THE BODY UNDER THE BRIDGE BY NICK LOUTH – BOOK REVIEW

PUBLISHED BY CANELO ON 30th APRIL 2020

DCI Craig Gillard will be pushed to his limits… But will he break?

It seems like a routine disappearance, a case of a musician’s stage fright. As a senior detective, Craig Gillard isn’t sure why he’s even involved. Until it turns out the woman’s father is the German Minister of Justice, and the British Home Secretary is on the case too.

But nothing about the case is simple. How does a woman on a train simply vanish? What do you do when a trail runs cold and the pressure is on?

Before long the perpetrator has another target: DCI Gillard himself. What if the detective isn’t just running the case, but is part of it? The victim merely a lure for a bigger fish.

The answer is under the bridge. The chilling setting for the biggest challenge of his life.

Nick Louth is a best-selling thriller writer, award-winning financial journalist and an investment commentator. A 1979 graduate of the London School of Economics, he went on to become a Reuters foreign correspondent in 1987. It was an experience at a medical conference in Amsterdam in 1992 while working for Reuters, that gave him the inspiration for Bite, which was published in 2007 and went on to become the UK No1 Kindle best-seller for several weeks in 2014. It has sold a third of a million copies and been translated into six languages.

Freelance since 1998, he has been a regular contributor to the Financial Times, Investors Chronicle and Money Observer, and has published seven other books. Nick Louth is married and lives in Lincolnshire.

Heartbreaker was published in June 2014 and received critical acclaim from Amazon readers, with a 4.6 out of 5 stars on over 100 reviews. A third thriller, Mirror Mirror, was published in June 2016, and The Body in the Marsh in September 2017.

‘To the frustration of my publishers, I’ve wandered between many sub-genres of the thriller world – medical, terrorism, psychological – and even a hint of zombie! I’ve also packed in issues that are normally covered in women’s fiction in commercial novels that have the pace deemed necessary to lure male readers. This is deliberate. I spent years as a journalist, and remain wedded to the idea that action and page-turning power should not deduct from the ‘intelligence’ of a book, or lead it away from the grey areas of contemporary issues to conclusions set in black and white.’

‘In Bite, this was the way that (at the time of writing in the late 1990s) diseases that killed the most people were those that got the least investment by drug companies – because the customers were poor.’

‘In Heartbreaker, part of which is set in a refugee camp in Lebanon, I wanted to show the dilemmas facing Western journalists who routinely cover terrible events and the price that are paid by the drivers, translators and fixers who work for them. Radicalisation, particularly how it works on women, is a key part of the book and has since publication in 2014 become an even more topical issue since the rises of ISIS in Syria.’

‘With Mirror Mirror, I have dived into the world of women’s identity and self-image in the age of celebrity and branding. Why a beautiful woman, beaten up by her famous boyfriend, is persuaded not to report it to the police, to protect the value of a forthcoming branding deal. I hope readers will look at the questions posed in this book, and my others, and when the last page is turned have something to take away with them.’

‘The Body in the Marsh is my first police procedural, set in Surrey and the Romney Marsh area of Kent. It’s a tale of a shocking murder, reflecting an unhappy marriage in the midst of apparent success, and contains what I think is my best-ever twist.’

What did I think?

I love Nick’s books with this series one of the best, lots to keep you turning those pages and keeping you engrossed until the end. The twists and surprises are really good, I can never predict what is going to happen in these brilliantly written stories. Will the answers come out in time? A huge five stars from me for this one.

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ONE SPLIT SECOND BY CAROLINE BOND – BOOK REVIEW

PUBLISHED BY CORVUS; MAIN EDITION ON 4th JUNE 2020

When a car carrying five friends home from a party crashes into a wall, the consequences are devastating – not just for the young people directly involved, but also for their families and the wider community.

No one escapes unscathed, but some are more deeply scarred than others. Those affected are left to question who was to blame for the accident, and what price they will pay.

This moving story of an accident and its aftermath explores our understanding of love and loyalty, grief and forgiveness.

 

 

 

 

 

Caroline Bond was born at the seaside and still feels happiest when walking into a headwind with the prospect of fish and chips on the near horizon. She had a fulfilling career in research before becoming a writer.

Her debut, The Second Child, was inspired, in part, by her experiences working with, and raising, a disabled child. Her second, The Forgotten Sister, reflects her belief that our life chances are hugely impacted by our upbringings. Her third, One Split Second, explores guilt and forgiveness.

She is a slow, but tenacious runner and not a bad cook.

She prefers red to white wine.

WHAT DID I THINK?

