Interview on Fictionophile

My thanks to Lynne LeGrow for some interesting and entertaining questions.

‘There’s nothing better than knowing others enjoy the story you wrote. That’s why I write.’

Read the full interview here.

 

Bury Them Deep by James Oswald

20th February 2020. 5 stars.

This has to be one of the best and most enjoyable police procedurals I’ve read for some time.

I’ve never read one of the author’s books before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect when I was offered an advance copy in exchange for an honest review. It’s the tenth book in the Tony McLean series and reads fine as a standalone, though I imagine you get a little more out of the characters if you’ve read the whole series from the start.

I enjoyed the story from the opening pages, where a member of the team goes missing at the start of a major operation, involving various agencies and countries. The author’s easy to read style moved the story along at a measured pace, allowing the characters, subplots and story to breathe and develop. I got to know the characters inside and outside the police, including the usual conflict between frontline officers and senior officers, more concerned with budgets and public relations than a missing member of staff.

The suspense built slowly, creating an overwhelming sense that something rather unpleasant was waiting for me at the climax. I was not disappointed as little by little, the story became more complex and intriguing. The mystery deepened with each step forward in the investigation until the gruesome and truth began to emerge from the Scottish mist. From here it was full steam ahead to an exciting and shocking climax that provided a satisfactory conclusion to the story with no loose ends.

This is a measured, thoughtful and intriguing story, related with great skill and confidence to ensure the perfect balance between character and plot. I have no hesitation in recommending this novel to anyone who likes realistic and elegant police procedurals that offer something a little bit different.

I’m going back to the beginning now to see how the series started.

Description

When a member of the Police Scotland team fails to clock-in for work, concern for her whereabouts is immediate… and the discovery of her burnt-out car in remote woodland to the south of Edinburgh sets off a desperate search for the missing woman.

Meanwhile, DCI Tony McLean and the team are preparing for a major anti-corruption operation – one which may raise the ire of more than a few powerful people in the city. Is Anya Renfrew’s disappearance a co-incidence or related to the case?

McLean’s investigations suggest that perhaps that Anya isn’t the first woman to have mysteriously vanished in these ancient hills. Once again, McLean can’t shake the feeling that there is a far greater evil at work here…

Bury Them Deep

No Mercy – Interview on Books Teacup and Reviews

My thanks to Yesha for some intriguing and enjoyable questions.

‘The challenge is invariably the same with all my books – keeping it fresh and credible, which isn’t easy when your main character isn’t a police officer or private detective.’

Read the full interview of Books Teacup and Reviews.

 

The challenge of writing a series

‘The Kent Fisher murder mysteries are a long way from the cop with a trauma, which seems to be one of the current trends in crime fiction. They’re traditional murder mysteries, driven by both character and plot to entertain readers.’

If you want to find out more about why I write the Kent Fisher mysteries, you can read the guest post at Between the Lines

My thanks to Cathy at Between the Lines for letting me spread the word.

 

Hunting Shadows by Sheila Bugler

11th February 2020. 4 stars.

The story grabbed me from the start, thanks to the quality of the writing, the high stakes and the sharpness of the characters. DI Ellen Kelly in particular was vividly drawn with her flaws, self-doubts and fears, adding to the tension and suspense.

The abduction of a child must be a parent’s worst nightmare and this was well-portrayed throughout the story as the pressure mounted and facades began to crumble. Though it’s pretty much impossible to like or empathise with someone who takes a child, the abductor could also be viewed as a victim of a tragic past he never recovered from.

There’s a lot going on as the story develops and deepens, with Ellen and the police floundering for much of the story. The climax is exciting with a twist that wasn’t entirely unexpected, but it didn’t take anything away from the impact. I wasn’t overly keen on the way the viewpoint kept switching around during the climax, making it a little bitty, but it’s a minor niggle.

If you enjoy police procedurals with strong, but flawed characters, high stakes and a complex plot, Hunting Shadows is well worth reading.

Description

Lee, southeast London. A young girl has disappeared. There are no witnesses, no leads, no clues. The police are tracking a shadow, and time is running out …

DI Ellen Kelly is at the top of her game – at least she was, until she took the law into her own hands and confronted her husband’s killer. Now she’s back at work, leading the investigation into the missing child. Her superiors are watching her; the distraught family is depending on her.

Ellen has a lot to prove. And she knows it.

A tense thriller that stalks the urban streets of southeast London and the bleak wilderness of the North Kent coast, Hunting Shadows introduces the forceful, compromised police detective, DI Ellen Kelly.

