Monday, 28 March 2016

Book Review - The Facts of Life and Death

The Facts of Life and Death - Belinda Bauer
My rating: 5 stars

On the beaches and cliffs of North Devon, young women have become victims in a terrifying game where only one player knows the rules. And when those rules change, the new game is Murder.

But a madman on the loose feels very far from the crumbling, seaside home of ten-year-old Ruby Trick. Instead she lives in constant fear of school bullies, the dark forest, and the threat of her parents' divorce.

Helping her father to catch the killer seems like the only way to keep him close.

As long as the killer doesn’t catch her first.

What I love about Belinda Bauer's books is that they are so much more than the story. The quality of the writing seems to encapsulate so many different facets. There's a bizarre macabre humour, a quirky original view of the world, innocence and tenderness - all within a dark and cracking-good crime thriller!

In The facts of Life and Death, there are two strands - a serial killer in a small seaside village, snatching late-night foolish hitch-hikers and a family that centres around a girl of ten, Ruby, learning to cope with bullying at school and discord at home between her parents. The police are on the trail of the twisted killer who forces the women to strip, then call their mothers to say 'goodbye'. Creepy indeed. Ruby starts writing a diary and what she sees and who she's with begins to hold significance for both threads of the novel.

Ruby is portrayed with humanity and there's  a 'coming of age', transformational element to her story. She is so well drawn in 3D, she jumps off the page. I did not know where the story was heading, which I always love and the unpredictability is coupled with unusual, clever, true to life, even laugh out loud moments.

I thoroughly recommend this book - I was sad to reach the end.

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-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------              AJ Waines’ novels are Standalones and can be read in any order:

  •  Over 100,000 books sold worldwide
  • Girl on a Train  a Number One Bestseller on Kindle in UK and Australia (2015)
  • The Evil Beneath Number One in 'Murder' and 'Psychological Thrillers' (UK Kindle charts)
  • No Longer Safe went straight to Number One 'Crime Noir' (US & UK Kindle charts)
  • Awarded Kindle KDP Top 20 'most-read Author' in UK (2015)
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