Anne Bonny #BookReview The Island by Ragnar Jonasson 5* #CrimeFiction #Icelandic #Hulda #Triology

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The Island by Ragnar Jonasson
My Own Copy ~ Hardback

Synopsis ~

Four friends visit the island.

But only three return . . .

Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsdóttir is sent to the isolated island of Elliðaey to investigate and soon finds haunting similarities with a previous case – a young woman found murdered ten years ago in the equally desolate Westfjords.

Is there a patient killer stalking these barren outposts?

As Hulda navigates a sinister game constructed of smoke and mirrors she is convinced that no one is telling the truth, including those closest to her.

But who will crack first? And what secrets is the island hiding?

Haunting, suspenseful and as chilling as an Icelandic winter, The Island follows one woman’s journey to find the truth hidden in the darkest shadows, and shine a light on her own dark past.

My Review ~

The Island is the much anticipated follow-up to The Darkness Hulda Hermannsdottir #2. The trilogy is working backwards and with this title we are transported to the 1980’s and 1990’s with a case from Hulda’s past…

‘I’m so glad you’re home’
The novel opens in 1988 in Kopavogur. We are aware that it is a scene with a babysitter and the 7yr old child they are watching. But we are unaware of who they are and how they fit into the storyline. But as usual, all will slowly be revealed…
‘There were two of them’

The novel jumps to 1987 and we follow a young couple very much in love, that are travelling from Isafjordur to Mjoifjordur. They are telling old Icelandic ghost stories of witch burnings and black magic.
Across Iceland Hulda is being overlooked for promotion and is beginning to feel the burn of being a female in a male dominated career. Especially when the position in question is given to a colleague with less police experience than Hulda.
The team are made aware of a young woman in her 20’s missing from a holiday home in Mjoifjordur. Inspector Andres of the Isafjordur police attends due to the remote location of the area. He finds a deserted holiday home and the body of a dead female.
Was this an accident? A fall? or Murder?

‘Andres had an uncomfortable foreboding that a terrible crime had been committed here’

A potential murderer is quickly identified and the case appears to be solved. But did he do it? Or is the case being solved far too quickly and far too easily?

The novel now jumps to 1997, It is the 10th anniversary of the victim’s death. The anniversary is dragging up feelings of guilt and a desire for the truth to be told. But can the individual reach the police before the killer reaches them…
‘I think it’s time the truth came out’

‘Some crimes are so despicable that revenge is justified’

Hulda is currently alone, with no one in her life. But a search for a father that has never known she existed…
‘She felt so alone in the world, so lonely’

The novel kept me guessing right up to the last pages. I thought I had it all figured out! that was until the author’s big reveal. I absolutely CANNOT wait to read the next title in the trilogy… The Mist (2020 release).
Ragnar Jonasson is so very clever! 5* 

RJ
Ragnar Jonasson
Website
Twitter
My Review of The Darkness

#BookReview Innocent Blood by @DStuartDavies #2 #DIPaulSnow #Trilogy

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Innocent Blood by David Stuart Davies
Synopsis:

A child’s body found in woodland. Parents torn apart by grief. But this is only the first victim in a series of apparently motiveless crimes. Detective Inspector Paul Snow, heading the enquiry, must discover the pattern and reveal the chilling truth as a cunning and violent murderer becomes desperate and even more unpredictable. Haunted by secrets of his own, the complex DI Snow races against the clock, following a murderous trail that leads all the way to a dark and shocking climax.

Innocent Blood, set in Yorkshire in the 1980s, is the second in the gritty series featuring DI Paul Snow and maintains the high level of tension and dramatic surprises of the first, Brothers in Blood.

My review:

Innocent Blood is the second novel in the DI Paul Snow trilogy! The plot follows a series of child murders in Yorkshire in the 1980s. Snow is still battling to keep his secret and the case grows more and more intense.
The case will strike close to Snow’s secret. Can he maintain his cover?

The prologue opens in autumn 1984, with a drunk driver involved in a coach crash. There are a series of children’s screams and you quickly become aware, this is no ordinary crash!

Spring 1985, Snow is leading the arrest on a violent murderer. When a call comes in about a missing little girl! Snow arrives at the parent’s house to discover their nine year old daughter Gillian has been missing overnight. It isn’t long before a call comes in and a body matching the description has been found at Mollicar woods.

The body is badly beaten and bruised. Pathologist Chris McKinnon ascertains the death is via strangulation, with no obvious sexual motive.
What is the motive? Who murders young girls and leaves their bodies in the woods?

As the reader we become aware Snow, is still battling his demons. To hide his homosexual feelings, this is something that will lead Snow, down a dark path! There are a series of chapters from the killers perspective, they make for haunting reading but offer little in the way of motive. What is it, that this killer wants the police to see?

A week passes with no progress and then the killer strikes again! Snow needs to fine the motive and quickly before more young girls are snatched and killed! Eventually, through further investigation Snow uncovers the pattern/motive. When he does, it becomes apparent it ties in with the coach crash! With two survivors left, Snow must protect their lives at all costs.
But deep in the shadows, another disturbed man lurks and he wants revenge on Snow……..

