The Trial by John Mayer

I found The Trial, John Mayer’s first book in The Parliament House book series to be a fascinating novel and would recommend it as a thriller with a legal twist!  I was hooked after reading the synopsis and liked the fact that it is set in Scotland and written by an Advocate. I was not disappointed!

This is an intriguing story which is very well written. The author clearly describes the scenes in great detail, sometimes over wordy, but certainly in a way that you feel yourself in the heart of the action in each  setting.

There were a lot of twists and I found this difficult to follow at times but perseverance got me through those paragraphs and then I found myself back with the story again.

As mentioned, at times I had some difficulty following the legal terminology but this did not dampen my enthusiasm for the book.  I look forward to reading more from this talented author.

I was given this book in exchange for an open and honest review.

Synopsis

An urban legal/crime novel set in the beautiful Scottish city of Edinburgh.

Part 1 of The Parliament House book series

When Glaswegian Brogan McLane completes many years of university education and legal training he crosses that great divide from Glasgow to Edinburgh. ‘Called’ to the Bar of the Scottish Supreme Court, he becomes a member of the most prestigious club in Scotland; The Faculty of Advocates in Parliament House.

When High Court Judge, Lord Aldounhill, is found dead after a transvestite party in his sumptuous home, those who know the killer close ranks and need a scapegoat – who better than ‘outsider’ Brogan McLane?

Out on bail with his career on hold, McLane and his band of blood brothers in the Calton Bar in Glasgow need to get ahead of their enemies or McLane will go down for life after Trial. But every time they discover a piece of evidence, it seems there is a mirror image to contradict it.

Through the murky world of Russian controlled transvestite hotels and with some unexpected police and judicial help, McLane battles against ‘Low Life in High Places in the Old Town’ until the killer is found.

But well protected and knowing all the tricks, will the killer ever stand trial in Parliament House

AUTHOR John Mayer
BOOK TITLE The Trial
SERIES The Parliament House Books #1
PUBLISHER John Mayer
DATE OF PUBLICATION 29 January 2015
PRINT LENGTH 290 pages
ASIN B00SYZRN12
OBTAINED: Author

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mayer, John

John Mayer’s Parliament House Books website

John Mayer on TwitterGoodReads

and Amazon

John Mayer (b. 1952) was born in Glasgow, Scotland at a time of post-WW2 austerity. But in 1963 when he heard The Beatles on Radio Caroline, his life path was set. Aged 14 he walked out of school because, in his opinion, he wasn’t being well taught. Every day for the next year, in all weathers, he cycled 9 miles to and 9 miles from the Mitchell Library in central Glasgow where he devoured books of all kinds.

While still an apprentice engineer he was soon teaching men two and three times his age. But in the 1970s he ‘dived off a cliff’ and set out to become a Record Producer. He built his own record company trading in 14 countries. After a court battle with global giants, he went to the University of Edinburgh and became an Advocate in the Supreme Courts of Scotland. He acted for the downtrodden and desperate as well as Greenpeace International. His specialism was in fighting international child abduction.
As an author, John has written non-fiction, legal texts and articles; broadcasting to tens of millions of people on US and UK radio, TV and print media.
The Trial is the first novel in his Parliament House Books series. Set in Edinburgh, it’s an homage to Franz Kafka’s book of the same title. The Trial sees crusading Scottish Advocate, Brogan McLane, fight injustice casually delivered by Low Life in High Places in the Old Town.

Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead by Owen Mullen

WOW…. This book is way above a recommended read!

152b

I have to say I really enjoyed Owen Mullen’s first two books featuring PI Charlie Cameron – Games People Play and Old Friends and New Enemies – and have been recommending them both to everyone I speak to.

Owen Mullen writes a fantastic thrilling third novel, Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead which is even better than the first two! I really cannot get enough of this author. His words reach me when no other author can!

It may be that once we reach book three we know the characters who feature in all three books.  I would love to meet Charlie Cameron!

I felt this book moved at a faster pace than the last which made it impossible to put down. I switched between the paperback and the kindle versions depending on where and when I was reading.

