Friday, 28 October 2016

Hide and Seek by M.J.Arlidge (Helen Grace #6)

Synopsis from Amazon:

Detective Inspector Helen Grace has spent her whole life running.
From the past. From herself. From everyone who's ever tried to get close to her.
She's spent her whole life hiding.
Behind the badge. Behind her reputation as one of the country's best detectives. Until - framed for murder - she became one of its most high-profile prisoners.
Now there is nowhere to run. Nowhere to hide.
Because HMP Holloway is a place of dark days and long nights with dangers at every turn. Despised by the inmates and reviled by the guards, Helen must face her nightmare alone.
And then a carefully mutilated body is found in a locked cell.
Now Helen must find a ruthless serial killer. Before the killer finds her.

My review:

If you are looking for a fast paced thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat, this is it.  I haven’t realised that his book was part of a series, it is actually the sixth book in Helen Grace series, and although I have obviously missed out on the back story of the characters in this book, I still enjoyed this book as a standalone novel.  I will for sure look out for the other books and read them in order in the future.

Helen finds herself locked up in Holloway prison for a henious crime she didn’t commit.  And then a murder happens. And then another. With her detective background Helen can’t help but try to find out the truth whilst trying to dodge attacks from her fellow inmates.  Being a disgraced cop in prison does not make for a safe combination.

On the other side we have Charlie Brooks, Helen’s friend and colleague, on the hunt for the man who framed Helen for three murders.  She has to overcome her boss, her colleagues and her family in order to prove Helen’s innocence.

The pace of this book is set brilliantly, the story told from various characters’ points of view.  The timeline is handled tastefully and keeps you going and wanting more.

Thanks to the publisher, M.J. Arlidge and NetGalley for letting me read this book in return for an honest review.

My rating: 5/5

Book available from:

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Great Small Things by Jodi Picoult

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Ruth Jefferson is a labour and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years' experience.  During her shift, Ruth begins a routine check up on a new-born, only to be told a few minutes later that she's been reassigned to another patient.  The parents are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child.  The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery.  Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime.  Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy.  Conflicted by Kennedy's counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family - especially her teenage son - as the case becomes a media sensation.  As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other's trust, and come to see that what they've been taught their whole lives about others - and themselves - might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candour, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion - and doesn't offer easy answers.  Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game.

My review:

Jodi Picoult has been one of my favourite authors ever since I picked up a battered, library copy of her novel The Pact.  This highly talented author creates characters that get under your skin and keep you awake at night, one minute sympathising with them and next minute screaming them down. 

She skilfully picks a subject that is almost taboo in our modern society and turns it into a piece of work that makes you think and question your own beliefs.

Small Great Things is one of those novels that everyone should read.  A book that should be made mandatory as it covers one of the most skirted around subjects there is – racism.  Racism is like a black hole that eats you up and never lets you go.  We all have an idea of what the word ‘racism’ means to us but trust me; this novel will make you question everything you know.

As the blurb suggest Ruth Jefferson is a labour nurse (midwife).  She does her job well and still gets punished for the colour of her skin.  Both Ruth and her lawyer Kennedy are both very strong women and extremely likable characters that develop and kind of grow up throughout the difficult relationship they are thrown into.  This lawsuit changes the lives of more people than you’d think and I have a feeling that in a way it has changed me too.  I found myself feeling sorry for a person I thought I would clearly hate and that surprises me even now.  But as the book suggests some of us are lucky to be born a certain way and some of us have to work extra hard to try and fit in and nobody is saying that will ever work.

I applaud Jodi Picoult on her brilliance and bravery to talk this important issue and thank you to the publisher, Jodi Picoult and NetGalley for letting me read this book in return for an honest review.

My rating: 5/5

Book available from:

Amazon US