Blog Tour: Deepwater King – Claire McKenna

Blog Tour: Deepwater King – Claire McKenna


Series:
The Monstrous Heart Trilogy #2
Release Date: June 24th 2021
Publisher: HarperVoyager
Pages: 400
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4/5 stars

Synopsis

Since losing her great love to the Queen of the Sainted Isles, Arden must fulfil an impossible promise before she can return home – she must complete the dangerous Rite that will return Jonah’s spirit to the abyssal Court of the Deepwater King.

This sets her off on a journey far out at sea to find believers of the old religion on the oil-slick and mysterious islands beyond the horizon. But such a responsibility will not come without sacrifice, for the Deepwater folk who worship the King require the most desperate payments the soul, and with one man Arden may have to pay the greatest price of all…

Astonishingly original, with world-building to rival the depths of the ocean, McKenna has drawn a rich tale of longing and courage – penning the perfect oceanic steampunk fantasy.

Review

Deepwater King is the second instalment in the beautiful Monstrous Heart trilogy by Claire McKenna. Monstrous Heart is a book that’s been on my radar for quite a while and I ended up reading both books back to back. Deepwater King picks up immediately after the events of Monstrous Heart and I found it so easy to get sucked back into the story. We are once again following Arden as she heads out on her journey to complete the rite and return Jonah’s spirit to the court of the deepwater king.

While I really enjoyed Monstrous Heart I enjoyed Deepwater King even more. The world is so unique and – it’s a Victorian-style world full of mysterious sea creatures and fascinating abilities. The blood magic was something that I was particularly intrigued by and the way McKenna incorporated that into the world. I liked that we got the opportunity to learn more about it as the series progressed. It took me a little while to get to grips with the world in book one so I found it much easier to understand what was going on in book two. McKenna has an absolutely beautiful writing style and the vivid writing really made the story come alive.

Arden is an interesting protagonist – she’s the light mistress and in this second instalment there is danger wherever she turns. She’s quite a strong-willed main character and she will do whatever she can to fulfil her promise. She has been on such a journey since the first book and I really enjoyed seeing the character development. I also liked Jonah who is much more than we first suspect in Monstrous Heart. Deepwater King is definitely a book I found myself thinking about when I wasn’t reading it and I was always desperate to get back to the story. I ended up reading the last hundred pages of the book in one sitting, and I am desperate to see how it all ends in the final instalment. If you’re looking for a captivating fantasy story with plenty of twists and turns, this is definitely one to check out.

Book Review: The Last Girl – Goldy Moldavsky

Book Review: The Last Girl – Goldy Moldavsky


Release Date:
April 15th 2021
Publisher: Electric Monkey Books
Pages: 430
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 3.75/5 stars

Synopsis

When it comes to horror movies, the rules are clear:
– Avoid abandoned buildings, warehouses, and cabins at all times.
– Stay together: don’t split up, not even just to “check something out.…
– If there’s a murderer on the loose, do NOT make out with anyone …

New girl Rachel Chavez turns to horror movies for comfort, preferring them to the bored rich kids of her fancy New York High School. But then Rachel is recruited by the Mary Shelley Club, a mysterious student club that sets up terrifying Fear Tests; elaborate pranks inspired by urban legends and horror movies.

But when a sinister masked figure appears, Rachel realises that her past has caught up with her. It’s time for the ultimate prank to play out…

Review

I’m a big horror movie fan so when I heard about The Last Girl I was immediately intrigued. The story follows Rachel, a young girl that attends a fancy school full of rich kids. Rachel finds comfort in the horror movies she loves, but when she stumbles across the Mary Shelley Club – a group of students who carry out clever pranks designed to make their classmates scream. But Rachel soon learns everyone in the group has secrets, including her.

This was such a fun read and is absolutely perfect for getting swept up in over the Summer. I loved the premise of this book, the idea of a group of horror movie fanatics getting together to design these spine-tingling fear tests. The tests were probably the bit of the story I enjoyed most, seeing the way the group pull of the pranks and get away with it. I really enjoyed the writing style in this and I found some of the scenes really quite scary. It’s a fast-paced read and one that will have you reading past bedtime.