It was gripping and I look forward to Owen Mullen’s next release!

Synopsis

Gavin Law was a whistleblower.
Now he’s missing.

Just another case for Glasgow PI, Charlie Cameron, until he discovers there is more to Law and his disappearance than anyone imagined.

Wallace Maitland, the surgeon responsible for leaving a woman brain-damaged may have abandoned his sacred oath and become a killer. Did the hospital which refused to accept responsibility for the tragedy have Law silenced permanently? Or, with his wife little more than a vegetable, has David Cooper, believing he has been betrayed yet again, taken justice into his own hands?

Charlie comes to realise the world of medicine can be a dangerous place.

Across the city, East End gangster, Sean Rafferty is preparing to exploit the already corrupt city council in a multi-million pound leisure development known as Riverside. The project will be good for Glasgow. But not everybody is keen to work with Rafferty. 

With more than money at stake, Sean will do anything to get his way. His motto, borrowed from his old man, is simple. Never take a no from somebody who can give you a yes.

If that means murder, then so be it.

Charlie has crossed Rafferty’s path before and lived to tell the tale.

He may not be so lucky a second time.

AUTHOR Owen Mullen
BOOK TITLE Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead
SERIES PI Charlie Cameron #3
PUBLISHER Bloodhound Books
DATE OF PUBLICATION 21 March 2017
PRINT LENGTH 272 pages
ASIN B06XQ33D5X
OBTAINED Purchased (paperback + kindle)

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

152c

Bloodhound Books website

Bloodhound Books on Twitter

Owen Mullen on TwitterFacebook and GoodReads

 

When he was ten, Owen Mullen won a short story competition and didn’t write anything else for almost forty years. In between he graduated from Strathclyde University with a Masters in Tourism and a degree in Marketing, moved to London and worked as a rock musician, session singer and songwriter, andhad a hit record in Japan with a band he refuses to name; on occasion he still performs. He returned to Scotland to run a management consultancy and a marketing agency. He is an Arsenal supporter and a serious foodie. A gregarious recluse, he and his wife, Christine, split their time between Glasgow – where the Charlie Cameron books are set – and their villa in the Greek Islands.

The Yellow Envelope by Kim Dinan

Kim Dinan has given us a fascinating memoir telling of her journey, with her husband, around the world. As they prepared to set off on their adventure, their friends gave them a yellow envelope containing $1,000 for them to use for those in need on their journey.

Whilst I found the descriptive way the author talks of the places visited very interesting, I would have preferred to read more of this than the sections which read more journal-like. However, this is clearly a memoir and not just a travel story.

I would recommend this as a very fascinating read.  The synopsis had me excited to get started and I was not disappointed!

Thank you to Netgalley and SourceBooks for the opportunity to read an advance copy prior to publication.

Synopsis

After Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs to travel around the world, they’re given a yellow envelope containing a check and instructions to give the money away. The only three rules for the envelope: Don’t overthink it; share your experiences; don’t feel pressured to give it all away.

Through Ecuador, Peru, Nepal, and beyond, Kim and Brian face obstacles, including major challenges to their relationship. As she distributes the gift to people she encounters along the way she learns that money does not have a thing to do with the capacity to give, but that giving—of ourselves—is transformational.

AUTHOR Kim Dinan
BOOK TITLE The Yellow Envelope
PUBLISHER Sourcebooks
DATE OF PUBLICATION 1 April 2017
PRINT LENGTH 346 pages
ISBN 978-1492635383
OBTAINED: Netgalley / Sourcebooks

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

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Amazon.co.uk

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kim Dinan is a freelance writers and blogger, whose travel blog, So Many Places, receives over 200,000 unique visitors per year and was selected by USA Today as one of the 2014 Best Hiking and Outdoor Travel blogs. Her writing has appeared in OnTrak Magazine and Northwest Travel Magazine, among others, and she was on a speaking tour for Backpacker Magazine.

