Last Flight to Stalingrad by Graham Hurley @Seasidepicture @HoZ_Books #BlogTour #LastFlightToStalingrad #BookReview #HistoricalFiction

Firstly I wish to thank Lauren Tavella of Head of Zeus for inviting me on the blog tour for Last Flight to Stalingrad by Graham Hurley


‘A searing portrait of the Nazi elite as the war turns against them. Raw, shocking and meticulously researched’ TIM SEBASTIAN

Berlin, 1942.

For four years, the men in field grey have helped themselves to country after country across Western Europe.

For Werner Nehmann, a journalist at the Promi – the Ministry of Propaganda – this dizzying series of victories has felt like a party without end. But now the Reich’s attention has turned towards the East, and as winter sets in, the mood is turning.

Werner’s boss, Joseph Goebbels, can sense it. A small man with a powerful voice and coal-black eyes, Goebbels has a deep understanding the dark arts of manipulation. His words, his newsreels, have shaken Germany awake, propelling it towards its greater destiny and he won’t let – he can’t let – morale falter now. But the Minister of Propaganda is uneasy and in his discomfort has pulled Werner into his close confidence.

And here, amid the power struggle between the Nazi Chieftains, Werner will make his mistake and begin his descent into the hell of Stalingrad…


Last Flight to Stalingrad (Spoils of War) 


Although this is part of this author’s ‘Spoils of War’ series this book is not affected at all, it reads great as a stand-alone. It is the first book that I have read by him.

It is perfect how the author has blended fact and fiction together in this step back in time, to 1942 Europe, following the war’s progression from the German side. The story mainly centre’s around what was happening in the war, in contrast to what the German people were been told through Propaganda. Everything had gone Germany’s way until the army was sent East and to Russia.

Some of the characters in this book are instantly recognisable, but, the way that the author has written this story the fictional characters feel solid. When Werner Nehmann a Propaganda reporter, makes an error of judgement, it has repercussions for him.

There are no holds barred as the story progresses through Russia and Stalingrad with accounts of the horrors the SS left behind them. It is truly a story that you should read. Stunning research and perfect delivery.


Graham Hurley is the author of the acclaimed Faraday and Winter
crime novels and an award-winning TV documentary maker. Two of
the critically lauded series have been shortlisted for the Theakston’s
Old Peculier Award for Best Crime Novel. The first Wars Within
novel, Finisterre, was shortlisted for the Wilbur Smith Adventure
Writing Prize.

Twitter: @Seasidepicture

Dishonoured by Jem Tugwell @JemTugwell @SerpentineBooks #NewRelease #PsychologicalFiction #Dishonoured #BlogReview

Firstly I would like to thank Raquel Elias for inviting me to read and review Jem Tugwell’s latest novel, Dishonoured.

Dishonoured: An addictive psychological thriller by [Jem  Tugwell]



Dan has worked hard for the perfect life.
He has a loving wife, beautiful kids, a fabulous home and is a successful businessman.
But one afternoon he steps onto a train with a stranger.
It was a simple mistake…
Four stops later, Dan is a criminal who has lost everything.
Someone hates him enough to destroy him.
Through a web of lies and deceit Dan battles to win his life back.

Dishonoured is a compelling psychological thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat and turning the pages.

A new take on the familiar psychological thriller with a male protagonist and a cast of characters that will keep the reader guessing right to the very end.

Perfect for readers of Lisa Jewell, Teresa Driscoll and Erin Kelly.


Waterstones –

UK Amazon Kindle –

US Amazon Kindle –


Poor Dan has had some pretty horrendous times in his life, but he had worked hard, taken chances and now he was going to reap the rewards that would set him and his family up for the rest of their lives. Someone else had a different future for him.

After celebrations at work, Dan found himself in a situation that couldn’t be explained away. His life was to hit rock bottom because some labels in life stick, even when they aren’t true, but they can be damaging to not just that person, but their nearest and dearest too.