Hunting Shadows by Sheila Bugler

Reviews and guest posts from the No Mercy book launch

This is another fabulous book by Robert.  His writing style is so easy to read and follow which makes it an absolute joy – Curled up with a Good Book

A super series, brilliant angle for the stories and Kent is a top bloke! Highly recommended – Books from Dusk Till Dawn

5 things I learned from writing a series. A guest post on Novel Deelights

Daring to be different. A guest post on Linda’s Book Bag

No Mercy is a cracking read and I would Definitely Recommend it – Me and my Books

I was on the edge of my seat trying to figure out who in the hell the person was that I thought had done it – The Caffeinated Reader

Humorous dialogue and engaging characterisation I’ve come to expect from Robert Crouch, and is the best Kent Fisher book yet – Hair Past a Freckle

Great fun, an intriguing mystery and thoroughly entertaining – The Bookwormery

I am an avid fan of Agatha Christie and I have absolute no qualms in saying, these stories really do have a close relation to the original classics – Lacy Ace Book Reviews

A great whodunit in a kind of familiar, though also unique way, as I never met a sleuth like Kent before – The Magic of Wor(l)ds

Reviews and posts from the No More Lies blog tour

Somehow I don’t think I could ever tire of this series – A Lover of Books

A really enjoyable read – Donna’s Book Blog

I recommend this series if you like thriller/murder/mystery – The Writer’s Alley

A thoroughly entertaining, cosy-ish crime thriller – The Bookwormery

Fits in with all the “greats” of crime fiction quite perfectly as an interesting sleuth with a clear voice and style – The Itinerarian

Good mystery with an ending that has you longing for another book instantly – The Magic of Wor(l)ds

There are some real characters building in this series which I now care about, love it when a series affects me like that – Books from Dusk till Dawn

This has that classic ‘whodunnit’ feel but in a modern setting – Me and my Books

How an environmental health officer can solve a murder – a guest post at Linda’s Book Bag.

Each of the Kent Fisher mysteries is brilliantly written and easy to read – Mo Mo Book Diary

The Book I Had To Write – a guest post on Nemesis Book Blog

With secrets to uncover, laughter, passion and some lovely creatures to add to the mix, this is definitely one story to read – Lacy Ace Book Reviews

Avoiding Jessica Fletcher Syndrome – a guest post on The Tattooed Book Geek

I loved it and it definitely hooked me into wanting to read the next book – The Caffeinated Reader

A great read with a kind of cosy mystery feel – Curled Up with a Good Book

 

Reviews from the No Remorse blog tour

Check out the reviews and guest posts from the No Remorse blog tour, 7th to 18th May, 2018.

Dear BBC, please make these into a top quality drama – Booksaremycwtches

This book is a brilliant read – Black Books Blog

A light hearted and entertaining mystery with deaths and danger aplenty –  My Reading Corner

Guest post on LJ Ross, Author Introductions

An engrossing puzzle with some intriguing twists and a real sense of danger – Hair Past a Freckle

Enough intrigue to keep you hooked from start to finishNovel Deelights.

The characters were really great – Donnasbookblog

Kept me guessing until the endKatiesbookcavereviews

Guest post at Love Books Group

A great sense of tension, suspense and drama. Highly Recommended – Me and My Books

An addictive read which you will find hard to put downA Lover of Books.

This one is the best so farIgnite Books.

A strong plotted book that kept me turning those pages – Orchard Book Club

No Bodies Reviews, post and author interview

Reviews, guest posts and interview from the No Bodies blog tour, 19th October to 2nd November 2017.

A brilliant read – Black Books Blog

Robert Crouch is fast becoming a favourite author – A Lover of Books

The inspiration and creation of Kent Fisher guest post – Love Books Group

Kent Fisher is a wonderful creation and unique in crime literature – Booksaremycwtches

Kept me gripped from start to finish – Me and My Books

Easy writing style with a mix of humour – Ali The Dragon Slayer

An interview with Ronnie Turner

Had me hooked from start to finish – Novel Deelights

You will inevitably be entranced with the journey – CJPPublishing

Left me with more questions with every page turned – Bits About Books

No police. No private eye. No murder. A guest post on Linda’s Book Bag

I really enjoy this series and look forward to more – Kath Middleton Books

It’s a very intriguing and entertaining read – My Reading Corner

A book which will be hard for any reader to put down – Sweet Little Book

 

Reviews and posts from the blogtour

Check out the links to read the full reviews and posts from the No Accident blog tour between 20-30th August 2017.

An extraordinary detective thriller – Bits About Books.

A clever, original and highly enjoyable thriller – Booksaremycwtches.

Could an environmental health officer solve a murder? – Anne bonny Book Reviews

I enjoyed the humour scattered throughout – Ali – The Dragon Slayer

An entertaining and enjoyable mystery – Novel Deelights

A different concept to a crime story – Sweet Little Books

I have a new fictional hero! – Ignite Bookblog

I warmed to Kent Fisher straight away  – A Lover of Books