Kim Dinan’s website

Kim Dinan on Twitter and GoodReads

Kim Dinan is the author of The Yellow Envelope and Life on Fire. Endlessly curious about the world, she has backpacked to over twenty-five countries on five continents and has called India, Mexico and numerous campgrounds around the USA home. Her love of the outdoors landed her a coveted job on Backpacker Magazine’s Get Out More Tour and has compelled her to climb mountains in the Himalayas, raft frigid rivers in Patagonia, and walk five hundred and fifty miles across Spain on her own. Her writing has appeared in Parks and Recreation Magazine, Northwest Travel Magazine, Trailer Life Magazine, Go Explore Magazine and OnTrak Magazine, among others. Her popular blog, So Many Places, was named one of the best outdoor blogs by USA Today and has been featured online by such sites as Huffington Post and BuzzFeed. She is a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America and lives in Ohio with her husband and daughter.

 

The Idea of You by Amanda Prowse

MoMo’s Book Diary highly recommends the latest Amanda Prowse release. Be warned – you will be left an emotional wreck but it is worth it!

Amanda Prowse is an incredibly talented author who writes poignant and moving books that will have you hooked in the opening pages and does not let go until the last word.

This page-turning masterpiece focuses on the heart-wrenching subject of family, parenthood and the heartbreak caused by miscarriage.

This is a real emotional read with very likeable, believable characters. I struggled with my own emotions whilst reading as I recently lost my mother and I will never be a mother.

Thank you to Netgalley, Amanda Prowse and Lake Union Publishing for the opportunity to read this book prior to publication.

Synopsis

With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter dares to hope that she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance of a precious baby of her own. Life couldn’t be more perfect.

But the reality of becoming parents proves much harder than Lucy and Jonah imagined. Jonah’s love and support is unquestioning, but as Lucy struggles with work and her own failing dreams, the strain on their marriage increases. Suddenly it feels like Lucy is close to losing everything…

Heart-wrenching and poignant, this latest work by bestselling author Amanda Prowse asks the question: what does it mean to be a mother in today’s hectic world? And what if it’s asking too much to want it all?

AUTHOR Amanda Prowse
BOOK TITLE The Idea of You
PUBLISHER Lake Union Publishing
DATE OF PUBLICATION 21 March 2017
PRINT LENGTH 334 pages
ISBN 9781503942332
OBTAINED: NetGalley – preapproved

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

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BookBridgr

Amazon.co.uk

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Amanda Prowse website – www.amandaprowse.org

Amanda Prowse on TwitterFacebookGoodReads and Amazon

AmandaProwse

6th Grade Revengers: Cat Crimes and Wannabes by Steven Whibley

This is the first book in Steven Whibley’s 6th Grade Revengers series.

I would recommend this to children of all ages – especially pre-teens.

The author has created the perfect team with friends Jared and Marcus who team up to become Revengers who set out to help those in need in order to raise money to pay for spy camp.

Well written and fast paced will keep children’s attention right to the end!

 

Synopsis

Jared and Marcus aren’t like other 11-year-olds…they’re also Revengers.

They fix problems and they’re awesome at it – at least, they will be if they ever get a chance to show off their skills. What they need is exposure. Luckily, they have the perfect target in mind: Jared’s sister’s boyfriend. He’s a jerky, wannabe rock star, a relentless bully and he smells like old gym socks. Enough is enough. The tone deaf jerk’s days are numbered. There’s only one hitch: Marcus already offered their services elsewhere. A stray cat with serious aggression issues apparently has a whole neighborhood boarding up their windows.

What the boys think will be an easy-money job quickly turns into a dangerous game of wits. The cat’s a monster. It takes all the ingenuity the boys can muster to deal with this beast. Two targets at once. It’s time to prove themselves as the awesome after-school problem-solvers they know they are. That is, if their plan doesn’t backfire. Because they’ll either be feared fixers or a couple kids who can’t even take out a kitten.

