Girl Out of Place by Syl van Duyn and translated by Ernestine Hoegen @AuroraMetro @lovebooksgroup #lovebookstours

I’m pleased to be sharing my review for this historical fiction novel today as part of the blog tour organised by the Love Books Group. Thank you to the publisher (Aurora Metro Books) for a copy of the book – my thoughts are my own and not influenced by the gift.

Synopsis:

At the end of the war, Nell is released from a Japanese internment camp in Java. While searching for her father in the chaos, she meets Tim, a young man who is looking for his family too. Nell’s journey takes her first to Singapore then to a new life and new friends in Sydney, Australia. But although Tim may well be the love of her life, her father puts her on a passenger liner bound for the Netherlands. Will Nell really be able to settle in a country she’s never known – and will she ever see Tim again?

Based on the true story of Nora Valk, this is an exciting tale of courage and friendship, hope and determination, about the search for love and a place to finally call home.

My thoughts:

This was a book I devoured in a day. 15 year old Nell has experienced more in her short lifetime than many people would have in a full lifetime. As a young child she travelled to the USA, only to return to Indonesia to be imprisoned in a Japanese internment camp where her mother died. With her aunt, she flees the civil unrest in Indonesia, heading to Singapore to look for her dad who she hasn’t seen for over three years and hoping to meet Tim again, a young man who helped her on the day she left the internment camp.

This book looks at how people dealt with being imprisoned, losing their loved ones, struggling to reconnect with loved ones after a long time apart, first love and finding happiness. A thought provoking read that I’m happy to recommend.

Author Bio:

Syl van Duyn is author of four Dutch language children’s books: ‘Hallo Aarde, Hier Maan’ (2001), ‘Mijn Zus is een Flussemus’ (2002), ‘Angels’ (2008) and ‘Op zoek naar jou’ (2015), as well as an adult non-fiction book based on the columns she wrote for the Dutch magazine Margriet (‘Een kwetsbaar bestaan’ (2001). She works for the Dutch broadcasting network VPRO, selecting and purchasing documentaries, and lives in Amsterdam.

Ernestine Hoegen has translated Girl out of Place by Syl van Duyn from Dutch into English. She has also written a biography of Dutchwoman Mieke Bouman (Unieboek | Spectrum) 2020. She worked as a public prosecutor before turning to writing, translating and editing full-time in 2017. She lives near Arnhem.

The Second Marriage by Gill Paul

I’m pleased to be sharing my review today for The Second Marriage by Gill Paul (published as Jackie and Maria in the USA). Thank you to Anne from Random Things Tours for inviting me to join the blog tour and thank you to Avon Books for a digital proof copy via NetGalley. My thoughts about the book are my own and not influenced by the gift. To catch up on the other reviews, please see the details for the other blog tour members below.

Synopsis:

JACKIE
When her first marriage ends in tragedy, Jackie Kennedy fears she’ll never love again. But all that changes when she encounters…

ARI
Successful and charming, Ari Onassis is a man who promises her the world. Yet soon after they marry, Jackie learns that his heart also belongs to another…

MARIA
A beautiful, famed singer, Maria Callas is in love with Jackie’s new husband – and she isn’t going to give up.

Little by little, Jackie and Maria’s lives begin to tangle in a dangerous web of secrets, scandal and lies. But with both women determined to make Ari theirs alone, the stakes are high. How far will they go for true love?

My thoughts:

This is my first Gill Paul novel and I thoroughly enjoyed the story. I was aware that Jackie Kennedy had been married to Aristotle Onassis after her first husband, Jack died, but I knew very little about the story before reading the book.

Gill Paul explains at the end of the book how she has mixed factual details (such as the details of the death of Jack Kennedy in Dallas), with fiction. This is primarily a piece of fiction based on real people. Many young people dream of being famous but this book shows why fame and money don’t guarantee happiness. Mixed amongst the glamour is anger, addiction and infidelity.

Without giving away any spoilers, I found myself feeling sorry for both Maria and Jackie. Both experienced tragedies and betrayals, and both loved Ari in very different ways. I feel that Gill Paul has been sympathetic to the plight of both her main female characters. My opinion of Ari worsened as the book progressed but as Gill Paul notes, the era this book was set in was was very different to the #MeToo era of 2020.

