Tag Archives: Suspense

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 – 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 Lost tomb

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – N. J. Croft https://njcroft.com is the author of eight novels. The Lost Tomb was published in 2020 and is the second book in his Lost 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 language, I categorize this novel as R. Major Noah Blakey, head of an elite anti-terrorist unit, is the primary character.

His ex-wife is reported killed in remote Mongolia. She was an archaeologist who had been looking for the tomb of Genghis Khan. Blakely goes to investigate her death. He soon finds himself and his three children in danger.

After the death of Genghis Kahn, a group of devout followers dedicate themselves to keeping his tomb hidden. Descendants of Kahn want to fulfill the prophecy he made at his death to expand his empire and dominate the world. All they need is a missing artifact from the tomb.

Blakely finds himself caught between these deadly factions. The line between history and myth becomes blurred the closer he gets to the truth.

I enjoyed the 8+ hours I spent reading this 281-page thriller. This novel is a very smooth read and includes history, action, suspense, and intrigue. I will be looking for any future novels by this author. 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 Doomsday Medallion

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Avanti Centrae https://www.avanticentrae.com is the author of four novels. The Doomsday Medallion , the third book in his VanOps thriller series, was published in 2022. I was able to interview Ms. Centrae in September of 2020.

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.

Maddy Marshall has just finished her VanOps training and has joined her twin brother Will. With boyfriend and fellow VanOps agent, Bear they set about to find a 16-year-old French girl. The girl had predicted a Chinese attack in the South China Sea. With her successful prediction, which is somehow tied to Nostradamus, she is being sought by many.

The VanOps group must find her and keep her safe. The team must follow the clues to reveal the secret of Nostradamus.

I enjoyed the 8 hours I spent reading this 409-page thriller. The novel is filled with action and intrigue. I had the opportunity to read both of the previous novels (The Lost Power and Solstice Shadows) in this series. While I enjoyed both of them, I think this novel is the best of the three. While the cover art is interesting, it isn’t tied closely to the story. I give this novel a rating of 4.4 (rounded down to 4) out of 5.

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

Book Review: Countdown to Midnight

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Dale Brown http://www.dalebrown.info/index02.htm (website out of date) is the author of 50 novels. The novel Countdown to Midnight was published in 2022, and it is the second in his Nick Flynn 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 language, I categorize this novel as R. Intelligence agent Nick Flynn is the primary character.

Flynn is a former US Air Force officer now working for a secret US intelligence organization. While on an operation in Austria, he is ambushed and nearly killed. His investigations disclose a joint operation between Russia and Iran, code-named Midnight. Midnight is under the direction of a wealthy Russian, Pavel Voronin. Security for the operations is provided by Raven, the elite security company Voronin owns.

A huge oil tanker is being refitted in an Iranian port. The plot involves the tanker and an effort to seriously damage the US. Flynn and his team must stop Operation Midnight before it is too late.

I enjoyed the 10 hours I spent reading this 398-page action-packed thriller. Since Brown’s first novel The Flight of the Old Dog was published in 1987, I have read many of his works. I have always enjoyed them and this novel was no exception. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4.2 (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).

Book Review: The Nemesis Manefesto

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Eric Van Lustbader https://www.ericvanlustbader.com is the author of more than 50 novels. The novel The Nemesis Manifesto was published in 2020. This is the first novel in his Evan Ryder thriller 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 violence and mature language, I categorize this book/novel as R. The primary character is DOD agent Evan Ryder.

Western intelligence agents are being targeted and killed. Ryder is paired with another US agent Brenda Meyers to investigate. As they follow one thin lead after another, they uncover a secret organization known only as Nemesis. It has targeted the US for destruction.

Ryder is certain that it won’t be long before her name comes up on the Nemesis hit list. She must discover who is behind Nemesis before it is too late. The journey also begins to unlock some of her deeply hidden memories.

I enjoyed the 11+ hours I spent reading this 343-page spy thriller. Over the past few decades, I have read more than a dozen novels by Lustbader. I have enjoyed all of the novels, but the earlier ones stand out as better than the more recent ones. This novel struck me as having unnecessary ‘color’ phrases included. The chosen cover art is a bit bland. I give this novel a rating of 3.7 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

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

Book Review: The stolen Girls

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Patricia Gibney https://patriciagibney.com is the author of seven novels. The novel The Stolen Girls was published in 2017. It is the second book in the 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, mature situations, and mature language, I categorize this novel as ‘R’. The primary character is Irish Garda Detective Lottie Parker.

Parker is facing many issues in her personal life. She became a widow only four years before. Involvement in an earlier investigation has traumatized her three children.

One day a foreign woman appears at Parker’s door asking for help but then disappears. Later, the body of a young woman is found. More bodies and missing women follow. A close friend of Parker’s teenage daughter has gone missing. Could there be a connection?

One suspect implies that Parker’s deceased husband is somehow linked. The Garda has a suspect, but Parker doesn’t think he is responsible. Can she find the killer before there are more bodies?

I enjoyed the 9.5 hours I spent reading this 465-page mystery. While this novel reads OK on its own, it would be better to start reading with the first novel in the series. The cover art is a bit drab, but the story is also a little dark. It seems to fit. 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: End of Days

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Brad Taylor https://bradtaylorbooks.com is the author of more than 15 novels. The novel End of Days was published in January of this year. It is the 16th volume in his Pike Logan thriller 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 as ‘R’. The primary characters are Taskforce operators Pike Logan and his wife, Jennifer Cahill.

The outbreak of COVID has kept Logan and Cahill sequestered in South Carolina. Israeli Mossad agents show up and entice the couple to accompany them on a mission. They jump at the chance to travel again.

At first, it is only supposed to be an easy, low-key trip. Soon they find themselves involved in a much more sinister plot. Several Israeli and US government officials are killed. The superficial evidence points to Hezbollah. But the four agents believe there is another group at work. They discover that radicals within the Knights of Malta are behind the assassinations. Between the deaths and the implication of Hezbollah involvement, they are trying to hasten the biblical End of Days.

Pike and friends must try to stop the radicals before a devastating war sweeps the Earth.

I enjoyed the 11+ hours I spent reading this 443-page thriller. This is the fourth novel by Taylor that I have read and reviewed. The Insider ThreatGhosts of War, and Ring of Fire are the others. They are all very enjoyable thrillers. I give this novel a rating of 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

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