AUTHOR Steven Whibley
BOOK TITLE Cat Crimes and Wannabes
SERIES 6th Grade Revengers:
PUBLISHER Amazon Digital Services
DATE OF PUBLICATION 15 September 2015
PRINT LENGTH 88 pages
ISBN 9781927905081

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

 

 

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Amazon.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Steven Whibley’s website

Steven Whibley on TwitterFacebook GoodReads and Amazon

Whibley, Steven

Steve believes in pixies and fairy dust, and the healing power of unicorns. When he’s not writing epic tales of horned beasties, he’s working as a look-a-like for Brad Pitt, Ryan Reynolds, Zac Efron, and Seal. He spends his free time training hairless mole rats to be service animals for the colorblind, and dreams of one day inventing a thanksgiving dish that will rival the infamous turducken.

Okay, okay, most of the stuff I just said isn’t super accurate. Here’s the truth: I love writing books for kids and it’s a privilege I don’t take lightly. I want my readers to be taken away on an adventure they hadn’t expected. I want them to gasp and laugh and cringe about what’s coming around the next corner. And in the end, I want them to leave the story with the same rush I used to feel when I was a child reading books like The Hardy Boys or Goosebumps.

 

Manipulated Lives by Helene Leuschel

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends Helene Leuschel’s Manipulated Lives as a provocative read.

Helene Leuschel has created a thought-provoking collection of well-rounded and believable characters in each of the five stories.

It is clear from the beginning this is an emotional read.

Five stories of the devastatingly long-lasting affect manipulators have on their victims.

Thanks to the author, Helene Leuschel, for inviting me to read and review this book.

I was taken with the synopsis and although I don’t read many short stories I was drawn into each story. I found the theme to be a difficult read but very focused and interesting.

Synopsis

Five stories – Five Lives.

Have you ever felt confused or at a loss for words in front of a spouse, colleague or parent, to the extent that you have felt inadequate or, worse, a failure?

Do you ever wonder why someone close to you seems to endure humiliation without resistance?

Manipulators are everywhere.

At first these devious and calculating people can be hard to spot, because that is their way. They are often masters of disguise: witty, disarming, even charming in public – tricks to snare their prey – but then they revert to their true self of being controlling and angry in private.

Their main aim: to dominate and use others to satisfy their needs, with a complete lack of compassion and empathy for their victim.

In this collection of short novellas you meet people like you and me, intent on living happy lives, yet each of them, in one way or another, is caught up and damaged by a manipulative individual.

First you meet a manipulator himself, trying to make sense of his irreversible incarceration. Next, there is Tess, whose past is haunted by a wrong decision, then young, successful and well balanced Sophie, who is drawn into the life of a little boy and his troubled father. Next, there is teenage Holly, who is intent on making a better life for herself and finally Lisa, who has to face a parent’s biggest regret.

All stories highlight to what extent abusive manipulation can distort lives and threaten our very feeling of self-worth.

AUTHOR Helene Leuschel
BOOK TITLE Manipulated Lives
PUBLISHER Self-published with CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
DATE OF PUBLICATION 8 June 2016
PRINT LENGTH 274 pages
ISBN 978-1534708976
OBTAINED: Author

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

GoodReads and Amazon

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

leuschel-helene

Helene Andrea Leuschel was born and raised in Belgium to German parents. She gained a Licentiate in Journalism, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh.

Helene moved to the Algarve in 2009 with her husband and two children, working as a freelance TV producer and teaching yoga. She recently acquired a Master of Philosophy with the OU, deepening her passion for the study of the mind.

Manipulated Lives is Helene’s first work of fiction.

Helene is on TwitterFacebookGoodReads and Amazon

 

The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends Kerry Fisher’s latest novel ‘The Silent Wife’.

It is packed full of family secrets and earth shattering betrayals that will leave your mouth open in disbelief again and again.  The characters are brought to life in such a way you can easily relate to their individual personalities. The Farinelli family certainly has high expectations! The author expertly looks at the complicated relationships with step-children, in-laws, and the constant reminders of the first wives and mothers.

Told in alternating views of Lara (married to Massimo) and Maggie (married to Nico) this is a poignant story the lengths women are prepared to go for the sake of their families. I was gripped from the start and enjoyed page after page until the last chapter.

Thanks to NetGalley and Bookouture for the opportunity to read and review The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher.

