Category Archives: Thriller

War In The Wilderness by Adam Lofthouse – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing War In The Wilderness by Adam Lofthouse!

Here’s the blurb

Genre – Historical Thriller

Balomar, King of the Marcomanni and leader of the united army of the tribes, broods and drinks his way through the long winter as his alliance falls apart. He won great fame when he destroyed the Fourteenth legion and brought his army to Italian soil. Rome will not let his victory go unanswered; new legions have been formed, and their spear tips point north.

Elsewhere Albinus braves the harsh weather and tribal hordes as he searches desperately for Licina, his lost fiancé. Once more he must play dice with Fortuna as he launches himself into the iron storm.

For Rome, and his father’s shade…

Review

We are back with Albinus for book 2 in The Centurion’s Son Chronicles.. he’s grown up fast since the death of his farther in the previous instalment…he’s lost so much but things were looking up when he found love with Licina..only for his hopes and dreams to be dashed.

Time has passed but Albinus hasn’t given up on finding Licina…how can he find his love whilst also fulfilling his commitment to the legion though..it’s not going to be easy.

Albinus is pretty lucky as the legion aren’t just comrades..their brothers and he along with a trusted few set out to find Licina.. of course they end up in a bit of bother and the stakes are high.. the cost too much and the guilt will stay will Albinus forever.

Meanwhile we also learn of Licina’s fate.. she’s become rather resourceful and brave in her own right.. the perfect match for Albinus..if only she can get back to him… If anything her tale overshadowed that of Albinus and I would have loved to see her fight more…who doesn’t love a strong female character!

Both Albinus and Licina struggle at times being apart..does the other still care about them..is it worth fighting for? Neither are going to give up easily though.

War in the Wilderness is a great mix of legion comradery mixed with a personal plot you can get invested in, add in a couple of big twists along the way and you’ve got a smashing read.

I won’t lie.. these soldiers aren’t the hard-nosed warriors I’m used too.. they show their emotions..but that makes them more real at the same time.. what would you do for the one you loved? Would you lay your life on the line for a friend?

One bit that really had me hooked was the whole conspiracy angle..there’s a whole section when you are left wondering who are the good guys.. why are certain people associating with those with a not so clean profile? All this plays out with Albinus in the dark and the repercussions will rock his world.

I loved the book, the pace was pretty decent.. if anything I would just have liked the story strung-out a little longer.. More fighting.. less talking..ha.

The author did a great job a tying up the threads of the plot whilst also developing his characters.. Adam Lofthouse is finding his feet as an author and hit the right notes for me. One to watch? I’d say so!

A plot driven tale with fun and interesting characters to boot 4/5 Stars 🙂

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

Pity The Dead (Detective Solomon Gray #5) By Keith Nixon – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing Pity The Dead by Keith Nixon!

Here’s the blurb..

Genre – Thriller/Police Procedural

“Don’t waste your time, he’s just another dead junkie.”

That’s what Detective Inspector Solomon Gray is told when the body of a young man is found. But Gray recognises him – an old school friend of his daughter’s. His death is suspicious, but junkies are the underclass – who cares about them? Investigations are brief, the deaths ruled accidental, the people soon forgotten, and life moves on.

There’s a brutal a new drug gang in town. Run by the vicious Leka Krisniqi, an Albanian who rules by fear and intimidation. Gray just can’t break it. And anyone suspected of working with the police ends up dead – their drugs spiked with a powerful toxin.

An old foe calls. Sylvia – former PA to Gray’s old boss and an expert in side-eye and snide remark – swallows her pride to ask for Gray’s help. Her husband is missing. One morning he upped and left with just the clothes on his back and hasn’t been seen since. To Gray it hardly seems important compared to a spate of murders, but there’s more to it than he thinks.

Gray gets a break that just might bust Krisniqi’s gang – a street dealer called E who could help. But she’s afraid for her own life and that of her family. Before she can risk it, Gray must first do something for her…

Can Gray bring down the dealers before more people die?

Review

Keith Nixon knows what his readers want and boy does he deliver!

We are back with Detective Inspector Solomon Gray.. past events are still playing heavy on his mind but there’s no time to dwell.. Junkies are dying.. you could easily pass this off as expected but things just aren’t right..the death rate is higher than the norm.. and where are they even getting the drugs? Wasn’t the major drug stream closed down?