I loved the detailed descriptions from the story, including the places they visited, the food and drink they enjoyed, the outfits they wore. I’m happy to recommend this as an excellent and enjoyable piece of historical fiction – with a reminder that it is not a true story.

Author Bio:

Gill Paul’s historical novels have reached the top of the USA Today, Toronto Globe & Mail and kindle charts, and been translated into twenty languages. 

They include THE SECOND MARRIAGE (titled JACKIE AND MARIA in the US), two bestselling novels about the Romanovs – THE SECRET WIFE and THE LOST DAUGHTER – as well as WOMEN AND CHILDREN FIRST, which was shortlisted for the 2013 RNA Epic Novel of the Year award, NO PLACE FOR A LADY, shortlisted for a Love Stories award, and ANOTHER WOMAN’S HUSBAND, about links you might not have suspected between Wallis Simpson and Princess Diana.


Gill also writes historical non-fiction, including A HISTORY OF MEDICINE IN 50 OBJECTS, and she speaks at libraries and literary festivals on subjects ranging from the Titanic to the Romanovs.
Gill lives in London, where she is working on her tenth novel, and she swims daily in an outdoor pond.

www.gillpaul.com

Twitter @GillPaulAUTHOR

Instagram @gill.paul1

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (17 Sept. 2020)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 000836625X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0008366254

Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Second-Marriage-Gill-Paul/dp/000836625X

The Girl from the Hermitage by Molly Gartland

Today I’m pleased to be sharing my review for this thought provoking impressive debut novel on the last day of the blog tour organised by Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources and Lightning Books. I’ve added the tour poster below so that you can see the other blog sites to visit. Thank you to the publisher for a digital review copy – my thoughts are my own and not influenced by the gift.

Synopsis:

Galina was born into a world of horrors. So why does she mourn its passing?

It is December 1941, and eight-year-old Galina and her friend Vera are caught in the siege of Leningrad, eating wallpaper soup and dead rats. Galina’s artist father Mikhail has been kept away from the front to help save the treasures of the Hermitage. Its cellars could provide a safe haven, as long as Mikhail can survive the perils of a commission from one of Stalin’s colonels.

Three decades on, Galina is a teacher at the Leningrad Art Institute. What ought to be a celebratory weekend at her forest dacha turns sour when she makes an unwelcome discovery. The painting she starts that day will hold a grim significance for the rest of her life, as the old Soviet Union makes way for the new Russia and her world changes out of all recognition.

Warm, wise and utterly enthralling, Molly Gartland’s debut novel guides us from the old communist era, with its obvious terrors and its more surprising comforts, into the bling of 21st-century St Petersburg. Galina’s story is an insightful meditation on ageing and nostalgia as well as a compelling page-turner.

Purchase Link 

http://eye-books.com/books/the-girl-from-the-hermitage 20% off with discount code HERMITAGETOUR. Free UK p&p

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Girl-Hermitage-Molly-Gartland-ebook/dp/B087BZSXN5

My thoughts:

As regular readers of my blog may notice, I have been reading and reviewing a large number of books set in the last century and especially with links to the history of World War 2. However, this is the first one set in the USSR/Russia.

The opening chapters are heartbreaking. We are currently in the midst of a global pandemic but the way Molly Gartland brings the siege of Leningrad to life, makes you realise how different our lockdown experience has been. Parents starving to death to try to save the lives of their children and eating the wallpaper paste off the walls as a gruel. Moving to the Hermitage offers Galina the opportunity to survive the siege if her father can paint a portrait of the children of a senior Army figure in time. Hearing the description of rat and cat stews whilst her father paints a plump son of the Army hierarchy shows the contrast in the lives of the various children of the Soviet Union.

The story continues as Galina grows up, following in the creative footsteps of her artist father, and we meet her again as a mother of an 18 year old, then as grandmother and a great grandmother. During these times Leningrad has become St Petersburg and the grip of communism weakened as the Berlin Wall fell and the era of perestroika began. As a Westerner I had assumed that life would be much improved as the changes occurred but as Molly explains via Galina and her family, this wasn’t actually the case for many people.

Thank you to Molly Gartland for writing this thought provoking book, inspired by a painting she bought. I look forward to reading more from Molly Gartland in the future, and have given her debut novel 5 stars.