Synopsis

Would you risk everything for the man you loved? Even if you knew he’d done something terrible?

A heart wrenching and gripping tale. I was hooked from the very first page.’ Write Escape

Lara’s life looks perfect on the surface. Gorgeous doting husband Massimo, sweet little son Sandro and the perfect home. Lara knows something about Massimo. Something she can’t tell anyone else or everything Massimo has worked so hard for will be destroyed: his job, their reputation, their son. This secret is keeping Lara a prisoner in her marriage.

Maggie is married to Massimo’s brother Nico and lives with him and her troubled stepdaughter. She knows all of Nico’s darkest secrets – or so she thinks. The one day she discovers a letter in the attic which reveals a shocking secret about Nico’s first wife Caitlin. Will Maggie set the record straight or keep silent to protect those she loves?

For a family held together by lies, the truth will come at a devastating price.

A heart-wrenching, emotionally gripping read for fans of Amanda Prowse, Liane Moriarty and Diane Chamberlain.

AUTHOR Kerry Fisher
BOOK TITLE The Silent Wife
PUBLISHER Bookouture
DATE OF PUBLICATION 24/02/17
PRINT LENGTH 374 pages
ISBN 9781786811264
OBTAINED: NetGalley – Bookouture

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

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Amazon.co.uk

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

fisher-kerry

Kerry Fisher website

Kerry Fisher on Twitter and Facebook and GoodReads and Amazon

108

Sins of the Father by Sheryl Browne

Another fantastic new release from the amazingly talented author Sheryl Browne.

Sins of the Father is the second instalment featuring DI Matthew Adams. I would recommend reading “After She’s Gone” first but it can be read as a stand-alone novel.

Sheryl once again has given us a tense nail-biting thriller that will have you reading page after page, chapter after chapter.  The characters are believable, and mostly likeable. After getting to know DI Matthew Adams and his family in the first novel I was rooting for them this time around and became so caught up in what was going on that I was in tears by the end of the book. The tension is unbelievable – NEVER before have I cried whilst reading a thriller.  Sheryl Browne has a way of telling a story that really pulls you in and twists your heart with each scene.

This is a fast paced, gripping action thriller.  As with all of Sheryl’s books I would suggest finding yourself a comfy chair, switch off your phones and get yourself a large glass of wine and some chocolate… you will need it!

Synopsis

What if you’d been accused of one of the worst crimes imaginable?

Detective Inspector Matthew Adams is slowly picking up the pieces from a case that nearly cost him the lives of his entire family and his own sanity too. On the surface, he seems to be moving on, but he drinks to forget – and when he closes his eyes, the nightmares still come.

 But the past is the past – or is it? Because the evil Patrick Sullivan might be out of the picture, but there’s somebody who is just as intent on making Matthew’s life hell, and they’re doing it in the cruelest way possible.

When Matthew finds himself accused of a horrific and violent crime, will his family stand by him? And will he even be around to help when his new enemy goes after them as well?

AUTHOR Sheryl Browne
BOOK TITLE Sins of the Father
SERIES DI Matthew Adams
PUBLISHER Choclit
DATE OF PUBLICATION 28 February 2017
PRINT LENGTH
ISBN 9781781893425
OBTAINED Author

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Sheryl Browne on Choc-Lit website

Sheryl Browne website and Twitter and Facebook

Sheryl Browne on Amazon and GoodReads

sheryl-browne03-small-file

Sheryl Browne brings you edgy, sexy contemporary fiction and psychological thrillers.

A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and awarded a Red Ribbon by The Wishing Shelf Book Awards, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.

Recommended to the publisher by the WH Smith Travel fiction buyer, Sheryl’s contemporary fiction comes to you from multi-award winning Choc Lit.

After She’s Gone by Sheryl Browne

A fantastic new release from the amazingly talented author Sheryl Browne.

In “After She’s Gone” Sheryl has given us a gripping thriller that had me eagerly turning page after page.  The characters are brought to life in a way that only Sheryl can do. I felt true empathy for each and every character, even Patrick Sullivan at times. DI Matthew Adams and his family have been through so much but he still has so much more to give – and does!

