My #Review of, Thirteen by @SSCav @orionbooks @orion_crime #Th1rt3en #CrimeFiction 5* GENIUS by @annebonnybook

*I received an arc via the publisher in return for an honest review*

cover
Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh
Synopsis:

THE SERIAL KILLER ISN’T ON TRIAL.
HE’S ON THE JURY…

‘To your knowledge, is there anything that would preclude you from serving on this jury?

Murder wasn’t the hard part. It was just the start of the game.

Joshua Kane has been preparing for this moment his whole life. He’s done it before.
But this is the big one.

This is the murder trial of the century.
And Kane has killed to get the best seat in the house.

But there’s someone on his tail.
Someone who suspects that the killer isn’t the man on trial.

Kane knows time is running out –
he just needs to get to the conviction without being discovered.

My review:

The synopsis of this novel instantaneously grabs the readers interest! It grips you straight from the prologue, and refuses to let go.
This novel does not disappoint, not one single page!

The synopsis details, a celebrity murder trial of the century mixed with the mystery of the killer being on the jury! But the novel is in fact, much more detailed, a plot full of twists and turns that slowly unravels throughout. I was so engrossed in the plot, I didn’t want to miss one single word of the story.

The prologue is outstanding! Easily one of the best I have EVER read! The writing style of the prologue was so breathing taking, it reminded me, of the ending of the cult move, The Usual Suspects. But instead of who is Keyser Soze? It is who is Joshua Kane?
Joshua Kane, where do you begin with such an incredible character as Joshua Kane? He is ruthless, psychopathic and methodical in his killing. The murders are planned right down to each meticulous action before, during and after the murder!
Joshua Kane in an enigma, a dark and disturbing killer, yet bizarrely you admire his commitment to his ‘work’.

The novel opens with Eddie Flynn, at Manhattan criminal court with a routine hearing. Ex-hooker Jean Marie, is his client and she is looking at hard time for her second drug offence within the same year. Eddie breezes through the case with ease and for those new to the series, this is a great indication of what makes Eddie Flynn such a great lawyer and character.

After the case Eddie is accosted by slick lawyer Rudy Carp. He wishes to requisition Eddie for a case due to start in just three days. A high-profile case, with an even more high-profile client, movie star Robert (Bobby) Soloman. Eddie is reluctant at first for various reasons, which are detailed with some amazing thoughts and quotes from Eddie.

“It’s not about the money. I don’t roll for the guilty” Eddie

But Rudy continues to profess Bobby’s innocence and asks Eddie to at least consider the case evidence.

“If Robert didn’t kill those people, who did?”

A combination of Eddie’s inquisitive mind and a random twist of fate. Have Eddie agreeing to view the notes, although offering no obligation to assist and second chair the case. Whilst Eddie arranges to view the hard drive of evidence at Rudy’s office. He comes face to face with suspected killer Bobby Soloman.

“Someone murders your family, lover or friend and you are the one standing trial while the murderer goes free. There’s nothing else like it on earth. And it’s the same look, all over the world. An innocent man falsely accused, looks the same in Nigeria, Ireland, Iceland, you name it. If you’ve seen that look before, you never forget it. It’s rare to see that look”

“Bobby Soloman wore that look. And I knew I had to help him”

Bobby’s past is explored, and we learn that he came from very humble beginnings. He stands accused of murdering his wife Ariella and chief of security Carl Tozer. Both victims found naked and dead on the marital bed! Bobby pleads his innocence and it is believable. As the reader, you urge Eddie to take the case!
But Eddie suspects that Bobby is holding back, a secret possibly? He refuses to help, until he has completed reading all the evidence available.

“Bobby Soloman was a scared kid with the prospect of a life in jail hanging over his head” Eddie

“But you can’t act your way out of a double murder” Rudy

Eddie eventually opens the case notes and evidence. It is not for the faint hearted, this is a brutal murder, unleashed by a fierce and savage individual. Ariella was stabbed multiple times and Carl was viciously beaten with a baseball bat. What grabs Eddie’s intrigue is the dollar note stuffed inside Carl’s mouth, after death. What does the note mean? Is this a clue to the killer’s reasoning, motivations? Eddie just can’t get this case out of his mind, despite how hard he tries to.

“A violent death tells its own story. It’s written on the victims. In their wounds. On the skin. Sometimes in their eyes. I’d never seen anything like this” Eddie

With one of the murder weapons still missing and so many unanswered questions. Eddie calls in some help, in the form of ex-FBI investigator Harper, to assist. The details of the scene are analysed, and it makes for intense and eye-opening reading. What motivates such a vicious slaying?

As the novel unfolds, there are chapters from Eddies perspective and alternate chapters from Joshua Kane’s scheming. One thing is for certain Kane’s plans have been months in the making. The psychology of a killer like Kane is intense. The writing makes the killer come alive on the page, a rare talent and exceptionally creepy in this case.

The novel also, has the individual juror memo’s throughout, so we begin to learn about each member on a personal scale. Eddie’s broken marriage is explored, and we learn of his motivations to find an easier job role, one with less risks to him and his family. Eddie is so much deeper than the usual lawyer protagonist. But it is when Harper finds a history of similar cases, closed cases, that the story explodes!!!!!!

This novel is sheer brilliance in its writing style and structure. The characterisation is massively on point and you root for all the characters. Alarmingly even Kane at points!
A superb legal thriller, with an unforgettable, edgy and haunting serial killer!
In my humble opinion, John Grisham and Michael Connelly, should be aware, Steve Cavanagh has arrived!
5* genius

steve
Steve Cavanagh
Authors Links:
Website
Twitter

***The novel is released today! Happy publication day to the author!***

For signed copies check out No Alibis Bookstore They also have FREE P&P to the UK
The novel is also available on order from Waterstones & Easons. 

