All Posts, book-reviews

Book Review: The Bone Keeper by Luca Veste

Boring book info:

Title & Author: “The Bone Keeper” by Luca Veste
IBSN
: 9871471141416
Published: March 2018
Book Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK

 

Synopsis:

“Now Jordan Henderson… What can England do here from this counter attack? He finds Trippier on the wing, who passes it back to Ashley Young… England are looking PROMISING as Young runs down the flank… Looking for the cross to Harry Kane, who controls it… shoots towards GOAL… OH MY WORD! WHAT AN UNBELIEVABLE SAVE BY THE BONE KEEPER!”

“Absolutely! It’s an unbelievable save! Ashley Young crosses it into the box to Kane, who’s got LOADS OF SPACE – where are the defenders? They should be rushing forward… NOW. But instead they sit back, and Kane gets the opportunity to hit the sweet spot, but HOW THE BONE KEEPER got his hands to the ball, I DON’T KNOW!”

Okay, I’m joking. This book isn’t about a skeleton who rises from the dead and becomes the world’s greatest goalkeeper and stops England from winning the World Cup. (Besides, as if England will ever reach the World Cup final).

However, I would rather have a skeleton in goal than this abomination:

And yes, being an England fan, I feel that I should be obliged to use this train of thought to remind you that the ball was CLEARLY OVER THE LINE (and completely changed the dynamic of the game. You know, if that goal ACTUALLY counted, it would have brought the game back to 2-2 and the outcome of the match would have been different. You never know, England *might* have gone on to win the match or lose on penalties. But because the goal wasn’t given, the players’ mentality was affected, and Germany went on to win 4-1. AND NO, IM STILL NOT BITTER ABOUT IT. NOT ONE BIT. IT’S FINE. DON’T CARE, MATE. IT’S IN THE PAST. Besides, who cares who wins? Football’s the real winner.)

Anyway… shall we actually get to the *proper* synopsis?

 

The “Actual” Synopsis/Blurb:

The Bone Keeper’s coming.
The Bone Keeper’s real.
He doesn’t stop.
He doesn’t feel.
He’ll snatch you up.
And make you weep.
He’ll slice your flesh.
Your bones he’ll keep.

x

As a child, Louise Henderson knew this song.
Then, she knew not to play in the woods.
Then, the Bone Keeper was never seen
but everyone feared the name.

x

As a police officer, Louise’s job is to catch criminals.
Now, bodies are being unearthed in local woodland.
Now, she has no choice but to go into the woods.
A childhood memory is about to become a terrifying reality.

x

So this book starts off with four kids, about twenty years prior, doing what any kid would do if there was a “suspected sighting” of an urban myth – “The Bone Killer” – in the woods. Go and try to find it. Even though that you’re between the ages of eleven-to-fifteen, and there’s a chance that if this myth is, in fact, real, you could DIE, but…

Sorry, maybe I’m being too harsh; I mean, that is what a kid is about, I suppose. Exploring. Finding things. Proving you’re “not scared” to do something, yet deep inside, you’re actually shitting bricks. I’ve been there.

But I’ve read enough books now to know that it’s a terrible idea, and something bad is going to happen. And sure enough, four people enter the tunnel, three people leave, and one disappeared, never to be seen again.

Then, we go forward in time to present day, where DC Louise Henderson is having a panic attack and an almost post-traumatic flashback with fire, before being called by her Sergent to deal with a crime, where a woman had been assaulted in the woods, before singing “The Bone Killer” song, according to an eye-witness report.

So… is “The Bone Killer” real? Is it a fan, a copycat, someone using the myth’s name to scaremonger the local community? Find out more… by reading… this… book (Ha! Thought I was going to tell you the ending? Sike!)

 

The Bone Keeper is the second book that I’ve read from Luca Veste so far – the first being “Then She Was Gone”, which I could have almost sworn that I’ve reviewed before on this blog; however, I think I might have accidentally deleted it – which is a shame, because I enjoyed the book :/

Nonetheless, I honestly prefer Then She Was Gone compared to this book. Don’t get me wrong, the idea surrounding this standalone novel is interesting – I mean, although I’m not sure if any exist in my hometown (and hope not), but the concept surrounding local, urban myths was something that immediately brought my attention to the book. The tension built up towards the start and end of the book, and the book itself was so fast-paced that it’s such a quick read, even when things were starting to prolong.

However, the main issue I found with this book was that it was so confusing. Like, towards the end, I got to a point where I was like “well, I have no idea what the fuck’s going on anymore, but there’s a lot of things happening all at once, and things are really interesting, so I can’t put it down”.

I think this was meant to be confusing – once you find out the ending, it makes more sense. However, there are so many POV changes that it’s almost impossible to keep track of all of the characters and plot points at times. Which I think lets it down a little bit.

