Sycamore Gap; L J Ross

sycamore gap

After reading Holy Island, which was very generously sent to me by L J Ross, I was super eager to get my hands on Sycamore Gap.  When it was finally released I was in the middle of a huge reading slump, and I mean huge!! It went on for a good couple of months, and then suddenly a little parcel arrived at my doorstep.  The lovely L J Ross had sent me Sycamore Gap and I was so excited I read it straight away… goodbye reading slump!

[The Plot]: The past never stays buried for long…
Detective Chief Inspector Ryan believes he has put his turbulent history behind him. Then, in the early hours of the summer solstice, the skeleton of a young woman is found inside the Roman Wall at Sycamore Gap. She has lain undiscovered for ten years and it is Ryan’s job to piece together her past.
Enquiry lines cross and merge as Ryan is forced to face his own demons and enter into a deadly game of cat and mouse with a killer who seems unstoppable.
Murder and mystery are peppered with a sprinkling of romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunnit set amidst the spectacular scenery of Hadrian’s Wall country in Northumberland.

As this book is a sequel to Holy Island, I will do my best as to not give anything away from the first book, but you really should go and give it a read!  Anyway, back to Sycamore Gap… as I’ve said already, I was eagerly waiting to read more of DCI Ryan and Sycamore Gap did not disappoint.

Sycamore  Gap was just as thrilling and captivating as Holy Island, and I literally could not put this down.  The story is fast paced and like any good murder mystery, you are really unsure of who the killer is throughout.  Ross has you questioning so many of the characters, and their motives and the outcome leaves you wanting more of DCI Ryan.

As Ryan and Anna’s relationship develops further throughout the book, you see Anna really accept Ryan for who he is.  He is protective and scarred from his past, and this shows the more he opens up to Anna.  With that, Anna almost teaches him that it’s ok to feel vulnerable, and how to let someone in past all of the walls he has built up to protect both himself and the people he loves. Their relationship just grows stronger throughout the book and with Ryan’s past, you can’t help but feel overwhelmingly happy for him.  Ross’ writing makes you feel like you truly know Ryan and want the best for him.

If I’ve not hinted enough already, I absolutely loved this book and need more DCI Ryan in my life! I know that Ross is working on a third in the series to be released this year, and I can’t freaking wait!!

I rate this book five out of five stars.


Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.

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The Fade Out; Ed Brubaker & Sean Phillips


The Fade out was a completely new reading experience for me, as I have never read a graphic novel before. After seeing a couple of people mention The Fade Out within the book tube community and thought I would give it a go.

[The Plot]: An intricate and groundbreaking crime story on a level Brubaker and Phillips have never tackled before, THE FADE OUT weaves a tangled web through the underbelly of a 1948 Hollywood… A noir film stuck in endless reshoots. A writer plagued with nightmares from the war and a dangerous secret. An up-and-coming starlet’s suspicious death. And a maniacal studio mogul and his security chief who will do anything to keep the cameras rolling before the Post-War boom days come crashing down. THE FADE OUT is the most ambitious series yet from the award-winning Noir Masters.

As I’ve already said, this was the first graphic novel I’ve read, and to be honest, I was really pleasantly surprised. Being the completely naive person that I am, I always assumed graphic novels were just for super heirs and really ‘geeky’… as if being a 100% bookworm isn’t geeky enough.  However, after hearing about a couple on blogs and youtube, I was really interested in the different genres included in graphic novels.

The Fade Out is a very dark and sinister murder mystery story based in 1940s Hollywood.   I’ve always been a fan of this time in history and that’s what really attracted me to read this in the first place.  And as a fan of crime / thriller books, I think I found the perfect graphic novel to get me started.  I really enjoyed the different reading format and the imagery in The Fade Out is really  amazing and fits in perfectly with the Noir genre.

I really enjoyed reading The Fade Out and loved how face paced it was.  I would love to hear your recommendations in the comment below of any graphic novels you love and think I should pick up.

I rate this book four out of five stars.

four star

Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.

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The Sea Between Us; Emylia Hall

the sea between us

Well, what can I say? It has been a busy busy couple of months in the Just Bookish household, and as much as I hate it, it’s meant I’ve had no time to blog!  Fingers crossed I can now get myself back on track, and post reviews at least once a week.  Before life took over, I was really enjoying posting my reviews and also started to post some more DIY styled posts and a  bookshelf tour, so if you enjoyed them please let me know if the comments below, and also let me know if there are any other post you would like to see from me in the near future.

Now, lets get back to business!  The Sea Between Us isn’t my usual read, it’s a  contemporary novel which isn’t something I tend to gravitate towards when I’m picking my next book to read. However, it was quite nice to have a break from the crime and thriller books I’ve been buried in over the last couple of months, and I would love to hear your recommendations on other contemporary reads.

[The Plot] In a remote Cornish cove, on one of the last days of summer, Robyn Swinton is drowning. She is saved – just – by local boy Jago Winters, and it is a moment that will change both of them forever.

