Category Archives: Fiction

Book Review – HE WILL GET YOU

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Charlie Gallagher https://www.writercharliegallagher.com is the author of more than a dozen novels. HE WILL GET YOU was published in 2020. It is the 5th novel in his Detective Maddie Ives series. This is the 60th book I have completed in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature language, I categorize this book/novel as R. The primary character is 35-year-old UK police officer DS Maddie Ives.

Ives and Inspector Harry Blaker are assigned to investigate the murder of Alice Oxley’s ex-husband. A brutal murder with no trace of a motive or a suspect. A few days later, Scott Rice is found murdered in a similar way. The reason for his death is equally baffling. Ives and Blaker fear that they are tracking a serial killer.

Lance Askew has come to Canterbury on business. His business is murder, a job that he loves. He has been hired to kill a police officer. To throw off the investigation, he has set about committing multiple murders. He hopes that his real target will be lost amongst the other victims.

Can Ives and Blaker make sense of the crimes and find the killer before a colleague and friend is murdered?

I enjoyed the 9 hours I spent reading this 280-page mystery. This novel can be read stand-alone, but it is always best to read any novel series in order. I had the opportunity to read the first novel, HE IS WATCHING YOU. I think both were enjoyable mysteries. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Alias Emma

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Ava Glass is the author of Alias Emma which was published in 2022. This is her first publication.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence and mature language, I categorize this novel as R.

Emma Makepeace has just completed her training as a British secret agent, but that name is only her working alias. Her first assignment seems easy enough. She simply has to escort the son of a Russian dissident across London. And she has 12 hours to do it.

But that is before the Russians hack into London’s extensive CCTV surveillance system. Buses, subways, cars, and trains, the normal means of transportation, are all being watched. Nor can they use a cell phone or a credit card without signaling their location. Emma and her charge must find their way across London without disclosing themselves to the Russian assassins pursuing them.

I enjoyed the 7+ hours I spent reading this 273-page thriller. The novel has action, intrigue, and romance woven into the plot. While I understand the chosen cover artwork, a London city map, I do not think it is very engaging. I give this novel a rating of 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Ten Seconds to Dead

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – L.A. Clayton https://www.authorlaclayton.com is the author of four novels. Ten Seconds to Dead was published in 2020 and is the first book of her Ten Second series.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is Katherine ‘Kate’ Edison.

Edison has just finished law school and passed the bar on her first try. Her father would have been proud of her, but he is gone. He died in front of her. Now she is ready to follow in his footsteps. He was a CIA man.

Since her father’s death, she has been preparing to be a CIA agent. She secures an interview, and it is going well. As she leaves, she is covertly contacted by the AGI, the Alternate Government Initiative. AGI is an ultra-secret US government agency. They want her as an agent, just like her father was before her.

Edison accepts the AGI offer and undergoes rigorous training. Even before she has finished her training, she is catapulted into the field. She faces danger in both the training and missions. She begins to sense that something is wrong. She soon begins to fear that she has been deceived. That she is not really working for a government agency. Can she discover the truth and survive?

I enjoyed the 10+ hours I spent reading this 389-page thriller and mystery. The story is filled with action, suspense, and intrigue. I like the chosen cover art, and I give this novel a rating of 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – The Albion Initiative

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – George Mann https://www.georgemann.net is the author of more than 30 novels. The Albion Initiative was published in 2022 and is the 6th and the final book in the Newbury & Hobbes series.

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this book/novel as R. The series is set in a steampunk Elizabethan alternative universe.

Newbury & Hobbes, along with their fellow Secret Service agents, find themselves set upon by Queen Victoria’s men. They come to the realization that the Queen is no longer in her right mind. To save the Empire they must enact the ‘Albion Initiative’ to break Prince Edward out of Bedlam.

Their investigation reveals the depths of madness to which the Queen has fallen. Will they be able to put things right? Will the Empire survive?

I enjoyed the 7 hours I spent reading this 244-page steampunk thriller. The novel can be read stand-alone, but it would be best to have read the prior works. I was fortunate to read book 5 of the series The Revenant Express in the summer of 2019. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – The Barbarossa Secret

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Christopher Kerr https://christopher-kerr.co.uk is the author of three novels. The Barbarossa Secret was published in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is journalist Hans Schirach.

In 2020 Schirach is approached. He begins to learn the truth about what happened. The true Nazi legacy from WWII. The Third Reich may have fallen in May of 1945, but a new Reich was now in power. It is hidden behind the scenes, but wields far more power than Hitler.

There are secrets many do not want to be revealed. The revelation of these secrets could cause governments to fall. Efforts are made to keep the information contained. People die.

I enjoyed the 13.5+ hours I spent reading this 468-page thriller. The novel covers from 1932 up to 2020. It is a mix of historical fiction and alternative history. The fictional plot weaves around many historical facts, popular myths, and conspiracy theories. I like the eye-catching cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4.4 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. 

Book Review – The Guilty Girl

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Patricia Gibney https://patriciagibney.com is the author of almost a dozen novels. The Guilty Girl was published in 2022 and is the 11th novel in her Detective Lottie Parker series.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is Irish Garda Detective Lottie Parker.

Parker is called to the murder scene of a teenage girl. With her parents out of town, the 17-year-old Lucy McAllister throws a party. Her body is discovered the next morning. The initial evidence points towards another teen, Hannah Byrne.

