parts of the country, but now they are marching west, and Hengist has amassed the biggest army seen on these shores since the Romans left over twenty years ago.
Arthur – dubbed the Bear of Britain by his advisor, Merlin – has never truly felt he’d earned such a grand title, but now he will have a chance to prove himself. The addition of a new, crack unit to his ranks will, he hopes, be enough to sweep the Saxon threat from Britain once and for all, and herald a generation of peace and prosperity for his people. But nothing in war is straightforward and even their own countrymen can turn violently against them at any moment, as Bellicus discovers to his cost…

Review

The Saxons are ready to attack.. War is coming to Britain.. the only thing standing in their way is Arthur, the Bear of Britain… well not just Arthur. He’s got help from the big warrior druid Bellicus!

A lot has happened to Bellicus and his faithful companion Duro but the upcoming war is going to push them to their limits.

As Arthur sets about raising an army to face the Saxons Bellicus manages to get himself into scrape that nearly costs him his life. I really enjoyed seeing Bellicus’s vulnerability as he recovers.

Vulnerability is probably the word I’d use to best describe the development in this instalment as the author manages to show the human toll paid during war. Duro is a fine example, there’s a sadness to him, still haunted by the past when his wife was brutally murdered… will this be his chance to heal those wounds?

Character development is key to a series.. you need to keep things fresh and boy does the author know how to keep the readers hooked. My favourite character had to be Sulinus. Arthur needs cavalry to win the war.. and Sulinus is the man to train them, he’s a former Roman solider and knows his stuff.. unluckily for him though Arthurs men are not trained to the same standard as the legions.. they aren’t soldiers so he’s got his work cut out for him. It’s Sulinus’s humour that really makes you love him.. you can’t help but smile.

For fans of history, you see the author take on some well know figures, we have Arthur, Merlin and Lancelot…how can you not get excited when you hear those names. Each of these characters felt perfect.. it’s hard to explain but you have expectations when you think of historical names but McKay knows just how to tackle big characters and do them justice!

I don’t want to spoil anything too much but I can’t write my review without talking about one scene.. Merlin and the Sword in the Stone…wow. I’m not going to say any more than that.. wow!

The Bear of Britain is a wonderfully written book. I’m kind of in awe of the author and how he manages to keep offering up gripping tales, weaving his skill and imagination throughout history. His tales are exhilarating, the characters believable and exciting and the action hard hitting.

I can’t give the book any less than a 5*…when’s the next book?? Ha. This series is a must!

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon!

BLOG TOUR – The Boy Who Breathed Underwater written by Izzy Rees and illustrated by Sarah-Leigh Willis – Review

Today on David’s Book Blurg I’m taking part in the blog tour for The Boy Who Breathed Underwater written by Izzy Rees and illustrated by Sarah-Leigh Willis!

Here’s the blurb

When lying in his bed, a boy is visited by a genie. He is given a week to try out different superhero powers. What adventures will he have, and which power will he choose to keep?

Review

The Boy Who Breathed Underwater is a fun little rhyming book following a little boy who is offered the chance to have a super power for the rest of his life.

As the boy trys out different powers before making is ultimate choice he sees the downside some of these powers may have and ultimately learns he’s perfect just the way he is.

I read this with my two girls and they loved it, they loved the idea of super powers but agreed they don’t need them… Georgia for example says she has cheetah speed anyway ha.

As the parent I found the book fun and fast with a positive message, it allowed me the time to tell the girls just how brilliant they are, being twins they can be compared a lot which can mean sometime they don’t feel so “super” and this little tale helped a little for them understand it’s perfect just to be yourself.

When asked what superpowers the girls would have Georgia of course referred back to her cheetah speed while Abigail decided she would like to have power of the mind, to move stuff, to help clean her room.. not bad ha.

When asked if they enjoyed the illustrations it was a resounding yes! although Abi did say she thinks she could do better ha! She loves to draw bless her!

The girls gave this a 5* rating and would love to recommend it to their friends. When I pointed out this is only one of the books in this series their ears picked up! Guess I know what I need to buy them next ha ha.