The book is a fantastically fast paced action thriller.  As with all of Sheryl’s books I advise to read in a comfy chair, mobile switched off, glass of wine in hand and a large chocolate bar close at hand!

Synopsis

He’s killed your child and kidnapped your wife. What would YOU do?

There’s evil and then there’s Patrick Sullivan. A drug dealer, pimp and murderer, there are no depths to which Patrick would not sink, and Detective Inspector Matthew Adams has found this out in the most devastating way imaginable.

When Patrick’s brother is shot dead in a drug bust gone wrong, the bitter battle between the two men intensifies, and Matthew finds it increasingly difficult to hold the moral high ground. All he wants is to make the pimping scum suffer the way he did … the way Lily did.

But being at war with such a depraved individual means that it’s not just Matthew who’s in danger. Patrick has taken a lot from Matthew, but he hasn’t taken everything – and now he wants everything.

AUTHOR Sheryl Browne
BOOK TITLE After She’s Gone
SERIES DI Matthew Adams
PUBLISHER Choclit – Death by Choclit
DATE OF PUBLICATION 21 February 2017
PRINT LENGTH
ASIN B01N9UTTBE
OBTAINED Author

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

NetGalley

GoodReads

Kobo

Amazon

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Sheryl Browne on Choc-Lit website

Sheryl Browne website and Twitter and Facebook

Sheryl Browne on Amazon and GoodReads

sheryl-browne03-small-file

Sheryl Browne brings you edgy, sexy contemporary fiction and psychological thrillers.

A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and awarded a Red Ribbon by The Wishing Shelf Book Awards, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.

Recommended to the publisher by the WH Smith Travel fiction buyer, Sheryl’s contemporary fiction comes to you from multi-award winning Choc Lit.

Old Friends and New Enemies by Owen Mullen

I enjoyed Old Friends and New Enemies, the second PI Charlie Cameron novel and give it a thrilling recommendation to all.

The book is mainly set in Glasgow, as was the first novel – Games People Play.  This should be read after the first book but can also be read as a stand alone novel. The author knows his way around Glasgow and brings the city alive in his descriptive writing.

This gripping instalment had me hooked beginning to end. Private Investigator, Charlie Cameron is shocked when he realises the body in the mortuary is not the man he was expecting, instead its an old friend…

Thank you Owen Mullen for the opportunity to read and review the second Charlie Cameron novel.  It was gripping and I look forward to the next!

Synopsis

An explosive new crime thriller

The body on the mortuary slab wasn’t who Glasgow PI Charlie Cameron was looking for.

But it wasn’t a stranger.

Suddenly, a routine missing persons investigation becomes a fight for survival. As Charlie is dragged deeper into Glasgow’s underbelly he goes up against notorious gangster Jimmy Rafferty and discovers what fear really is.

Rafferty is so ruthless even his own sons are terrified of him.

Now he wants Charlie to find something. And Jimmy Rafferty always gets what he wants.

There is only one problem… Charlie doesn’t know where it is.

AUTHOR Owen Mullen
BOOK TITLE Old Friends and New Enemies
SERIES PI Charlie Cameron
PUBLISHER Bloodhound Books
DATE OF PUBLICATION 21 February 2017
PRINT LENGTH 336 pages
ASIN B01N9UTTBE
OBTAINED Author

REVIEW PUBLISHED:

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Amazon.co.uk

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Bloodhound Books website and on Twitter

Owen Mullen on Twitter and Facebook and GoodReads

When he was ten, Owen Mullen won a short story competition and didn’t write anything else for almost forty years. In between he graduated from Strathclyde University with a Masters in Tourism and a degree in Marketing, moved to London and worked as a rock musician, session singer and songwriter, andhad a hit record in Japan with a band he refuses to name; on occasion he still performs. He returned to Scotland to run a management consultancy and a marketing agency. He is an Arsenal supporter and a serious foodie. A gregarious recluse, he and his wife, Christine, split their time between Glasgow – where the Charlie Cameron books are set – and their villa in the Greek Islands.