Book reviews, Crime thriller, Psychlogical thriller

Fatal Fortune by Miranda Rijks – Book Review



Is someone trying to frame psychologist Pippa Durrant for the brutal murder of a woman she’s never even met?

It certainly seems that way when Pippa’s photo is found on the body of murdered lottery winner, Leanne Smith.

Pippa soon finds herself a suspect at the centre of a huge media storm. But she has an invaluable skill set – she is a human polygraph, expertly trained to spot lies and deceit. Skills she will need to help her to solve the mystery of who killed Leanne before it destroys her career – and her life.

But every cloud has a silver lining and this one arrives in the shape of DS Joe Swain. Initially suspicious of Pippa, he comes to trust her and to value her lie detection skills. Soon it’s clear there’s a definite spark between them….

Then, when another body turns up, Pippa realises her reputation isn’t the only thing in danger. Can she identify the killer before she becomes the next victim?

Fatal Fortune is the electrifying first book in the Dr. Pippa Durrant Thriller Series. If you like edge-of-your-seat action, clever sleuths, and shocking twists, then you’ll love Miranda Rijks’ gripping crime novel.




This is the first book in series featuring Dr Pippa Durrant.

Pippa is a psychologist and has gained a good reputation for herself, but then her photo is all over the media identifying her as the murdered lottery winner, Leanne Smith.

The police had issued the photo to the press as it had been found on the brutally murdered Leanne…but why? Is Pippa linked somehow?

“I look down at my handiwork and smile. The bitch is unrecognisable “

DS Joe Swain is investigating the murder and there is definitely a spark between him and Pippa, but is he just using her for her skills as a psychologist and micro expression reader?

Donna, is Leanne’s daughter and is distraught at her mothers death, her husband Ricky is supportive and caring….for now!

Mike is helping Ricky complete an extension on their home and he becomes close to Donna, when as Ricky starts behaving oddly, disappearing for hours…..and her Dad has been arrested for the murder…

Pippa tries to find out what’s going on and does her own bit of investigation, which leads nowhere but raises more suspicions, at the same time she is struggling with her own personal issues, her estranged son has come home, but things are still a bit fraught and then he is involved in an accident, her dog is let out of the house by someone and she has a client, the troubled Brent who needs to talk……and then another person is murdered!

I loved this book, so cleverly plotted, with many suspects and secrets to keep you guessing with never a dull moment… all comes together in a final, nerve shredding finish….brilliant writing by Miranda Rijks.

Thank you to Damppebbles Blog Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

About Miranda Rijks:


Miranda Rijks is a writer of suspense novels. I WANT YOU GONE is her first psychological thriller.

Miranda has an eclectic background ranging from law to running a garden centre. She’s been writing all of her life and has a Masters in writing. A couple of years ago she decided to ditch the business plans and press releases and now she’s living the dream, writing suspense novels full time. She lives in Sussex, England with her Dutch husband, musician daughter and black Labrador.

Up next is FATAL FORTUNE, the first of three books in a mystery romance series that will be published in May 2019. They feature Dr Pippa Durrant, a psychologist and specialist in lie detection, who works alongside Sussex police getting embroiled in some scary stuff!

Miranda loves connecting with her readers, so you can reach out to her at

Social Media:
Amazon Author Page:

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK:
Amazon US:

Publishing Information:
Published in paperback and eBook format by Inkubator Books on 5th May 2019



Book reviews, Historical fiction

Blood On The Stone by Jake Lynch – Book Review



Historical mystery thriller about a detective who defends justice and human rights

March 1681. Oxford is hosting the English Parliament under the ‘merry monarch’, King Charles II. As politicians and their hangers-on converge on the divided city, an MP is found murdered, triggering tensions that threaten mayhem on the streets.

Luke Sandys, Chief Officer of the Oxford Bailiffs, must solve the crime and thwart the plot. On his side is the respect for evidence and logic he absorbed in his student days, as a follower of the new science. On the other, a group of political conspirators are stirring up sectarian hatreds in their scheme to overthrow the Crown.

Struggling to protect all he holds dear, Luke leans heavily on his cavalry officer brother, his friends, and his faithful deputy, Robshaw. But he has a secret, which may be clouding his judgement. At the moment of truth, will he choose love or duty?




I enjoyed Blood on The Stone by Jake Lynch immensely, it’s a unique murder mystery set in 17th Century Oxford.

King Charles II is visiting the city with his entourage, when an MP William Harbord is found murdered…first thoughts are this is a political killing by the papists. They worry about revenge by the Green Ribbon Club and their anti-catholic agitation..