Over the next seven years, Robyn and Jago’s paths lead them in different directions, to city streets and foreign shores. Will the bond forged that day Jago dragged Robyn in from the sea be strong enough to bring them back to one another, or has life already pulled them too far apart?

As I have said above, this isn’t the sort of book I would usually pick up, which meant it did take me a little white to fully get into the book.  That being said, once I had got past the first quarter-ish, I was hooked. It is a romantic book, but I felt that it wasn’t too soppy or gushy with the romance, it was a realistic story that a lot of people could relate to.

I found that throughout the book, there was a lot of will they won’t they between Robyn and Jago, and at times it made me want to shake some sense in Jago.  He clearly likes Robyn but holds back instead of making a move, but then at the same time, I did find Robyn to be quite naive.  Even though they had these characteristics which could be really annoying at times, it made for a great read and I loved the way the story panned out, in the end.

I don’t want to give too much away, as there are quite a lot of twist and turns in the plot, but it’s not your everyday boy meets girls, fall in love, the end, sort of book.  And as I’ve said before, this means it isn’t too much of a sickly sweet romance.  I would love to read more boo’s like this and explore the Contemporary genre further.

I rate this book  three out of five stars.

three star

Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.

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Waiting for Doggo: Mark B. Mills

waiting for doggo

As a huge dog person, just the little illustration on the cover caught my eye.  After reading the blurb, I really wasn’t sure what to expect but I was intrigued and after a couple of pages, I was hooked.

[The Plot]: Dear Daniel, I’m going away, a long way away.  I can’t tell you where…
Take Doggo back, you can’t leave him shut up n the flat all day.  It wouldn’t be fair on him, and it’s not like the two of you have hit it off.
Love and Light,
Clara xxx

Mills has written what I think is the perfect holiday book.  It’s short, it’s a light read, it’s funny and if I’m honest, it’s just  a happy little story.

Daniel is left in a bit of a sticky situation when his girlfriend, Clara, leaves him and the dog she adopted to travel the world.  At the beginning of the book, Dan has no affection for Doggo, he is an ugly little mutt who hasn’t especially taken to Dan either, or anyone for that matter.

The book has a rom-com feel to it, which is really interesting when it’s solely written from the male’s point of view.  Throughout the book, Dan slowly learns to love Doggo, through all of his flaws and with this new affection Doggo becomes really attached to Dan.  Dan takes Doggo everywhere he goes, he even takes him to his new job.  The better the relationship between Dan and Doggo, the better everything else in Dan’s life seems to be.  He is excelling in his new job and building new relationships, he is putting Clara out of his mind and using his new found free time to move on with his life.

As a dog lover myself, I really admired Dan and Doggo’s relationship and how it grew.  Dan no longer tolerates Doggo bit has learnt to love him and takes really good care of him.  He even sticks up for Doggo and confronts a colleague who was trying to stop him coming to work with Dan.

One of the great things about this book was that Mills didn’t feel the need for adding ridiculous events or plot twist, it’s just a simple story about how the new found relationship of a man and his dog can completely change your outlook on life.

I absolutely flew through this book and read it in one sitting. I’d love to hear some suggestions of other mark Mills books with picking up in the comments below!

I rate this book four out of five stars.

four star

Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.

Please like,share and follow if you enjoyed this post, and feel free to leave recommendations in the comments.

Near Enemy; Adam Sternbergh

Near Enemy

After reading the blurb for this book, I had really high hopes and thought I would thoroughly enjoy the plot.  This didn’t seem to be the case.

[The Plot]: Spademan, a former garbage man, lost his wife and his livelihood in the dirty bomb that hit Times Square.  He became a hit man, and he’s been cleaning up in a whole new way. In the burnt-out shell of what was once New york, the wealthy escape to a virtual reality far removed from the ruins around them.
Now the virtual world is under threat from terrorists and Spademan is tasked with tracking them down.  He’s not used to having enemies- his foes usually end up dead pretty quickly- but he’s about to find out just how close they are, and how dangerous they can be.

I don’t tend to write negative reviews or even comments on my blog, however this is the first book in a long long while I was unable to finish.

I tried to read this book for roughly 2 weeks, and was only able to get about 60 pages or so into the book.  I don’t think it was any fault of the plot or the characters, I just couldn’t get along with the writing style.  When you first open the book, it almost looks like it’s written in the style of a poem.  The majority of sentences are shorter than the length of a line on the page.  This isn’t what bothered me as I read it, I just found it really hard to follow as there is no differentiation between narration, thought or speech, and when people are speaking it’s hard to follow who is speaking when.

As I said, I was unable to finish this book and therefore I won’t drag on the review and slate the book for no reason.  I simply couldn’t follow the writing style.

Have you read this book?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the book, and if you have any tips for reading it and following along a bit better.

I rate this book 1 out of 5 stars.

one star copy

Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.

Please like,share and follow if you enjoyed this post, and feel free to leave recommendations in the comments.