Author Bio:

Originally from Michigan, Molly Gartland worked in Moscow from 1994 to 2000 and has been fascinated by Russian culture ever since.

She has an MA in Creative Writing from St Mary’s University, Twickenham and lives in London.

The manuscript for her debut novel The Girl from the Hermitage was shortlisted for the Impress Prize and longlisted for the Mslexia Novel Competition, the Bath Novel Award and Grindstone Novel Award.

Social Media Links – @molbobolly Twitter

Ashes by Christopher De Vinck

Today I’m pleased to be sharing a mini review for Ashes, a book I received via Readers First. I had originally hoped to share this last month when the book was published in mid August 2020, so apologies for the delay to the author and Harper Inspire.

Synopsis:

A deeply touching novel about two young women whose differences, which once united them, will tear them apart forever, during Hitler’s Nazi occupation of Belgium and France. Based on true events.

For fans of All The Light We Cannot See and Tattooist of Auschwitz. 

Belgium, July 1939: Simone Lyon is the daughter of a Belgium national hero, the famous General Joseph Lyon. Her best friend Hava Daniels, is the eldest daughter of a devout Jewish family. Despite growing up in different worlds, they are inseparable.

But when, in the spring of 1940, Nazi planes and tanks begin bombing Brussels, their resilience and strength are tested. Hava and Simone find themselves caught in the advancing onslaught and are forced to flee.

In an emotionally-charged race for survival, even the most harrowing horrors cannot break their bonds of love and friendship. The two teenage girls, will see their innocence fall, against the ugly backdrop of a war dictating that theirs was a friendship that should never have been.

My thoughts:

Personally I think this would be an excellent book for students in secondary schools to read for History and /or PSHE.

The book looks at how two very different girls became friends in Belgium just before the start of World War 2. Simone has grown up without a mother, has a national hero for a father and attends a convent school. Her friend Hava has grown up in a devout Jewish family and is full of creativity.

Alongside the story of what happened as the Nazi’s arrived in Belgium, we find out how the two girls enjoyed becoming friends so close they were like sisters.

I enjoyed this story despite the heartbreak. The message readers should take from the book is that we mustn’t ever let this happen again. As a world we need to show more kindness and compassion to our fellow human beings, irrespective of their race, religion and culture.

Author details (from Amazon):

Christopher de Vinck is a teacher and the author of eleven books and numerous articles and essays for publications such as the Wall Street Journal and Reader’s Digest. He delivers speeches on faith, disabilities, fatherhood, and writing, and has been invited to speak at the Vatican. He is the father of three and lives in New Jersey with his wife. 

His essays on everyday life have been published in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, USA Today, Reader’s Digest, Good Housekeeping, The Chicago Tribune, The Dallas Morning News, The National Catholic Reporter, and used in high school and college textbooks as samples of good writing. 

He has won two Christopher Awards, which celebrates authors whose work looks at the ‘highest values of the human spirit’. His essays have been selected three times for ‘Best Column’ by the National Catholic Press Association. His essay The Power of the Powerless praised by, among many others President Ronald Reagan, was selected by Christianity Today as one of the ten ‘Best Biographies and/or Autobiographies’ of this past century, which also included the works of C.S. Lewis, Thomas Merton, and Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn. –This text refers to the paperback edition.

Stuck on You by Portia MacIntosh

I’m happy to be sharing my review for the latest book by Portia MacIntosh as part of the blog tour organised by Rachel’s Random Resources and Boldwood Books. Regular readers of my blog may remember that I have previously shared reviews for The Plus One Pact (https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2020/05/30/bookreview-blogtour-the-plus-one-pact-by-portia-macintosh-boldwoodbooks/), My Great Ex-Scape (https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2020/01/18/my-great-ex-scape-by-portia-macintosh/), Honeymoon for One (https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2019/08/05/honeymoon-for-one-by-frankie-collins-publication-day-is-6-august-2019/) and Home Alone on Hope Island (https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2019/11/18/home-alone-on-hope-island-a-fun-festive-novella-by-portia-macintosh/)

Synopsis:

Could a post-it note really lead to love…?

Sadie doesn’t have time for finding love. She’s too busy as PA for famous artist Damian Banks. When she’s not arranging exhibitions, she’s organising his dry cleaning or dumping his never ending stream of girlfriends.

