My #BlogTour #Review of, Faking Friends by @JaneFallon #NewRelease @penguinrandom by @annebonnybook

*I received an arc via the publisher in return for an honest review*
I have just realised via a diary mishap, that I have mixed up the dates 11th & 12th January. My apologises to the author, publisher and publicist. 

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Faking Friends by Jane Fallon
Synopsis:
Amy thought she knew everything there was to know about her best friend Melissa. Then again, Amy also thought she was on the verge of the wedding of her dreams to her long-distance fiancé.

Until she pays a surprise trip home to London. Jack is out, but it’s clear another woman has been making herself at home in their flat.

There’s something about her stuff that feels oddly familiar . . . and then it hits Amy. The Other Woman is Melissa.

Amy has lost her home, her fiancé and her best friend in one disastrous weekend – but instead of falling apart, she’s determined to get her own back.

Piecing her life back together won’t be half as fun as dismantling theirs, after all.

My review:

Faking Friends is an unusual novel for me to read. I rarely read contemporary fiction, based on modern day relationships.
But with this novel, I was looking forward to reading something different. I regularly jump between novel genre’s.
I was drawn to the psychological element of the synopsis.

Aspiring actress Amy, returns to London to surprise fiancé Jack. Unbeknown to her, the surprise will be on her! As she arrives to find a woman’s things in her place, in her flat.
And not just any woman’s things, the items of her best friend Melissa……..

I was immediately drawn to the WOW factor of a shock surprise, of the ultimate betrayal. Amy is left devastated, how could her best friend from childhood betray her? How long has this love affair been going on? Why would Jack do this to her?

Amy cannot bring herself to face up to the answers to these questions. At least not just yet! She begins to plot her revenge. What follows is a toxic friendship on full display.
Amy’s inner-feelings of hurt at the betrayal are moving, you get a real sense of a woman in deep emotional pain.
A woman scorned…….

As Amy comes to terms with the mess, that is her life. We learn that Mel is an extremely vicious woman. Who will destroy anyone or anything, to get what she wants.
I took an immediate dislike to Mel and her selfish behaviour. I felt myself, become more and more drawn into the plot. Almost as if I was on Amy’s side cheering her on!

‘There is nothing left to salvage in either of these relationships. There’s nothing to mourn the loss of because they weren’t the real people I thought they were’

This isn’t just a story of revenge and the emotional damage of cheating. It also shows a woman, determined to pull her life back together.
To start again and in turn, become a new woman! 4*

Jane_Fallon_HP
Jane Fallon
Author links:
Website: http://www.janefallon.co.uk/
Twitter: @JaneFallon

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New Release review: Sympathy For The Devil by William Shaw

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Sympathy For The Devil by William Shaw

The synopsis:

SUMMER OF LOVE

She made a profit from her youth. She’s not beautiful anymore – but now she will be young forever.

Called away from his pregnant girlfriend, Detective Sergeant Cathal Breen knows the sight of the murdered prostitute will be with him all his life. But this is what he does: he finds killers. Helen Tozer, more than most, understands why.

SUMMER OF DEATH

The girl they called Julie Teenager had a client list full of suspects – all rich, powerful – and protected. Someone warns off the beat coppers; someone disturbs the crime scene. When Breen gets a phone call from MI6, he fears just how protected his suspect is. These are dangerous waters, where Russian spies hide.

Then Helen, with her unstoppable copper’s instinct and fierce moral sense, dives into the investigation. And Breen knows he has more to lose than ever before. He is about to become a father. He can have no sympathy for the devil.

My review:

I actually read this straight after reading The Birdwatch by the same author. As novels go, they are poles apart in plot and themes. Sympathy For The Devil is much more dark, gritty and edgy. That’s not to say The Birdwatcher is not a cracking read too. I think the author has a real gift to write two very different novels so well.

The novel opens in the summer of 1969, with the body of a dead rock star floating in a pool. A rock star surrounded by wealth, privilege and beautiful women. Who has a known addiction problem. The plot moves on to what we come to know as Lena aka ‘Julie the teenager’ a prostitute who capitalises on her young looks with ‘an act’ that lures the perverted men whom desire underage teenage girls. The sleaze, secrets and depravity of sex work are fully explored. But when Julie the teenager is found dead, so begins a complex case of dead ends and mystery. Who killed Julie and why? Was it a punter? A manic? Or her maid?

Detective sergeant Cathal Breen is assigned the case. Breen and Constable Mint attempt to learn more about Julie the teenager. But how do you navigate a world built on secrecy, one where the Johns must remain anonymous, when you are the long arm of the law?

The other tenants in the apartment block provide clues and we learn of Lena’s past, one that leads right to WW2. Lena’s maid Florence is a pivotal part of the investigation but she can’t be found. Does she hold the secret list of clients? Who is on this list? Is there a link between the dead rock star and the dead hooker?

This novel has the trademark twists and turns of the author. Its complex, deep and interwoven. The characters are engaging good/bad you want to know more about them! The era is evocative and I found so many little details added up to really portray the 1960’s in its true light. One of drugs, sexual liberation and the changing roles of women. Will definitely read most by the same author!

Authors links:
Web: http://williamshaw.com/
Twitter: @william1shaw

*I received an Ebook arc via netgalley.