Anne Bonny Q&A with #Author of The Savage Shore @david_hewson #NicCosta #Series #CrimeFiction #ItalianMafia #Italy @blackthornbks #TheSavageShore @midaspr

cover
The Savage Shore by David Hewson
Review To Follow

Synopsis ~

The ‘Ndrangheta is a ruthless mafia organisation, one of the richest and most powerful organised crime groups in the world. Completely impenetrable to outsiders, merciless when crossed, they run the savage Calabrian coast of Italy, their influence everywhere. So why has the head of this feared mob, Lo Spettro, offered to turn state witness?

Detective Nic Costa is sent deep into the mountains to infiltrate this mafia family, with Lo Spettro’s help. With a new identity, Nic becomes one of their own. But one slip up would mean the end not just for the investigation, but for Nic, and his whole team.

Q&A ~

Q) For the readers, can you talk us through your background and the synopsis of your new novel?

A) I’ve been an author for more than twenty five years now, with thirty books or so (you stop counting after a while) to my name. The Savage Shore is a new instalment in a story that started nearly twenty years ago with A Season for the Dead which introduced a young detective called Nic Costa, working with a state police team in the historic centre of Rome. Over the years Nic’s spent most of his time on stories based in Rome, with occasional diversions to Venice and beyond.

When I decided to bring the old crew back, though, I decided to throw a spanner in the works. Usually they’re kings of a castle they know and control very well: Rome. But here they’re strangers in a strange land, sent to Calabria in the south of Italy where they’re meant to organise the defection of a gang lord into police custody so he can turn state witness.

The problem is no one knows who the gang lord is, how they can find him, how they can extricate him and his family safely out of a gang that would surely murder them all if they knew what was going on. To make contact Nic has to go undercover and pretend he’s part of the crime clan, and the rest of the team have to wait under false identities on the coast.

Pretty soon it appears nothing, in the fabled land of Calabria, is really what it seems.

Q) Can you talk us through the journey from idea, to writing and finally to publication?

A) I tend to be very logical about these things and decide some key issued to begin with. The first here was location: I knew it wasn’t going to be in Rome, and I was very interested in Calabria as a backdrop. It’s got an amazing culture and history of its own – not just Italian but ancient Greece as well. And it’s the home of a crime gang which is huge and very powerful, the ’Ndrangheta.

After the location came the style of the narrative. As I said I wanted Nic and co to be strangers in a strange land. So I hit upon the idea of making them become almost criminals themselves, having to hide their true identities, which isn’t easy given they’re decent people who don’t like to keep things secret.

Another element of the book is that each section of the story is preceded by a brief extract from a fictional tourist guide to the area. This gives the readers some context to the story, but also, as the narrative proceeds, we begin to realise that this device is also part of the main story too.

Then I needed an opening which came when I was driving round Reggio, the capital of Calabria. I invented a bar for crooks, an illegal immigrant forced to work behind it, and a monkey with a taste for drink. Then in walk some people with guns…

Q) What are your favourite authors and recommended reads?

A) That’s always a tough one to answer. I’m reluctant to name living rime authors because you always leave out someone you should have mentioned and the likelihood is they’re going to notice. So… current authors of non-fiction, Mary Beard for her great work on Rome, the history books of Tom Holland. Dead authors: Robert Graves, Mario Puzo, Mary Renault.

I, Claudius is one of my favourite books, something I reread from time to time for the beautiful simplicity of its writing and structure, and the timeless nature of the story it tells: a decent man becomes the monster he loathes.

Q) What were your childhood/teenage favourite reads?

A) Anything I could lay my hands on in my local library: Ray Bradbury, lots and lots of science fiction by people whose names escape me now, Conan Doyle, Saki, HP Lovecraft…

Q) What are you currently reading?

A) The Garden of the Finzi-Continis by Giorgio Bassani, a story about the Jewish community in Ferrara just before the start of the Second World War. A very unusual book that’s both an emotional story of failed loved but also darkened by the coming of fascism to people who’ve no idea the world is changing.

Q) What has been your favourite moment of being a published author?

A) My favourite moment is always the one when you know a book is finished – edited, revised, done.

Q) Who has been your source of support/encouragement, throughout the writing process?

A) You always rely on the advice and support of agent and your editors. Without them we’d never be able to achieve a thing. Writers are lone wolves but we need to connect with the flock too. I’ve been lucky in that I’ve worked with some of the best over the years.