Thanks to some great additions to Gray’s police team light starts to be shed on the issue but with junkies reluctant to help the police, the price of talking too high,  the case stalls.. Sol’s not one to give up easily.

As the case develops a visit from an unexpected visitor occurs that throws a spanner in the works.. Sylvia who has a history with Sol asks for his help with the disappearance of her husband.. At first Sol half heartedly looks into things..with good reason.. is a domestic right? he’ll turn up… but after a bit of digging we see the bigger picture become clear.

We get twists and turns along the way and the authors normal style of sucking you in repeats past tales as you follow Sol and his team as they follow the clues to solve the mystery..utterly engrossing from start to finish.

I loved the personal development with this one. Sol has a lot of bad history behind him and we start to see current life events take precedence, is this a fresh start for Sol? I doubt it.. there’s too much in his past but it seems like this could be a turning point for Sol.

Keith Nixon once again ticks all the boxes, Sol is flawed, he’s real. Real life affects his work , nothing is clear cut..there’s frustrations, it’s messy, not everyone is nice… that’s real life. It’s the perfect mix of character development vs plot and I couldn’t have been happier as a reader.

5/5 Stars for me.

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads.

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg is The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena.

Here’s the blurb

PEOPLE ARE CAPABLE OF ALMOST ANYTHING.

You never know what’s happening on the other side of the wall.

Your neighbour told you that she didn’t want your six-month-old daughter at the dinner party. Nothing personal, she just couldn’t stand her crying.

Your husband said it would be fine. After all, you only live next door. You’ll have the baby monitor and you’ll take it in turns to go back every half hour.

Your daughter was sleeping when you checked on her last. But now, as you race up the stairs in your deathly quiet house, your worst fears are realized. She’s gone.

You’ve never had to call the police before. But now they’re in your home, and who knows what they’ll find there.

What would you be capable of, when pushed past your limit?

Review

The Couple Next Door is a physiological thriller.. a little girl has been kidnapped while her parents were next door.. who did it and why them?

The tale is quite intense as the author delves into the lives of the parents in detail and also the neighbours. Suspicion falls on the parents at first as you’d expect.. something is just not adding up but the author throws in a few twists along the way to throw you off the scent.

I loved the build-up but must admit the ending didn’t give the bang I was expecting.. the author had painted such a vivid series of events that the ending just felt a bit flat.. almost too easy.

The characters themselves were very good, each developed well and has their time to grow. It seems everyone in this book has some skeleton in the closet so it was really fun watching the pieces come together.

The plot was intriguing… from the off I was 99% sure who was involved but had no idea why.. or how they even managed to do it.. this little nugget of info is what makes this book so good.. the author digs her claws into you quickly and you just can’t help but read more…I just had to find out why the kidnap happened in the first place..it certainly had me sucked in.

My wife really enjoyed this one too.. she likes her books but is easily distracted by tv or home improvements (hope she doesn’t read this J ). To know she’s read it was a sure sign to me it was worth reading and I couldn’t agree more.

4 Stars!

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

Blog Tour – The Nudge Man by Keith Nixon

Hi!!!!

Today I’m taking part in the blog tour for Keith Nixon’s new book – The Nudge Man.

Follow the tour! Show your support 🙂

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Here’s the blurb –

Genre – Crime Thriller

A washed up reporter, an escaped convict, a sociopathic gangster. All are hunting the Nudge Man…

Wheelchair bound, born again, ex-gangster, Eric Hennessey offers down on his luck reporter, Harrison Vaughan, a job. Track down the Nudge Man, a mysterious vigilante who’s stolen most of Hennessey’s money, ill-gotten gains which now Hennessey wants to use to do God’s work. Trouble is, Harry has no desire to work for a sociopathic murderer, even if he is an apparently changed man.

Harry is estranged from his family since a fabricated scandal destroyed his career. Hennessey tells Vaughan it was the Nudge Man who set him up for the fall. Find The Nudge Man and Harry has the chance for redemption and maybe even his family back.

However, Hennessey has another objective in mind. Unknown to Harry his family were taken into witness protection and had to cut ties with everyone after Harry’s son saw a murder – carried out by Eric Hennessey. Hennessey has been looking for them ever since and now may have a way in – Harry himself.