The characters in this were really fascinating and I was so intrigued to find out who the masked figure was. Pretty much everyone in the group is not what they seem and there were a couple of twists that I guessed and a few I definitely did not. The Last Girl is an entertaining and creepy read and if you love books like One Of Us Is Lying or Harrow Lake this will definitely be your cup of tea. This is my first book from Goldy Moldavsky and I will definitely be picking up more from them in the future.

Blog Tour: The Tsarina’s Daughter – Ellen Alpsten

Blog Tour: The Tsarina’s Daughter – Ellen Alpsten


Release Date:
8th July 2021
Publisher: Bloomsbury Books
Pages: 464
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: I was kindly sent a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4.25/5 stars

Synopsis

When they took everything from her, they didn’t count on her fighting to get it back…

Born into the House of Romanov to the all-powerful Peter the Great and Catherine I, beautiful Tsarevna Elizabeth is the world’s loveliest Princess and the envy of the Russian empire. Insulated by luxury and as a woman free from the burden of statecraft, Elizabeth is seemingly born to pursue her passions.

However, a dark prophecy predicts her fate as inexorably twined with Russia. When her mother dies, Russia is torn, masks fall, and friends become foes. Elizabeth’s idyllic world is upended. By her twenties she is penniless and powerless, living under constant threat. As times change like quicksand, an all-consuming passion emboldens Elizabeth: she must decide whether to take up her role as Russia’s ruler and what she’s willing to do for her country – and for love.

Review

The Tsarina’s Daughter is the incredible new book from Ellen Alpsten, author of Tsarina. Having never read Tsarina I ended up reading both books back to back. I was just so engrossed in this story. Russian history isn’t something I know too much about but I was fascinated by the complex characters Alpsten has brought to life. The Tsarina’s Daughter follows the life of Elizabeth, daughter of Peter the Great and Catherine I. She is a beautiful young woman, the envy of all Russia and free to spend her time how she likes. When Elizabeth’s mother dies her world is turned upside down and she must learn to navigate the treacherous world she finds herself in.

The Tsarina’s Daughter is filled with beautiful writing and it’s one of those books that just completely sweeps you away. As mentioned I don’t know much about Russian history but it felt like an immense amount of detail and research has gone into this book and Alpsten has crafted some really brilliant characters. Despite knowing nothing everything was well explained and I never once got lost in all the characters and titles. I really enjoyed her writing style and her descriptions of the lavish court life lept off the page.

The story is full to the brim with political intrigue, with every man out for themselves. Alpsten depicts the treacherous life at court, where you never know who you can trust. The Tsarina’s Daughter is a really gripping read and if you’re a fan of historical fiction this is definitely one to try. Part of what intrigued me about these books is the quote from Daisy Goodwin saying ‘makes Game of Thrones look like a nursery rhyme.’ This definitely rings true and I think if you’re someone who reads a lot of fantasy books you’d love these ones too. While the two books are linked you can absolutely read The Tsarina’s Daughter as a standalone but you won’t regret picking up book one. If you’re looking for a book to keep you entertained on a long summer evening, definitely check this one out. I cannot wait to read more from Ellen Alpsten and these books have without a doubt rocketed on to my favourite historical fiction books.

Blog Tour: Dragon Mage – M L Spencer

Blog Tour: Dragon Mage – M L Spencer


Series:
Rivenworld #1
Release Date: January 8th 2021
Publisher: Stoneguard Publications
Pages: 982
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: I received a copy of this book through Storytellers Tours
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Aram Raythe has the power to challenge the gods. He just doesn’t know it yet.

Aram thinks he’s nothing but a misfit from a small fishing village in a dark corner of the world. As far as Aram knows, he has nothing, with hardly a possession to his name other than a desire to make friends and be accepted by those around him, which is something he’s never known.

But Aram is more. Much, much more.

Unknown to him, Aram bears within him a gift so old and rare that many people would kill him for it, and there are others who would twist him to use for their own sinister purposes. These magics are so potent that Aram earns a place at an academy for warrior mages training to earn for themselves the greatest place of honor among the armies of men: dragon riders.

