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A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village by Michelle Vernal #Review

  Michelle Vernal's A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village was published on September 27th by Bookoutre . Ava Kelly loves returning to Emerald Bay for Christmas. Snowflakes fall on the green rolling hills and mulled wine fills The Shamrock Inn with the smell of winter spice. But this year, the Kelly family is hoping for a miracle… When twenty-four-year-old Ava Kelly and her adventurous twin Grace return home to The Shamrock Inn, their Ma’s favourite baubles bring back so many memories of Christmases past. They have always done everything together, even leaving their little Irish village for the excitement of London. But with the locket her handsome ex Shane gave her hanging just above her heart, Ava has just one wish this festive season… After a year stuck in a job she can’t stand and going on dreadful dates, Ava longs to be back with Shane. Curling up in front of the fire with him, the brooding fisherman everyone else sees melts away as his blue eyes meet hers.

Deadly Game by Matt Johnson **Blog Tour Review**

    I am delighted to be the next stop on Orenda's Blog Tour to celebrate the publication of Deadly Game by Matt Johnson. 


Reeling from the attempts on his life and that of his family, Police Inspector Robert Finlay returns to work to discover that any hope of a peaceful existence has been dashed. Assigned to investigate the Eastern European sex-slave industry just as a key witness is murdered, Finlay, along with his new partner Nina Brasov, finds himself facing a ruthless criminal gang, determined to keep control of the traffic of people into the UK. On the home front, Finlay’s efforts to protect his wife and child may have been in vain, as an MI5 protection officer uncovers a covert secret service operation that threatens them all … Aided by new allies, he must not only protect his family but save a colleague from an unseen enemy … and a shocking fate.  

 Deadly Game is a stunning, terrifying and eye-opening thriller from one of the most exciting new names in crime fiction.

My Thoughts 

Deadly Game is packed full of action and intrigue and it certainly kept me on my toes. Who to trust? It follows on from the first book, Wicked Game and although I haven't read that, I was soon able to pick up on the pace. Robert Finlay returns to police duty and is caught up in a maelstrom of international crime, sex trafficking, political intrigue and espionage. Never a dull moment! Matt Johnson controls the action with a masterful touch. 

    In Robert Finlay, we have a vulnerable central character who is suffering from the effects of terrorism. I was able to absolutely believe in the character as it rang out with authenticity, reflecting Matt's own experiences. His years in the Police Force and his experience in dealing with terrorism and Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome feed into the portrayal of Robert and give real depth to the character. 

    I particularly enjoyed some of the women characters, notably, his partner, Nina and the MI5 liaison officer, Toni. There is a real spark about them. My favourite though has to be Robert's wife Jenny, so aware of her situation and so concerned for Robert. She sees the effects of PTSD on her husband and in a way, becomes our eyes. Never dull and full of tension, I'm looking forward to the next instalment of Robert's story. 

In short: a nail-biting thriller and some great characters and serious issues.

About the Author

Matt Johnson served as a soldier and Metropolitan Police officer for 25 years. Blown off his feet at the London Baltic Exchange bombing in 1993, and one of the first police officers on the scene of the 1982 Regent’s Park bombing, Matt was also at the Libyan People’s Bureau shooting in 1984 where he escorted his mortally wounded friend and colleague, Yvonne Fletcher, to hospital. Hidden wounds took their toll. In 1999, Matt was discharged from the police with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. While undergoing treatment, he was encouraged by his counsellor to write about his career and his experience of murders, shootings and terrorism. One evening, Matt sat at his computer and started to weave these notes into a work of fiction that he described as having a tremendously cathartic effect on his own condition. His bestselling thriller, Wicked Game, which was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey Dagger, was the result. Deadly Game once again draws on Matt’s experiences and drips with the same raw authenticity of its predecessor.

You can connect with Matt on his Website    |   Twitter  |  and on Facebook. 

Thanks to Karen Sullivan at Orenda Books for a copy of the book and a place on the Blog Tour.

Check out the rest of the Tour!



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