The Weight of Silence @Gregg_Olsen

Gregg Olsen has delivered once again – a taut, well-written police procedural that will keep you on the edge of your seat!

TBR Thursdays

Each Thursday I try like hell to cross another book off of my TBR list. I have no idea why I waited so long to read The Weight of Silence by Gregg_Olsen when I know that his books always are going to be amazing. Of course this one is no exception!

The Weight of Silence is the follow-up to Olsen’s bestseller, The Sound of Rain, where we first met Detective Nicole Foster. Foster is back after her catastrophic downward spiral in The Sound of Rain and ready for a second chance. She’s moved back to her childhood home on the Washington coast to care for her niece Emma and begin “fresh” in a new department. Of course, the past never really is buried and her sociopathic sister, Stacey, is not going to let Nicole’s past stay in the past for long.

The story is two-fold: the majority of the theme is an extremely well written police procedural where Nicole and her partner, Carter, are investigating the worst kind of case – the death of a child. The parents insist at every opportunity available that the child’s death was an accident. But was it really? Methodical policing may prove otherwise. As the case progresses, Olsen gives us an in-depth examination of Nicole’s current life – her intense love for her niece, her “family” which includes an aging pooch and her Alzheimer ridden father. We learn more about Nicole’s gambling addiction and the strength she uses to overcome it every single day. To say that Olsen is a master of character development is understatement. He is brilliant. Ultimately Nicole’s past and present converge at a climactic conclusion that is extremely satisfying on both fronts.

There are times when I think that suspense/mystery/thrillers all are blending together and merely re-telling the same plot over and over again. With The Weight of Silence I am reminded how wonderful it is when the genre is done right.

Five highly recommended Stars to The Weight of Silence!

Thanks to #Netgalley, #Thomas&Mercer and @Gregg_Olsen for this very enjoyable book.


Truth and Lies by #CarolineMitchell

Lies can hurt you but, sometimes, the truth hurts more. Truth and Lies is a chilling new thriller by #CarolineMitchell.


It’s Monday and time for my latest look at Murder and Mayhem that is filling our literary shelves.


Still reeling from her father’s untimely death, DI Amy Winters wants nothing more than to throw herself back into her police work where she can honor her father’s memory by becoming a well respected cop just like he was. However, fate deals Amy a blow when a letter arrives proclaiming that Amy is, in fact, the daughter of one of the most notorious serial killing couples Great Britain ever has known. This couple lured young teenage girls to their home, brutally murdered them and then hid their bodies. Most of these bodies were recovered but three still remain missing. The lone surviving killer, Lillian Grimes, wants to make a deal with Amy: do what Lillian asks and the bodies will be revealed. However, it soon becomes apparent that Lillian has additional plans for Amy as this old, cold case is apparently intertwined with a current kidnapping crime.

Caroline Mitchell is a former CID and her knowledge and experience are well apparent throughout the book. This is, by far, one of the best written police procedurals I have read in a long time simply because the methodology, the “cop-speak,” and protocol were perfectly realistic. In addition, the psychological aspect of both cases were fully explored and developed. We were able to see the struggles going on within Amy while also watching in horror the machinations of the very evil Lillian Grimes. It is a race against time as a young girl’s life hangs in the balance.

I haven’t read Mitchell before this book but, based on the writing of Truth and Lies, she definitely is going on my author watch list. If you enjoy police procedurals, crime novels or mysteries, then you will love this book. I highly recommend it – not to mention there is a terrific ending that will leave you wanting MORE –  ASAP.

Thanks to #Netgalley, #CarolineMitchell, #Thomas&Mercer and #AmazonPublishingUK for this terrific book!


The Fifth To Die by #JDBarker

When girls go missing, later turning up dead in a different person’s clothes, the public suspects the MK4 killer has returned or is this a new madman stalking the streets of Chicago?


The Fifth to Die by J.D. Barker picks up just after the event of his previous book, The Fourth Monkey. The much loved characters from the first book have returned, although much battered after the events that transpired and with reputations tarnished after Bishop’s (aka the Fourth Monkey) escape. When the murdered girls begin appearing, while sadistic and horrifying, the murders do not have the same “MO” as The Fourth Monkey. Soon, however, Det. Porter sets off on his own “secret” mission to find Bishop by looking for his mother which, of course, will lead to disastrous and dubious results.