Aram will have to fight for respect by becoming not just a dragon rider, but a Champion, the caliber of mage that hasn’t existed in the world for hundreds of years. And the land needs a Champion. Because when a dark god out of ancient myth arises to threaten the world of magic, it is Aram the world will turn to in its hour of need.

Review

Dragon Mage is a book that I have seen around quite a lot recently and I have heard nothing but incredible things. I went in with pretty high expectations and this brilliant coming of age story has immediately rocketed into my favourite books of 2021.

Dragon Mage follows Aram, a young boy living in a small fishing village. Seen as an outcast, all Aram wants is to make friends. What Aram doesn’t know is that he has a rare and powerful magic within him – magic that people would kill him for, or use him for their own gain. This magic earns Aram a place at the academy – a plan to train and become a dragon rider. With this comes the chance to be a Champion, something the world has not seen for hundreds of years. When the world of magic becomes in danger of a vengeful god, only a champion will be able to stop them. But will Aram survive?

Dragon Mage is a big book, coming in at just under 1000 pages. The story Spencer has created is incredibly well crafted and I was so invested in Aram and his journey. I was never once bored and completely fell in love with this world and these characters. This coming of age fantasy adventure is everything I could possibly have wanted and I am so excited to learn there will be more books in the series.

Spencer has created some truly wonderful characters in this book and that is most evident with our main protagonist Aram. From the very first chapters, I was rooting for him, when all he wants is to have a friend. Dragon Mage is this epic journey as he finds himself and his place in the world. I similarly really liked Markus, Aram’s friend who sticks by him no matter what. I loved seeing their relationship grow as the story progressed and they are tested in ways they don’t expect. The worldbuilding in this story is excellent and everything felt really fleshed out. I can’t wait to see where Spencer is going to take us next.

The world of Dragon Mage is a dark one, and there’s plenty of action scenes to keep the reader hooked. I really enjoyed Spencer’s writing style and it was so easy to get lost in this world for hours at a time. There were definitely moments I sat down to read a chapter or two and glanced up and I’d been captivated by the story for several hours. Dragon Mage is a brilliant, gripping read – one that classic fantasy fans will adore.


Blog Tour: The Family Tree – Steph Mullin & Nicole Mabry

Blog Tour: The Family Tree – Steph Mullin & Nicole Mabry


Release Date:
June 10th 2021
Publisher: Avon Books
Pages: 400
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4.25/5 stars

Synopsis

The DNA results are back. And there’s a serial killer in her family tree…

Liz Catalano is shocked when an ancestry kit reveals she’s adopted. But she could never have imagined connecting with her unknown family would plunge her into an FBI investigation of a notorious serial killer…

The Tri-State Killer has been abducting pairs of women for forty years, leaving no clues behind – only bodies.

Can Liz figure out who the killer in her new family is? And can she save his newest victims before it’s too late?

A gripping, original thriller for fans of My Lovely Wife, Netflix’s Making a Murderer, and anyone who’s ever wondered what their family tree might be hiding…

Review

The Family Tree is the gripping story of Liz Catalano, a young woman living in New York with her cousin Andie. When Andie gets her a DNA ancestry kit as a present Liz signs up only to discover she’s adopted. As she goes in search of her biological family she is contacted by the FBI and becomes entangled in an investigation to discover the Tri-State Killer – a serial killer who has been abducting and murdering pairs of women for forty years. Can Liz uncover the truth behind her family, and can she do it in time to save his latest victims?

This was such a compelling read and I ended up reading it in one day. I thought this was such a unique concept and it was so well executed. It was a dark and engrossing read and I definitely did not want to look away. I loved the way the story was told from Liz’s perspective and from all the different victims of the Tri-State Killer. This definitely added to the suspense as we learn more about how the killer is getting away with his crimes all these years. As you would expect this story has plenty of twists and turns and there were more than a few creepy scenes that sent a shiver up my spine.

The Family Tree contains some really compelling characters and it was fascinating seeing Liz attempt to cope with learning about her birth family and what happened to them. I really liked the close bond between Liz and Andie and their portrayal felt really realistic. I loved the short chapters that had me turning pages faster and faster and the ending definitely wasn’t what I expected. The Family Tree is an inventive and chilling read, unlike any thriller I’ve read before. If you’re looking for something to keep you completely hooked on a long summer day, The Family Tree is exactly what you’re looking for.

