Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Follow Me Down - Sherri Smith ~Guest Post~

Sent to me by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 21/03/17

Publisher: Titan Books

ISBN: 978-1785654046

Format: Paperback, 447pp

Genre: Thriller/Drama

Rating: 4.5/5

Summed up in one word:

Buy/Read: Titan Books/Amazon UK/Goodreads

Book Synopsis:  Mia Haas has built a life for herself far from the small town where she grew up, but when she receives word that her twin brother is missing, she’s forced to return home. Once hailed as the golden boy of their community, Lucas Haas disappeared the same day the body of one of his teenage students is pulled from the river. Trying to wrap her head around the rumors of Lucas’s affair with the teen, and unable to reconcile the media’s portrayal of Lucas as a murderer with her own memories of him, Mia is desperate to find another suspect. 

All the while, she wonders, if he’s innocent, why did he run?

As Mia re-evaluates their difficult, shared history and launches her own investigation into the grisly murder, she uncovers secrets that could exonerate Lucas—or seal his fate. In a small town where everyone’s history is intertwined, Mia will be forced to confront her own demons, placing her right in the killer’s crosshairs.

Blog Tour Guest Post:
Welcome to today's stop on the Follow Me Down blog tour hosted by Titan Books. Follow Me Down is an intense, hostile and thrilling small town mystery. I usually can't stand small town plots because they are so one-sided and unpleasant to the point of cringe-worthy. Sherri Smith manages to evade the stomach-turning feeling by giving us a strong, persistent and capable lead character, Mia Haas. I really enjoyed FMD, it has so much going on and the plot is twisted up so tightly you barely get a chance to digest each part before another reveal is thrown into the mix.

I am here to share a guest post with you today. Follow Me Down is Sherri Smith's first venture into crime-thrillers and keeping with the theme of her own work, Sherri has written about her top-ten favourite crime novels. Unfortunately I haven't read any on the list, but I now have ten more books to add to my TBR! If you have read any of the books then please leave a comment with what you thought about it. Thank you for coming to learn more about Sherri Smith's inspiration and I hope you enjoy her post.


1. Every Secret Thing by Laura Lippman.

This was my first Lippman novel and I was hooked from the opening line, “They were barefoot when they were sent home, their dripping feet leaving prints that evaporated almost instantly, as if they’d never been there at all.” Two young girls commit an unspeakable act on the first page and while it’s not a typical whodunit, it’s still riveting, as you try to figure out what exactly happened and which of the two girls did what. I am always captivated by stories that unfold from a single bad decision, and this one follows those ripples with chilling authenticity. I recommend Lippman’s novels to everyone I know. 

2. The Cement Garden by Ian McEwan

This one is chock-full of psychological unease. You have a ramshackle house, four parentless kids fending for themselves while trying to keep their orphan-status hidden, what could go wrong? There is something almost apocalyptic about this one, as claustrophobia settles in and boundaries break down. It’s warped and disturbing in all the right ways.

3. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

This is a dark and twisted novel with characters so real I could reach out and touch them. I love all of Flynn’s novels, and would list them all here, but if I had to choose (and I wouldn’t want to) I’d say this was my favourite. I started reading it one afternoon and it set in like a bad fever. I couldn’t get up until I was finished. I am not even sure I took another breath until I turned that last page. It’s grim and haunting and it’s still all there coiled in my brain. It’s everything you want a novel to be.

4. The Trespasser by Tana French

Tana French is such a consistent, brilliant writer. From pitch-perfect dialogue to evocative descriptive writing to twisty plots, there’s nothing not to love in her novels. This one hits all the right notes yet again and I especially loved going along for the twisty ride with the very sharp and tough Antoinette Conway. An excellent book. Tana French does that thing few writers can, she makes it look easy. 

5. While They Slept by Kathryn Harrison

I just finished this one and it’s still rattling around in my head. While technically this isn’t fiction, it does read like a novel and a very smart, heart-wrenching one at that. It chronicles what exactly led an eighteen-year old to murder his parents and younger sister with a baseball bat. The author struck up a relationship with the surviving older sister, and together they excavate their respective childhood dramas, trying to unpack what or how this kind of tragedy happens. There was something in this, that’s eerily familiar, it closes the gap on a far-flung crime by pushing you to glance over the landscape of your own childhood. I loved this and highly recommend it. 

6. Dare Me by Megan Abbott

What is there not to love about mixing murder and cheer squad? Abbot’s prose is mesmerizing and it captures that raw adolescent emotion and blistering girl-politics so effectively, you feel like you’re tumbling around with them, the hard gym floor fast approaching. But Abbott doesn’t let you flinch, and you find yourself turning the pages, navigating the darker side of those all-consuming teen friendships until you get to the disturbing ending. This novel had me transfixed.  

7. Confessions by Kanae Minato

I always love a good revenge tale and this is an excellent one! There’s something deeply unnerving about a teacher exacting vengeance on her own students. The pieces of this bleak puzzle are doled out slowly, but paired with a certain urgency that makes your muscles stiffen and your skin pucker. To say too much would give it away, but it’s dark and unsettling in the best way possible. 

8. Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood

Based on the notorious Grace Marks, an Irish immigrant convicted of her role in the murder of her employer and his pregnant housekeeper, this novel mulls female villainy. Set in the 19th century, Grace’s infamy and claims of having visions draws the interest of a doctor who can’t decide if Grave is a victim or willing participant in the murders. This novel has all the right spooky, hair-raising elements and though I read it quite a while ago, I still remember going to sleep with the light on once I finished it. 

9. Her Every Fear by Peter Swanson

I just finished this last night and I think Peter Swanson is one of my new favourites. I can’t wait to go back and read his other novels. This is a great voyeuristic thriller, told in a few different viewpoints. It’s infused with a kind of propulsive anxiety that keeps you up late. Not to mention, I obviously love an eerie apartment block setting.  It’s a really gripping read.

10. Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

This is an outstanding, nerve-fraying thriller. It’s all cat and mouse and the pace barrels along like a freight train coming straight for you. It had my gut in knots, my entire reading. The characters are so well-drawn, the plot so taut; you just have to read it. 

Thank you to Sherri Smith for sharing her favourite crime pieces with us. Thank you for reading this post and please share your thoughts in the comments. This is a big blog tour and there is so much great content being posted this week, so see below for additional blogs to check out for more information on Follow Me Down.

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