Category Archives: M. J Arlidge

No Way Back by M.J. Arlidge #Review


Book description

Jodie’s arriving at her third children’s home. She’s only fifteen.
Maybe this time will be different. She’ll be safe. Looked after.

But the truth is Jodie has no one left to protect her.
She must defend herself. She must change.


I am a huge fan of the Helen Grace series by M. J. Arlidge and when I saw this short story was a prequel to the series I just knew I had to read it. Now I’m not usually a huge fan of short stories they often seem rushed, and it’s often difficult to get a feel for the characters or the plot before it’s all over, but I’m pleased to say the author packs a lot into No Way Back.

No Way Back explores Helen’s earlier years, when she is placed in a children’s home, a place where she should have felt safe and protected, but regrettably this isn’t the case, Helen experience’s the darker side of a children’s homes, unfortunately it makes for a very credible read. The events that happen to her whilst living there, not only help the reader to gain insight into why Helen acts the way she does in certain situations, but you also get a better sense of just how strong a character she has become.

For such a short book I found it to be a gripping and fascinating read, and I would certainly recommend this short story to lovers of the Helen Grace series, and if it’s a series you are looking to read sometime in the future it would certainly be a good place to start

5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of 5

Print Length: 54 pages

Publisher: Penguin (11 Aug. 2016)

Amazon Uk

**Holiday Reads September 2016**


Hello the book review café is back, did you miss me? Probably not!! Well here I am anyway and I thought I would share my holiday reads with you all. I’m glad to say I had the most relaxing holiday ever in Portugal, and I managed to read TEN whole books, yes you read that right! It’s the most I’ve ever read in such a short time, and my god I read some real corkers. I’m super excited that I have made a dent in my Netgalley reads (six of the books were Netgalley reads), and now I just need to try and stay away from requesting any books until I’ve posted my reviews, and my shelf will be reasonable (watch this space, note I said TRY😂🙈). Just in case you are wondering what I read I’ve included a list. As a blogger I like to write my review straight away, so I’m feeling slightly sick at the thought of having to write ten reviews, and trying to remember everything I want to include in my review. So don’t expect them any time soon 😀😀……so here are the books I read

Ward Zero by Linda Huber


Anything For Her by Jack Jordan


Before I Let You In by Jenny Blackhurst


Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult


Lizzie’s Christmas Escape by Christie Barlow


Untouchable by Sybil Hodge


The Silence Between Breaths by Cath Staincliffe


Good Me Bad Me by Ali Land


Hide And Seek by M J Arlidge


No Way Back by M J Arlidge


Little Boy Blue by M. J. Arlidge



Delving into the murky and secretive world of BDSM, Little Boy Blue is a dark and complex read. I’m a huge fan of M.J. Arlidge and this is undoubtedly his best book yet. When a body is found in a nightclub the connection to Helen’s private life is in real danger of being exposed. As the investigation intensifies and the killer strikes again, Helen begins to wonder how long her darkest secrets can remain hidden from her work colleagues and the investigation.

From the shocking opening chapter you know you are in for a hell of a read. DI Helen Grace is a complex and troubled protagonist, and over previous books we have seen her character evolve. In Little Boy Blue Helen’s past and recent life choices which up until now have remained a dark and well guarded secret, are unlikely to stay hidden as the investigation runs parallel with her secret life. As Helen’s life begins to unravel  and the investigation intensifies we see a different side to Helen’s character, she becomes erratic and impulsive, and her integrity and professionalism come into question.

I would recommend that you read the four previous books in the series; Eeny Meeny, Pop Goes the Weasel, The Doll’s House and Liar Liar (believe me it won’t be any hardship to read them, they are all 5 ⭐️Reads in my opinion), as you really need to know Helen’s story in all its glory to really appreciate this book.

I can’t say to much about this book without giving away major spoilers, so I’m just going to keep it brief. There are so many twist and turns throughout I found myself holding my breath, and I was tapping the pages so quickly on my Kindle, I’m surprised it didn’t explode! Little Boy Blue has a cleverly constructed plot, that runs along like an express train. I never for one minute guessed how the plot would pan out, and my god when I reached the nail biting conclusion I was shocked to the core! Suspenseful and highly original this will certainly be in my top books of 2016.

