While I read a wide variety of genres and authors, I’ve kind of fallen into a dark hole of murder, psychological thrillers, and mysteries of a more sinister manner during my May crime fest!
These three particular novels caught my attention and gripped me to the point I was reading when I should have been writing, reading while cooking dinner, and snatching minutes here and there, desperate to find out what happened next.
Another Mother by Amanda James
I’ve read a few of Amanda’s psychological thrillers, enjoying them all. Filled with suspense and a domesticity touched by fingers of darkness, Another Mother didn’t disappoint. It had me chewing my finger nails, rooting for Lu in her brave moments, worrying for her safety in the danger spots.
The blurb says... Adopted at birth, for years Lu has secretly dreamt of finding her birth mother but childhood bullying has left her with a lack of confidence. When a tragic accident changes her life forever it sets her on a mission to get in contact with her birth mother and find out the reasons behind her adoption.
When she tracks down her mother in Cornwall there is an emotional reunion and the pair begin to form a relationship. But is everything as wonderful as it appears or has Lu walked into a nightmare?
The twists and turns in this book are many; just when you think you have it sussed... that final twist will have you saying, ‘wow, I didn’t see that coming.’
Not only does Amanda tell a thrilling story, she paints her settings in Cornwall so brilliantly you can picture yourself there, walking the streets of St Ives, looking out across the sparkling ocean, or walking the beach with the sand between your toes.
The Dry by Jane Harper
This debut novel is a compulsive read for sure. From the very first page I was hooked. With no nails left to bite it was a tense read fuelled by the unforgiving Australian heat. With simmering tension from the very start; a horrific triple-murder in a small isolated community where fingers are quickly pointed, I knew there had to be more to it.
The blurb says... Amid the worst drought to ravage Australia in a century, it hasn't rained in small country town Kiewarra for two years. Tensions in the community become unbearable when three members of the Hadler family are brutally murdered. Everyone thinks Luke Hadler, who committed suicide after slaughtering his wife and six-year-old son, is guilty.
Policeman Aaron Falk returns to the town of his youth for the funeral of his childhood best friend, and is unwillingly drawn into the investigation. As questions mount and suspicion spreads through the town, Falk is forced to confront the community that rejected him twenty years earlier. Because Falk and Luke Hadler shared a secret, one which Luke's death threatens to unearth.
Jumping between the current story of the murder of the Hadler family, and the past storyline which tells why Policeman Aaron Falk is still a target for the pent-up emotions from 20 years before, is seamless. The twin narratives keep you interested and build to a final twist for both present and past.
The Dry pulls you into the claustrophobia and simmering tension of this small town with its lack of water, dust, burning sun and the ever present possibility of fire. It has you fearing for Falk’s safety at every turn of the page.
Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh
This is Clare’s third novel and just as addictive as the other two. Now, I have a confession... I haven’t finished this one yet, but loving ever page with the ‘just one more chapter, one more page’, even when it’s really late! Clare writes such brilliant twisting psychological stories with believable characters and situations.
The Blurb says... One year ago, Caroline Johnson chose to end her life brutally: a shocking suicide planned to match that of her husband just months before. Their daughter, Anna, has struggled to come to terms with their loss ever since.
Now with a young baby of her own, Anna misses her mother more than ever and starts to ask questions about her parents' deaths. But by digging up the past, is she putting her future in danger? Sometimes it's safer to let things lie...
This quote on Amazon from Jane Corry sums it up...
"I devoured every page of this addictive, complex, multi-viewpoint spider's web of plot and clever characterisation. The big twist took me completely by surprise - but even this was overshadowed by the shock of the last page. No cheating. You're in for a treat" (JANE CORRY, author of My Husband's Wife and Blood Sisters)
Now I’m aborting all other tasks to finish this book today!