book reviews · Bookish · Uncategorized

Till Morning is Nigh by Rob Parker (Review)

Bracken is back on a whole new adventure! I’m so pleased to be on the blog tour for “Till Morning Is Nigh” by Rob Parker, the latest Ben Bracken Thriller. Following The Penny Black, Bracken is set to get himself into a whole heap of trouble… again. Read on for my thoughts! Till Morning is Nigh is available now in eBook and Paperback formats and is available on Kindle Unlimited.

It’s no secret that Bracken is one of my favourite protagonists to date. He’s not your typical “hero” and he’s plenty flawed. In Rob Parker’s latest offering, Bracken has a chance at a whole new life. More.. legally this time, though all still very questionable. He’s not hiding off-the-grid. He’s been given a chance. He’s got a family now and a new job consulting with the NCA.

He’s now part of a team, something different to what we’re used to from this lone wolf. However, will he play the part or will he go off and do what he wants? Does his new family effect his decisions? He has a newborn son with his partner, Carolyn, whom already has two children from her previous relationship. That’s a whole interesting story there, but it’s a spoiler for previous books, so if you’ve not read them, I’d recommend you do. 😉 It’s noticeably softened Bracken but you’ll have to find out for yourself what it means for his adventure.

A race against time with a topical, political theme, Till Morning Is Nigh is unsettling and tense throughout as Bracken goes above and beyond – as per usual, gets himself to a whole heap of trouble – as usual and puts himself firmly amongst the grey.

A little slower of a pace than his other books, this is an excellent thriller with well-built tension that had me genuinely unable to put it down – I wasn’t kidding when I say it’s unsettling and tense. While a work of fiction, the topical theme hits close to home with the current political tensions and the threats of extremism and only led to a more immersive read. I had to follow it through to the end for my own sanity. The ending didn’t fully sit with me, some of the action elements didn’t feel totally believable but I put it down to adrenaline and went with it, I’m totally fine with that, that’s literally my only criticism and it’s barely a criticism. I really enjoyed the book as a whole and I can’t get enough of Bracken. So I am pleased to say this is yet another excellent offering from Rob Parker.

About the Book

Dragged half dead from a river, Ben Bracken, fugitive ex-soldier, is in a bad way.

But, too valuable to discard and too dangerous to set free, an old friend offers him a choice: abandon his identity and become a desk-bound advisor to the National Crime Agency, or go back to the prison he broke out of – a place where he is extremely unpopular.

Bracken is forced to accept – and he’s becoming a different man.

But all this changes when, days before Christmas, an undercover narcotics officer is murdered in horrific circumstances, and only Bracken has the inside track on the key suspect. Throwing himself into the fray, Bracken finds himself in a very present-day ideological conflict, uncovering a plot which has huge implications for both Manchester’s political, socio-economic landscape, and the nation at large – coming to an explosive conclusion amidst the twinkling fairy lights and frost-tipped boughs of Christmas Eve…

Bookish · Uncategorized

Blood, White and Blue by James Silverster (Excerpt)

Hey. Another Bookish post already? I know right! There are just so many great books! Today I’m on the tour for Blood, White and Blue by James Silvester, the first book in his Lucie Musilova series. Today I am sharing an excerpt with you! You can find out more on other tour stops if you wish! This book is released on November 8th 2018 in both Paperback and Kindle Editions and will be available on Kindle Unlimited.

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Blurb

Love, deception and murder dominate as thriller writer James Silvester delivers the first in the Lucie Musilova series.

Britain is a hotbed of racial tension and economic uncertainty. Only Sir Geoffrey Hartnell, an ageing but hugely respected MP, can bring about a successful resolution to the talks, but a ghost from the past threatens to bring the UK to its knees.

Lucie Musilova meanwhile, is a young woman running out of places to hide. Half-British, half-Czech and rejected by both countries in the aftermath of Brexit, she meets ‘Mr. Lake’, the eccentric Head of a branch of the intelligence services known as The Overlappers, and is press ganged into service on the Huxley case.

As events spiral out of control it becomes clear it is not just Lucie’s life that is at stake, but the future of the very nation.

The new thriller from the bestselling author of Escape to Perdition and The Prague Ultimatum, is a gripping tale of corruption and perfect for fans of Luke Jennings, Daniel Silva and Stella Rimington. If you’re a fan of Killing Eve you’ll love this!