You know as a reader that Dan is innocent of this crime, but his colleagues, friends and family could only go on facts. My heart broke for him at times and how not just strangers saw him but people who had known him years. Friends didn’t want to be tarnished and saw opportunities for themselves.

I admired the fight in him to prove his innocence. Some great characters in the story help to dig him back out of the dark place he is in now, but there were others that loved the idea of a man at the top being knocked off his pedestal. It is pure entertainment from the beginning to the end. A belting story that knocked me sideways more than once. An awesome ending.

I wish to thank Raquel Elias for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.


Jem Tugwell

Jem Tugwell was born in Berkshire and Dishonoured is his first psychological thriller.

Jem’s first two critically acclaimed novels, Proximity and No Signal, are exciting crime fiction novels set in the near future, featuring DI Clive Lussac and his partner Zoe Jordan.

Jem has a Crime Writing MA from City University, an MBA and a BSc in Computer Science and in a past life, Jem had a successful career in IT and investment management. Jem’s loves are snowboarding, old cars and bikes. He lives in Surrey with his wife and has two children.

Twitter: @JemTugwell

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Dishonoured: An addictive psychological thriller by [Jem  Tugwell]

Sleeping Dogs (A Penny Wiseman Murder Mystery Book 1) by Wendy Turbin @HobeckBooks #sleepingdogs #BookReview #crimeseries #NewRelease

Firstly I wish to thank Rebecca Collins of Hobeck Books for inviting me to read and review Sleeping Dogs (A Penny Wiseman Murder Mystery Book 1) by Wendy Turbin.

Sleeping Dogs (A Penny Wiseman Murder Mystery Book 1) by [Wendy Turbin]


A jigsaw puzzle of a crime novel with a paranormal twist – the brilliant feel-good debut from Wendy Turbin

Meet Penny Wiseman, a private investigator by circumstance, stumbling through adulthood and desperately trying to keep her late father’s business afloat. 

She’s on the trail of her client’s husband. He’s guilty of hiding something, but is he having an affair? The case leads her to an intriguing series of mysteries and encounters, and not all are quite of this world.

Because, for Penny, seeing the dead is a fact of life, and when a teenage ghost wants justice, who else can the girl turn to for help?

There’s one big problem – the dead don’t talk. 

Penny’s first job is to work out exactly why she’s being haunted. 

Her second is to solve the case that should pay her bills, but will she find answers to either question?

Sleeping Dogs is full of brilliantly drawn characters, quirky humour and gripping plot twists.




Well, this is different! This is Wendy Turbin’s debut novel and she certainly hit the spot for a quirky murder mystery that at times made me laugh. Penny Wiseman has taken on her late father’s P.I. business, but she is struggling to keep it afloat. The investigation she is following takes a bit of a side step and opens some unusual doors. Penny has always been tuned in to seeing the dead, but there is a massive communication problem between them and her.

Even writing this review made me smile as I still have scenes of this story playing along in my mind. I smiled and giggled so many times at the antics of some of the deceased, as it made trying to solve this case was like doing a dot to dot, but without the numbers. There is an underlining storyline which I hadn’t heard of before and found it very fascinating. The author has certainly done a lot of research on the subject.

There are some great characters in this book, especially Penny and her sister. Some characters seem to fill a room with their personalities, these do just that. I can say that I am hooked already and delighted that this is the first book in a series.

I wish to thank the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honesty.

Sleeping Dogs (A Penny Wiseman Murder Mystery Book 1) by [Wendy Turbin]

Your Neighbour’s Wife by Tony Parsons @TonyParsonsUK @randomhouse #YourNeighboursWife #NetGalley #NewRelease #BookReview

Your Neighbour’s Wife by [Tony Parsons]


What do you do when your perfect life spins out of control? A gripping psychological thriller that combines the emotional warmth of Man and Boy with the page-turning excitement of The Murder Bag.

Tara Carver seems to have the perfect life. A loving mother and wife, and a business woman who runs her own company, she’s the sort of person you’d want to live next door to, who might even become your best friend.

But what sort of person is she really?