How does a teenager cope with grief? Actually, how does anyone deal with the loss of someone close to them, especially in an accident? This story delves into the grief from a parent, a child, a friend, family and the person that finds them. They each have their storyline about what they went through, this might sound very sad but it is written in such a way that you can actually feel their pain. This was a very good book which was written so well by Caroline Bond.

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NATIONAL WRITING DAY 24th JUNE 2020

HAIKUS AND HAIBUNS

Playlist of all the videos here.

 

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SAFE BY S. K. BARNET – BOOK REVIEW

PUBLISHED BY CORNERSTONE DIGITAL ON 11th JUNE 2020

YOUR CHILD IS MISSING.

She was only six years old when she disappeared. Posters went up, the police investigated.

But no one could find her.

Now, twelve years later, she’s home.

And knocking at your door.

You’re so happy to see her. But soon you start to wonder why she can’t answer your questions.

Where has she been? How did she find her way home?

Who is she? 

S. K. Barnett is a pseudonym for a New York Times bestselling author whose previous thriller novel Derailed was turned into a major motion picture featuring Jennifer Anniston and Clive Owen. He lives in New York State with his family.

WHAT DID I THINK?

This was very good, I loved that it kept the suspense up but without telling you hardly anything, so the ending is great and not what I was expecting at all. Good characters that all go well together to keep the story close. I really enjoyed this and would recommend it.

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OVER THE RAINBOW BRIDGE

PEACHES 2010 – 2020

        

It was with a heavy heart that I took her back to the vets and we said goodbye, as she looked at me with such sad eyes it felt as if she knew. There were no objections she just laid her head on my hand and it got heavier and heavier. Quick and painless, that made me think I bet there are many humans that would like to go that way.

Peaches had always been a one-person cat and very loyal in fact sometimes I wondered if she had the mind of a dog as she would follow me about the flat. To the extent of sitting on the edge of the bath when I was in the bathroom. On sunny days she would be sat by my side in the garden soaking up the sun. This year she had decided she liked the swinging chair and would put her paw on my leg when she wanted it to move.

Peaches never went very far from the garden being a creature of habit, she liked her sachet of food in the mornings and would often come and wake me up with a paw on my face or licking my hair. After that she would go out in the garden, just to check it was all ok and then come back inside to sleep. It is amazing how much cats sleep and when I wasn’t well she would curl up on the bed next to me.

She would be my last pet as I do not want the tye anymore, it will be nice to enjoy staying with family and friends and going away for days in my camper. Even if it’s just down the road to wake up to the sight and sound of the sea.

Bye-bye Peaches, you were my companion and loved.

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MISSING CHILDREN – FAO ALL BLOGGERS!

I touched on this briefly the other day as I was so shocked at the number of children that go missing with nothing really done about it, you can read my post here.  I suggested that maybe a picture of someone missing could be put at the beginning and end of all news programs over every channel worldwide!

I have had a few comments over my social networks and email with many of the bloggers and facilitators being more than happy to put a missing child on their website. Missing in Europe.

         

The figures are astounding and I am amazed that children can get so lost, especially when they first go missing but they very rarely make the news and children change in appearance as they grow.  This is the time it is good if they have a birthmark that can be seen by others. With everybody’s help lets see if we can find some of these children.

 

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MASKS & SCAMS

I thought a mask was a mask but after reading this if you are over 60 then it should be a three-layer mask! Who knew that?  I haven’t checked this on the World Health Organisation site as I just wanted to make the point about so much information that is piled on all social media. You never know what is true, what is a fact as even if the writer is a newspaper they have a way of writing it so that you think it is a fact but it is not. So please look on the government sites or W.H.O. if you want the true information about something.

WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION

GOVERNMENT UK

The scams that are spreading very rapidly to do with coronavirus are getting clever and because the government is trying out an app on The Isle Of White they are also using this to trick you.

Just remember no one will ask for your name, address, date of birth, bank account number or any personal information so do not tell anyone.

Always be careful how you are filling in some details on social media, for example, questions about you as these can be used to get your question correct when you go through a log-in process. I also still think it is best not to have your name in your email address, why help the conman at all!

 I see the news is full about missing Madeline again, it always makes me feel so sad for the many other missing children that we never hear about. According to statistics from Missing Kids UK, a child goes missing in the UK every three minutes! That is an awful figure and I think more should be done to help locate these vulnerable children.

Missing Kids UK states that an estimated 306,000 reports of missing people are made to British police every year – the majority of which are children and young people under the age of 18. The thought of what these many parents are going through is unimaginable with so many never getting closure and never knowing where or if they are alive.

At the beginning and end of each news broadcast on the TV, they should show a picture of the missing child with any information they have, at least then there is a piece of hope that they might be recognised.

