Anne Bonny #BookReview Dead To Her by Sarah Pinborough 5* GENIUS #NewRelease #Psychological #Thriller @SarahPinborough @HarperFiction @HarperCollinsUK @fictionpubteam


dthDead To Her by Sarah Pinborough ~ (US cover)
Review Copy ~ Negalley ~ Ebook
Synopsis ~

From the No.1 Sunday Times bestselling author of Behind Her Eyes

There’s nothing like a woman scorned

Something old…

Marcie’s affair with Jason Maddox catapulted her into the world of the elite. Old money, old ties, old secrets. Marcie may have married into this world –
but she’ll never be part of it.

Something new…

Then Jason’s boss brings back a new wife from his trip to London. Young, attractive, reckless – nobody can take their eyes off Keisha. Including Marcie’s husband.

Something you can never, ever undo…

Some people would kill for the life Marcie has – what will she do to keep it?

My Review ~

Whoop Whoop Queen Pinborough has a new book out!!!! WHOOP WHOOP!
Nothing cheers up this little bookworm, quite like seeing Sarah Pinborough has a new book out! Sarah is a talented writer who has NEVER let me down, with her books which cover various genre’s. Before I read Dead To Her, my favourite novel of hers would probably have been a close tie between Behind Her Eyes (obviously) and 13 Minutes. With 13 Minutes probably stealing the thunder!
HOWEVER, that was all set to change with the raunchy, steamy and addictive new release that is Dead To Her. This is Sarah Pinborough as we have never see her before….

The novel begins with a bunch of wealthy wives known amongst themselves as ‘the second wives club’. The woman aren’t necessarily likeable (but I think that is kind ofthe point). But if you’re anything like me and love a good super bitch or femme fatale then you will LOVE this title.

‘What else was there to do but bitch. judge and gossip about one another between charity events’

Marcie Maddox is a main protagonist and the second wife of Jason. They live in Savannah, Georgia and for all intents and purposes, live a life of high class, wealth and luxury. But nothing is as it seems….

‘A wife to be kept in the attic not out on display’

Introducing new ‘second’ wife to the group Keisha Radford. Keisha is the second wife of William Radford IV, who coincidentally is Jason’s boss. Which means despite how she feels internally Marcie must play nice. She must rub shoulders with the elite, shower affection and admiration upon Keisha.

‘She’s not one of us’

Keisha herself is an unusual addiction to the club. Keisha is black, British and feisty, Keisha doesn’t suffer fools (other than William) and she isn’t afraid to speak her mind. There is no overt racism, but there are subtle and passive aggressive acts thrown towards Keisha within the club. But Keisha must learn to hold her own against the gaggle of white privilege. Not only must she hold her own, but she has every intention of coming out on top. Metaphorically and figuratively speaking…

‘Keisha had a lot to learn about their set’

Amongst the club are wives Iris and Virginia. The addition of Keisha to the club sends Marcie wild with jealousy.
But has the other women also keeping a very close eye on her too.
‘It seemed Keisha was upsetting the apple cart’

It’s impossible to compare this novel to others in the genre. But it has shades of Penny Vincenzi, with layers of sex and psychological warfare. There may even be an added extra of what we have come to know and love the authors writing for. But that would be revealing far too much.

There will be feelings of inadequacy, worries that fake friends… fake friendship, secrets and jealousy galore.
‘She’d never seen him look at another woman that way. Never’

It also asks the age old question…
‘Why didn’t men fade like women?’
It also explores the dynamics of dating/remarriage in older adulthood. The emotional baggage of the women and potential fragile ego’s of the men.
‘She wondered if terrible people were drawn to terrible people’

Toxic marriages, pasts that haunt the characters and constant scheming comes to a head with an ultimate showdown. But will Keisha remain unscathed or will everyone get what they deserve. In the words of the author….
‘Thrill seekers seek thrills’

The novel deserves HUGE praise for its inclusivity and diversity. Too often psychologically thrillers or domestic noir novels ONLY portray white heterosexual females with perfect lives. The genre is saturated in perfect women, with perfect husbands, perfect children and one day something drastic shakes their lives. THIS IS NOT THAT CLICHE! 

The Queen of the genre is back! Buy it, read it and LOVE it!

Sarah Pinborough
Pre-order link to Amazon (non-affiliate) ~ 6th August 2020 release date
Pre-order link to (non -affiliate) ~ 11th February 2020 release date

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Anne Bonny #BookReview Cross Her Heart by @SarahPinborough 5* Genius #Psychological #Thriller #NewRelease @HarperFiction @fictionpubteam #CrossHerHeart

Cross Her Heart by Sarah Pinborough
Review Copy


Is it Lisa?
Haunted by a tragic past, all Lisa wants is a quiet life with her daughter, Ava. And when she meets a new man, things seem to be falling into place. But Lisa is hiding a secret so momentous it could shatter her entire world…

Is it Ava?
When sixteen-year-old Ava saves a young boy’s life, she becomes a local hero. But never in a million years could she have anticipated the fallout of her actions…

Is it Marilyn?
Marilyn has the perfect life. Her husband, her job, her house—she seems to have it all. But she could never admit to her best friend Lisa the lies she tells herself to get through the day…

One moment will change these three women’s lives forever.
And the secrets they’ve been keeping could destroy them all.