Because in one night of madness, on a work trip far from home, she puts all this at risk. And suddenly her dream life becomes a living nightmare when the married man she spent one night with tells her he wants a serious relationship with her. And that he won’t leave her or her precious family alone until she agrees.

There seems to be only one way out.
And it involves murder …


Your Neighbour’s Wife


Oh my, a moment of madness and a lifetime of regret. Tara seemed to have it all, a very successful dating app business, a 5-year-old son and a husband who stayed at home to look after him. On a business trip to Tokyo, she had a one night stand. It wasn’t something she did, and it wasn’t anything like she thought it would be. The man sees it all very different though and is willing to ruin her life if she doesn’t continue with it.

This man is a real nut job that made my skin crawl from the first time he appeared on the page. The saying, ‘the grass is always greener’ comes to mind but it wasn’t going to be any garden of Eden. The reality was that he was more persistent than clover and as irritating as hogweed. Tara’s favourite person in the world seemed to be herself, and the effect it would have on her life if she couldn’t stop this man. But how far would she be willing to go, or even get someone else, to stop him.

I was engrossed in the first half of this book, but then it took off and became much deeper in the second half. The main characters are far from likeable with twists that I hadn’t even thought of. Shocking disclosures and a mystery to unravel that made my brain go into overdrive. Brilliant round off with all the ends tied off. A great read.

I wish to thank the publisher and NetGalley for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.


Tony Parsons

Tony Parsons is a bestselling novelist and an award-winning journalist. His books have been published in over forty languages and his multi-million selling novel Man and Boy won The Book of The Year prize in 2000. Most recently, he created the Max Wolfe crime series. Tony lives in London with his family. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Twitter: @TonyParsonsUK

Your Neighbour’s Wife by [Tony Parsons]

The Coffinmaker’s Garden (Ash Henderson 3) by Stuart MacBride @HarperCollinsUK #TheCoffinmarkersGarden #NetGalley #NewRelease

The Coffinmaker’s Garden: From the No. 1 Sunday Times best selling crime author comes his latest gripping new 2021 suspense thriller (Ash Henderson 3) by [Stuart MacBride]


The stunning new thriller from No. 1 Sunday Times bestseller Stuart MacBride.

A village on the edge…
As a massive storm batters the Scottish coast, Gordon Smith’s home is falling into the North Sea. But the crumbling headland has revealed what he’s got buried in his garden: human remains.

A house full of secrets…
With the storm still raging, it’s too dangerous to retrieve the bodies and waves are devouring the evidence. Which means no one knows how many people Smith’s already killed and how many more he’ll kill if he can’t be found and stopped.

An investigator with nothing to lose…
The media are baying for blood, the top brass are after a scapegoat, and ex-Detective Inspector Ash Henderson is done playing nice. He’s got a killer to catch, and God help anyone who gets in his way.

‘Stuart MacBride’s deft plotting and whipcrack dialogue, along with a strong sense of place, make The Coffinmaker’s Garden a must read. If you like your serial killers with lashings of dark humour, this is for you’ Peter Robinson, no. 1 bestselling author of the DCI Banks series

The Coffinmaker’s Garden is brilliantly creepy, with the most cleverly conceived crime scene I’ve ever read. His legions of fans will love this – it’s an unmistakable Stuart MacBride cocktail of dark violence and even darker humour’ Jane Casey, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Cutting Place


The Coffinmaker’s Garden: From the No. 1 Sunday Times best selling crime author comes his latest gripping new 2021 suspense thriller (Ash Henderson 3)


Oh wow! button down the hatches because this is one hell of a stormy ride as the sea batters and erodes the coast line, taking with it the gardens and homes perched on top. There hasn’t been a hole deep enough to hide the horrors of the coffin maker’s true nature as his victims remains tumble into the sea. He of course is nowhere to be found.