Blog Tour: Black Water Sister – Zen Cho

Blog Tour: Black Water Sister – Zen Cho


Release Date:
June 10th
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Pages: 384
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4/5 stars

Synopsis

A reluctant medium discovers the ties that bind can unleash a dangerous power in this compelling Malaysian-set contemporary fantasy.

Jessamyn Teoh is closeted, broke and moving back to Malaysia, a country she left when she was a toddler. So when Jess starts hearing voices, she chalks it up to stress. But there’s only one voice in her head, and it claims to be the ghost of her estranged grandmother, Ah Ma. In life Ah Ma was a spirit medium, the avatar of a mysterious deity called the Black Water Sister. Now she’s determined to settle a score against a gang boss who has offended the god–and she’s decided Jess is going to help her do it.

Drawn into a world of gods, ghosts, and family secrets, Jess finds that making deals with capricious spirits is a dangerous business. As Jess fights for retribution for Ah Ma, she’ll also need to regain control of her body and destiny. If she fails, the Black Water Sister may finish her off for good.

Review

Black Water Sister first caught my eye when I heard the story described by the author as “A stressed zillennial lesbian fights gods, ghosts, gangsters & grandmas in 21st century Penang.” If that doesn’t intrigue you I don’t know what will! Black Water Sister is the engaging story of Jessamyn Teoh, a young woman moving from the US back to Malaysia with her parents. When she starts hearing a voice in her head she assumes it’s the stress of the move, but when the ghost admits to being her recently deceased grandmother, Jess ends up entangled in a plot to get revenge on a gang boss who has offended a god.

Black Water Sister is such a unique read and I got completely wrapped up in this magical story. The story is excellently plotted and well-paced, I found myself racing through the second half of the book because I wanted to know what was going to happen. This is my first book by Zen Cho and I enjoyed her writing style immensely, it was so easy to picture the sights and sounds of Malaysia. I love learning about the gods and the culture, especially as I don’t think I’ve read many books set there. Whilst this is my first book by the author it definitely won’t be my last and I will definitely be ordering Sorcerer to the Crown!

In this story, we meet some truly compelling characters and it was the incredible characters that really made this book for me. Jess is a brilliant protagonist – she’s trying to find herself, never having fit in in the US or in Malaysia. She’s trying to have a long-distance relationship with her girlfriend and her parents don’t know that she’s gay. There’s a lot going on, but Jess made for a really likeable character and I was rooting for her to succeed. I was similarly fascinated by Ah Ma, the snarky Grandma who is much more than she seems. I loved the way Cho mixed the magical mystery elements with typical family drama, it made for such a compelling and intriguing read.

Black Water Sister is a beautifully written, vivid tale of ghosts, mystery and family. If you’re looking for a fantasy read that’s completely unlike anything you’ve read before – this one is a must-read.

Book Review: Sorrowland – Rivers Solomon

Book Review: Sorrowland – Rivers Solomon


Release Date:
May 6th 2021
Publisher: Merky Books
Pages: 368
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 3/5 stars

Synopsis

Vern, a hunted woman alone in the woods, gives birth to twins and raises them away from the influence of the outside world. But something is wrong – not with them, but with her own body. It’s changing, it’s stronger, it’s not normal.

To understand her body’s metamorphosis, Vern must investigate the secluded religious compound from which she fled and the violent history of dehumanisation, medical experimentation and genocide that produced it. In the course of reclaiming her own darkness, Vern learns that monsters aren’t just individuals, but entire histories, systems and nations.

Rivers Solomon’s Sorrowland is a memorable work of Gothic fiction that wrestles with the tangled history of racism in America and the marginalisation of society’s undesirables. It is a searing, seminal book that marks the arrival of a bold, unignorable voice in American fiction.