My Review:

This novel, ticks all the boxes of an ‘award winner’.
So, straight off the bat, I am calling that one (on 21st January!).
After I finished the novel, I just sat there thinking
‘how do you even learn to write like that?’.
The novel is jam packed full of twists and turns. You never really know if you’re coming or going, making the novel unpredictable and insanely gripping. The twists are planted early on, literally from page 30 onwards.
When I reached the last 100 pages, I don’t think I dared move or breathe……

The novel opens with a note ‘Don’t try and find us’ being left for an angry volatile man. At this point all we are aware of, is a sinister man in the background. The novel quickly introduces Lisa, Ava and Marilyn, with chapters told from each perspective. I found the mother and daughter relationship between Lisa and teen Ava fascinating. They have the usual, over protective mother and desperation to be and adult scenario.
Which all play out well, until small daily occurrences, start to set off Lisa and she doesn’t know who she can trust!

“In any gaggle of women, there’s always one you have to watch” – Marilyn

Marilyn has created the ‘perfect life’  which is far from perfect. Ava is trying hard to prove she can make adult choices, putting herself at serious risk. Lisa is trying to hold it all together. But they all have secrets, only some are more treacherous than others….

‘She is not the person she was then’

The complex mother and daughter stand-off, continually develops. Then one-day Ava saves a young boys life, leading to media attention and a plot explosion I never saw coming. It is at this point that the novel timeline changes and we get to see everyone’s secrets laid bare. By 150 pages in, I was absolutely engrossed in the plot and the characters. Sarah Pinborough really has excelled herself, yet again!

There are themes of jealousy, secrets, childhood trauma, revenge, scheming and rejection. The little twists build and build, keeping you constantly guessing and increasing the suspense with every page.
You’ll never guess the ending, that I can promise you, cross my heart…….
5* Genius

Trust Sarah Pinborough. Don’t trust her books.

Sarah Pinborough

***Cross Her Heart is released on 14th May in Ebook and Hardback and is available for pre-order*** – Go on! Treat yourself!
My Q&A with Sarah

Q&A with Author Sarah Pinborough. Sunday Times & NY Times Bestseller!

I have many, many authors whose books I love and cherish. But my list of author’s I openly admit to being a huge #fangirl of their writing is somewhat shorter. Last year I read 242 books and choose 20 favourite fiction reads. In that list were, not one, not two, but three books by Sarah Pinborough! With The Death House, 13 Minutes and Behind Her Eyes all making the list!  My 14-year-old daughter Daisy is also a huge fan of the author and also likes following her writing success in the media. As a mother I am extremely proud that my daughter admires another woman’s success and actively seeks out to promote her work. With recommending to all her friends and demanding they stock the books in the school library!

Huge thanks to the author for being kind enough to agree to a Q&A with me on my ‘newbie’ book blog! 

the death house13 minutesbehind her eyes

Q) 13 Minutes, The Death House and Behind Her Eyes are all incredibly different and unique reads. Full of twists and turns, but all have the definitive ‘Pinborough’ stamp. How do you come up with your ideas?  Does the idea all come at once or are the twists added as the idea develops further? 

A) Oh, if only the whole idea all came at once! That would be wonderful! The origins of books come in different ways though. So for Behind Her Eyes, I had the ending and wanted to write about an affair, for 13 Minutes I’d watched a documentary about a teenage girl murdered by her friends, and then you sort of plot out as you go. I try and have a vague idea of what it’s about, then think about it for a couple of weeks, jotting characters, and little snippets of thoughts down, and then after that – once I have an ending in place – I start figuring out the nitty gritty of the plot. I certainly don’t have it all in place when I start writing, but I will have a whole load of spider diagrams etc, ready to pull together into some sort of structure.

Q) 13 Minutes was categorised within the YA genre. I read this at the same time as my daughter and we both loved it. I found it would easily compete with adult crime fiction, despite the plot revolving around teenagers.  Do you think some readers of adult crime fiction may be put off by a YA genre novel or are they becoming popular with adult readers also? 

A) Oh YA is mainly read by adults – I think mainly 18-32 is the age range I read someone. The great thing about 13 Minutes is how many actual teenagers read it. It’s been great in that respect. The US version is much more YA – I had to take out quite a lot of the adult interaction for them. But yes, I think perhaps people who are serious crime readers might not necessarily pick up a book that is written for teens. But they’re missing out. YA is as well-plotted and has as much emotional depth as any adult novel.

Q) Behind Her Eyes, has had fantastic success in both the UK and USA. Will we see another psychological thriller with the Pinborough stamp?