What a tremendous opening to what is a real-world mind blocker. This book took over me, as I carried my kindle everywhere I went not able to lose even a second of what came next in the story. The discoveries are horrific and brought to life masterfully in perfect technicolour perfection by this author. The thing that took this from a great book to unforgettable was the dark humour and banter of the investigating team. It was the icing on a cake, so it is a good job that devouring this book was calory free as I read it in one greedy binge.

The specialised team are established characters from previous books, but this was my first encounter with them. I felt very comfortable with them as they felt natural, with no stiffness about their characters like, at times, when they are new. Alongside, the case of the serial killer is also the disappearance of a neighbour’s daughter.

The pace of the story is fast. I loved the unpredictable characters in this story, from the crazy serial killer to the unorthodox investigation. A highly recommended read for the start of 2021.


Stuart MacBride

Stuart MacBride was born in Dumbarton near Glasgow but grew up in Aberdeen. He is the number one bestelling author of several novels featuring DS Logan McRae. He has been shortlisted for the Theakstons’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award twice. Stuart won the 2007 CWA Dagger in the Library, awarded for a body of work, and was named Best Breakthrough Author at the 2008 ITV Crime Thriller Awards.

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The Coffinmaker’s Garden: From the No. 1 Sunday Times best selling crime author comes his latest gripping new 2021 suspense thriller (Ash Henderson 3) by [Stuart MacBride]

The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean @willrdean @HodderBooks @HodderPublicity #BookReview #NetGalley #NewRelease #SuspenceThriller

The Last Thing to Burn by [Will Dean]


‘I lived every second with the characters. A masterpiece’ JANE CASEY
Misery meets Room … a triumph’ MARIAN KEYES
‘Ratchets up the tension to the point where I had to check my pulse’ LIZ NUGENT

He is her husband. She is his captive.

Her husband calls her Jane. That is not her name.

She lives in a small farm cottage, surrounded by vast, open fields. Everywhere she looks, there is space. But she is trapped. No one knows how she got to the UK: no one knows she is there. Visitors rarely come to the farm; if they do, she is never seen.

Her husband records her every movement during the day. If he doesn’t like what he sees, she is punished.

For a long time, escape seemed impossible. But now, something has changed. She has a reason to live and a reason to fight. Now, she is watching him, and waiting …


The Last Thing to Burn


This is a hit you in the gut sort of story that breaks you up into a million pieces. Thanh Dao and her younger sister Kym-Ly had travelled from Vietnam nine years ago in a cargo ship illegally, to make a better life for themselves. They found out that what they got was to be sold as slaves for their owners to do whatever they wanted with them.

The story takes place around Thanh, now renamed Jane, who lives with her ‘husband’ on a very remote farm miles away from the nearest town. No-one knows of her existence. It begins with Jane being brought back to the farm after trying to escape again and the consequences that she has to face for her actions.

It is a brutal account of Thanh’s life day in day out, and it isn’t an easy read. With each page, I was piecing together a picture of Lenn, the farmer, and it scared the living daylights out of me. Thanh knows the routines that she must follow, even when Lenn isn’t there because he has cameras everywhere in the house. There were horrendous obvious punishments that had been dealt out in the past, and continue, with both physical and mental cruelty, but things are about to change.

The characters in the book couldn’t have been made more perfect, with the descriptions of Lenn gradually building in each chapter. He was always faceless in the story with me, like I couldn’t look him directly in the eyes. The farmhouse, which was stuck in a time warp, left me feeling uneasy that this had never been a normal home way before Thanh lived there.

To say that there are very few characters in the story it never loses that intensity that something worse is going to happen. It makes me shudder to think that this could be someone’s life now.

I wish to thank the publisher and NetGalley for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.


Will Dean

Will Dean grew up in the East Midlands and had lived in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. After studying Law at the LSE and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden where he built a house in a boggy clearing at the centre of a vast elk forest, and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes. His debut novel, Dark Pines, was selected for Zoe Ball’s Book Club, shortlisted for the Guardian Not the Booker prize and named a Daily Telegraph Book of the Year. Red Snow was published in January 2019 and won Best Independent Voice at the Amazon Publishing Readers’ Awards, 2019. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Twitter: @willrdean

The Last Thing to Burn by [Will Dean]

Primal Calling by Barry Eisenberg @MichCFitz @FSBAssociates #PrimalCalling #NetGalley #BookReview

Firstly I wish to thank Michelle Fitzgerald at FSB Associates for inviting me to read and review this book.