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The grounds of the British Embassy, Prague, 1968.

PROLOGUE

A ferocious and unwelcome sweat brought on by the August heat,
erupted on the brow of the young Civil Servant as he raised the
gun in an awkward and wholly unfamiliar movement, his aim
distorted by the shaking in his arm and his nervous clenching of
the revolver’s grip.
“I could stop you,” he intoned, straining against the daily agony
he felt in his arm to keep the weapon levelled on his foe. “I should
stop you.”
“Be my guest,” replied the second man, pushing his black trilby
back above his brow and defiantly staring beyond the wavering
gun barrel into the eyes of his accoster. “You might as well finish
the job; it’s the least you can do after this.”
The second figure was as young as the first, but stood straighter
than his counterpart, his features were more cruelly arranged, and he
wore an altogether fiercer expression on them, no doubt born from
the furious rage he felt towards the gunman before him. But while
his face was etched with anger, his opponent’s radiated only anguish.
“Oh, I think I’ve finished the job well enough, don’t you? The
whole Embassy knows by now, knows that you are a traitor,
nothing more than a Communist Patsy.”
“Bastard!”
“Language, Old Boy,” the first man smirked through his obvious
pain, as through trying to enjoy his moment to the full but his
heart denying him the pleasure. “You can’t pretend you don’t
deserve this, or that you didn’t know the moment was coming. It
was always coming, ever since you decided upon betrayal.”
“Then put a bullet in my brain and get it over with, will you?
Spare me your gloating.”
From across the courtyard, the gunman slowly lowered his
arm, a twinge of sadness further diluting the loathing which he
had yearned to surrender to.
“No,” he answered, simply, eliciting a frown of reluctant
curiosity in response. “There’s only one place you can go, Old
Boy. In seconds, the security will descend upon you and drag you
back to Britain in chains. You’ll be paraded across the front page
of every paper in the land, your face jeered at nightly on every
television unless you run.”
“Run where?”
“To your suitors, of course; to the Reds. The Dubček regime
is doomed and the Hardliners are waiting in the wings. I’m sure
they’d welcome you with open arms, after all, you’re the man who
killed the Prague Spring.”
“You’re not serious…” the desperate man half-whispered, almost
incredulous at what he was hearing. “You really can’t be serious.”
“What’s the matter? You always wanted to make your mark
on history, and now you have. Whether you run or not, you’ll be
remembered forever for this,” came the response. “You can either
spend your life reeling from your castigation in a prison cell, or
else you can embrace it here as a hero; a hero of sorts anyway.”
There was no choice that he could see, the other man’s logic was
sound, and he had always considered himself a logical man; that
was what had gotten him into this mess to start with. But a lifetime
here, with them?
“We were right about you,” he said after a moment. “All this
time, we were right about you. This is a death sentence just the
same as if you put a bullet between my eyes, you know that. But
then, you never did have the courage to fire a gun, did you, Geoff?
And that arm of yours doesn’t look strong enough to take the shot
anyway, does it?”
“No,” Geoff quietly conceded. “But it isn’t just my gun you
need to be wary of, and you never did have the courage to take
a bullet, to be the one to take the pain, did you Alex? That’s why
you’ll run.”
The sun was getting hotter and Alex could hear the sound of
boots getting closer. He turned his back to Geoff, to the Embassy
and to his country, the country he had pledged to serve, and
stepped closer to the gate, through which lay whatever he could
turn into his destiny. As he stepped through, he turned back, just
one more question on his lips.
“Why did you do this?” he asked solemnly. “Just so you can say
you stopped the man who betrayed Britain?”
“Screw Britain,” the slighter man replied with equal solemnity
from across the courtyard. “You betrayed me.”
He nodded, his acceptance of the answer as reluctant as that of
his situation and drew his first breath as a man on the run from
his country.
“Goodbye, Geoffrey,” he shouted through the gate. “Don’t get
too comfortable, don’t ever let your guard down. Hell is a lonely
place and that’s where you’re sending me. Don’t be surprised when
I come back looking for company.” He doffed his trilby in faux
salute to the Embassy, then turned and set off at a jog into a life in
the chaos and fear of a Russian invasion.
“Goodbye, Alexander,” Geoffrey whispered back, before the
heat and his emotion overpowered him and he fell to the ground,
his knees, and his gun, dropping uselessly to the cobbles.