A) Yes of course! Otherwise my publishers would kill me;-) There are definitely two more coming. One next May and one the year after. Can’t say much about them yet though!

Q) The Death House is a fantasy novel set away from the modern world. It has a story of young love which is heart-breaking and actually made me cry! I loved that the plot revolved around a never-ending threat of being sent to the sanatorium. What was the inspiration behind this plot?

A) I’d written a short story called ‘Snow Angels’ for a British Fantasy Society anthology a few years ago, and it was set in a similar institution and although that had a much more supernatural element to the story, I knew I wanted to revisit those characters and that world again. I don’t overly enjoy writing short stories, so when I do I tend to use them as ideas playgrounds for novels (my trilogy for children, The Nowhere Chronicles, came out of a short story called The Nowhere Man). I’m very happy that Snow Angels morphed into The Death House as I’m really quite proud of that book.

Q) With 13 Minutes and Behind Her Eyes, you have sold the TV/movie rights. I personally think AnnaLynne Mccord would make an ideal Natasha- 13 Minutes. What is your ideal casting for the characters?

A) I have no idea! I never really ‘see’ characters, because I’m always on the inside of them! It really is a blank page to me. I’m quite mercenary though, I’d like whoever is a big box office draw 😉

Q) You have received huge praise from fellow authors, with quotes from Stephen King and Harlan Coben on your covers. How did you feel when saw their comments of praise?

A) When Stephen King mentioned The Death House in the New York Times, it came completely out of the blue – the book wasn’t even out in the States at that time – and I sat on the sofa literally shaking. It was such an amazing moment. You can get so caught up in the business of writing, that you forget what drove you to do it in the first place – the stories written that you loved reading. And King was/is a total hero of mine. His books saw me through boarding school. So yeah, that was amazing, and then when he read and loved Behind Her Eyes that was just the icing on the cake. And of course it’s also brilliant to see a Coben quote on your book! I’ve been very very lucky with the people who have been generous enough to blurb my work.

Q) With Behind Her Eyes it is even incorporated into the book description, to not give the ending away. “Don’t Trust This Book, Don’t Trust These People, Don’t Trust Yourself And whatever you do, DON’T give away that ending…” I was lucky enough to read this in 2016, before I saw any reviews containing spoilers. Was it frustrating to read reviews that spoiled the ending?

A) Actually there haven’t been too many reviews that have mentioned the ending, and what I’m most grateful for is that no one spoiled the ending before the book came out. Even people who didn’t like it were careful not to give anything away. It’s been out a couple of months now though, so I’m sure there are plenty who comment on it. I figure most people don’t trawl through reviews before buying though. They may look at stars etc, but I doubt they read loads. If they’re anything like me they’ll just have a peek at ‘Look Inside’ and see if they like it.

Similarly, how do you deal with negative reviews?

Oh I don’t mind them. People are perfectly entitled not to like something. I certainly don’t like everything I read. Also, with a book like Behind Her Eyes it was always going to be divisive. It’s a love or hate book.

Q) 2017 has seen some amazing new releases, what is on your TBR pile? and what has been your favourites so far? 

A) I think the world is in for a treat with ‘Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine’ by Gail Honeyman. It’s such a lovely book – so dark in places, so completely Bridget Jones in others. I think I described it as Bridget Jones does Dexter, but that doesn’t do it justice. It’s a joy of a book. My TBR pile is massive at the moment. Just finished Simon Toyne’s wonderful ‘The boy who saw’ which is the next in his Solomon Creed series. Such rich storytelling and so moving. I also have a crush on Creed. Christopher Golden’s ‘Ararat’ is out soon and that’s a great kind of The Thing on a mountain book. My favourite ‘people up a mountain’ book of this year and there seem to be a few of those coming out.

I’ve got the new M R Carey, my mum has stolen the new Sharon Bolton which I need to get back, Tammy Cohen’s ‘They all fall down’ sounds ingenious, and then I also have ‘Exquisite’ by Sarah Stovell, ‘Six Stories’ by Matt Wesolowkski, and ‘Gather the daughters’ by Jennie Melamed, which all sound brilliant. I’m currently reading ‘Goblin’ by Josh Malerman which is a great collection – a Derry for a new generation.

I’m very lucky in getting sent so many proofs, and now I always make sure to buy the ebook when it comes out because I’m so lucky to get to read such good stories early.

Q) what has been your favourite moment, of the success of Behind Her Eyes?

A) Well, getting to Number One on the Sunday Times Bestsellers was probably the moment, but when we went in at Number two I did have a cry. In the park. While walking my dog. Which was totally uncool 😉

Q) What’s next, are we allowed any snippets of info, on what you’re currently working on? 

A) Nope, can’t give anything away there until announcements have been made!


Credit for photo: Lou Abercrombie

Authors Web page:
Twitter: @SarahPinborough

*Huge thanks to Sarah for answering my (slightly mammoth) Q&A. I wish you much success in your future writing career and can’t wait to hear news of the latest book! 🙂