🕵🏻‍♀️’For Anyone Who Likes A Good #Mystery’ Fiona reviews Inhuman Acts by @BrookeLFrench1 for Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Today’s team review is from Fiona.

Find out more about Fiona here https://fionaforsythauthor.co.uk/blog/

Orange rose and Rosie's Book Review Team
Rosie’s Book Review Team

Fiona has been reading Inhuman Acts by Brooke L. French.

Book cover for Inhuman Acts by Brooke L French set against a sculpture of a man from a free photo from Pixabay.
Inhuman Acts by Brooke L. French

I’ve seen arguments over what the word “competent” means in a book review and let me make it clear that in my world it is a compliment. In this book, the plotting, pace and sense of disaster are all more than competent, they work together to result in a read-in-one-go thriller with a hugely attractive hero and an intriguing thread of environmental questioning running through it. The signs are that it is the first in a series and I am very glad of it!

Lettuce Duquesne has friends, and a job she loves, but she also has the tragedy of her sister’s death hanging over her. She is an intelligent and likeable main character, and cleverly, the author lets you see her through other people’s eyes as you are making up your mind about her. And other people like her.
When a case of rabies transmission arises in Chattanooga, Letty sees the potential for a disaster and though she is unable to persuade everyone of the seriousness of the situation,  she handles their skepticism as a scientist should, by collecting and testing the data. She teams up with Andrew, a cop on enforced leave, and Pete a local vet, to track down what could be the worst outbreak of rabies in the USA for decades.

French handles the science extremely well, managing that crucial balance between scientific jargon and readability. She doesn’t hype the fear of the disease any more than the plot demands, so we don’t get overblown panic and doom, but we do feel the tension as Letty discovers more about what is happening in Chattanooga. I found this approach made the book credible and a page-turner. Oh and I didn’t see the end coming until way past I should! French treats her readers fairly in the “working out of the puzzle” part of the book.

Characters are human, realistic and fallible, and I particularly liked the Andrew/Mary dynamic where every serious cop conversation took place against the background of shuttling the kids around or making banana pudding.

A book for anyone who likes a good mystery, intelligently told.

Orange rose book description
Book description

A deadly, incurable disease creeps silent through Chattanooga. And its victims aren’t random.

When inexplicable human rabies cases appear in Tennessee, disease ecologist Letty Duquesne jumps at the chance to trace the virus back to its source. But the closer Letty gets to finding the outbreak’s origin, the further someone will go to stop her.

With an unwanted promotion threatening to take Letty far from the fieldwork she loves, this outbreak feels like her last chance to make a difference. It’s not something she can ignore, especially now. The spillover of zoonotic diseases to the human population is on the rise and violent animal attacks-like the one that killed her sister-are becoming all too common.

Something in nature has gone very wrong.

Local authorities would rather she go home, but Letty can track a source animal like no one else. With the help of disgraced detective Andrew Marsh, Letty follows the virus’s epidemiological trail. But her every move is watched. And the source animal is closer than she thinks.

Inhuman Acts is a pulse-pounding thriller. Gripping and intricately paced, Brooke L. French’s debut novel will keep you on the edge of your seat.

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📚’Here is a man who takes risks almost as a matter of course’. Fiona reviews Tudor #Histfic Raleigh by @tonyriches for Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Today’s team review is from Fiona.

Find out more about her here https://fionaforsythauthor.co.uk/blog/

Orange rose and Rosie's Book Review Team
Rosie’s Book Review Team

Fiona has been reading Raleigh by Tony Riches.

Book cover for Raleigh: Tudor Adventurer by Tony Riches
Raleigh: Tudor Adventurer by Tony Riches

It is particularly important that, as well as telling a good story, an historical novel makes the reader feel comfortable with the era being covered: informative enough to be interesting, entertaining enough to make one want to find out more. It is so easy for a book to turn into an information dump.

Fortunately, within a few pages, I knew I was in expert hands, and settled down to enjoy “Raleigh”, marvelling at the life of a true adventurer. I loved that fact that Riches sets the opening scenes in the London of the theatre, introducing the romantic poetry-writing side of Raleigh which runs through the novel. The reader is reminded of the many facets of a true Elizabethan, the intelligence and fascination with learning, as well as the thirst for war and adventure which is nowadays so alien.

And this is what I take away from this book, that a man like Raleigh was so full of schemes, so outward-looking that he never seems to stay still. I had not been aware of his own many voyages nor of his exploits in Ireland, and it gave me a much better understanding of his willingness to risk his wealth in setting up a colony in Virginia. Here is a man who takes risks almost as a matter of course, for whom the horizon is always thousands of miles in front of him, and nevertheless makes straight for it whenever he can.

Raleigh is narrator in this book, and a straightforward one, though he lets more slip than maybe he realises: notably, his personal relationships, despite the protestations of love for his wife and sons, clearly take second place to his restless spirit. When he is younger, his loyalty to his Queen and his need for her favour seem to be a result of this restlessness and it is an older and wiser Raleigh who, at the end of the book, grieves for his royal mistress and cannot trust her successor.

On reaching the end I did expect that Riches would be continuing Raleigh’s story with the exploits under James 1, surely as fascinating as anything in his earlier life. But this book is the third in a trilogy of Elizabethan characters, and the author’s note indicates that he is heading in another direction. I am hoping there may be a time when Raleigh is called for duty once more.

Orange rose book description
Book description

Tudor adventurer, courtier, explorer and poet, Sir Walter Raleigh has been called the last true Elizabethan.

He didn’t dance or joust, didn’t come from a noble family, or marry into one. So how did an impoverished law student become a favourite of the queen, and Captain of the Guard?

The story which began with the Tudor trilogy follows Walter Raleigh from his first days at the Elizabethan Court to the end of the Tudor dynasty.

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