My thanks go to the author, Full Media Ltd and Rachel @ Rachels Random Resources for having me on the tour!

To find out more click the links below 😊

https://full-media.co.uk/product/the-boy-who-breathed-underwater-izzy-rees/

https://izzyrees.co.uk/product/the-boy-who-breathed-underwater-izzy-rees/

Amazon purchase link


Author Bio

Izzy Rees was born in West London, but has spent the last thirty years living in Derby. Ten years ago, when her three girls were young, she began work on a series of rhyming picture books, created in snatched moments, and initially written on small scraps of paper or whatever was available. She always intended to revisit them, and Covid and lockdown presented the opportunity; unable to continue her work as a neurophysiotherapist, working with vulnerable patients, she decided it was now or never! She has written six books so far in the ‘The Boy Who’ series, The Boy Who Breathed Underwater being the first one. The others will be published in the near future.

Social Media Links – https://www.facebook.com/izzyreeschildrensauthor

Book Birthday Blitz – Erma Does The Math by Ann Strawn

Today I’m helping celebrate the Book Birthday Blitz for Erma Does The Math by Ann Strawn with a review.. featuring my two girls, Abigail and Georgia who were super excited to read this one!

Here’s the blurb

When Tameka visits her elderly aunt, birthday gift in hand, quirky Aunt Erma puts her to work. As she hangs an old photo Tameka discovers that the women in the picture are 1940’s-era human computers at Langley Jet Propulsion Lab and that her auntie was one of them! She has lots of questions, but Aunt Erma’s price for answers is one math problem each. Tameka keeps up, but the problems get more complex with each question. Remembering the gift, Tameka convinces her auntie to open it. The contents make them both laugh and realize that they’ve learned something about each other.

Review

Erma Does The Math follows a day in the life of Tameka as she visits her elderly aunt. As Tameka helps her aunt you learn about Erma’s past and her skill as a human computer.

You’d be forgiven for thinking this book was simply about maths.. and for the most part the words are.. you learn how how much we rely on technology these days to solve our problems and you really see Erma’s love for maths but it’s another message within the story that my two girls really picked up on as Erma explains to Tameka about segregation.

This started some wonderful conversations with my daughters, helping me understand what they have learned themselves so far at school, They talked to me about Rosa Parks, and how they don’t believe it’s fair people are treated differently due to skin colour which was lovely to hear.

We also talked about space rockets and Neil Armstrong, prompted in the book by some discussions questions, the first being what would you take to space with you. Abi was very certain she needed her toothbrush, food and drink while Georgia settled on apples, humus and pencils,  both agreed whatever they took would float away.

The book also had us talking about how we communicate, in that we use computers so much these days but at one point these were created, at some-point language itself was created and this got us onto sign language and the girls had fun explaining what they have learned at school and I manged to remember how to sign my name for them.

Erma Does The Math is a very easy book to read and certainly packs a punch when it comes to meaning and discussion. It turned out to be one of the best talks I’ve had with the girls.

Thoroughly recommend 5*

My thanks go to the author, publisher and Rachel @ Rachel’s Random Resources for allowing me an eArc for my girls to read and review.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

Author Bio –

Ann Strawn lives in Renton Washington with her husband of 34 years, daughter and family dog. She makes her living as a middle school science teacher and truly enjoys the company of kids and teens. She considers her job total immersion training for writing her middle grade novels, THE DOWNLOAD and THE UPDATE.

Ann’s most current project is a picture book about her great aunt Erma Tynes Walker who was a human computer at Langley Airforce Base. Besides writing Ann also enjoys crochet and just hanging out with her family.

BLOG TOUR – The Score by Kerry Kaya

David’s Book Blurg has been a bit quiet over the last few weeks while I enjoyed some much needed down time with the family… that being said I’ve got a bumper load of reviews to get through for you lucky people to read 😊.