DH
David Hewson
Website
Twitter
Facebook
Instagram

***Don’t miss the other bloggers on the blog tour***
banner2

Anne Bonny #BookReview Never Tell by@LisaGardnerBks 5* #NewRelease #CrimeFiction #Thriller #Mystery #DDWarren #Series ‘The novel is a dark and twisted web of murder, arson, secrets and lies’

cover
Never Tell by Lisa Gardner
Review Copy

Synopsis ~

One death might be an accident.
Two deaths looks like murder.

A man is shot dead in his own home, and his pregnant wife, Evie, is found with the gun in her hands.

Detective D.D. Warren instantly recognises her. Sixteen years ago, Evie also shot her own father. That killing was ruled an accident.

D.D. doesn’t believe in coincidences. But this case isn’t as open and shut as it first appears, and her job is to discover the truth.

Evie might be a victim.

Or she might be about to get away with murder again.

My Review ~

‘My Husband’
‘He’s been shot. He’s dead’ – Evie

Never Tell focuses on protagonist Evie Carter, her past, her present and the men she leaves dead in her wake.
But is Evie innocent or guilty of murder?
Surely no one can be a victim in both cases?
Do coincidences really occur in first degree murder cases?

Detective D.D Warren is a workaholic cop with the Boston homicide unit. She was the police officer on the case of Evie’s fathers murder. When he was shot at his computer desk 16yrs ago. Warren becomes convinced Evie is a killer with secrets to hide.

‘For the second time in her life, Evie Carter’s gonna get away with murder’

At the scene of Evie’s husbands murder, in the present day. Evie remains calm, composed and cooperative as she is charged with murder. She shows no signs of physical abuse, tests positive for GSR and makes no denials. Evie is also five months pregnant…

‘I haven’t even met my baby yet, and I’m already filled with so many regrets’

Flora Dane, kidnap victim and confidential informant of warren; throws another spanner in the works when she recognises Conrad (Evie’s husband) from her past with kidnapper Jacob Ness. If Conrad is connected to Jacob, is he a predator? Was Evie just protecting herself and her unborn child?

Warren believes the answers must lie in the past and begins digging into Evie’s fathers crime scene, the potential motives and evidence. Evie’s father was a Harvard professor and mathematical genius with a photographic memory. What secrets lay behind what happened that day? And what drives a pregnant wife to killer her husband? What is Evie’s motive?

The novel is a dark and twisted web of murder, arson, secrets and lies. Gripping 5*

LG
Lisa Gardner
Website
Twitter

Anne Bonny #BookReview From The Shadows by @gr_halliday 4* #NewRelease #CrimeFiction @HarvillSecker #DIMonicaKennedy #Series #Scotland

cover
From The Shadows by G. R. Halliday
Review Copy

Synopsis ~

A stunning, atmospheric police procedural set against the grit of Inverness and the raw beauty of the Scottish Highlands, this is the first book in the DI Monica Kennedy series.

Sixteen-year-old Robert arrives home late. Without a word to his dad, he goes up to his bedroom. Robert is never seen alive again.

A body is soon found on the coast of the Scottish Highlands. Detective Inspector Monica Kennedy stands by the victim in this starkly beautiful and remote landscape. Instinct tells her the case won’t begin and end with this one death.

Meanwhile, Inverness-based social worker Michael Bach is worried about one of his clients whose last correspondence was a single ambiguous text message; Nichol Morgan has been missing for seven days.

As Monica is faced with catching a murderer who has been meticulously watching and waiting, Michael keeps searching for Nichol, desperate to find him before the killer claims another victim.

My Review ~

From The Shadows, is a brand new Scottish crime series set in the remote location of the Highlands. The novel focuses on the investigation of a missing teenage boy, bringing together both local copper and social worker.
What happened to 16yr old Robert and why does there remain no sighting of the boy, in the days following his disappearance?

The characters of DI Monica Kennedy and social worker Michael Bach add extra depth to the story. They offer the opportunity for us to view the case not only as a criminal endeavour but from a social point also.
When Robert disappears one Friday evening after receiving some bizarre messages. A body is discovered the following morning posed, showing signs of torture and with something lodged in the throat. Is the body Robert’s or do the police have two separate cases to work?
4*

GRH
G. R. Halliday
Twitter

Anne Bonny #BookReview The Stalker by @Alexincrimeland 4* #NewRelease #Psychological #Thriller #Scotland #WilliamLorimer

cover
The Stalker by Alex Gray
Review Copy

Synopsis ~

A murder on their doorstep
A case that’s too close to home . . .

