It’s a pleasure today to be helping launch the blog tour for No Place Like Home by Lynda Stacey, and sharing my publication day review. Published today by Boldwood Books, it’s now available for kindle (free via Kindle Unlimited) and in paperback. My thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for the invitation and support, and to the publishers for my advance reading copy (provided via netgalley).
I first met Lynda way back in (I think!) 2015, when we happened to be sitting next to each other at a Milly Johnson launch party: since then, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed following her writing career. You’ll find reviews of all her other books here on Being Anne – House of Secrets, Tell Me No Secrets, House of Christmas Secrets, The Fake Date and Keeper of Secrets (all links are to my reviews). While the dark side really isn’t my usual choice of reading, her books have always managed to tread that really difficult path between nail-biting suspense and convincing romantic entanglement – and I was particularly delighted to include The Fake Date in my 2018 Books of the Year list. I think I might have been almost excited as she was when I heard about her new contract with Boldwood, and saw the book’s wonderfully atmospheric cover… and I was really rather looking forward to this one…
He knows where you are…
Sisters Molly and Beth Winters thought the remote clifftop house would be the perfect place to hide away after their mother’s brutal murder. They were wrong….
He wants revenge…
Because someone from the girls’ past has already found their safe house and he is watching and waiting in the shadows ready to make them pay.
He won’t stop until you’re dead…
Their new home should have been the place the sisters were safe.
But no place is safe forever.
A gripping new thriller from Lynda Stacey guaranteed to keep you up all night!
Perfect for fans of Sue Watson, S E Lynes, Jackie Kabler and Kendra Elliot.
A remote clifftop house – and one that belonged to the sisters’ murdered mother (and where the original owner met something of a sticky end too) – is a great choice of setting for an edge-of-the-seat thriller. I really liked the location too – high above the expanse of sandy beach at Hunmanby (and “high”, of course, tends to mean “sheer drop” too, in this case just at the bottom of the garden), the lights of Filey twinkling reassuringly from across the bay at night.
When sisters Molly and teenage Beth arrive, the house – at the end of a rutted lane that the removers baulk at negotiating – is considerably less than welcoming. They should have been greeted, but the house is deserted – the back door wide open, an abandoned bucket of hot water in the kitchen, the carpet in the hallway haphazardly and inexplicably torn out. When they’ve restored the electricity, and settle down for the night on a mattress in the lounge, Molly becomes convinced someone else is in the house – and there are signs the next day that she could well have been right. Living here really isn’t going to be the seaside idyll Molly tries to sell to an increasingly uneasy and disgruntled Beth – but things really are only going to get considerably worse.
Something I always rather enjoy in a book like this is the sharing of the thoughts and musings of an unknown observer – and here those thoughts are really sinister, focused on murder and revenge. With everything getting distinctly more unsettling by the moment, we then begin to try to identify some of the possible suspects. Beth’s father has been in prison for some time, and although she has good memories of him Molly remembers more clearly his propensity for cruelty and violence. Then there’s their nearest neighbour – seems like a nice guy (with a very friendly dog…), rather attractive too, but he does keep some rather unsavoury company. And Molly’s former partner Dan – something went wrong there (we’re not told what until some time later) and he does seem unusually persistent in his attempts to “help”, with some possibility too that he might know more than he should about their mother’s murder. To be honest, I had absolutely everyone we came across in the frame before the slow reveal and the book’s particularly explosive climax – I was looking askance at the girls’ grandfather for a while, and wondered from the start about the teenage surfer that Beth befriends.
I’m going to be absolutely honest though – this really wasn’t the book for me. There’s a certain amount of romance within its pages, and that’s something I always look for – some nice family drama too, particularly in the sometimes difficult relationship between the two sisters. But, with apologies, the darkness and edginess that built was rather more than I enjoy. We all look for different things in our reading – although it was clearly marketed as a thriller, my personal preference is for the romantic suspense I was more used to seeing from the author, but I have no doubt that there will be many readers who might like this change in direction rather more. So I’ll be looking forward to seeing the other reviews… there were a few elements I really did enjoy, but this book really wasn’t quite the right choice for this romance reader.
About the author
Lynda grew up in Doncaster, South Yorkshire. She works full time as well as being an author and is currently the Sales Director of a stationery, office supplies and office furniture company in Doncaster, where she has worked for the past 28 years.
Over the past 30 years she’s often worked two jobs and has also been a nurse, a model (in her much younger days), an emergency first response instructor and a PADI Scuba Diving Instructor … and yes, she was crazy enough to dive in the sea with sharks, without a cage.
Following a life changing car accident in 2008, Lynda was left with limited mobility in her right arm. Unable to dive or teach anymore, she turned to her love of writing, a hobby she’d followed avidly since being a teenager.
Her own life story, along with varied career choices helps Lynda to create stories of romantic suspense, with challenging and unpredictable plots.
After joining the Romantic Novelist Association in 2014 under the umbrella of the New Writers Scheme, Lynda’s debut novel House of Secrets won the Choc Lit Search for a Star competition in 2015. She’s previously published five books, her sixth book No Place Like Home is published today with her new publisher, Boldwood Books.
She currently lives in a small rural hamlet near Doncaster, with her ‘hero at home husband’, Haydn, whom she’s been happily married to for over 25 years.