Here's what I've been reading in April. If a book is marked * I've very kindly received it from the publisher via Netgalley.
The Beauty of Impossible Things by Rachel Donohue* - I loved this richly drawn tale which isn't published until next month. I'll share my review in my May Book Round-Up.
Raven Black - Shetland Island #1 by Ann Cleeves - having loved Quick Read "Too Good to Be True" featuring Detective Jimmy Perez I knew I wanted to pick up the Shetland Island series. Raven Black is the first in the series and Perez is on the scene when the body of a young woman called Catherine Ross is found. All fingers point to local loner, Magnus Tait who lives alone nearby with his caged pet raven.
Detective Jimmy Perez feels that his colleague from Inverness, DI Roy Taylor is too quick to jump to conclusions and feels there's more to this case than it being an open and shut case. All thoughts go to the missing Catriona Bruce whose body was never found - is there a connection?
I found the characters interesting - especially liking the Detective as well as the Shetland landscape. The story has a twist I didn't see coming. A great read which I would recommend.
Twisted Lies DI Kim Stone #14 by Angela Marsons* - another un-put-downable read. It's not published until next month, so I'll share my review then.
White Nights - Shetland Island #2 by Ann Cleeves - the second book in the Shetland Island series is set near to the Summer Solstice when it never really gets dark on the island. This story is set in the small hamlet of Biddista where all it's residents know each other inside out...
Detective Perez's new friend Fran is showing her art work in an exhibition with renowned artist, Bella Sinclair. Bella has invited her world famous fiddler nephew to lighten the evening with a performance. A stranger appears in their midst and seems to take some sort of fit - what's his connection to the island and why was he encouraging people to believe that the exhibition was cancelled?
When a body is found hanging in the community shed it's believed to be suicide. Detective Jimmy Perez is soon forced to call in the team from Inverness. It's a twisty tale with again, a twist I didn't see coming. Would recommend.
On Hampstead Heath by Marika Cobbold* - I took part in the blog tour for this fab read. See my review HERE.
Watch her Fall by Erin Kelly* - Prima Ballerina, Ava Kirilova is at the top of her career at the London Russian Ballet Company. She's been training her whole life for the coveted roles of Odette and Odile in Swan Lake. Since the age of 12 her father, the great Nikolai Kirilova has guided and moulded her to become the very best...but someone wants what she has and will do almost anything to make it happen...
The story moves to the fate of Juliet, a dancer recovering from a career ending fall. How will she survive? The company has looked after her since she was a child and now she's cast aside. Other characters enter at this point which makes the story deliciously twisty. It's a story of obsession, ambition, control and is truly un-put-downable. I highly recommend it.
The Ladies Midnight Swimming Club by Faith Hogan* - I absolutely loved this book which made me cry - happy as well as sad tears. I'm taking part in the blog tour next week so catch my review then.
Previous reads (which were awaiting publication when I read them):
Sixteen Horses by Greg Buchanan* - I read this way back in November last year. It published yesterday. The setting is Illmarsh, a sleepy forgotten seaside town. A farmer calls the police when he and his daughter find something unexplained and quite gruesome on his land. Detective Alec Nicols is first on the scene and what he finds there gets him urgently requesting forensic veterinary help. When Cooper tips up he's surprised as he wasn't expecting a female.
The investigation turns to why someone could do such a thing and if "16" could have meaning to someone. They uncover crimes across the community - unexplained disappearances, arson, mutilations and desperate cruelty. Can they really believe the words of a local hermit who says he saw it all...
The story is twisty and dark but compelling - there's something which urges you to read on. The characters are multi-layered and I felt I never really knew any of them. When I wasn't reading the book I was mulling it over in my mind, which for me is the sign of a good read. Would recommend.
The Rift by Rachel Lynch* - I was very excited to be asked to be an early reader of The Rift. I'm a huge fan of Rachel's DI Kelly Porter series so I couldn't wait to read something new from her.
Major Helen Scott of the Royal Military Police is sent on a posting to Paris to take charge of the security for the British Ambassador, Sir Conrad Temple-Gray at the forthcoming NATO summit at the Palace of Versailles. She's to work closely with the Americans and she comes across a couple of people from her past - one with whom she shares some precious, if heartbreaking memories.
Before she's had time to bed into the job she's sent to head up an Interpol investigation into the kidnapping of oil magnate, Khalil Dalmani's son. She's got to find out who is behind it and why as well as finding him safe. Could his ex-friend and rival, Fawaz bin Nabil be behind it? And what life changing incident has he never got over from?The Ambassador of course wants her to do some digging into the pair's background while she's at it She uncovers more than they expected and she's able to experience closure and new beginnings. Absolutely brilliant with twisty storylines and interesting characters. I especially loved Helen. Thanks so much for the opportunity to be a first reader. - I've got my fingers crossed this is the start of a new series!What have you been reading this month?