crime · friendship · mystery · relationships

Blog Tour ‘n’ Book Review – Limelight


Life is dangerous. No one survives it. Enora Andressen makes a series of mind-blowing discoveries when her friend disappears.

Actress Enora Andressen is catching up with her ex-neighbour, Evelyn Warlock, who’s recently retired to the comely East Devon seaside town of Budleigh Salterton. The peace, the friendship of strangers and the town’s prestigious literary festival . . . Evelyn loves them all.

Until the September evening when her French neighbour, Christianne Beaucarne, disappears. Enora has met this woman. The two of them have bonded. But what Enora discovers over the anguished months to come will put sleepy Budleigh Salterton on the front page of every newspaper in the land

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Author Bio

Graham Hurley is an award-winning TV documentary maker who now writes full time. His Faraday and Winter series won two Theakstons shortlist nominations and was successfully adapted for French TV. He has since written a quartet of novels featuring D/S Jimmy Suttle, and three WW2 novels, the first of which – Finisterre – was shortlisted for the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize. The first three titles in the Enora Andressen series, Curtain Call, Sight Unseen and Off Script, are also available from Severn House. After thirty years in Portsmouth, Graham now lives in East Devon with his wife, Lin.

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My Review

The story begins with Enora heading to Prague with her partner’s ashes, only to be stopped at customs and told she can’t take the ashes on board. Rather than leave them behind, she instead leaves the airport and sets off to visit her friend, Evelyn, in Budleigh Salterton.

The opening scenes are beautifully written, drawing me effortlessly into Evelyn’s relaxed lifestyle away from her previous life in London. Enora is welcomed by Evelyn’s friends , especially her French neighbour, Christianne, with whom she can chat in French and enjoy their shared cultural heritage.

Then Christianne disappears. Has she taken her own life? Enora learns that Christianne has Motor Neurone disease, for which there is no cure. But was she so desperate to end her life? Did Christianne’s partner, Andy, know of her plans? Did he help her? Was he alone?

Limelight raise many issues as the police investigate first Christianne’s disappearance, and then later her death. Suspicions abound among the close-knit community and the police seemed determined to find someone to charge with the “crime”. Are Evelyn’s other friends complicit in Christianne’s death? (Evelyn herself is never implicated, yet Enora who has only recently met Christianne is … because of the very close (and French) friendship they had formed. To me, that felt a little forced to propel the plot forward, but as I’ve not read any of this author’s previous books, I don’t whether that is his style of storytelling.

The police investigation is also a little contrived and, for me, seems an unlikely portrayal of how a police force would investigate such a case. That said, with fiction, anything is possible.

This is a slow-burner of a mystery, with a very understated crime at its core. The debate as to whether there has been a crime at all does form a central feature of the story. Of course, it’s a valid discussion point, and I congratulate the author in weaving the theme of euthanasia into his mystery so beautifully.

Limelight is a gentle mystery with a solid message about euthanasia. It encourages discussion well beyond the last page which can only be a good thing. There’s a heart-warming element to the story when looking at how the friendship of Evelyn and Enora has lasted, and how strong the community spirit and commitment to each other is in Budleigh Salterton.

The characters meander through the story, ably assisted by beautiful prose, stunning scenery, and a vibe that is captivating and engaging. Not your average crime mystery at all, but one that will keep you thinking about the story even when you’ve finished reading.

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blog tour · book review · crime · series · thriller & crime

Blog Tour ‘n’ Book Review – Villain


To catch a villain sometimes you have to become one.
Bailey’s Back! From the bestselling author of Jailbird.

Detective Constable Bailey Morgan is back doing what she does best – working undercover.
This time she has to infiltrate the inner circle of a notorious underworld family. Posing as a fellow villain, she is on a one-woman mission to bring the family to their knees.

But things are never that simple. Bailey finds that she is forced to confront shadowy wraiths from her past and will come face-to-face with a set of devastating revelations that will shatter her world and threaten her very existence.

With only herself to trust, Bailey is on her own and the stakes are higher than ever.

Heart-stopping and gripping. Perfect for the fans of hit TV shows such as Line of Duty and Gangs of London.

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Author Bio

Caro Savage knows all about bestselling thrillers having worked as a Waterstones bookseller for 12 years in a previous life. Now taking up the challenge personally and turning to hard-hitting crime thriller writing, Jailbird was published by Boldwood in October 2019.

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My Review

5/5 stars

Detective Constable Bailey Morgan prefers working undercover over normal duties. In fact, you might say she’s addicted to the adrenaline rush, the secret life, and maintaining a cover story.

In a previous job, she was tortured when her cover was blown. Those scars, both mental and physical, are testament to the danger she puts herself in. Yet, that’s what she does. Most recently (in the previous book of the series – Jailbird) she went undercover in a women’s prison. Bailey Morgan thrives in these conditions, and she gets results too.

When she is called in to work for a meeting over the Christmas break, she knows it has to be for something important. Is she ready? Does she need time to think about throwing herself back in the fray? Hell, no!

The latest job requires her to act as an intermediary, looking to buy arms from the Molloy family. The story develops following a car bombing in which Adraian, the eldest Molloy son was killed. Unbeknownst to his family, Adrian was an informant and the team use that connection to get Bailey introduced to his brother, Rick who heads up the family business under the watchful gaze of his mother, Nancy.

Nancy is hell-bent on avenging Adrian’s death while Rick is super cautious, determined to maintain his “never been caught” record.

Bailey has to convince them that she’s genuine, and they test her at every opportunity, even breaking in to her undercover apartment to check her out. That’s not their only surprise, as she is invited to join them on a shooting spree (for grouse) as well as to the “interrogation” of someone they believe to know who was behind Adrian’s death. Keeping her cover at all times, Bailey plays her best game.

However, her mind is elsewhere when her father falls gravely ill. Even so, she doesn’t slip up. Until a potential date reminds her that trust is a fragile thing and not everyone is deserving of hers.

A fabulous thriller from the outset, plunging the reader straight into the action and ramping up the tension beautifully as the story develops. The drama of the undercover job is complemented by Bailey’s daughterly role and her concern and love for her dad. These life layers given Bailey greater depth as a character and the balance gives the reader time to breathe before the next drama kicks in.

I very much enjoyed Villain and have already added the first book to my Kindle. This is a new author for me, and one whose work I’ll keep an eye out for in the future.

PS – I’m happy to take any coffee creams off Bailey’s hands πŸ˜‰

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