Review

I read The Deep by Rivers Solomon last year and it was such a beautiful and haunting read that I was excited to try more from this author. The story follows Vern, a young woman fleeing the remote religious compound she has lived in all her life. She gives birth to two babies and tries to raise them without the influence of the compound or the outside world. As Vern and her babies fight for survival she soon learns something is wrong with her body. Not only is she experiencing hauntings, but her body is changing, making her more powerful than she ever thought possible. But the group she fled from will not let her go easily and for Vern to survive she must become more than she ever imagined.

Sorrowland is a dark and moving tale, one that definitely sticks with you long after you’ve finished reading. Vern’s story is a haunting one, that very much shines a light on the history of racism in America. It’s such a unique read, blending Gothic horror with science fiction and fantasy. Sorrowland is completely unlike anything I’ve read before – if you’re looking for a unique and compelling read this is definitely one to pick up.

I really liked Solomon’s writing and I particularly enjoyed the first half of the book. I found the last portion of the book a little muddied, and the ending took a different turn than I was expecting. Despite this Sorrowland is still a completely fascinating read, one that touches on a lot of important topics. It definitely isn’t a light or fun read but it’s absolutely a story worth reading. I was really fascinated by the idea of the hauntings, and this was something I was particularly intrigued by in the story. I was so intrigued to learn if they were real or a product of Vern’s imagination. I won’t say too much about the plot because this is definitely one of those books that’s best to go in blind. Sorrowland is a unique and engaging read, one that I think lots of people will be swept up in. If you’ve read other books by Rivers Solomon I’d definitely check this one out.

Book Review: Mrs England – Stacey Halls

Book Review: Mrs England – Stacey Halls


Release Date:
June 10th 2021
Publisher: Zaffre Books
Pages: 400
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

West Yorkshire, 1904.

When newly graduated nurse Ruby May takes a position looking after the children of Charles and Lilian England, a wealthy couple from a powerful dynasty of mill owners, she hopes it will be the fresh start she needs. But as she adapts to life at the isolated Hardcastle House, it becomes clear there’s something not quite right about the beautiful, mysterious Mrs England. Ostracised by the servants and feeling increasingly uneasy, Ruby is forced to confront her own demons in order to prevent history from repeating itself. After all, there’s no such thing as the perfect family – and she should know.

Simmering with slow-burning menace, Mrs England is a portrait of an Edwardian marriage, weaving an enthralling story of men and women, power and control, courage, truth and the very darkest deception. Set against the atmospheric landscape of West Yorkshire, Stacey Halls’ third novel proves her one of the most exciting and compelling new storytellers of our times.

Review

Mrs England is the third book from historical fiction writer Stacey Halls. I read and love both The Familiars and The Foundling, so this was an incredibly anticipated release for me. The story follows Nurse Ruby May a graduate of the Norland Institute. When she is forced to leave her position she knows she needs to find another as soon as possible. When the opportunity comes up to be a nurse to the four England children, Ruby takes the position immediately. When she arrives in Yorkshire she soon finds things aren’t right with the family. Mrs England is detached and mysterious, and the servants won’t talk to her. As Ruby spends more time with the family, she uncovers more than she could possibly imagine.

Stacey Halls is one of those authors where you start reading the book and then become immediately torn between reading it slowly to savour the beautiful writing, or racing through it in a single night because of the compelling story. For me I ended up reading this until the wee hours of the morning, I just had to know what was happening with the England family. The story is really addictive and it has such a fascinating premise. It really focuses on the idea of marriage and power in a relationship. Yorkshire really comes to life in the beautiful and vivid writing and I felt completely transported back to that time period.

Like her previous novels, you can tell an immense amount of research has gone into this story. I loved the slow-building feeling of menace in the story, it’s so atmospheric and there were some moments that definitely gave me a feeling of dread. One of the most compelling things for me was the complex characters – so many of them are way more than they seem on the surface. Mr and Mrs England were brilliant characters and Halls has a brilliant way of making you question who they truly are. Ruby is a really interesting protagonist and I loved learning about her family and her past alongside her time with the Englands.

Stacey Halls is rapidly becoming my favourite historical fiction writer. This is another brilliantly plotted and well-executed tale, one that I will be recommending to everyone I know. If you love historical fiction this one is a must-read.