And others are on the trail of the Nudge Man, including the British government and an American secret service agent. Then there’s the lawyer who offers Harry £1m to stay away from The Nudge Man.

With more questions than answers and hapless guard dog Bonzo, whose bark is definitely worse than his bite, at his side Harry begins his search.

Can Harry find the Nudge Man and save his family? Or will Hennessey exact his revenge?

Review

I’m a massive fan of Keith’s work so jumped at the chance to read/review the book as part of the blog tour.. did I do it for the free book? No! I’ve bought a copy too.. it’s well worth the £1.99 kindle price tag.

Harry hasn’t seen his family in years..he beleives his wife left him after a scandal but we soon learn there’s more too it than that.

Hennessey employs a down and out Harry to track down the Nudge Man..why you might ask..well there’s a personal connection. Hennessey says it’s the Nudge Man who set Harry up all those years ago and cost him his family.

Harry’s not quite sure how he feels about all this..he’s stuck in-between a rock and a hard place and at every turn someone is trying to control his next move. Who can be trusted?

Keith Nixon weaves an exciting tale with some very spectacular turns..it’s riveting and perfectly paced to build up the suspense I like in a gritty thriller.

The plot was exciting but for me the idea of the Nudge Man is what had me sold.. the idea someone can influence events towards an outcome they desire without you even knowing anyone was even involved..brilliant. Keith knows how to develop his characters to make them appeal to his readers and once again the cast in this one were spot on.. special mention has to go to Bonzo the loveable hound.. his attitude had me smiling from ear to ear.

Keith never fails to pack a punch in his work..everything works..nothing is out-of-place or rushed..just perfectly planned and executed pure brilliance. This is the first in a new series for the author so I’ll eagerly be awaiting the follow up to see where this one goes.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

Law and Addiction by Mike Papantonio – ARC Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg is an ARC review of Law and Addiction by Mike Papantonio due to be released May 7th!

Here’s the blurb

Genre – Legal Thriller

One week before JAKE RUTLEDGE is scheduled to graduate from law school, he receives the devastating news of the death of his fraternal twin BLAKE. What makes this death even more terrible for Jake is that his brother died of a drug overdose. Until hearing of his death, Jake had no idea his brother was even using drugs.

When Jake returns home to Oakley, West Virginia, he takes a hard look at the circumstances of his brother’s death. In the five years Jake has been away for his schooling, his hometown has drastically changed. Because of the opioid epidemic, and the blight it has brought, many now call Oakley “Zombieland.” Jake can see how his town’s demise parallels his brother’s.

Undeterred, the newly-minted lawyer takes on the entrenched powers by filing two lawsuits. Jake quickly learns what happens when you upset a hornet’s nest. The young attorney might be wet behind the ears, but is sure there is no lawyer that could help him more than NICK “DEKE” DEKETOMIS and his law firm of Bergman/Deketomis. Deke is a legendary lawyer. When he was Jake’s age he was making his name fighting Big Tobacco. Against all odds, Jake gets Nick and his firm to sign on to his case before it’s too late.

Mike Papantonio, a member of the Trial Lawyers Hall of Fame, knows the ins and outs of the courtroom better than anyone. Law and Addiction is a legal thriller, inhabited by the kinds of characters Papantonio has come to know well. In a setting of despair, it is a book of hope, with the little guy along with truth and justice prevailing.

Review

Jake Rutledge is about to have his world turned upside down. As a youngster growing up Jake and his twin brother Blake were close but when Jake goes off to law school Blake starts to hide the truth from his brother.

After the heart breaking news that Blake has died of a drug overdose Jake returns to his home town.

Soon a picture starts to form… it’s not just Blake who has suffered thanks to drugs..It seems like his home town is struggling to win a win addiction..it’s so much bigger than Jake first assumes.

What follows is a quite an emotional at times but overall powerful tale as Jake sets out to take this all the way to the top..the drug companies themselves.

For me the best bit of the book has to be Jake himself, you she the events play out with different viewpoints, the lawyer and the grieving brother. The plot was seamless and moving as Jake struggles to keep control to do his brother proud.