Today is my turn on the blog tour for The Score by Kerry Kaya

Here’s the blurb

He did the crime…


Twenty years ago, Fletch avenged the gangland killing of his younger brother, Spencer and accepted his guilt. But his actions meant he had to leave his precious children, Austin and Kitty to fend for themselves. He thought they would be looked after…

Served his time…

Now a free man, Fletch returns to find his family in chaos, devastated by his prolonged incarceration. Kit is married to notorious gangster Rosco Taylor, while Austin seems hell bent on doing everything he can to create a turf war.

Fletch knows he has to do something to get his kids under control, but he also knows that the seeds of this disaster were planted long ago by his own reckless actions.

Now Fletch is back and it’s time to settle the score.

Review

Kerry Kaya previously offered up the awesome novel The Price which followed the life of Fletch and his brother Spencer. After some grisly events Fletch has been in prison for 22 years but is now back out as a free man.

Firstly, do you need to have read The Price to fully enjoy The Score you might ask? Not at all. The author has written the tale so well, with the little details, meaning you could pick this up and read as a standalone no problem.

Truthfully though I’m glad I had read the previous book as the author builds on the character development of Fletch and having that prior background just elevated the development and helped me understand Fletch’s motivations better.

After 22 years behind bars Fletch wants nothing more than to keep his nose clean but history has a way of repeating itself.. His children, having grown up without his influence Kit and Austin have found themselves drawn into the gangster life themselves.. and it’s not been an easy ride thanks to the despicable Rosco Taylor.

We learn more about Kit and Austin’s upbringing.. the downfall of their mother and the things they did to survive and within this the author manged to throw in some very good twists.. you know something is coming but the efforts some men will go to in the name of vengeance is unreal.

Fletch is thrown into the deep end to save his kids. With the help of old friends Fletch battles his past and does whatever he can to keep his family safe and make amends for past deeds… but can he fix things without getting blood on his hands?

What I really enjoyed about this offering was the character development. I didn’t always like Fletch in the previous tale.. his emotions didn’t scream gritty gangster to me.. but added to this offering I understand him so much better now, it’s family.. you’ll do anything for those you love.

The Score is a family orientated gangland tale that packs a punch. What gives it the 5 star is simply the character development which couldn’t have been more perfect.

5/5 Stars

My thanks go to Boldwood Books and Rachel’s Random Resources for having me on the blog tour and for the ARC to allow me time to have my review ready for the blog tour, I’ve already bought myself a copy too! No free rides for me 🙂

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon!


Author Bio –  

Kerry Kaya is the hugely popular author of Essex-based gritty gangland thrillers with strong family dynamics. She grew up on one of the largest council estates in the UK, where she sets her novels. She also works full-time in a busy maternity department for the NHS. She has signed a nine-book deal with Boldwood for both new and backlist titles. Her first book The Price will be published in July 2021.

Social Media Links –  

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/KerryKayaAuthor

Twitter https://twitter.com/KerryKayaWriter on Twitter

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/kerry_kaya_writer/ on Instagram

Odin’s Game (The Whale Road Chronicles Book 1) by Tim Hodkinson GIVEAWAY!!!

Today I’m very happy to be bringing to you an opportunity to win a paperback copy of Tim Hodkinson’s Odin’s Game (The Whale Road Chronicles Book1)

Here’s the blurb.

Not everyone will survive, but who will conquer all in Odin’s game?

AD 916.

In the Orkney Isles, a young woman flees her home to save the life of her unborn child. Eighteen years later, a witch foretells that evil from her past is reaching out again to threaten her son.

Outlawed from his home in Iceland, Einar Unnsson is thrown on the mercy of his Uncle, the infamous Jarl Thorfinn ‘Skull Cleaver’ of Orkney. He joins forces with a Norse-Irish princess and a company of wolfskin-clad warriors to become a player in a deadly game for control of the Irish sea, where warriors are the pawns of kings and Jarls and the powerful are themselves mere game pieces on the tafl board of the Gods.

Together they embark on a quest where Einar must fight unimaginable foes, forge new friendships, and discover what it truly means to be a warrior. As the clouds of war gather, betrayal follows betrayal and Einar realises the only person he can really trust is himself.

Interested?