Primal Calling by [Barry Eisenberg]


While rummaging through the attic, high school senior, Jack Davies, is surprised to find his never-before-seen birth certificate, revealing a startling bit of information that changes his life. The story his mother told about his birth, he discovers, is revealed to be a lie, shattering long-held beliefs and the trust he had for her. Jack becomes obsessed with discovering the truth, leading him down a dangerous path. Faced with unanswered questions and confounding obstacles at every turn, Jack finds himself deeply enmeshed in an intricate world of national security and international intrigue. Relationships are tested as his every move is tracked by a group of mysterious people. Who are they? Whose side are they on? Who can he trust? And, most importantly, who will he ultimately become?


Jack is a confident high school senior who has a great relationship with his mum until he discovers his birth certificate. Jack’s world went into an almighty spin as he secretly decided to trace his biological father down. It isn’t your run of the mill story of tracking down a parent, this story is the one in a million, frustrating and dangerous step into the unknown. It isn’t just dangerous for him and the father he never knew he had but for countless others too.

This story strips relationships and emotions back to raw nerve endings that manipulate and distort feelings to something more primal. He had once asked a question about who his father was and been answered and accepted it. But now he was angry that his life had been a lie. He had to find out who his dad was and he had some leads to go on.

Jack is more mature than his years, I liked his character and felt that the author captured his reaction to events in a realistic way. Lisa, Jack’s mum, had always known that these events were a ticking time bomb but, the story gets across how one lie leads to another, even with good intentions, until time runs out.

I liked how this story didn’t follow the expected route and took on a more thrilling conclusion. All in all, this is a story that will keep your interest from the first to the last page.


Primal Calling


Barry Eisenberg is an associate professor of health care management in the School for Graduate Studies at the State University of New York Empire State College, a health care management consultant and a former hospital administrator. He and his wife, Amy, live in New Jersey. They have three grown children and one grandson. Primal Calling is his first novel.

Primal Calling by [Barry Eisenberg]

Over Her Dead Body (The Quirk Files Book 1) by A. B. Morgan @AliMorgan2304 @HobeckBooks #OverHerDeadBody #NewRelease #BookReview

Firstly I wish to thank Rebecca Collins of Hobeck Books for inviting me to read and review Over Her Dead Body (The Quirk Files Book 1) by A.B. Morgan

Over Her Dead Body (The Quirk Files Book 1) by [A B Morgan]


Gabby Dixon is dead. That’s news to her…

Recently divorced and bereaved, Gabby Dixon is trying to start a new chapter in her life.

As her new life begins, it ends. On paper at least.

But Gabby is still very much alive. As a woman who likes to be in control, this situation is deeply unsettling.

She has two crucial questions: who would want her dead, and why?

Enter Peddyr and Connie Quirk. husband-and-wife private investigators. Gabby needs their help to find out who is behind her sudden death.

The truth is a lot more sinister than a simple case of stolen identity.

Over Her Dead Body is a ‘what if’ tale full of brilliantly drawn characters, quirky humour and dark plot twists.


Over Her Dead Body


Gabby had been all set to start her new life after her mother had recently died and her marriage had ended. The plan, was to buy her sister out of her half of the house, they had been left from their mother, using the money from her divorce settlement. But things went downhill quickly when the bank put a stop on her account.

Gabby was dead, or so the bank had been informed, then her whole life crumbled as everywhere else that could confirm her identity followed suit. Her life became impossible to live as a registered dead person. It wasn’t as easy as just ringing people up and saying she was alive. Someone had gone to great lengths to do this, but why?

Entre this dynamic duo of Private Investigators, husband and wife Peddyr and Connie Quirk. They were Quirk by name and quirky by nature. I took to them immediately and loved watching the real them come out when they were alone. The story fascinated me as layer after layer, was peeled away, before I could fully understand everything.