Three factors complicate the investigation. The suspect, Hannah, was apparently drugged and has only limited memory of the party. The body of another teen is discovered. The 15-year-old boy had been at the party and is thought to have been selling drugs. Then Parker finds that her own son had been at the party as well.

Can Parker discover who is behind the murders before more teens fall victim? How deeply is her son involved? Is he a witness? Will he be targeted by the killer?

I enjoyed the 10.5 hours I spent reading this 507-page mystery. This is the second novel that I have read that was written by Ms. Gibney. The first was The Stolen Girls. I have enjoyed both of these mysteries and will be looking toward reading more of them in the future. I like the chosen cover art, but it doesn’t strike a chord in relation to the story. I give this novel a rating of 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Glass Dolls

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Daisy E. White https://daisywhiteauthor.co.uk/ is the author of nearly a dozen novels. Glass Dolls was published in 2020 and is the first in her Detective Dove Milson series.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is 36-year-old Detective Constable Dove Milson. She has just been reassigned to a Major Crimes Team.

The naked body of a teenage girl has been found near the Devon coast. The corpse has been encased in glass, replicating the methods of convicted serial killer Peter Hayworth. But he is long dead. Milson bears a personal connection to the serial killer. Four years earlier, her niece was one of Hayworth’s victims. Milson herself was seriously injured while pursuing Hayworth.

As she and her new partner, Detective Sargent Steve Parker, begin their investigation, Milson’s other niece, Delta, goes missing. By then, the body of a second naked girl enclosed in glass has been found. The fear is that Delta will become the next Glass Doll. Not only must they find the killer, but they have to find Delta before it is too late.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 8 hours I spent reading this 298-page mystery. It was a very smooth read with a few good plot twists. This is the second novel my Ms. White I have read. The other being Remember Me. She is a consistently good writer. I will be looking for more novels by Ms. White. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Death in Delft

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Graham Brack https://grahambrackauthor.com is the author of more than a dozen novels. Death in Delft was published in 2020. It is the first book of six in his Master Mercurius Mysteries novel series.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. I categorize this book/novel as G. The main character is Master Mercurius, a cleric from a University in Leiden.

The mystery is set in the Netherlands of 1671, where three young girls have disappeared. The Mayor of Delft has reached out for assistance in the investigation. Mercurius is sent to offer what learned assistance he can. Only one body has been found, so there is still an active hunt for the two other girls.

Mercurius must hunt for clues and try to locate the girls. It is feared that their bodies might soon be found as well.

While this is not a hard-core mystery, I enjoyed the 7+ hours I spent reading this 245-page novel of historical fiction. The author does paint a good description of medieval Europe. This novel reminds me of the Cadfael mysteries by Ellis Peters, though those are a bit grittier. The cover art is plain, but appropriate for the novel. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – The Confessor

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Andrew Turpin is the author of 10 novels. The Confessor was published in 2022 and is the third book in his Jayne Robinson Thriller series. I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Turpin in 2018.

I received an ARC of this book from the author with an expectation of a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character in the novel is former MI6 operative and now independent contractor Jayne Robinson.

In Washington, D.C., four Catholic Cardinals are assassinated on their way to meet with the President. Their secret message dies with them. Robinson is approached by the CIA to investigate. She is also engaged by a British Cardinal to delve into the murders.

What she uncovers is a conspiracy directed by Hezbollah. At first, the assassination seems linked to Mossad, but that is soon revealed to be a false lead. That does involve Mossad agents known to Robinson. She visits the Vatican for more information. The U.S. president is scheduled to soon meet with the Pope. Robinson and her colleagues must uncover the details of the conspiracy before it is too late.

I enjoyed the 6.5+ hours I spent reading this 446-page thriller. Several characters from earlier Jayne Robinson novels appear here again. As it is will all of Turpin’s works, there is intrigue and action throughout. While this novel could be read stand-alone, I recommend reading the first two books (The Kremlin’s Vote and The Dark Shah) in the series before The Confessor. The cover art is a bit bland, but it fits the plot. I give this novel a rating of 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Tark’s Ticks War Paint

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Chris Glatte https://chrisglatte.com is the author of more than a dozen novels. Tark’s Ticks War Paint was published in 2022 and is the sixth novel in his Tark’s Ticks series.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this book/novel as R.

Tark and his Alamo Ranger squad are still deployed in New Guinea. Added to the unit is a replacement. Not only does the ‘new guy’ need to prove himself, but his Japanese heritage instantly puts him at odds with the rest of the team. They must set aside their differences and carry out their assigned missions.

Their first task is to perform a quiet reconnaissance on a Japanese airfield. As is often the case, plans quickly change, and the squad finds itself in combat. The second mission takes the unit deep into Japanese-held territory. Military Intelligence has uncovered plans for a Japanese General to visit a small island outpost. The squad is to intercept and kill him.

Their final mission in this novel involves a POW rescue attempt. The team is sent in ahead of the main rescue force. They decide to stray from their orders to reach additional POWs.

I enjoyed the 6+ hours I spent reading this 300-page WWII action thriller. This is the second novel (The other was Tark’s Ticks Dark Valley) in the series that I have read. This is just as good as the previous novel. There is plenty of action, but the squad is not able to escape taking casualties. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4.5 (rounded up to 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

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If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.