Here’s the rules –

Terms and Conditions

  1. UK postal addresses only.
  2. No giveaway only accounts.
  3. Entrants must be aged 18 or over.
  4. Entries must be received by midnight (UK time) on 10th October 2021
  5. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified via Twitter.
  6. The winner must claim their book by sending a direct message to @AriesFiction
  7. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties.
  8. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

1 Winner will get 1 paperback of the book. The competition will end midnight on the 10th October and the winner will be announced via Twitter the following day. The winner will then be able to DM @AriesFiction to claim their prize!

How do I enter you may ask?

Simple, I use Rafflecopter to track entries. Just click here and follow the instructions to enter 🙂

 

About the Author

Tim Hodkinson grew up in Northern Ireland where the rugged coast and call of the Atlantic ocean led to a lifelong fascination with Vikings and a degree in Medieval English and Old Norse Literature. Tim’s more recent writing heroes include Ben Kane, Giles Kristian, Bernard Cornwell, George R.R. Martin and Lee Child.

After several years in the USA, Tim has returned to Northern Ireland, where he lives with his wife and children.

Connect with Tim
Website | Twitter | Goodreads

The Shadow of Troy by Gordon Doherty (Empires of Bronze Book 5) – Review!

Next up on David’s Book Blurg is The Shadow of Troy, Book 5 in the Empires of Bronze series by Gordon Doherty.

Here’s the blurb

The war at Troy has raged for ten years. Its final throes will echo through eternity…

1258 BC: Surrounded and outnumbered by the army of Agamemnon, King Priam and his Trojan forces fight desperately to defend their city. In the lulls between battle, all talk inevitably turns to the mighty ally that has not yet arrived to their aid. Agamemnon will weep for mercy, the Trojans say, when the eastern horizons darken with the endless ranks of the Hittite Empire.

King Hattu has endured a miserable time since claiming the Hittite throne. Vassals distance themselves while rival empires circle, mocking him as an illegitimate king. Worst of all, the army of the Hittites is but a memory, destroyed in the civil war that won him the throne. Knowing that he must honour his empire’s oath to protect Troy, he sets off for Priam’s city with almost nothing, praying that the dreams he has endured since his youth – of Troy in ruins – can be thwarted. All the way, an ancient mantra rings in his head: Hittites should always heed their dreams.

Review

It’s been 10 long years but King Hattu has never forgotten the Hittite oath to Troy. One way or another Hattu will aid his friends.. the issue is the Hittite’s no longer have an army. He knows the danger.. not only to himself, but the struggling Hittite empire too. Hattu will do everything he can to uphold the oath his brother made to the people of Troy.

The journey to Troy doesn’t go quite as planned and there’s some wonderful interaction with Achilles, the champion within Agamemnon’s army. The early setup in the story describing the dynamic between Achilles and Agamemnon and the struggles they have in the army really worked well.

Hattu arrives at Troy thanks to an unlikely source, only to find things a little bit off. Troy have managed to stop Agamemnon at every step but it’s not been without loss… and the reason behind the losses is not clear cut.. there’s more at play here than we know and Hattu makes his own vow to get to the bottom of this.

The story of Troy’s fall is one most will have heard of, their fate is already sealed, but what Gordon Doherty offers is something new, something fresh, something god damn breath-taking! It felt like I was hearing the tale for the first time. It didn’t feel like a story I’d heard before, there’s so much more depth and emotion.

We see the tale from a different perspective woven expertly with the Hittite’s struggle. The Hittite empire has it’s own issues and I feel the author managed to capture both the struggles of Troy and the Hittites well, neither overshadowing the other.

What Gordon Doherty hit perfectly was the plot and character development, the story flows so naturally and we get depth added to a large number of characters in quick succession as he brings individuals such as Paris, Hector, Agamemnon and many others to life , it’s pure talent to give each character their own depth without moving too far away from the focus of the plot itself.

Doherty constantly brings history to life, uses his knowledge and storytelling skills in such a way that the story mesmerises you. I’m utter in awe of the author and what I’ve just read. The easiest 5* I’ll give this year!

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