The story doesn’t race away, it is one of discovery looking back as well as looking forward and connecting the dots to make a full picture. I got more than I bargained for. What a conclusion. I am, looking forward to more of The Quirk Files again soon.

I wish to thank the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.


AB Morgan

Alison Morgan: A former mental health nurse, country bumpkin at heart, married to a hairy biker, fascinated by words, loves live music and she has an innate ability to make people smile and laugh.

Her crime thrillers have a strong cast of characters helping to define the style and pace of each story inspired by her life, her career and her fascination with the extremes of human behaviour.

AB Morgan, critically acclaimed author of crime mystery and suspense, has been applauded for being refreshingly different within the genre.

Her latest series The Quirk Files is published by Hobeck Books.

Twitter: @AliMorgan2304

Over Her Dead Body (The Quirk Files Book 1) by [A B Morgan]

The Mist: Hidden Iceland Series, Book Three by Ragnar Jónasson @ragnarjo @penguinrandom @MichaelJBooks @sriya__v #TheMist #BlogTour #NetGalley

Firstly I would like to thank Sriya Varadharajan of Penguin Random House for inviting me on the Blog Tour for The Mist by Ragnar Jónasson

The Mist: Hidden Iceland Series, Book Three by [Ragnar Jónasson, Victoria Cribb]


Just before Christmas, a winter blizzard sweeps across Iceland. In their remote farmhouse, Erla and Einar are hunkering down for the night.

Then there’s a knock at the door.

It’s a stranger, desperate for shelter. They take him in – but they’ll wish they hadn’t.

Because this man is not who he says he is. And, when the power cuts out, no one can see what happens next.

An unexpected guest, a liar, a killer. Not all will survive the night.

And Detective Hulda will be haunted forever . . .


The Mist: Hidden Iceland Series, Book Three 


Some books you can read and simply walk away from them, but there are a few that stay with you, well this is one of those. From the start of this book, I was edgy. There was something that put fear into me on every level.

I must admit that I didn’t know Iceland’s traditional Christmas ways and to be honest, I loved the idea of them, but the isolation would make me uneasy. I walk home from work every night in the early hours, and it is seeing someone that makes me jumpy because I feel they shouldn’t be there. This story is like that but a hundredfold more. When a stranger turns up at a very isolated property, there was something that felt very wrong. There are three stories taking place in this book, and I dreaded the chapters returning to each one as they headed into the unknown.

I loved the descriptions of the places in this story, the intense cold, the blizzards, the vast loneliness and feeling of being completely being cut off from the rest of the world. Where it was welcomed, with some, it was a prison to others. It made me think about what I would do. There is usually someone in a story that I would like to be, but not this one. In this people are so different and yet they are the same although they don’t know it.

An outstanding story that left me completely numb!
I wish to thank the publisher and NetGalley for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.



Ragnar Jonasson is author of the international bestselling Dark Iceland series. His debut Snowblind went to number one in the kindle charts shortly after publication, and Nightblind, Blackout and Rupture soon followed suit, hitting the number one spot in five countries, and the series being sold in 20 countries and for TV. Ragnar was born in Reykjavik, Iceland, where he continues to work as a lawyer. He also teaches copyright law at Reykjavik University and has previously worked on radio and television, including as a TV-news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service. Ragnar is a member of the UK Crime Writers’ Association (CWA) and set up its first overseas chapter in Reykjavik. He is also the co-founder of the international crime-writing festival Iceland Noir. From the age of 17, Ragnar translated 14 Agatha Christie novels into Icelandic. He has appeared on festival panels worldwide, and lives in Reykjavik with his wife and young daughters.

