Posts Tagged ‘Crooked Cat Books’

The Refuge by Jo Fenton

June 2, 2019 - 5:51 am 1 Comment

My time has come for my turn to let me share my thoughts on The Refuge, the 2nd in the Abbey Series written by Jo Fenton. Also, a reminder that the competition is still open to be in with a chance to win E-book copies of both The Brotherhood and The Refuge.     

The Refuge

Following the death of The Brotherhood’s charismatic but sinister leader, Dominic, Melissa and her husband Mark resolve to turn the Abbey into a refuge for victims of domestic abuse. But when Melissa’s long-lost sister, Jess, turns up at the Abbey, new complications arise.

The Abbey residents welcome the new arrival but find it hard to cope with the after-effects of her past. As Jess struggles to come to terms with what she’s been through, her sudden freedom brings unforeseen difficulties. The appearance of a stalker – who bears a striking resemblance to the man who kept her prisoner for nine years – leads to serious problems for Jess.

Meanwhile, Mark also finds that his past is coming back to haunt him. When a mother and daughter venture from the Abbey into the local town for a shopping trip, there are dreadful consequences.

A build-up of tension, a poorly baby and a well-planned trap lead Mel, Jess and their family into a terrifying situation.

Can Jess overcome the traumas of her past to rescue her sister? 

My thoughts

The Refuge by Jo Fenton

Published by Crooked Cats Press on 28th May 2019

247 pages

Now Dominic is dead and some of the wardens have done a runner, the residents of the Abbey are trying to move on with their lives. Mark and Melissa are trying to get used to parenthood, whilst bringing the Abbey into the 21st century, turning part of the building into a refuge and being reacquainted with Jessica, Melissa’s long-lost sister.

As you start this story, you get the feeling that everything is working out well, everyone is happy and the abbey is becoming the safe haven, it was meant to be. But as you read further, you can sense that something is not right. Threats of an outside source make the community more vulnerable, you can see that Mark is beginning to crack under the pressure of being helpless, especially when his friends are not safe. Melissa was still the caring strong person as she was in the Brotherhood, but the worry of her sick baby, resulted in her making some stupid mistakes, showing that she was not as confident as she made out to be. Although there were times that I felt that Melissa was not getting the support to run a refuge, it was good that she was still getting support from Inspector Greg Matthews.  

Whilst Melissa and Mark are still at the forefront of the story, other characters that were featured in the 1st book, all have major parts to play in the running of the Abbey and as we follow them round, we get to learn more of their backstory.

The author’s descriptive style, enables you to get fully involved in the story, the character’s emotions were important to the story and you knew straightaway just what the characters were feeling. As in book one, there are scenes than certain readers may find disturbing and as Melissa and Jessica’s relationship becomes stronger, you learn just what a horrific life Jessica had with her capture.

Sometimes sequels to a series are not as good as the first, but with The Refuge, it is as good or even better than The Brotherhood. If you enjoy psychological thrillers than pick up this series.

  Purchase Links:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Refuge-Jo-Fenton-ebook/dp/B07Q83W3XV

US –  https://www.amazon.com/Refuge-Jo-Fenton-ebook/dp/B07Q83W3XV

About the author

Jo Fenton grew up in Hertfordshire. She devoured books from an early age, particularly enjoying adventure books, school stories and fantasy. She wanted to be a scientist from aged six after being given a wonderful book titled “Science Can Be Fun”. At eleven, she discovered Agatha Christie and Georgette Heyer, and now has an eclectic and much loved book collection cluttering her home office.

Jo combines an exciting career in Clinical Research with an equally exciting but very different career as a writer of psychological thrillers.

When not working, she runs (very slowly), and chats to lots of people. She lives in Manchester with her husband, two sons, a Corgi and a tankful of tropical fish. She is an active and enthusiastic member of two writing groups and a reading group.

Social Media Links – Website www.jofenton137.com            

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jl_fenton

Giveaway to Win 3 x E-copies of The Brotherhood and The Refuge (Open Internationally)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494230/?

The Brotherhood by Jo Fenton

May 31, 2019 - 5:17 am 1 Comment

I am on the blog tour for a new to me author Jo Fenton. The Brotherhood is the first in The Abbey series, a psychological thriller. At the end of my review, there is a competition to win E-Copies of both The Brotherhood and The Refuge.    

 The Brotherhood

When a young woman becomes pregnant in a religious sect, how far will she go to escape the abusive leader and save the people she loves?

The Brotherhood – safe haven or prison?

After her parents’ sudden death, a grieving Melissa falls back on her faith and into the welcoming arms of a religious sect. Captivated by their leader, Dominic, she leaves her old life behind and moves to the countryside to join them.

But life in The Brotherhood is not as safe as it first appeared. When engineer Mark joins The Brotherhood, Melissa finds herself conflicted between her growing feelings for him and her crush on Dominic. With their leader’s initial encouragement, Melissa and Mark grow close.

But as her haven becomes a prison, Melissa’s newfound happiness is destroyed by Dominic’s jealousy. How can she escape and save the ones she loves?

My review                                                                  

The  Brotherhood

Published by Crooked Cat Books on 25th July 2018

255 pages

Melissa is a trainee nurse, grieving over the death of her parents, has a missing sister and being stalked by a possessive ex-boyfriend.  Once I knew that about her, I was not surprised that she wanted to escape life and move to the abbey, a retreat for damaged souls.