But when she strikes up an unusual friendship with her desk share buddy, she finds a confidante and a new potential love interest. Problem is, they’ve never actually met…

With Christmas just around the corner, can Sadie put herself first for a change and find what she’s been looking for all along?

The brand new romantic comedy from top 10 bestseller Portia MacIntosh. Perfect for fans of Sophie Ranald, Mhairi McFarlane and Zara Stoneley.

Purchase Link – buff.ly/3f9Yy8M

My thoughts:

After reading back to back crime thrillers and historical fiction books recently, I was thrilled to see the latest Portia MacIntosh book on my NetGalley shelf. I’m pleased to say, that after first discovering books by Portia last year, I haven’t been disappointed. Stuck on You is another book full of romance and humour, and another visit to Hope Island over Christmas.

A great cast of characters. Sadie is working for (or pandering to every need of) Damian, a world class photographer. We also meet Sadie’s family (who live on Hope Island), Damian’s family in Oxfordshire and travel to the wedding of the daughter of a suspected serial killer.

Although I had quickly worked out one of the secrets in the story, it didn’t distract from the enjoyment of the story – this is an uplifting read, not a who did it thriller.

A relaxing story with a festive feel, to be enjoyed with a mug of hot chocolate whilst wearing a pair of Elf pyjamas.

Author Bio – 

Portia MacIntosh is a bestselling romantic comedy author of 12 novels, including It’s Not You, It’s Them andHoneymoon For One. Previously a music journalist, Portia writes hilarious stories, drawing on her real life experiences.

Social Media Links – 

Newsletter sign up: http://bit.ly/PortiaMacIntoshNewsletter

https://www.facebook.com/macintoshportia

http://instagram.com/portiamacintoshauthor

http://bookbub.com/authors/portia-macintosh

View all my reviews

Art and Soul by Claire Huston

Today I’m sharing my review for this gorgeous debut romantic novel about new beginnings, creativity and cake. Thank you Claire for a digital review copy – my thoughts are my own and not influenced by the gift.

Synopsis:

There’s no problem Becky Watson can’t fix. Except her own love life…

Struggling single mother Becky Watson longs to revive her career as a life-fixer, working miracles to solve her clients’ problems, no matter how big or small. Since the birth of her two-year-old son she has been stuck preventing wedding fiascos for the richest and rudest residents of the Comptons, a charming, leafy area of southern England known for its artistic heritage.

So when semi-reclusive local artist Charlie Handren reluctantly hires Becky to fix his six-year creative slump, she’s delighted to set him up with a come-back exhibition and Rachel Stone, the woman of his dreams.

Though they get off to a rocky start, Becky and Charlie soon become close. But as the beautiful Rachel becomes Charlie’s muse, Becky is forced to wonder: will giving Charlie everything he wants mean giving up her own happily ever after? A heart-warming, uplifting romance served with a generous slice of cake.

My thoughts:

This weekend was warm and sunny (much more than usual in the UK in mid September), so I decided to sit in the back garden to read Art and Soul on my Kindle. Claire whisked me off to the Comptons, to meet Becky and her toddler son Dylan, plus Charlie and his almost adult daughter Phoebe.

Becky is much more than a life coach, she is a life fixer – whether stopping disgruntled exes from spoiling weddings or helping people start a new business, she sometimes has to be slightly cruel to be kind to encourage clients to make changes.

Charlie (aka John) needs her help even if he doesn’t immediately realise it, despite hints from Phoebe and his sister, Lauren. The world famous artist has lost his creative streak and his passion for life, and his family hope Becky can help.

I enjoyed this uplifting story, where the course of true love for a number of characters didn’t run smoothly. In addition to the characters mentioned above, we also meet Ronnie and her cake creations. Having enjoyed the story, I was thrilled to discover that Claire has put the recipes on her website.

I happily recommend this book for an escape from the anxiety inducing news of 2020 and I’m looking forward to trying some of the recipes too. If you enjoy books by Jill Mansell, Milly Johnson and Caroline Roberts, then I suggest you read this next.

Author Bio:

Claire Huston lives in Warwickshire with her husband and two children. Art and Soul is her first novel.