Luke Sandys, The Chief Officer of the Bailiffs is set to solve the murder, he also finds a plot against the King.

I found Luke Sandys to be a quite sympathetic character,  a married man, but lonely and has feelings for the Catholic Cate….very much against the emotions of the time.

The mix of historical facts and fiction made for a very entertaining read, it was clearly a very troubled, turbulent and brutal time….the idea of Catherine Wheeling someone is horrific….all in the name of religion. A must read for lovers of historical fiction and I can thoroughly recommend it.

Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.

Also Thanks to The Pigeonhole.

You can buy a copy here (click on the image)


Jake Lynch is Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Sydney, and the author of seven books and over 50 refereed articles and book chapters. Over 20 years, he has pioneered both research and practice in the field of Peace Journalism, for which he was recognised with the 2017 Luxembourg Peace Prize, awarded by the Schengen Peace Foundation.

He has held Fellowships at the Universities of Johannesburg, Bristol and Cardiff, where he read English Literature and got a Diploma in Journalism Studies. His PhD was from City University, London.

Before taking up an academic post, Jake enjoyed a successful career in journalism, with spells as a Political Correspondent for Sky News at Westminster and the Sydney correspondent for the Independent newspaper, culminating in a role as a presenter (anchor) for BBC World Television News.

Jake divides his time between Australia and Oxford, where he performs in amateur dramatic productions and runs a local book group. He is married with a teenaged son.



Book reviews, Crime thriller

Jaded by Rob Ashman – Book Review



A body washes up on a Blackpool beach, tortured and shot through the head.

A man is found in an alleyway with his throat ripped open.

A woman is murdered in a hospital bed.

What connects them?

DI Roz Kray’s private life is in turmoil as she struggles to unravel a baffling case and DCI Dan Bagley is hell-bent on making her working life a misery.

Billy Ellwood is a chameleon. What forced him to disappear eighteen years ago? And what was the promise?

When Kray makes a shattering discovery it rocks her world to the core. The stakes could not be higher. She’s left with no choice.

This time … it’s all or nothing.


This starts with torture and murder…..then the body is found after being dumped at sea…and the investigation begins.

DI Rosalind Kray (Roz) and her DC Duncan Tavener are assigned the case….then a young Asian woman is run over by a taxi driver in an accident and Roz believes she may have been a victim of trafficking and that the two cases may be linked. Her boss DCI Bagley thinks differently and tells her to treat them as separate and that this must be drug related.

The story is interspersed with chapters from Billy’s perspective, an undercover cop who gets a little too close to enjoying the criminal lifestyle….until his wife is murdered…after 18 years he wants revenge and his companion, Jade is very encouraging…..

Roz is getting close to working out what is going on, she then has a personal tragedy and Bagley takes over the case. When she returns she discovers just how they keep missing catching the perpetrators…..she is so driven despite her recent tragedy and just keeps digging until she discovers the shocking reason…

This is a brilliantly plotted tale, with some truly gruesome moments of torture. There’s also people trafficking and violence, but is ultimately a story of heartbreak and revenge…..with a little corruption. Great characters with human emotions, a credit to Rob Ashman’s creative writing. I really enjoyed this gripping thriller and can absolutely recommend it.

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.

You can can buy a copy here (click on the image)



Rob is married to Karen with two grown up daughters. He is originally from South Wales and after moving around with work settled in North Lincolnshire where he’s spent the last twenty-three years.


Like all good welsh valley boys Rob worked for the National Coal Board after leaving school at sixteen and went to University at the tender age of twenty-three when the pit closures began to bite. Since then he’s worked in a variety of manufacturing and consulting roles both in the UK and abroad.


It took Rob twenty-four years to write his first book. He only became serious about writing it when his dad got cancer. It was an aggressive illness and Rob gave up work for three months to look after him and his mum. Writing Those That Remain became his coping mechanism. After he wrote the book his family encouraged him to continue, so not being one for half measures, Rob got himself made redundant, went self-employed so he could devote more time to writing and four years later the Mechanic Trilogy is the result. Since then Rob has written the DI Rosalind Kray series.


All the novels are published by Bloodhound Books.
The Mechanic Trilogy – Those That Remain, In Your Name and Pay the Penance.
The DI Rosalind Kray series – Faceless, This Little Piggy, Suspended Retribution and Jaded.


When he’s not writing, Rob is a frustrated chef with a liking for beer and prosecco, and is known for occasional outbreaks of dancing.
Twitter Handle: @RobAshmanAuthor