Dead Hope by Nicky Wells
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Dead Hope is a romantic suspense/ thriller. Thirty one year old Cat Hope, spoilt socialite daughter of rock star legends, finds herself in front of a judge when caught in possession of class A drugs. She’s been in and out of rehab for years, so when the judge enforces a sentence which entails her getting a proper job, supporting herself and doing five hundred hours of community service rather than the expected prison sentence, Cat is rather shocked.
Sent immediately from the hearing to a small northern town with a new identity, Cat finds herself living her life as Annabelle Smith. With no educational qualifications the only job she can find is a lowly job in a digitisation company. Fellow worker Kay takes pity on her and helps her get settled, she intrigues him, it is obvious to him that she’s running away from something. Not that he can judge, his own background isn’t very rosy.
Kay helps Annabelle after a heroic day at the office and a stiff drink for the shock turns into a deeper conversation about the past. Annabelle tells Kay about her parents and together they decide to find out more about an event which happened more than twenty years ago and which has been haunting lives ever since. However soon their search triggers red flags amongst others who have been keeping secrets and as events unfold, Cat is exposed to danger and Kay will do anything to rescue her.
An easy read, slight twist on a rags to riches storyline. A well paced suspense probably more for romance readers looking to spread their reading wings a little wider than those into deep dark thrillers. The rock theme which this author is known for is thread throughout the storyline. Enjoyable read.
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DEAD HOPE is the new thriller by Nicky Wells, bringing you a delicious cocktail of crime, suspense, and romance:
Cat Hope doesn’t want to go to prison. She needs a job, and she needs it fast: judge’s orders.
Kay Mahon, office worker by day and hacker by night, is on the run from a past life that he’d rather not remember.
When their paths cross, they begin to investigate the truth behind the deaths of Cat’s parents, the successful rock star couple Jackie and Adam Hope. Little do they know that their quest is putting Cat in grave danger.
About Nicky Wells: Love & Thrills
Nicky Wells writes captivating romance and breathtaking thrillers featuring famous (or infamous!) feisty heroes and extraordinary villains. DEAD HOPE is her eighth book and the first published novel in her “Wake Up Dead” themed thriller series, with the next two books scheduled for release through the course of 2017 and 2018. Nicky has previously published seven works of romantic fiction both with US publishing house, Sapphire Star Publishing, and independently.
Born in Germany, Nicky moved to the United Kingdom in 1993 and currently lives in Lincoln with her husband and their two boys. She loves listening to rock music, dancing, and eating lobsters. When she’s not writing, she’s hopelessly addicted to reading crime novels by the truck load.
Nicky’s books: Sophie’s Turn | Sophie’s Run | Sophie’s Encore | Spirits of Christmas
| Fallen for Rock | Fairy Tale in New York | Seven Years Bad Sex
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Question: You’ve been a bit quiet this past year or so. What’s been happening? Where have you been?
Nicky: After the release of my last novel, the romantic comedy “Seven Years Bad Sex,” I decided to take a little breather and to allow myself some time to think about where I was going to go next, writing-wise. I took a whole six months off, and I spent that time with family and decorating a part of our house. Wouldn’t you know it, six months flew by, and I found myself brimming with ideas for not one but several books, and I got busy writing and planning and writing again.
Question: Tell us about DEAD HOPE. How did you come up with the idea?
Nicky: DEAD HOPE was born with the working title of “Deep Cover”. When the idea came to me, I was still planning to write a romance featuring rock stars, and the key nugget is: what would happen if you transplanted a world-famous rock star into an office job like you and me might hold down? Moreover, what would happen if you removed that rock star from their natural habitat, the glittering metropolis, and placed them into a sleepy rural town? Romantic and comedy ideas flowed galore.
Question: So, DEAD HOPE was going to be a romantic comedy?
Nicky: A romantic comedy-slash-suspense, yes. That was the plan.
Question: How did you get from romantic comedy-slash-suspense to thriller? That’s quite a leap.
Nicky: It might look that way, but it was actually a gradual progression. I’m an OCD planner. I can’t write if I haven’t got the book planned out in minute detail, so I sat down and started weaving all my wonderful ideas together. But there was one central question I couldn’t answer: Why. Why would this whole thing happen? What would bring the rock star to the office job in the middle of nowhere?
Nicky: I did a spider map of all the possible scenarios that could have got the rock star into his unusual circumstances, and I got a bit carried away. I allowed myself to really think out of the box, and suddenly one scenario jumped out at me that turned the plot entirely on its head. Funny how a small idea can prompt a cataclysmic change! My hero turned into a heroine, and while she’s the daughter of a famous rock star couple, she isn’t a celebrity in her own right. But at that point, the romance theme was still dominant.
Question: What happened next?
Nicky: I finished planning and started writing. And as soon as I started writing, the thriller and crime ideas just took off. This baby wanted to be something completely different from what I had envisaged, so I had to abandon writing and re-plan. I went deep on the logistics of my core crime, my mystery, and I learned quite a bit about court and police procedures and forensics, more so than is evident in the story but lots of stuff that’ll come in handy in my next stories. In this way, DEAD HOPE turned from a romantic suspense into a crime thriller with a strong romance subplot.
Question: But there is still some romance?
Nicky: There is still some romance. J
Question: What about blood and gore?
Nicky: That, not so much. I don’t like blood and gore and while there is some—it is a crime story, after all—the novel is all about solving the mystery. I guess I’m trying to follow in the tradition of Agatha Christie and Sue Grafton, not that I could ever hope to aspire to match their genius.
Question: Go on then, sell it to me. What’s DEAD HOPE all about?
Nicky: All right… here goes the elevator pitch!
A unique and delicious cocktail of crime, suspense and romance, “DEAD HOPE” is a compulsive page turner.
Cat Hope doesn’t want to go to prison. Kay Mahon is on the run from a past life that he’d rather not remember. When their paths cross, they begin to investigate the truth behind the deaths of Cat’s parents, the successful rock star couple Jackie and Adam Hope. Little do they know that their quest is putting Cat in grave danger…
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