A keen amateur baker, she enjoys making cakes, biscuits and brownies almost as much as eating them. You can find recipes for all the cakes mentioned in Art and Soul at clairehuston.co.uk along with over 100 other recipes. This is also where she talks about and reviews books.

Social Media Links

You can also find Claire on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Goodreads and Pinterest: https://linktr.ee/clairehuston_author

Universal purchase link

You can get your own copy of Art and Soul here: getbook.at/ClaireHustonAandS

It’s also free to download if you have Kindle Unlimited.

Published: 23rd April 2020

Genre: Contemporary romance

Pages: 397

Available formats: Ebook and paperback

Author Twitter: @ClaraVal

Tree Slayer by Harriet Springbett @HarriSpringbett @impress_books @lovebooksgroup

Today I’m pleased to be taking part in the Love Books Tours cover reveal for Tree Slayer.

Synopsis:

Nine months after the events of Tree Magic, Rainbow is struggling to come to terms with how she’s changed. Her bond with trees has grown, but now they’re under threat from the Tree Slayer.

To save them, she’ll need to leave everything she knows and loves. It will be her greatest adventure yet – but she cannot succeed alone.

She’ll have to enlist the help of Eole, an enigmatic scientist and sceptic.

Does Rainbow have what it takes to face the Tree Slayer? And can she trust Eole, who has powers of his own?

Author Bio

Harriet Springbett’s childhood on a small farm in West Dorset gave her an early exposure to nature, which continues to inspire her writing.

She qualified as an engineer but, during a Raleigh International expedition in Chile, she realised she preferred words to numbers. She abandoned her profession, moved to France, studied French and then worked as a project manager, feature writer, translator and TEFL teacher. She now lives in Poitou-Charentes with her French partner and their teenage children.

Since her first literary success, aged 10, her short stories and poetry have been published in literary journals and placed in writing competitions, including a shortlisting in the 2017 Bath Short Story Award.

Harriet leads writing workshops, has judged the Segora international short story competition and blogs at https://harrietspringbett.wordpress.com

The Cutting Place by Jane Casey

Today I’m sharing my review for The Cutting Place by Jane Casey again, having originally shared this back in April 2020, to show the newly published paperback cover.

Synopsis:

Everyone’s heard the rumours about elite gentlemen’s clubs, where the champagne flows freely, the parties are the height of decadence . . . and the secrets are darker than you could possibly imagine.

DS Maeve Kerrigan finds herself in an unfamiliar world of wealth, luxury and ruthless behaviour when she investigates the murder of a young journalist, Paige Hargreaves. Paige was working on a story about the Chiron Club, a private society for the richest and most privileged men in London. Then she disappeared. 

It’s clear to Maeve that the members have many secrets. But Maeve is hiding secrets of her own – even from her partner DI Josh Derwent. Will she uncover the truth about Paige’s death? Or will time run out for Maeve first?

My thoughts:

4.5 stars

Thank you to Harper Collins for a digital review copy via Readers First – my thoughts are my own. This is the first book I’ve read by Jane Casey and I was surprised to discover there are 8 previous Maeve Kerrigan books.

The opening chapters set the scene well – the discovery of Paige, the tension between Maeve and some of her colleagues, the ‘new’ relationship with Seth.

I enjoyed this crime fiction book – there was humour (sometimes dark), intrigue, secrets and twists. Even if you haven’t read any of the previous Maeve Kerrigan books (I’m assuming I’m not the only one), then hopefully you will enjoy it as much as I did.



View all my reviews

Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes by Jessica Redland

Thank you to Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to join the blog tour for this gorgeous book by Jessica Redland. Having recently read and enjoyed Starry Skies Over The Chocolate Pot Cafe, I was thrilled to return to the Castle Street again so soon.

Synopsis:

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…


It’s December on Castle Street; the fairy lights are twinkling, snow has settled and the festive season is in full swing.


For Carly, the owner of Carly’s Cupcakes, it’s the busiest time of year getting everyone’s Christmas treats ready on time. However with her clumsy sister, Bethany, as a co-worker, it’s proving a difficult task. They say you shouldn’t mix work with family. Maybe they have a point…

As Christmas approaches, Carly is also eagerly awaiting the return of her best friend to Whitborough Bay. Liam has no idea he’s been the object of her affection since their schooldays. After years of pining after him, can Carly pluck up the courage to finally tell him how she really feels by 25th December?