This novel sets the series up perfectly for the third in the series Blood Rites. Which is set to be released this November 2017.
A thoroughly good historical crime fiction read! 5*

*My review for Blood Rites, the third novel & new release was blogged earlier today!*

New release review: Mississippi Blood by Greg Iles – 5*

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Mississippi Blood by Greg Iles

The synopsis:

A father on trial for murder. A son whose world is falling apart.

Former prosecutor Penn Cage sees his world collapsing around him. The woman he loves is gone and his father, Dr Tom Cage, once a pillar of the community, is about to be tried for the murder of a former lover.

For decades Tom Cage has had a second son known to almost no one. It is this bitter son who set in motion the murder case against Dr Cage. But a murder charge may be the least of Tom’s worries.

The Double Eagle group, a savage splinter cell of the KKK, will stop at nothing to ensure that Tom either takes the fall for their past deeds, or takes his secrets to an early grave.

Unable to trust anyone – not even his own mother – Penn battles to discover the secret history of both the Cage family and the South itself, risking the only thing he has left to gamble: his life.

My review:

So the wait is finally over, for the 3rd instalment in the Penn cage trilogy. I discovered Natchez Burning (#1) back in 2014, it was my book of the year! I then went on to devour The Bone Tree (#2) at the same fast pace. I can’t recommend this trilogy or series, highly enough! It is absolutely first rate in terms of depth, complexity and emotions. Greg Iles doesn’t tell you what to think, he just delivers the facts! You will feel, what you will feel!

The novel opens 9 weeks after the events of The Bone Tree. Those familiar with the trilogy, will know there were some catastrophic developments within the novel, yet we were still left waiting for answers! There are some characters from within the series and some new ones on the journey too. Keisha Harvin was one of my particular favourites in this novel. Keisha is sassy, no nonsense and a veteran of war.

Ultimately the novel centres around the court case where Dr Tom Cage, local physician and hero is on trial for the murder of his former nurse Viola Turner. His son and local Major Penn cage, must navigate the many discoveries and emotions thrown into this case. This case is exceptionally complex, not only due to its themes of race. But the added scheming of the Double Eagles (a spin off from the KKK) an extremely violent and racist group, hell bent on covering up their past crimes. Which lead to the pasts of both Dr Cage and Nurse Viola. It features the corrupt cops/judges, meth trade, blackmail and bribes rife in the deep south’s past and present.

One particular moving scene is between Lincoln Turner (love child of Dr Cage and Viola Turner) and Penn. Where the story line touches upon the different lives they lead due to race, opportunity and secrets their lives hold. I found this incredibly moving and a very accurate contrast between the two characters. Brothers by blood but an entirely different raising. Obviously the novel has a theme of racism, but it’s not just a plot focused on solely racism. It explores race in many forms such as politics, justice, interracial relationships, framing of black men for crimes, fear in the black community, the collaboration between police & KKK, secrecy and sadly that, that it is just the way that it is/was. I did ponder that the excuse, it was another time/era, is an all too familiar approach to historical racism. But as the novel points out “Times change, but not at the same speed, everywhere”.

I was surprised not to see the quote sins of the father……….
Due to the complex father/son relationships portrayed. However, it was more focused around, the racism of the past equates to consequences for the future and “Mississippi Blood, beat but not broke” powerful words indeed. This is possibly one of the most brutally honest novels, you will ever read. Just when you think you have a handle on the plot, it will shift and become much more complex. Highly recommend 5*

#1 Natchez Burning
#2 The Bone Tree
#3 Mississippi Blood
Penn cage trilogy within the series.

Authors Links:
http://www.gregiles.com/
Twitter: @GregIles

My picks of the Kindle Monthly deals April!

Every month there is a huge variety of Kindle Ebook’s that go on offer. These are my picks of books I have read and loved. Also what I treated myself to this month.

Picks:

fall of giants KFthe black echo MCMy name is leon KDW

Bella Poldark WGthe apprentice TGThe poet MC

The American Boy ATBloodstream LV

In no particular order:

Fall Of Giants by Ken Follett (Century Trilogy #1)
The Black Echo by Michael Connelly (Harry Bosch #1)
My Name Is Leon by Kit De Waal
Bella Poldark by Winston Graham (Poldark series #12)
The Apprentice by Tess Gerritsen (Rizzoli & Isles #2)
The Poet by Michael Connelly (Jack Mcevoy #1) – Terrifying reading, so very good!
The American Boy by Andrew Taylor
Bloodstream by Luca Veste (DI Murphy & DI Rossi #3)

My buys this month:

The orphans Take PJInspector Chopra VKspotlight

The Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff
The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan (baby Ganesh agency #1)
Betrayal- The Crisis In The Catholic Church – Spotlight by The Investigative Globe (non-fiction)

Pam Jenoff has been on my wish list for quite some time, as I am a huge fan of the WW2 genre in fiction and non-fiction. I have been aware of the baby Ganesh agency series also, my daughter was desperate to read them due to her obsession with Indian culture. Spotlight, I watched the movie quite some time ago and found it very emotionally moving. I also bought it for my brother as he began studying journalism at University this September.

A variety of picks, hopefully something for everyone!