5 huge cups of ☕️☕️☕️☕️☕️out of 5

Print Length: 380 pages

Publisher: Penguin (10 Mar. 2016)





**Stacking The Shelves**


Here’s my round up of stacking the Shelves hosted by Stacking the Shelves highlight books which have been received In a week. Paper books, e-books, ARC’s received, books bought or borrowed, are all included.

ARC received

The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh



Book Description

One moment, Selena Cole is in the playground with her children and the next, she has vanished without a trace.

A woman returns

Twenty hours later, Selena is found safe and well, but with no memory of where she has been.
What took place in those missing hours, and are they linked to the discovery of a nearby murder?

Publisher: Century (21 April 2016)

The Innocent Killer by Michael Griesbach


Book Description

The story of one of America’s most notorious wrongful convictions, that of Steven Avery, a Wisconsin man who spent eighteen years in prison for a crime he did not commit and now the subject of the hit series Making a Murderer.

But two years after he was exonerated of that crime and poised to reap millions in his wrongful conviction lawsuit, Steven Avery was arrested for the exceptionally brutal murder of Teresa Halbach, a freelance photographer who had gone missing several days earlier. The “Innocent Man” had turned into a cold blooded killer. Or had he? This is narrative non-fiction at its finest and the perfect companion read for fans of Making a Murderer.

Publisher: Windmill Books (4 Feb. 2016)

Deadly Obsession by Nigel May


Book Description

What would you do if you saw your husband killed right in front of you … identified his body … had him cremated … then six months later received a letter written by him two days ago?

Amy Barrowman grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. So when she falls in love with millionaire Riley Hart and he asks her to marry him she can’t believe her luck. She has found true love and her happy ever after.

Riley Hart is a Millionaire Man about Town. Men want to be him and women want to bed him. But to achieve Riley’s status, you have to tread on a lot of toes and make a lot of enemies.

When Riley is gunned down at the nightclub they own, Amy is determined to avenge his death. She receives a mysterious letter detailing a list of suspects including Riley’s sworn enemy, actor Grant Wilson. But with an obsessive passion brewing between her and Grant and a dangerous assassin trailing her every move it would seem Amy has opened a deadly and tempting Pandora’s Box. In settling the score for her husband has Amy put herself into terrible danger?

Publisher: Bookouture (19 Feb. 2016)

Little Boy Blue by M. J Arlidge



Book Description

Detective Inspector Helen Grace is no stranger to tragedy. But when a body is found in a Southampton nightclub, the death cuts too close to the bone.

Hiding her personal connection to the victim – and a double-life which must remain secret at all costs – Helen becomes a woman possessed, working her team around the clock to chase down every lead.

As the killer strikes again, the investigation takes its toll not only on Helen but also her senior officers. Tempers flare, friendships fray and Helen faces an impossible choice.

Confess her sins and lose control of the case? Or keep living a lie, protecting her darkest secrets, and risk getting trapped in this tangled web?

But whatever she does, this killer will not stop until the truth is revealed: there are some fates worse than death…..

Publisher: Michael Joseph (10 Mar. 2016)

When She Was Bad by Tammy Cohen



Book Description



Amira, Sarah, Paula, Ewan and Charlie have worked together for years – they know how each one likes their coffee, whose love life is a mess, whose children keep them up at night. But their comfortable routine life is suddenly shattered when an aggressive new boss walks in ….

Now, there’s something chilling in the air.

Who secretly hates everyone?

Who is tortured by their past?

Who is capable of murder?

Publisher: Transworld Digital (21 April 2016)

Between You And Me by Lisa Hall


Book Description

They say every marriage has its secrets.
But no one sees what happens behind closed doors.
And sometimes those doors should never be opened …

Sal and Charlie are married. They love each other. But they aren’t happy. Sal cannot leave, no matter what Charlie does – no matter how much it hurts.

Publisher: Carina (17 Mar. 2016)