Could a little festive magic make all of Carly’s wishes come true this Christmas…?

A heartwarming, short festive story of friendship and family from bestseller Jessica Redland. You can find out what happens to Carly next through exploring her best friend Tara’s story in Starry Skies Over The Chocolate Pot Café.

This is a new and updated version of Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes which has been previously published.

Purchase Link – https://amzn.to/3e5pUMP

My thoughts:

Thanks to Jessica Redland for creating another lovely story set in Castle Street with a festive vibe. Carly is a talented cake maker/decorator who is trying to help her sister, Bethany, recover from a traumatic incident, and get ready for her impending wedding.

This is a lovely festive story, full of cakes, wedding preparations, falling in love, the Castle Street community, and making snow angels. I curled up on a Sunday afternoon to read this with a mug of hot chocolate and a snoring dog – a lovely way to relax after a hectic week. This is an uplifting read which left me feeling happy (and craving cake).

Author Bio:

Jessica Redland is the author of nine novels, including The Secret to Happiness, which are all set around the fictional location of Whitsborough Bay. Inspired by her hometown of Scarborough she writes uplifting women’s fiction which has garnered many devoted fans.

Social Media Links – 

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/JessicaRedlandWriter/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/JessicaRedland

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/JessicaRedlandWriter/

Website – https://www.jessicaredland.com/

Blog – https://jessicaredlandwriter.wordpress.com/

Bookbub – https://www.bookbub.com/authors/jessica-redland

Mailing list sign up – http://bit.ly/JessicaRedlandNewsletter .

The Dentist by Tim Sullivan

I’m pleased to be joining the blog tour for the debut novel, The Dentist by Tim Sullivan, organised by Emma of damppebbles.com today. This book is currently free as a ebook on the Kindle.

Synopsis:

A homeless man. Violently strangled. No leads. Except his past.

An outsider himself, DS George Cross is drawn to this case. The discovery of the dead man’s connection to an old cold case then pulls Cross in further. Convinced this is where the answer to the murder lies, he sets about solving another that someone has spent the past fifteen years thinking they’ve got away with. 

Cross’ relentless obsession with logic, detail and patterns is what makes him so irritatingly brilliant. It doesn’t exactly make him popular with colleagues or his superiors, though. He has numerous enemies in the force wanting to see him fail.

Red flags are soon raised as suspicious inconsistencies and errors in the original detective’s investigation come to light. Now retired, this ex-cop has powerful friends in the force and a long-standing dislike of Cross. 

Set in picturesque Bristol in the Southwest of England, it’s not long before the city reveals its dark underbelly, in a case of intriguing twists and turns whose result astonishes even those involved.

Difficult and awkward, maybe. But Cross has the best conviction rate in Avon & Somerset Police. By far. Will this case put an end to that?

My thoughts:

I have to be honest – if I had seen the title of this book in a bookshop or online, I would probably have avoided it – thinking it was about a psychotic dentist. Thankfully, Emma from damppebbles sent out the blurb of the book and this piqued my interest (as did the setting of Bristol – my eldest is off to University there in a couple of weeks time).

I’m pleased to say that Tim Sullivan has created a wonderful set of characters. DS George Cross is a brilliant detective, who has a super power – he has Aspergers, so sees the world in a different way to many of his colleagues. He is a man of routine, who needs everything to be done properly and in a specific way (for example, his food mustn’t touch other food on his plate). His work partner is Ottey, who tries to understand him and to help him negotiate a world full of challenges and social expectations. We also meet George’s dad, Raymond who is a retired engineer and hoarder. Hopefully we will find out more about them as the series about DS Cross progresses.

The dentist, in the title, is the homeless murder victim. Cross and Ottey need to solve a number of puzzles including another murder from 15 years earlier to enable them to solve this murder. The story builds slowly as we meet the characters, then the tension increases as Cross and his small team track down information and potential witnesses. This is a no spoilers review so I’m not going to drop any hints about the plot. This is a book I’m happy to recommend to fans of crime fiction and I’m looking forward to meeting DS Cross again in The Cyclist later this year.