Maybe it was also the fact that this was a standalone novel, so characters didn’t feel as fully developed as they did in the Murphy & Rossi series.

But it’s difficult to explain because… whilst this is a good thriller, there’s just that *little* something that is preventing it from me saying that it’s a “great” thriller, you know? And the annoying thing is… I can’t quite put my finger on it. Is it the characters? The length of the book? The writing?

I just don’t know

 

Overall rating: 6.5/10

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ARC Book Review: While You Sleep by Stephanie Merritt

Book publisher: Harper Collins
Publication Date: March 2018

Synopsis:

It begins, they say, with a woman screaming…

On a remote Scottish island, the McBride house stands guard over its secrets. A century ago, a young widow and her son died mysteriously there; just last year a local boy, visiting for a dare, disappeared without a trace.

For Zoe Adams, newly arrived from America, the house offers a refuge from her failing marriage. But her peaceful retreat is disrupted by strange and disturbing events: night-time intrusions; unknown voices; a constant sense of being watched.

The locals want her to believe that these incidents are echoes of the McBrides’ dark past. Zoe is convinced the danger is closer at hand, and all-too-real – but can she uncover the truth before she is silenced?

 

My Review:

First of all, before I say anything about the book, I have to say a massive shoutout to Harper Fiction for giving me the chance to win an ARC copy of While You Sleep via a Goodreads giveaway. If you’re reading this – thank you so much! ^_^

This book seemed to have a mixture of everything. It’s a mystery-suspense thriller, combined with gothic-horror and elements of paranormal activity, with added romance and references towards mental health. Phew.

At the start, you think you know what’s going to happen. You’re just going to read a horror story, featuring the cliched young woman living in a haunted house on her own, and she’s going to run away, or get brutally killed by someone – or something, like an evil spirit or a dead woman.

Yeah, no. That didn’t happen.

I can’t spoil the plot… but what I can tell you was that While You Sleep was a completely suspenseful read. It’s rather slow-paced, but as you read through chapter-by-chapter, you’re constantly on edge, when you realise something’s about to happen. But you don’t know when.

Or more importantly, what’s going to happen, because there are so many twists and turns in the book – plus unexpected moments where you have to put your hand over your mouth and mutter “Jesus Christ, what did I just read?” – that it’s almost impossible to guess what happens. Especially the ending!

Seriously, if you’re into horror, suspense, thrillers and/or romance, then you will have no problem reading this. This was a great read.

Overall rating: 4/5

 

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Book Review: Crime Song by David Swinson

*I won Crime Song in a recent Goodreads giveaway, so before I start my review, I’d like to quickly say a massive thank you to Hodder Books for running it and allowing me the chance to read this book 👍*

Synopsis:

Frank Marr was a former cop in the D.C. police after he was forced into early retirement due to his drug addiction. Now a private investigator, he takes on a case close to home – to spy on his cousin Jeffrey as a favour for his aunt, who suspects that he was dealing drugs. After a long night of surveillance in a nightclub, he returns home to find that his house has been burgled, and his possessions have been stolen – his laptop, his flat-screen TV, his turntable, his vinyl and CD collection and his .38 revolver. At the crime scene, a body has been left on the kitchen floor, and it doesn’t take Marr long to recognise who it is. It’s Jeffrey. In Crime Song, Frank Marr unravels the mystery towards what happened to his stuff (and Jeffrey), taking him deeper into a network of thieves, crooked cops and drug addicts, in a mission which could get him killed.

Review:

Crime Song is different to most crime thriller novels that I’ve read recently. It’s more of a “let’s cut the bullshit out, and get down to BUSINESS”, one man solving a case with virtually zero fucks given. Like some nitty-gritty crime series that the BBC would show (just without 99% of the swearing)

The pacing of this story was really good – everything didn’t happen at once, nor did it become so slow that it became unbearable to read. It was right in the middle and was consistent throughout the entire story.

The main character, Frank Marr, was also easily likeable, despite his flaws, such as his drug addiction and saying ‘fuck’ every other sentence, which was annoying to read at first, but you get used to it eventually.

The side characters were pretty interesting too – even if they have their flaws like Marr, I noticed that I started to feel empathy and anger towards them at the end. I suppose that being an ex-cop himself, Swinson knows about this stuff well, and how good people can get themselves involved in bad situations, and his previous knowledge as a cop really showed in Crime Song.

I think that’s why this book stood out for me – it’s not just a simple case of finding out “who dunnit?”, it actually goes much deeper, and if it wasn’t for exams, I could have easily finished it in a day or two. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and now I need to read The Second Girl in the near future too.

Overall rating: 4.5/5

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