🕵🏻‍♀️’I could almost feel the icy lake waters’. Rosie’s #Bookreview of #Mystery The Last Party by @claremackint0sh

The Last PartyThe Last Party by Clare Mackintosh

4 stars

The Last Party is a murder mystery set on the Welsh border.

It begins on New Year’s Day when members of the local town take to the lake waters for the annual New Year’s Day swim—but this year they find a body floating in the water. Local music celebrity Rhys Lloyd returned home to create an upmarket lakeside resort, The Shore; he’s a smalltown hero, so why would someone want him dead?

The border between England and Wales crosses the centre of the lake, and Leo from Cheshire Major Crimes works with Ffion from North Wales Police to unravel the mystery. At first it’s an awkward reunion for the duo after some anonymous New Year’s Eve celebrations.

The story dots back and forth between a New Year’s Eve party held at The Shore, and the current time investigation. Once the police start digging, it appears that Rhys had a long line of people who were unhappy with him.

The setting, although cold and bleak in the first days of January, worked well; I could almost feel the icy lake waters in my own bones as I read the story and I liked the genuine atmosphere of the Welsh town. The author built up the layers of mistrust and number of suspects which really muddied the waters for myself and the investigators.

A good start to a new crime series for DC Morgan, I shall be interested to see what her next investigation involves.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

 

Orange rose book description
Book description

At midnight, one of them is dead.
By morning, all of them are suspects.

It’s a party to end all parties, but not everyone is here to celebrate.

On New Year’s Eve, Rhys Lloyd has a house full of guests. His vacation homes on Mirror Lake are a success, and he’s generously invited the village to drink champagne with their wealthy new neighbors.

But by midnight, Rhys will be floating dead in the freezing waters of the lake.

On New Year’s Day, Ffion Morgan has a village full of suspects. The tiny community is her home, so the suspects are her neighbors, friends and family—and Ffion has her own secrets to protect.

With a lie uncovered at every turn, soon the question isn’t who wanted Rhys dead…but who finally killed him.

In a village with this many secrets, murder is just the beginning.

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🐉 Set in the Welsh Marches during the late 13th century. Rosie’s #Bookreview of #Histfic The Welsh Lord’s Convenient Bride by @LissaMorganAuth #TuesdayBookBlog

The Welsh Lord's Convenient BrideThe Welsh Lord’s Convenient Bride by Lissa Morgan

4 stars

The Welsh Lord’s Convenient Bride is historical romance set in the Welsh Marches during the late 13th century.

The Welsh Marches was a frontier land that straddled what we know today as the borders between England and Wales. In the middle ages it was a place of constant war and rebellion. As this story opens, Eleanor de Vraille travels to Castelle y Lleuad where she is to marry Rhun ab Owain as part of peace treaty deal. The treaty was agreed years ago between their respective fathers and now that Rhun is the Lord, he is ready to get married.

Both Rhun and the castle are, at first, hostile to Eleanor. She doesn’t speak Welsh and she is at a loss to know why Rhun dislikes her so much; she even considers returning to her English home, but there she would face a father who despises her. When a new uprising against the English king begins, Rhun will support his Welsh comrades, which forces Eleanor to choose sides.

I enjoyed Eleanor’s determination to break Rhun’s dislike of her. I haven’t read any other books in this setting and the author’s historical notes at the back were most interesting. A good debut novel.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

 

Orange rose book description
Book description

Enjoy the drama that unfolds in this medieval marriage of convenience…A wedding between enemiesA marriage to heal their scars

Hiding a disfigurement, Eleanor de Vraille is already lacking confidence when she arrives at her future husband’s cheerless Welsh castle. And Rhun ab Owain’s open disapproval of her does nothing to make her feel at ease. Their union is to seal peace between their families, nothing more. But Eleanor’s heart rebels—is she a fool to hope for any affection from this strong-willed nobleman with the dark glittering eyes?

From Harlequin Historical: Your romantic escape to the past.

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Book one of a new crime series set in Wales. Noelle reviews A Final Regret by @JeffreyJWarren, for Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Today’s team review is from Noelle. She blogs here https://saylingaway.wordpress.com

Rosie's #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Noelle has been reading A Final Regret by Jeff Warren

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A Final Regret: A Pembrokeshire Murder Mystery is the first in a planned series featuring Sergeant Alys Carey and Detective Inspector Matt Vincent. It is set along the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast in England, which the author has described very evocatively.

The story: A sergeant in the neighborhood police force of Madoc’s Haven, Alys Carey, is reunited after many years with a childhood friend, Matt Vincent, who is now a Detective Inspector and brought in to investigate the disappearance of a young mother. The reader learns just how Rianna Hughes disappeared in a tension and action-filled prologue.

After her body is discovered, there are no shortage of suspects in the story: the husband Dylan is an immediate suspect because they are separated. She was awarded custody of their baby daughter and also the home where they lived and he is bitter. There are also the people she is blackmailing, the men with whom she had affairs or who wanted to have an affair with her, the women scorned by these men, even the local vicar. Red herrings abound.

Matt Vincent had left Madoc’s Haven after the tragic death of his girlfriend, which he witnessed. Alys Carey, while somewhat younger at the time, liked him, His return creates an awkward relationship between them, not improved by their immediate attraction to each other or by the attitude of Vincent’s embittered sergeant, Beth Francis, who harbors animosity toward Vincent since she wanted his promotion to DI.

The relationships in this book are incredibly complex, so readers have to stay on their toes, especially after another murder occurs.

I greatly enjoyed this mystery and, bouncing between suspects, I wasn’t sure until the end who the murderer was. The dialogue was spot on and smooth and the descriptions of the countryside and coast were stunning. Readers can easily place themselves in the scenes. 

