While I am trying to digest and put into words how utterly incredible Newcastle Noir was, I thought I would share with you some of the books I bought over the weekend. Honestly, this post could have included about 25 books but due to the fact that I don’t want to be the lady who lives in a house made of books (although this does hold some appeal) I had to restrict myself… to 5 books only. Even this was more than I bargained for since I already had quite a few of the authors books.
House of Spines
Michael J Malone
I’ve read Michael’s book ‘A Suitable Lie’ and it was INCREDIBLE! If you haven’t read it – go and do it now – right now! This one sounds a little different, he was on the ‘Otherworldly’ panel so this book has a supernatural theme to it. However, knowing how much I enjoyed ‘A Suitable Lie’ I am sure I will love this book also as I loved how he described it.
Ran McGhie’s world has been turned upside down. A young, lonely and frustrated writer, and suffering from mental-health problems, he discovers that his long-dead mother was related to one of Glasgow’s oldest merchant families. Not only that, but Ran has inherited Newton Hall, a vast mansion that belonged to his great-uncle, who it seems has been watching from afar as his estranged great-nephew has grown up. Entering his new-found home, it seems Great-Uncle Fitzpatrick has turned it into a temple to the written word – the perfect place for poet Ran. But everything is not as it seems. As he explores the Hall’s endless corridors, Ran’s grasp on reality appears to be loosening. And then he comes across an ancient lift; and in that lift a mirror. And in the mirror… the reflection of a woman… A terrifying psychological thriller with more than a hint of the Gothic, House of Spines is a love letter to the power of books, and an exploration of how lust and betrayal can be deadly…
I discovered Eileen during the ‘Femme Fatales’ panel which was just bloody hilarious (more on that in a later blog post) but Eileen was just so down to earth, so real and so god damn funny I just had to have her book and come on…. A book called ‘Shit Happens’ who doesn’t want to read that?!? Brownie points from me because Eileen is from Newcastle and her book is set in Newcastle – home advantage!
Rose Starling, abused wife, is living on benefits with her three children on an estate in a small town near Newcastle. Trying to keep one step ahead of the tallyman she dances in the shadows of various illegal dealings and works in a topless bar to make ends meet.
To add to her problems, bits of her ex-husband keep turning up in different places and DI Savage seems bent on linking the evidence to her. Desperate to extricate herself she finds her dead husbands diary and events spiral out of control.
Set against a backdrop of Northern council estate life, this fast-paced, humorous novel exemplifies the problems caused by poverty, piles and unruly children.
The Last Cut
Again, I discovered Danielle through the ‘Femme Fatales’ panel (clearly a wonderful panel) but I am telling you now, if you ever get the chance to go to a book festival, a book launch, a book reading or anything at all where Danielle is speaking -GO! She has passion in abundance, it was infectious. The reason between her main characters name was enough to persuade me to go and buy ‘The Last Cut’. She also started talking about the novel she is currently working on and OH.MY.GOD. I NEED IT. She hasn’t finished writing it yet but I need it! If you ever go and see her, believe me, you will be walking out with at least one of her books, if not the entire back catalogue!
Harri Jacobs knows she’s being stalked. But it might be her only chance to get revenge…
He’s taking women. He’s stripping them of their identity.
It’s all for her…
DS Harri Jacobs transferred to Newcastle from the Met in the hope of leaving her past behind: the moment where her stalker turned violent. He left her alive, saying that one day he would be back. And she ran.
But a year later, she realises he has followed her from home. He’ll prove his devotion. With blood…
One of the trio on possibly my favourite panel of the weekend – ‘Hot off the Press’. Doug, with his Scottish humour, won me over immediately. He was witty and great to listen to. Plus anyone I spoke to couldn’t stop raving about either this book or his previous Crash Land. Coming from Team Orenda, I know I’m going to love this as well.
In a reimagined contemporary Edinburgh, in which a tectonic fault has opened up to produce a new volcano in the Firth of Forth, and where tremors are an everyday occurrence, volcanologist Surtsey makes a shocking discovery. On a clandestine trip to The Inch – the new volcanic island – to meet Tom, her lover and her boss, she finds his lifeless body, and makes the fatal decision to keep their affair, and her discovery of his corpse secret. Desperate to know how he died, but also terrified she ll be exposed, Surtsey s life quickly spirals into a nightmare when someone makes contact – someone who claims to know what she s done…
Johana is just incredible. She is smart, she is funny and is so unbelievably lovely (massively fangirling right now). I had seen her books ALL OVER my timeline recently and just wasn’t sure if they were my ‘thing’ or not (hanging my head in shame) but she sold them to me in seconds. The research that goes into all of her novels just astounded me but the backstory behind them – UNBELIEVABLE! I am rushing out tomorrow to buy Block 46 so I can get started with the Roy and Castells series immediately!!
Whitechapel, 1888: London is bowed under Jack the Ripper s reign of terror.
London 2015: actress Julianne Bell is abducted in a case similar to the terrible Tower Hamlets murders of some ten years earlier, and harking back to the Ripper killings of a century before.
Falkenberg, Sweden, 2015: a woman s body is found mutilated in a forest, her wounds identical to those of the Tower Hamlets victims. With the man arrested for the Tower Hamlets crimes already locked up, do the new killings mean he has a dangerous accomplice, or is a copy-cat serial killer on the loose? Profiler Emily Roy and true-crime writer Alexis Castells again find themselves drawn into an intriguing case, with personal links that turn their world upside down. Following the highly acclaimed Block 46 and guaranteed to disturb and enthral, Keeper is a breathless thriller from the new queen of French Noir.
My TBR pile just doubled over the weekend!
If you have read any of these books already let me know what you thought? Any suggestions on which I should read first?