As I started reading this story, alarm bells were going off in my head and I could tell straight away that there was something dodgy going on in the Abbey. Whilst Dominic was a charismatic character there was something sinister about him. He was egotistical and at times had an evil streak. As he preached at his congregation, he reminded me of a wild animal playing with his prey. 

The story was compelling as I wanted to find out more about the Brotherhood. Being a busy commune, there were quite a few characters, but the story concentrated mainly on a handful. The detailed description of the characters enables you to decide fairly quickly whether they to be on Team Melissa or Team Dominic. As you read the story, you soon learn some of the character’s history and the reasons why they joined the group.

The story is written from Melissa’s point of view, making you feel you are emotionally involved in the story. There are some scenes that may disturb some readers involving torture and rape, but these scenes just made Melissa stronger and determined. This was fast paced and the twist at the end just made me want to read faster to find out everyone was OK. There is also a touch of romance to break up the tension, but on the whole, this was a great psychological thriller. Looking forward to reading The Refuge.      

Purchase Link:

https://t.co/YXdn8AM506

About the author

Jo Fenton grew up in Hertfordshire. She devoured books from an early age, particularly enjoying adventure books, school stories and fantasy. She wanted to be a scientist from aged six after being given a wonderful book titled “Science Can Be Fun”. At eleven, she discovered Agatha Christie and Georgette Heyer, and now has an eclectic and much loved book collection cluttering her home office.

Jo combines an exciting career in Clinical Research with an equally exciting but very different career as a writer of psychological thrillers.

When not working, she runs (very slowly), and chats to lots of people. She lives in Manchester with her husband, two sons, a Corgi and a tankful of tropical fish. She is an active and enthusiastic member of two writing groups and a reading group.

Social Media Links – Website www.jofenton137.com            

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jl_fenton

Giveaway to Win 3 x E-copies of The Brotherhood and The Refuge (Open Internationally)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494230/?

The Suspects by Katharine Johnson

May 2, 2019 - 4:03 am No Comments

The Suspects by Katharine Johnson
Published by Crooked Cat Books out on 10th May 2019 257 pages

Shallow Grave meets The Secret History in this quirky psychological thriller

Bristol, 1988. Five young graduates on the threshold of their careers buy a house together in order to get a foot on the property ladder before prices spiral out of their reach. But it soon becomes the house share from hell.

After their New Year’s Eve party, they discover a body – and it’s clear they’ll be the first suspects. As each of them has a good reason from their past not to trust the police, they come up with a solution – one which forces them into a life of secrets and lies. But can they trust each other? 

“The hugely talented Katharine Johnson has, again delivered a tense thriller! This is a compelling novel – up there with Erin Kelly and Sophie Hannah.”

Val Penny, author of The Edinburgh Crime Mysteries.

“Gripping and frighteningly realistic. The twists and turns kept me guessing to the very end.” Jo Fenton, author of The Brotherhood.

At the end of this post is a giveaway to win a sign copy of the book

So here are my thoughts…….

As I started this story, my first thought was that the MCs were either brave or stupid to buy a house with 4 complete strangers. The only thing they had in common was that they were all trainee journalist working for the same company. The story starts off slowly as you are introduced to each of the MCs. The detailed descriptions enable you to get the know the characters in more detail and you soon realise how different each one was. Stuart was the bossy one, liked to be in charge and wanted everything his way. Zak was a bit of a “Jack the lad” he liked to wind up people. Imogen came across as spoilt. The only one in a steady relationship, she wanted everything to be perfect. Xanthe came across as flaky, however, I think it was an act and she was cleverer than her housemates thought and finally Emily, the quiet one, who usually did what she was told to do without question. However, as soon as the body was found, their characteristics soon became important to the plot.

With all these characters, writing it from Emily’s point of view made it easy to follow the plot. As you continue with the story, you learn more about their backstories and get a better understanding of why they were how they were and why they did what they did without involving the police. As the characters felt more and more pressure the story’s pace seemed to quicken up.  

As the majority of the book is set in the late 80s, there was quite a few 80s pop culture inserted into the story, whether it was a film they were watching or a song playing on the radio. I found myself humming the songs as I was reading. As I found out more about the characters, I kept changing my mind who I thought was behind the death and I am sure I had to pause my reading when the big reveal happened, as I never saw it coming.

I really enjoyed this book and am going to look out for more of this author’s work.     

Purchasing Links Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Suspects-Katharine-Johnson-ebook/dp/B07PRCJ785

Amazon Com: https://www.amazon.com/Suspects-Katharine-Johnson-ebook/dp/B07PRCJ785

Meet the author: Katharine Johnson was born in Bristol and now lives in Berkshire. She’s worked as a journalist on lots of magazines and has written a history book about Windsor. When not writing you’ll usually find her with a book in one hand and a coffee in the other, restoring a house in Italy, walking her spaniel or playing netball (although not usually at the same time.)

You can connect with her here….

Website https://www.katyjohnsonblog.wordpress.com

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

Twitter https://www.twitter.com/@kjohnsonwrites

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

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/katharinejohnsonauthor

Bookbub https://www.bookbub.com/profile/katharine-johnson

Publishers http://www.crookedcatbooks.comhttp://@crookedcatbooks

Giveaway to Win copies of The Suspects and The Silence (Open International)

1st Prize – signed paperback of The Suspects

2nd Prize audiobook of The Silence – any region

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Want to win click to enterhttp://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494219/