All the bloggers and influencers could put a missing child on their blogs as these are read all over the world. Two very simple things that would get these children looked for, lets see what we can do for the many mothers and fathers who cry tears of love everyday.

 

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SELF-CARE

During these times when things are a little different, it will obviously affect our mood and feelings. With some finding life hard when this first started or now when we are coming out of it very slowly. For the ‘thinker’ and ‘worrier’ amongst us then this impacts greatly on our daily lives, with no remedy available we have to try and organise our thoughts in a way to minimise our worries.

Self-care ideas

I thought these were very good and apart from a spa day or retail therapy they are all things we can all do during the lockdown and limited activities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Running a bath especially with a nice bath bomb always makes me feel better, I have been using the CBD oil bombs which really help with my sleeping patterns. I also think the oil actually helps with the pains in my joints. So I am not only relaxed allowing me to sleep well but also pain-free. You can contact Karen Sinclair on here and through FaceBook.

A face mask can always be applied while you are in this relaxed mood, then when you get out you can paint your toenails. You will be sunshine ready for tomorrow.  Lighting a gorgeous smelling candle in the bedroom for when you return from the bath makes me feel good, especially when you use your favourite one. A wonderful pamper evening to make you feel great and if you needed something to take your mind away from your thoughts then have a think about what ten things you are grateful for in your life.

Get yourself a pretty notebook to drop down your grateful thoughts then you can also use it for a journal, this gets those thoughts that you do not really want cluttering up your head out of there and down on paper. I sometimes find that when you read them the next day or week you will process them differently so they are then not a worry.

Exercise is another very good way of lightening the load that we carry around, a stroll or yoga or hard exercise the choice is yours and what you and your body are capable of, never overstretch yourself or let it be painful. Enjoy the experience, then to keep your thoughts occupied think about the to-do list that needs to be written afterwards. This does not have to be big major events but things like clearing out your email box gives me such a good feeling. I also like to put things in folders, so I have a tidy desk, tidy mind that all makes a tidy computer.  I also like to go through my friends on the many social channels as you can end up with so many that you are not really engaging with any of them, have a sort out makes you feel better. I love it when I come across someone that I have not spoken to for ages and you end up losing an hour while you have a catch up with them.

Cooking can be a chore I find as every day you are stuck in that kitchen and especially if you live alone it is not much fun. There is nothing wrong in having cereal for dinner, if that is what you fancy then go with it. Sometimes when I am in the mood for cooking I will think of a theme, like Italian and make something from scratch, a glass of wine while cooking is an added bonus. I then eat it watching one of my favourite programs or even something about Italy or an Italian film. The choice of takeaway is so amazing now as we have many delivery services to choose from. I use Uber eats as you get some good deals from them like for example 50% off up to £15. The many restaurants in your local area will belong to many of the delivery services so the choice is so good now. Even if you didn’t want to cook Italian then you could order it in.

I very often escape into a book and have learnt that not all books appeal to you so even if I have been asked to review it if I am not getting on with it then it goes and I pick a new one. Life is too short to read books you don’t like. But what a great feeling when you are really enjoying it as you do not think about anything else. I never read a book again as there are so many books out there that I want to read so don’t waste a minute.

Self-care is looking after you so take the time to do things that make you happy, with the amount of time we are spending indoors then you deserve to have a happy mind and relaxed body.

What is your favourite thing to do when you just want to escape your thoughts?

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CURRENTLY READING

I started this last night and was pleased to see that I am on track for my total of 70 books to read this year. This is my 30th I think it is great that Goodreads keep a check on them all. I need to do some reviews this week so I don’t get behind with them again.

This sounds like it will be a relaxed funny read which I think we all need occasionally.

What are you reading now?

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FOTOR EDITOR – REMOVING BACKGROUNDS

  Last month I was invited to try out the fotor editor, I was very apprehensive as I do try to keep my photos simple and clear. I am very happy that I shifted out of my comfort zone and tried this program, it is very simple once you start playing about with it.

You can read my first blog about this program here. 

 

One of the best things I have learnt how to do is the background removal from photographs, I always thought this would be very technical but this set up makes it very simple.

As you can see in the smaller picture there is a white background then the main picture is with the background removed. You do this by clicking on the magic clipper then you outline what you want to save the then what you would like to get rid off and then apply.

There is a great photo enhancer ability that makes your pics look the very best they can. Plus so many great things you can do with this set-up that makes this a brilliant program and if your anything like me once you start you can’t stop playing around with it. Like many things the more you do it, the more you remember so it all gets quicker over time.

When I tried the background remover first time I picked a very hard photo so please don’t make my mistake, start off with a simple one then as you get steadier with the tool you can progress to harder photos.

Photo editor is the best way to make your work stand out from the crowd, tell them Karen’s World sent you.

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