The prologue adds additional tension to the unfolding investigation since the reader is made to ask: When are they going to find Rianna?

The novel is written in third person omniscient, so it shifts between scenes and characters. This approach can be confusing (and occasionally is) but it also enables the reader to be introduced to various untidy aspects of Rianna’s life.

My one complaint is that some of the female characters could not be distinguished.  They seemed to run to a common type (except for Sergeant Beth Francis, who was spiteful and headstrong) and could have used more distinguishing features. Matt Vincent, despite being a DI, seems a little less than forthcoming when it comes to dealing with the women in his life. Hopefully he will find a clear path ahead in the next book!

There is romance (but no sex) and humor but no graphic violence, so this qualifies as a true cozy. It should appeal to everyone from YA to adult readers. I look forward to reading the next book in this series.

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A missing mother, her baby’s father a suspect

Young single mother Rianna fails to return from her cliff-top run. Did she have an accident, or did someone want her dead?

Neighbourhood Sergeant Alys Carey and Detective Inspector Matt Vincent are thrown back together when Matt returns to Pembrokeshire and takes on the case. There’s no shortage of suspects: Rianna’s blackmail victims; the men she beguiled; the women who loved them; the father of little baby Meg.

Can Alys and Matt unravel the complex web of relationships within the local community and ensure that justice prevails? Will Matt’s embittered detective sergeant, Beth Francis, derail the investigation? And what will become of Rianna’s baby daughter, Meg?

A Final Regret is a murder mystery set on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast, with romance, humour and no graphic violence, sex or swearing.

AmazonUK | AmazonUS

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‘There are amusing anecdotes as well as terrifying moments.’ @LizanneLloyd reviews #CrimeFiction A Final Regret by @JeffreyJWarren

Today’s team review is from Liz. She blogs here https://lizannelloyd.wordpress.com/

Rosie's #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Liz has been reading A Final Regret by Jeff Warren

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It is always good to find a new murder mystery story which is well plotted and intriguing. Set in a beautiful part of Wales it begins with a nail-biting account of the murder. You naturally empathise with the victim, a young mother running along the clifftop to keep fit, but later we discover that her scheming nature had made her rather unpopular.

The investigation brings together one time school friends, Alys and Matt. Alys is the neighbourhood police sergeant while Matt has just transferred to the local police as a Detective Inspector. Events in the past make their relationship difficult while Matt’s detective sergeant, Beth, does her best to undermine Alys.

After another local is killed in suspicious circumstances the police are under pressure to find the killer and to stop a spate of theft of farm vehicles. Alys makes a foolish mistake but also puts herself in danger. She is keen to become a detective and to prove her abilities to Matt, while he begins to have feelings for her despite his determination to remain professional.

There are amusing anecdotes as well as terrifying moments in an entertaining story with no gratuitous violence. I am looking forward to further investigations involving Matt, Alys and Beth.

Desc 1

A missing mother, her baby’s father a suspect

Young single mother Rianna fails to return from her cliff-top run. Did she have an accident, or did someone want her dead?

Neighbourhood Sergeant Alys Carey and Detective Inspector Matt Vincent are thrown back together when Matt returns to Pembrokeshire and takes on the case. There’s no shortage of suspects: Rianna’s blackmail victims; the men she beguiled; the women who loved them; the father of little baby Meg.

Can Alys and Matt unravel the complex web of relationships within the local community and ensure that justice prevails? Will Matt’s embittered detective sergeant, Beth Francis, derail the investigation? And what will become of Rianna’s baby daughter, Meg?

A Final Regret is a murder mystery set on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast, with romance, humour and no graphic violence, sex or swearing.

AmazonUK | AmazonUS

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Rosie’s #Bookreview of Medical Fiction THE PORTER: RETRIBUTION IN LOCKDOWN by Rachel Parsonage

The Porter: Retribution in LockdownThe Porter: Retribution in Lockdown by Rachel Parsonage

3.5 stars

The Porter: Retribution in Lockdown is a medical story and part of The Lockdown series of books.

This story is set in Wales and features Dave, a hospital porter. The first part of the book introduces us to Dave and his brother Ken and walks the reader through Dave’s tough childhood, which featured neglect and a short time in care; those early years shaped the lives of both brothers.

The second part of the book is set in current times as Dave starts a new job as a hospital porter just as the world faces the Coronavirus pandemic. It’s at his new job that Dave is reacquainted with a couple of nasty characters from his childhood; his carefully controlled fears and anxiety bubble to the surface. Now with a stable family life behind him, will Dave be able to move on from his past horrors?

The author works in the NHS and has used her knowledge of the medical industry to accurately illustrate much of the book. Writing about the pandemic keeps this story current and will no doubt be useful to readers in years to come as a reminder of how the first six months of the virus in the UK affected us all. It is an easy read, with no surprises; the prologue sets up the ending of the book which avid readers will be quick to spot. A solid debut novel.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

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On the 23rd March 2020, the UK went into lockdown due to the pandemic threat of COVID-19. After experiencing back problems, Dave Williams has exchanged working as a builder for a job as a porter in a local hospital. Dave is enjoying his job. He has lived a happy life for the past thirty years with his wife and family. His childhood, however, was not so happy.
Dave suddenly finds himself confronted with the demons of his past – he and his brother Ken were in care in the eighties, subject to a system unfit for purpose. When faced with the main perpetrator of the harm caused to them, Dave, unrecognisable in his protective equipment, finds revenge easy to execute.

AmazonUK | AmazonUS

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