Author Bio:

About Tim Sullivan:

TIM SULLIVAN made his first short film before graduating from Cambridge University. His ambition to become a screenwriter was formed not so much by this experience but as an attempt to foil his father’s determination to turn him into a lawyer.

Within weeks of leaving university armed with a law degree he had met the film maker Derek Jarman and persuaded him to commission an original screenplay from him entitled BOB UPADOWN and so a career was born.

A few months later he joined Granada Television as a researcher. Here he was commissioned to write the first of many television scripts for the company. Two sitcoms entitled THE TRAIN NOW LEAVING and THE GREASY SPOON followed by the crime dramas MYSTERIOUS WAYS and MAIGRET.

While at Granada he was selected for the prestigious Directors’ Training scheme when only 26. Previous encumbents had included Mike Newell, Roland Joffe, and Michael Apted, more recently Julian Farino. Among other credits he directed CORONATION STREET, MADE IN HEAVEN, THATCHER THE FINAL DAYS and THE CASEBOOK OF SHERLOCK HOLMES with Jeremy Brett.

During this time he also co wrote the screenplays for the movies A HANDFUL OF DUST starring Kristen Scott Thomas, Judi Dench and Alec Guinness and WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD starring Helen Mirren and Helena Bonham Carter, both with producer the legendary TV producer Derek Granger (BRIDESHEAD REVISITED).

Upon leaving the bosom of Granada and venturing into the wild wide world of the freelance film maker he wrote and directed the movie JACK AND SARAH starring Richard E Grant, Samantha Mathis, Ian Mckellen, Judi Dench and Eileen Atkins. This led to a commission from New Line Pictures to write the screenplay WALKING PAPERS based on the Jay Cronley novel of the same name.

This screenplay came to the attention of execs at Universal and Imagine who then asked Tim to do a page one rewrite of a western for Ron Howard entitled THE PRETENDERS. Tim enjoyed working with Ron for over a year on this.

He then wrote an original screenplay, PERSONAL SHOPPING, which was promptly snapped up by Paramount for producer Scott Rudin.

He spent four months working for and with Jeffrey Katzenberg at Dreamworks animation as a production writer on the movie FLUSHED AWAY. Impressed by his work Katzenberg commissioned him to write a script for SHREK 4 which wasn’t used as a different storyline was decided upon as a director came on board.

During this time he was actively involved in British television directing the last ever ninety minute episode of the BAFTA award winning series COLD FEET. As well as a TV movie for ITV called CATWALK DOGS written by Simon Nye.

He was commissioned by the BBC to write a pilot for a TV series he invented called BACKSTORY as well as another pilot for the ITV network entitled OFFSPRING.

He also wrote HIS MASTER’S VOICE for the BBC as a radio play starring Rob Brydon which was broadcast in 2015.

He recently wrote the screenplay for LETTERS TO JULIET starring Amanda Seyfried and Vanessa Redgrave.

Oscar winning producers of The King’s Speech, Iain Canning and Emile Sherman then commissioned an original screenplay from him entitled THE WEDDING DRESS.

Tim is writing and co-producing and co-writing an animated feature screenplay for Hasbro and Paramount which is in production and scheduled for release in 2021.

He has now embarked on a series of crime novels featuring the eccentric and socially-awkward, but brilliantly persistent DS George Cross. Set in Bristol in the south west of England, Cross’ methods often infuriate his colleagues and superiors “not so much a thorn in my side as a pain in my arse,” according to his boss DCI Carson. But his conviction rate, thanks to his dogged persistence and attention to detail, is the best in the force. The DENTIST is in the first of a series.

Tim lives in North London with his wife Rachel, the Emmy award-winning producer of THE BAREFOOT CONTESSA and PIONEER WOMAN.

He is currently the UK chair of the Writers’ Guild of America (West).

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TimJRSullivan

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/timjrsullivan/

Website: https://timsullivan.uk/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/timsullivannovelist/

Purchase Links:

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/3ginNGt

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/3gjS7AB

Waterstones: https://bit.ly/3hnLO0b

Barnes and Noble: https://bit.ly/2QksVPQ

Book Depository: https://bit.ly/2Ewm2IQ

Publishing Information:

Published in paperback and digital formats on 15th June 2020

Additional Information:

The Cyclist (DS George Cross #2) was published on 2nd September 2020 and is available to purchase NOW!