Blog Tour: The Maidens – Alex Michaelides

Blog Tour: The Maidens – Alex Michaelides


Release Date:
June 15th 2021
Publisher:  W&N
Pages: 352
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4/5 stars

Synopsis

Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek Tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens.

Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge.

Mariana, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister. And she becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students? And why does he keep returning to the rites of Persephone, the maiden, and her journey to the underworld?

When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything—including her own life.

Review

The Maidens is the all-new thriller by The Silent Patient author Alex Michaelides. The Silent Patient was one of my favourite thriller reads of 2019 and I was really excited to see what Michaelides did next. The story follows Mariana, a group therapist who becomes obsessed with the maidens when a friend of her niece is found murdered in Cambridge. Mariana knows for sure that even though he has an alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of murder and she will do anything to prove it. As Mariana becomes more and more obsessed, she soon finds her credibility and her closest relationships falling away from her – but can she stop the killer?

Just like The Silent Patient, I found myself getting completely lost in this story and raced through it in a few gripping sittings. The story captivated me from the outset and Michaelides has such a brilliant writing style that I was completely swept away in this story. It’s fast-paced with pretty short chapters that kept me completely hooked. The story is full to the brim with twists and turns and given the surprises in his first book I knew anything was possible. Michaelides has such a great way of making you a bit suspicious of everyone and the final reveal definitely wasn’t what I expected.

The Maidens is a dark and compelling read, one I think thriller fans will completely adore. Mariana is an interesting protagonist she is someone dealing with grief who very quickly spirals into obsession. I really liked the Cambridge setting in the story, which definitely came to life in the vivid descriptions. If you’re a fan of gripping psychological thrillers you can’t look away from, The Maidens should definitely be your next read.

Blog Tour: Monstrous Design – Kat Dunn

Blog Tour: Monstrous Design – Kat Dunn


Series:
Battalion of the Dead #2 (See my review of book one here!)
Release Date: June 10th 2021
Publisher: Zephyr Books
Pages: 432
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

1794, London: Camille and Al are desperately hunting Olympe’s kidnapper. From the glamorous excesses of the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens to the city’s seedy underbelly, they are caught in a dangerous game of lies and deceit. And a terrible new enemy lies in wait with designs more monstrous than they could ever imagine… Can Camille play on to the end or will she be forced to show her hand?

In Paris, the Duc is playing his own dangerous games. With Ada in his thrall, old loyalties are thrown into question. The Battalion are torn apart as never before, and everything – Ada’s love for Camille, her allegiance to the battalion itself – is under threat.

Review

Monstrous Design is the second instalment in Kat Dunn’s thrilling Battalion of the Dead series. The story picks up right after the events of Dangerous Remedy. We follow Camille and Al as they attempt to get Olympe back and we follow Ada and Guil as they attempt to find where the Duc is hiding out. As the stakes get higher alliances are soon called into question – but will the battalion of the dead be able to survive their latest adventure?

Dangerous Remedy was one of my favourite books of 2020. It was one of those books I still thought about months after reading it, and Monstrous Design was one of my most anticipated releases of 2021. Monstrous Design is action-packed – it’s a rollercoaster ride that does not stop till the very last page. It’s a pretty fast-paced story and despite being nearly 500 pages I read it in a single day. Dunn really hooks the reader in with this addictive plot that’s full of twists – with everyone playing their own game I never quite knew what was going to happen next.

In Monstrous Design we are transported to England as well as France and Dunn really makes the sights and sounds of both cities come alive in the story. My favourite thing about Dangerous Remedy was the brilliant characters and that was definitely the same in Monstrous Design. I loved being back with the Batallion again and it was fascinating seeing how the characters grow in this second instalment. I think Al is still my favourite, but I honestly love them all. I also really liked getting to know James more and learning more about his motivations as a character. He was a really fascinating POV character – he is really complex and torn between loyalties. Like wise I loved Camille and Ada, they are such compelling characters and I think I could read a dozen books about the crew and their daring heists.

Monstrous Design is a brilliant sequel and I am incredibly excited to see where Kat Dunn will take us in book three. If you’ve been curious about this series I definitely recommend picking it up and if you’ve already read Dangerous Remedy, you need to pick up book two now!