Book Reviews May 2024

Book Reviews May 2024

Hello Everybody,

I hope you have had a relaxing and restful May and squeezed in lots of reading.  

First up, have you had an opportunity to watch the TV dramatisation of The Tattooist of Auschwitz?  

I really enjoyed it but as with most TV/film versions of a novel, it didn’t mirror the full depth and emotions of the book.  So, if you watch the TV version first, I would definitely recommend reading the book too.   However, it  is such an amazing story and so wonderful that Heather Morris achieved Lale’s dream of telling his story.  

Have you got any TV or book recommendations for this month?  

Here’s my Book Reviews for May 2024: 

One for Sorrow – Joanne Tracey (fiction)

one for sorrow Joanne Tracey


This is the latest book from fellow blogger Joanne Tracey.  It’s a new series set in Whale Bay, a fictional destination in Queensland, Australia. 

When Clementine Carter discovers she has been left a house by her Aunt Rose, she is forced to return to her home town after a 25 year absence.  Believing that she would fly in, organise the sale of the house and fly out back to her successful career in Melbourne, it soon becomes apparent that all is not as it seems.  Why did her aunt go up on the roof, late at night?  And who gets to benefit from her demise?

I really enjoyed this book with it’s wonderful setting by the beach.  The characters were all relatable and intriguing, with an interesting romantic side plot to the cosy murder theme.  It would make a great holiday read or even a fun winter read if you are craving some sunshine and beach vibes.    I shall certainly be looking forward to the next instalment with Clementine.  

Emergency Exit Only – Michelle Upton (fiction)

Emergency Exit Only Michelle Upton


This is the second book by Michelle Upton, a fellow Queenslander based in Brisbane.  You can read my book review for her first book here.

This book centres on Amelia Harris who at the age of 30 suffers a minor accident which triggers her into making some radical decisions about her life.  After over a decade working for the same company, she dramatically quits her job.  As she struggles to decide what she wants from life, she begins trying out all the jobs she has fantasied about doing in the past – journalist, zoo keeper, cafe barista, florist, wedding planner etc.  

Amelia’s safe and quiet life begins to become more interesting, especially when romance blossoms.  But just as Amelia feels like she is gaining confidence in herself and allowing people into her life, her mum drops a bombshell about their family that leaves Amelia questioning everything.  

Again, Michelle Upton has created a great story with likeable characters that explore how we each deal with fear, rejection and allowing ourselves to strive for our dreams.  She also very cleverly incorporates characters from her first novel. 

A great read which I would thoroughly recommend. 

Until it’s over – Nicci French (fiction)

Until It's Over Nicci French

Nicci French is the pseudonym for the UK husband and wife duo Nicci Gerrard and Sean French.  They have been writing for some 25 years with a vast library of books written both together and separately.  You can read the review of one of their other books I did here

I picked this rather tatty edition up from the free book swap shelf in our local shopping mall.  Since, Covid I have been a little more hesitant about reading second hand books, imagining all the other hands that have been touching the book in the past – eww!  However, my love of Nicci French books overcome my squeamishness and I wasn’t disappointed.  

I quickly fell into the escapism of this story set in a large communal house share in London.  All the characters had their own unique flaws which begin to surface as the story progresses.  My only criticism of the book is that there are two characters – Miles and Mick who for some reason I kept getting muddled up.  Maybe their names are a little too similar? 

Anyhow another great read from Nicci French.  

The blurb:

Young and athletic, cycle courier Astrid Bell is bad luck – for other people.  Firstly, her neighbour who accidently knocks her off her bike, is discovered dead.  Then a few days later, Astrid is asked to pick up a parcel only to find the wealthy client murdered in her hall. 

The police are obviously suspicious of these coincidences.  For Astrid and her six housemates the tension mounts, with bitter accusations and a feeling that there is worst to come, because bad luck always comes in threes, so who is next?  

The Hunch (The Ant Murders) – M Lindsey-Nobile (fiction)

The Hunch M Lindsey Noble

This book was passed onto me by my mum.  It appears to have been printed by a small independent publishing press from Somerset, UK so I’m not sure how easy it is to get copies.   It was particularly enjoyable for me as it was set in and around where I used to live in the UK.

The story is about Antonia Bell (Ant) who is a retired forensic scientist turned passionate pig farmer on Exmoor.  I especially enjoyed the descriptions about pig farming after having watched the latest series of Clarkson’s Farm (which I highly recommend, Amazon Prime).   

Anyhow, Ant is called upon by her former boss DI Benjamin Edward Cox (Bex) and former lover, to help him solve the two year old disappearance of their colleague Lucinda Sheridan, before he retires as well. 

The pace of this book flows along nicely, with a few twists and turns as Ant discovers new evidence to help discover what has happened to their friend.

An enjoyable read with an unsettling outcome, although there were quite a few typographical errors in the book.  

Ark of Blood – J F Penn (fiction)

Ark of Blood J F Penn
This is the third in Penn’s Arkane series.  The story line centres around the Ark of the Covenant and it’s ties to the Middle East.  Penn’s research hints at links from the Ark to Moses and the Egyptian phaoroah/King Akhenaten.  

Just as a heads up, some of the murder/thriller elements in the book are quite confronting and graphic.  

This is a very fast paced, action packed thriller in the style of Dan Brown and Indiana Jones.  If you like lots of travel, links to historical events and artifacts and lots of action then you will enjoy this series.


A group of fanatics wearing Egyptian god masks slaughter the curator of Cairo’s most famous museum.   A cleaner in Washington, DC, discovers a decapitated head on top of a replica of the Ark of the Covenant.  And someone is sharing videos of the deaths with extremists all over the world.

Morgan Sierra of the British secret ARKANE organisation is sent without her partner Jake (who nearly died in their last mission) to try to solve the mystery.  

In over her head, in constant danger, Morgan is pursued by vicious mercenaries bent on revenge, and willing to do anything for their cause.  Can Morgan discover the Ark before they do? 

Well, that’s it for this month.  Drop me a comment below, and do let me know what you’ve been reading this month. I love hearing about good books! 

If you missed my last book review you can catch up here 

Book Reviews May 2024

2 thoughts on “Book Reviews May 2024”

  1. Hi Janine, a great selection of books. Of course, I loved Jo’s book but I’m interested in the others as they all fit the genres I enjoy. Our What’s On Your Bookshelf? link up is Friday 21st June, I’d love you to link up this post then. Even though it’s your May reading it is more about the books we’ve read. Have a lovely week. x

    1. Hi Sue, thank you for your kind comments. I will try to link up on the next Bookshelf post – I keep missing it at the moment!

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