#BlogTour #GuestPost The Abandoned by @sharontwriter #NewRelease @Bloodhoundbook #HistoricalFiction #CrimeFiction

9781912175901
The Abandoned by Sharon Thompson
Synopsis:
Peggy Bowden has not had an easy life. As a teenager her mother was committed to an asylum and then a local priest forced her into an abusive marriage. But when her husband dies in an accident Peggy sees an opportunity to start again and trains as a midwife.

In 1950s Dublin it is not easy for a woman to make a living and Peggy sees a chance to start a business and soon a lucrative maternity home is up and running. But when Peggy realizes that the lack of birth control is an issue for women, she uses their plight as a way to make more money. Very soon Peggy is on the wrong side of the law.

What makes a woman decide to walk down a dark path? Can Peggy ever get back on the straight and narrow? Or will she have to pay for her crimes?

Set against the backdrop of Ireland in the 1950’s The Abandoned tells the story of one woman’s fight for survival and her journey into the underbelly of a dangerous criminal world.

Guest Post:

I didn’t know where I was headed when I started to write. So, it’s hard to believe that I’ve written a novel which people will read. It’s a strange turn of events and a scary but wonderful experience.

It all started when I thought maybe I could put ‘a book’ together for a charity close to my heart. Danny McCarthy from Mentor Books pointed out that books are a risky business, but I was adamant that in my future there would be books. After stalking and meeting Benji Bennett from Adam’s Cloud Publishing, he inspired me to start a blog. I had no clue what a blog was at the time but I wrote for hours and found I needed to write.

Then years ago, while on holiday I got up and just had to write about a female killer. She took over my fingers and my hours in the shade. It was as simple as that. My aim was to create a long work of fiction with this character and I let myself write. It seemed so natural and I was content.

While lost in Twitter, I came across Carmel Harrington – a successful HarperCollins author – who mentioned her online writing group and, after a long time, I picked up the courage to join. Carmel Harrington and the Imagine, Write, Inspire group became my secret writing family and I wrote blog posts, short stories and flash fiction. My writing group fuelled my cravings. We set challenges for each other and they made favourable comments about my ramblings. These lovely women also asked for more and more of my rampant 1950s female, serial-killer – Devina.

I wrote quite a few novel length manuscripts. Some may never see the light of day, but once I started I found it hard to stop. I learned as much as I could from other writers as I went along and tried hard to practice all I was taught or read about.

While staring in awe at other published writers at Louise Phillip’s book launch, Carmel Harrington dragged me over to tell Vanessa Fox O’Loughlin about my writing. It took me weeks to send Vanessa the first chapters of my manuscript, but she liked it and has mentored me as I have continued to write. Events like this are life-changing and yet I didn’t realise it. I had no idea how much each step would mean. It has taken a good while to built up the confidence to call myself ‘a writer’. But I daringly gave myself @sharontwriter as my Twitter handle!

Over the years, my short stories got into various publications. Some fabulous literary magazines have kindly published my work. I am proud of these stories. http://www.sharontwriter.com has links to them.

While tapping away, I studied various courses and thought about starting a writing tweet-chat. The tweet-chat king, Dr Liam Farrell joined me in making one. Turns out he’s a writer too and we established #WritersWise. Writing experts guest-host for an hour using our hashtag and give us some of their expertise in tweets. I learned from the experiences of my writing heroes and loved communicating with them and bringing their advice to other aspiring writers. We trend regularly and have a good following. Check us out on #WritersWise on select Thursdays 9-10pm on twitter and at http://www.writerswise1.wordpress.com .

While reading as much as possible, creating websites for #WritersWise and doing re-writes, I still didn’t dare call myself a writer. But when I threw in my teaching principal’s job people asked, ‘So what are you up to now?’ and I felt like a total fraud as I whispered, ‘I write.’

I submitted to events like Date with an Agent and dared to dream I’d find a literary agent. Finally, after many trials and tribulations, I found my home with Tracy Brennan at Trace Literary Agency. I could shout about my progress on social media now. This was the turning point for me. It all started to feel real.

Waiting around is a big part of being a writer and people were starting to ask where they could read my ‘stuff’. Still tentative about sharing my writing, I somehow convinced the Donegal Woman website that they needed a flash-fiction/opinion slot. Now every Sunday, I can be found having fun on our successful Woman’s Words segment at http://www.donegalwoman.ie.

While some fictional characters come and go, others stay a while and Peggy set up camp on my keyboard. Peggy is a backstreet abortionist and brothel owner in 1950s Dublin and she demanded to be a character. I wondered how women in 1950s might have tried to keep their independence when society just wanted them to marry and give up their jobs. I agreed with Peggy that we should explore her story together.

I’m so thrilled that Peggy’s story has been published by Bloodhound Books a leading UK publisher for thrillers and crime fiction. I hope readers take to Peggy’s story. It is called The Abandoned’ and is out on 25th January 2018.

XPpijWaR
Sharon Thompson
Authors Links:
Website
Twitter
Facebook

Author Profile:

Sharon Thompson lives in Donegal, Ireland. She is a member of Imagine, Write, Inspire. This is a writing group, under the mentorship of HarperCollins author Carmel Harrington. Sharon’s short stories have been published in various literary magazines and websites. #WritersWise is her collaboration with writer, Dr Liam Farrell. This is a trending, fortnightly, promotional tweet-chat with corresponding Facebook page and website (www.writerswise1.wordpress.com). Its mission is to encourage and support writers to reach as wide an audience as possible. Although she mostly writes crime fiction, Sharon does have a fun-side and she writes the quirky Woman’s Words column for the Donegal Woman wesbite. Sharon Thompson. Writing Fun is her writing page on Facebook and she tweets @sharontwriter.

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