‘Proper’ books I’ve enjoyed

Books on curved shelves

Blood Rites – Rachel Lynch

Blood Rites by Rachel Lynch

Reading a Rachel Lynch novel is like watching a classy Sunday night drama (or bingeing on catch up). There’s all the fine detail of a solid police investigation, with no scrimping on the grit and grime. At times it can be uncomfortable to read, and to comprehend that such events happen in sleepy old England, but the writing is so good that you can’t help but keep reading. I have found all of the DI Kelly Porter novels completely compelling. They’re the best type of books, you think about them during the day and can’t wait to get your next fix.

Blood Rites was no exception. I found the subject matter and eventual conclusion the grittiest so far. As the reader you’re desperate for a happy ending for Kelly and her extended family, and it’s to Rachel Lynch’s credit that she acknowledges that life isn’t always a fairytale, even for the most deserving of heroines.

After The End – Clare Mackintosh

Clare Mackintosh After the EndI wasn’t expecting to finish this book and I was certainly not expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. Enjoy is not quite the right word to use but I was compelled to keep reading. As a mum to two young children, the subject matter is one that I am very head in the sands about, and had never contemplated before reading this book. But what is beautiful about the story is that it doesn’t dwell on the sadness and anguish of the situation that Pip and Max find themselves in.

Actually it’s about them and their relationship, and the choices we make together and apart. I enjoyed the pace of the book, covering many months and then years, because that’s what life is like. You blink and another six months has gone by. This book reminds you to treasure every moment, to not take anything for granted.

I feel privileged to have read this book and humbled by the topic. Like with other Claire Mackintosh novels, I’m still thinking about it days after finishing it, and questioning what I would do. Although it’s a departure from the author’s usual thriller style, I gobbled up After the End in much the same way, desperate to find the resolution. It’s not an easy read at times but absolutely a must read.

The Accidental Life Swap – Jennifer Joyce

The Accidental Life Swap by Jennifer JoyceThis book is quite far away from my original genre of crime and mystery, but it was a great nostalgic trip back to the chick lit days of my youth. I got really involved with the storyline of Rebecca, who starts off pretty hapless and with not achieving her potential, but as time goes on she really blossoms.

The premise of the book involves Rebecca being thrown in the deep end by her (frankly scary) boss and having to project manage her boss’ property development. An innocent misunderstanding leads the builders and the locals mistaking Rebecca for her boss, and she carries on with charade as it empowers her to act like her boss would! Although the ending is not unexpected, it’s still a fun ride to get there, with plenty of near miss moments and the inevitable will-she won’t-she. This is a perfect holiday read or just for a bit of escapism!

*I was provided with e-book copies of these books via Net Galley, in exchange for an unbiased review.

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