Twitter: @ragnarjo

Beneath a Starless Sky by Tessa Harris @harris_tessa @HQstories #BeneathAStarlessSky #WW2HistricalFiction #NewRelease #NetGalley

Beneath a Starless Sky: A gripping and utterly heartbreaking WW2 historical fiction novel by [Tessa Harris]


The smoke tingled in her nostrils. Acrid. Harsh. Lilli Sternberg’s quickening heart sounded an alarm as she rounded the corner of the street. Lifting her gaze to the rooftops, she saw a roaring blaze of thick flames engulf the side of the building and join the stars to fill the black sky. Her father’s shop was no more.

Munich 1930

Lilli Sternberg longs to be a ballet dancer. But outside the sanctuary of the theatre, her beloved city is in chaos and Munich is no longer a place for dreams.

The Nazi party are gaining in popularity and the threats to those who deviate from the party line are increasing. Jewish families are being targeted and their businesses raided, even her father’s shop was torched.

When Lilli meets Captain Marco Zeiller during a chance encounter, her heart soars. He is the perfect gentleman and her love for him feels like a bright hope under a bleak sky.

But battle lines are being drawn, and Marco has been spotted by the Reich as an officer with great potential. A relationship with Lilli would compromise them both.

Will Lilli be able to escape the threats facing her family, and how much is she willing to risk for the man she loves?

An absolutely gripping and emotional historical fiction novel for fans of My Name is Eva and The Woman of War


Beneath a Starless Sky: A gripping and utterly heartbreaking WW2 historical fiction novel


What an incredible journey this is with some surprising historical figures playing major roles in the story. It begins in 1930 and follows the life of Lilli Sternberg. Lilli and her Jewish family lived in Munich, but attitudes are changing towards the family as long time friends turn their backs on them, and her father’s shop is burned down. Lilli, a ballet dancer, longs for her talents to be recognised and a way out of Germany.

The story follows Lilli through the war years, her loves, her career and the situations that she is forced into to survive and keep people she loves safe. There is never a dull moment in this story. I loved the romance and her determination, but for me, the second half of the book was riveting. The tension that the author brought to these pages just made the world around it become blurred. I had been watching a TV series, before and after reading this book, and the mix of them both brought this book even more to life. It was like this was the behind the scenes story, and it made my blood run cold.

It felt quite surreal that Lilli had no idea just how bad things had become for her family back in Germany. It was all too horrific to think that any of it could be true. It is, at times, extremely heart-breaking, and it becomes very personal to Lilli.

I can’t recommend this book enough. I wouldn’t even want to put in into a category because this for me is a book of life. One woman, brave and determined. A Perfect ending too.

I wish to thank NetGalley and the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.


Tessa Harris

When I was five years old, I visited the dungeons of an old castle with my parents. The guide was telling us about the oubliette, the place where they threw prisoners and literally forgot about them. Without warning he turned the light off, plunging the space into darkness. We were blind for a few moments. But instead of terrifying me, the experience had the opposite effect. I wanted to know more about people, lives, events from the past. So,from a very early age, I loved history: buildings, books, stories.

I went on to read History at Oxford University and qualified as a journalist and editor, contributing to several national publications such as The Times and The Telegraph. I also acted as a literary publicist for the English TV presenter and novelist Pam Rhodes.

Winning a European-wide screenplay writing competition led to the optioning of a screenplay. (Here’s where the history comes in.) Set in 18th century England, it highlighted what has to be one of the most fascinating periods of England’s past. The screenplay languished in what’s known as development hell, but I was determined to tell some of the stories I’d discovered during my researches into the period. The result is “The Anatomist’s Apprentice,” the first of a series of Dr Thomas Silkstone Mysteries – stories from late 18th century England that are based on true events.

Until December 2010 I was editor of a regional glossy magazine and was regularly heard on BBC local radio. As well interviewing dozens of celebrities, I interviewed writers at literary events in front of audiences. My most recent interviews were with Oscar winner Julian Fellowes (who wrote the screenplay for Downton Abbey), Barbara Taylor Bradford and Hollywood legend Leslie Caron.

Twitter: @harris_tessa

Beneath a Starless Sky: A gripping and utterly heartbreaking WW2 historical fiction novel by [Tessa Harris]