The Fourth Monkey was one of my favorite books for 2018 and ranks very high in my all-time favorites of all time. The writing was fresh, the characters were original. I loved the dialogue between the cops and between them and Bishop. It was the type of conversation that you know happens with cops but rarely is included in crime fiction. Knowing that I had high expectations for this follow-up, I tried to tamp down my excitement when I read The Fifth To Die. The second book is a series is always difficult to write, especially when following one as marvelous 4MK. However – don’t you just hate howevers – I was very disappointed in The Fifth To Die. 😦

While I knew that Porter was struggling after the death of his wife, his complete derailment was puzzling for me. Tiny “tells” that were so intriguing in the first book, were plodding in this second. Without giving anything away, there were certain characteristics about Bishop that made him the mad genius that he was – now many of those “facts” were called into question. Yes, I know that there is a storyline that Barker is following and “all will be revealed in the final book,” but to suspend belief in this book was more than I was willing to do. But the one thing that pushed me over the edge was the dialogue. It was so incredibly brilliant in the first book, yet in the second I wanted to put tape over their mouths just to get them to shut up. If Nash had called Clair “Clair Bear” once more, I would have stopped reading the book and series completely! In the era of the #metoomovement, you show me one female cop, regardless of circumstances outside the force, regardless of their relationship with their partner, who allows a male cop to call them by a “pet name” as belittling as this one IN PUBLIC! Not one. It is too hard to be a female cop in the first place, to keep your reputation in tact to allow this continue. It was infuriating.

There has been a lot of hype about the ending – it’s a cliff hanger. The ending didn’t bother me in the least. That is what cliff hangers do – leave you hanging, wanting more. I hope I want more but it is going to take a bit of time to get over my disappointment in this book. I love Barker’s writing. I’ve read his previous books; I’ve read his upcoming co-authored book, Dracul, and he really is a genius. But this one left me tattered, sad and disappointed.

Thank you to the author and to Maxine (Booklover Catlady) for my copy of this book. I apologize for taking so long to review – I read it three times hoping I would feel differently.




Murder and Mayhem Monday


Welcome to Murder and Mayhem Mondays where the theme always will involve, well, yes… murder and/or mayhem. I read a lot of crime fiction, thrillers and police procedurals so it is only fitting that they have a day in which the focus is on them. And yes, I know that I quite nearly missed Monday entirely and for some of you I most likely did – but it’s here!! Consistency is the name of the game for me right now. And so….


Look For Me is the ninth book is the D.D. Warren series, second to feature rescued “victim,” Flora Dane and yet it is the first Lisa Gardner’s that I ever have read! I don’t know how I missed her to this point except to say that there are a lot of great authors whose names are Lisa – Gardner, Unger, Jewell – and I like them. I put the word victim in quotes because Dane would never consider herself a victim but rather a survivor.

Despite the fact that I came in on the second chapter of Flora Dane’s story, there is plenty of background within this book to fill in any gaps and answer any questions the reader (me) might have. Dane was a victim of an extended hostage/abuse situation and Warren was one of the detectives who helped solve the case. The two do not see eye to eye on how to handle men who prey on women and often cross paths as they search out these men in the world – one through legal means, the other as a vigilante. However, their paths converge when they both are trying to help or look for a young runaway/suspect named Roxanna who either is the only survivor of a very brutal murder or the primary suspect – depending on your view point. As Warren works the case, Dane searches for Roxanna in order to help her. Eventually, Warren makes Dane a criminal informant in order to keep Dane under her watchful eye. Let me note that I appreciate the fact that Gardner made Dane a CI rather than allowing her to continue to meddle at free will. No cop in their right mind would allow a citizen, regardless of their past, free reign into an investigation which is what so many writers would have us believe. So thank you, Lisa Gardner, for keeping things real!

The remainder of the book is told in alternating chapters by the two women. This was a good way to handle the back and forth timeline as well as the different focus that these women had on working this case. I won’t go into the actual book any further – you could and should read it for yourself. I will say that this series is very well written. There are two very strong women, very different personalities, but both of whom are characterized extremely well. The story never gets lost in the character development and we never lose sight of the fact that both of these women have personal lives and demons on which they must focus. That is a realistic aspect for most women today.

Again, although there are books that proceed this one, you can read it as a stand alone. It would simpler if you read the first in the Flora Dane series, but it won’t hinder your enjoyment if you do not. I have since gone back and started at the beginning of Warren’s series in order to fully appreciate her and her story. You can find this book in hardcover, paperback and e-book. Your library, always, is a good source as well. I hope you read and enjoy it as much as I did.