The body of a young woman has been discovered in Bellahouston park, the second in a matter of months. It’s clear to Detective Superintendent William Lorimer of Police Scotland that they have a repeat killer on their hands, who is sure to strike again.

Lucky for DSI Lorimer that his wife, Maggie, is miles away from potential danger, touring Scotland to promote her first book. Faced with strangers at every event, Maggie doesn’t notice the quiet, non-descript man sitting in the back row.

But he has noticed Maggie Lorimer. And soon his will be a face she never forgets.

My Review ~

‘Darkness, be my friend’

The Stalker is a police procedural novel which surround the stalking of a female. But this isn’t just any female, this is Maggie Lorimer, wife to DSI William Lorimer head of the major incident team in Glasgow. Maggie is currently touring Scotland to promote her new book. Which makes her isolated, lonely and vulnerable. We become aware as we read on, that someone is following Maggie, someone who has an unhealthy obsession.

The title opens with DSI Lorimer at the crime scene of a murder victim in Bellahouston Park. The victim is in her 30s and has been strangled. Which draws a comparison to another recent case of a female found at Queens Park.
Is there a serial killer prowling the streets of Glasgow?

The novel continues and we learn more about the difficulty in prosecuting stalking as a crime and what is currently considered ‘enough’ to keep victims safe. With warning and court orders being the standard police pursuit.
The novel creates much rom for discussion with regards to the psychology of stalking. And what drives individual stalkers to pursue their victims. 4*

AG
Alex Gray
Website
Twitter

Anne Bonny #BookReview The Angry Sea by @jamesdeeganMC 5* #SAS #Action #Thriller #JohnCarr #Series @HQstories

cover
The Angry Sea by James Deegan ~ John Carr Series #2
Review Copy

Synopsis ~

Former SAS Sergeant Major John Carr is relaxing on a Spanish beach, when a man with dark eyes attracts his attention. Fixated on a group of young Britons, the man doesn’t notice Carr and soon moves on.

Within the hour, the Costa del Sol will be plunged into one of the most audacious and horrifying terrorist attacks Europe has ever seen.

In a co-ordinated strike, armed men storm both the beach and a cruise ship anchored further up the coast. But the terrorists – hiding personal greed under the veil of religious extremism – have an even bolder plan.

Constrained by the sensitive political situation, MI6 and the Prime Minister must confront the possibility of leading a secret operation against a brutal enemy. And then find the right man to head it . . .

Enter John Carr.

My Review ~

John Carr is back with another action packed read!
The novel opens in open court at the trial of Zeff Mahsoud, whom upon appeal is freed from HMP Belmarsh. The story surrounding Zeff is quite vague initially but then the title jumps ahead three months and we begin to fathom a connection to John Carr.

John Carr is retired from 22 SAS Sqn, leaving at the rank of Sgt Maj. Currently enjoying a holiday with his kids, Alice 17yrs and George 24yrs (currently awaiting selection) at Puerto Banus Beach.
In the distance is a cruise ship and we become acquainted with the ships crew onboard via their narrative. Then a suicide vest explodes, there is an armed man on board; murder and mayhem surely follows…

‘Cruise liners and tourists were just too big and soft and tempting a target’

When a terrorist on the beach opens fire. John and his son George jump into action. As the carnage of hate spills onto the beach, the terrorists locate their target. Under the hail of fire, John and George’s plan is to cease the bullets raining down.

‘Panicking got you killed’

After the attack, it is discovered 50 dead on the ship and approximately 30 dead on the beach. But what was the reasoning? Or was this just a senseless act of violence?
It is then discovered that three female hostages have been taken from the beach. And not just any hostages, one of them is the daughter of the Prime Minister Penelope Morgan.

‘There’s no point in kidnapping the daughter of the British Prime Minister just to kill her’

What is their motive in taking the PM’s daughter? What if you are the most powerful person in the country, but it is your position that may cost your child their life?
The UK government is in a tricky situation, as they can’t be seen to be negotiating with terrorist groups. They also have to plan deniable ops due to international law. John Carr is asked to establish and lead a team of men!

‘Combat was a drug, and he was a recovering addict’

Action-packed, with a cracking protagonist in SAS man John Carr 5*

JD
James Deegan
Twitter
My Review of Once A Pilgrim