I couldn’t fault this book, it had me hooked, shocked & gasping at every page turn. To say I was sucked in with this one is an understatement.

This is my first time reading Mike Papantonio’s work but it certainly won’t be my last. Law and Addiction was hard-hitting and edgy and throughly engrossing. The rawness of this tale is what really give it that hard hitting edge I need in a legal thriller..I felt it..

Well written, super plot, reals issues and a great mix of likable characters make this a gem to read.

5/5 Stars

My thanks go of course to the author Mike Papantonio but also Andrea Stein @ Jane Wesman Public Relations, Inc for the chance to read and review the book before release.

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

Six Strings by Frank Westworth – Review

Today I’m catching up with a favourite of mine, Frank Westworth and Six Strings.

Here’s the blurb

In a former life, JJ Stoner was a hard-faced military man. Now, discreetly and deniably, he resolves sticky situations for the British authorities. So when the Drug Squad can’t convict a particularly unpleasant pusher, Stoner is tasked with permanently solving the problem. But before he can deploy his very particular skill set, an old acquaintance steps out of the shadows and delivers disconcerting intelligence…

Six Strings is a quick thriller, an hour’s intrigue and entertainment. It features characters from the JJ Stoner / Killing Sisters series. You don’t need to have read any of the other stories in the series: you can start right here if you like.

‘You want me to kill someone.’
Stoner plainly had a grasp of both the gravity and the subtlety of the situation. ‘There’s no need to rattle on so much. Killing people is what I do.’
He paused.
‘But only if he orders me to…’

Six Strings is book 6 in the JJ Stoner series. These books are short and pack a punch!

What I love about the book is that the writing style gives you just enough to develop the tale in such a short page span..it’s not epic tomb of a read.. it’s straight to the point and it’s packed of the good stuff I’ve come to enjoy about Frank’s work.

For me I really think you need to start at the beginning of the series to see the character development. I’ll be brutally honest..this books too short..but wait..that’s not a bad thing.. it really makes you want read the author’s longer works..these are a perfect intro to Frank’s style and offer a quick read when you really need on.

I’m not sure what the authors long-term plans are for the series but I’ve seen real progression and the more I read the more I enjoy them… I’m sure this is far from the end.

With a short tale I always find it hard to give a glimpse into the plot without spoiling it all..rest assured Six Strings is another gem in this developing series. Short tales arent for everyone but these hit the spot with me!

4/5 stars 🙂

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

Carina by Alison Morton – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg is Carina by Alison Morton.

Here’s the blurb

Carina Mitela is still a young inexperienced officer in the Praetorian Guard Special Forces of Roma Nova. Disgraced and smarting from a period in the cells for a disciplinary offence, she is sent out of everybody’s way on a seemingly straightforward mission overseas.

All she and her comrade-in-arms, Flavius, have to do is bring back a traitor from the Republic of Quebec. Under no circumstances will she risk entering the Eastern United States where she is still wanted under her old name Karen Brown. But when she and Flavius discover a conspiracy that reaches to the highest levels of Roma Nova, what price is personal danger against fulfilling the mission?

Set in the time after INCEPTIO but before PERFIDITAS in the Roma Nova series, this thriller novella reveals hidden parts of Carina’s early life in Roma Nova. And North America isn’t quite the continent we know in our timeline…

Review

Carina is part of the Roma Nova series by Alison Morton. I came late to the series but was instantly hooked in by the uniqueness of the plots.

Think alternative fiction and strong female leads mixed with intriguing and well planned plots.. yeh you’re on to a winner.

This novella is perfectly suited for someone who hasn’t read the other novels in the series yet.. It’s got the detail to make you want read the rest of the series but there’s noting that isn’t explained that would confuse the reader so it’s a perfect standalone read.

Carina is part of the Praetorian Guard.. she’s young and headstrong.. this can only lead to trouble when tasked with a mission to bring back a traitor. Carina must stay under the radar but things quickly start to go wrong…something smells funny..but can Carina figure it out?

I’m always amazed by Alison’s plots, so believable, perfectly executed..real page turners!

Overall another cracking read from the author who has a very unique setting for her tales, Alison Morton challenges female stereotypes and gives the reader a fast paced thriller which I thoroughly enjoyed.

My rating – 5/5 Stars

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads