Book Review: The Girl Who Had No Fear (George McKenzie, Book 4), by Marnie Riches

Publisher:  Avon (Harper Collins UK)

Publication date:  1st December 2016

~ A very happy publication day to Marnie Riches! ~

the-girl-who-had-no-fear-my-review

the-girl-who-had-no-fear-by-marnie-richesOooh, I have SO MUCH LOVE for the George McKenzie Series! It’s a riptide of a read where the past, present and future collide for The Girl Who Had No Fear.

How these characters live and breathe! With every investigation there’s something new to discover about them as their comfort zones are stretched to unrecognisable proportions. And for those loathsome individuals who lurk in the shadier corners of the globe there is no ceiling where exploitation is concerned. Marnie Riches demonstrates this with perceptive ease, harnessing the extreme best and desperately worst traits of the good, the brutal and the downright reckless.

In The Girl Who Had No Fear our maverick criminologist, Georgina McKenzie, is compromised both emotionally and professionally as she continues to receive disturbing emails from the estranged Spanish father she hasn’t seen for twenty years. Her mother has gone AWOL too and despite the fact that Letitia (The Dragon) is probably living it up somewhere sunny  with cocktail bar George still worries, especially after the cliff hanger from Book 3 where she received an alarming parcel forewarning her that she would need to keep an ‘eye’ on situation that was yet to evolve.

Yet none of these relatively minor distractions are enough to keep George from jumping feet first into the next case Paul Van Den Bergen has enticed her into. Men are dying, their bodies discovered in a canal after an enthusiastic evening where a lethal blend of drugs and intense company were enjoyed.

An undercover operation launches involving George and her colleague Elvis (Dirk) leading them both on a fiercely dangerous and personal journey. In George’s case it will take her to the cold heart of Mexico’s hostile terrain. While she investigates the links and possible origins of drug manufacture to the killings in Amsterdam, maybe she can track down the last known whereabouts of her Spanish father on route. I genuinely didn’t believe her impulsiveness could test the gangly, medically challenged hypochondriac, Van den Bergen, to new limits but it does, and their text exchanges when the going gets tough are legendary (as is the Dutch Chief Inspector’s failure to adapt his dress sense to the oppressive Mexican climate).

If her spirited attitude doesn’t act as a repellent to those who throw themselves in her way, hopefully the gift of the ‘blag’ from her experience of gang culture as a teen will prove invaluable against the varying degrees of low life. Unfortunately the notorious ‘El Crocodilo’ is circling in the shallows and George is unwittingly dipping a toe into his territory.

Fair warning, this tackles fairly explicit themes including trafficking, drugs, an execution scene, and unconventional ‘reunions’. But have #NoFear. The plot is as complex and fiery as our unlikely heroine, and has a phenomenal, adrenaline charged ending – IT’S BLISTERINGLY GOOD STUFF!

Rating:  5/5

(I am grateful to have received a copy of this title I requested from the publisher via NetGalley and this is my unbiased review. It’s also been on pre-order since I can remember!)

the-girl-who-had-no-fear-book-summary

(Courtesy of Amazon UK)

Amsterdam: a city where sex sells and drugs come easy. Four dead bodies have been pulled from the canals – and that number’s rising fast. Is a serial killer on the loose? Or are young clubbers falling prey to a lethal batch of crystal meth?

Chief Inspector Van den Bergen calls on criminologist Georgina McKenzie to help him solve this mystery. George goes deep undercover among the violent gangs of Central America. Working for the vicious head of a Mexican cartel, she must risk her own life to find the truth. With murder everywhere she turns, can George get people to talk before she is silenced for good?

A pulse-pounding race against time, perfect for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbo.

BUY THE BOOK

the-girl-who-had-no-fear-author-profile

(Courtesy of Amazon UK. Photograph courtesy of publisher.)

Marnie Riches

Marnie Riches grew up on a rough estate in Manchester. She learned her way out of the ghetto, all the way to Cambridge University, where she gained a Masters degree in German & Dutch. She has been a punk, a trainee rock star, a pretend artist, a property developer and professional fundraiser. Previously a children’s author, now, she writes crime and contemporary women’s fiction.

Marnie Riches is the author of the George McKenzie crime thriller series, published by Maze and Avon at Harper Collins.

In her spare time, Marnie likes to run (more of a long distance shuffle, really) travel, drink and eat all the things (especially if combined with travel) paint portraits, sniff expensive leather shoes (what woman doesn’t?) and renovate old houses. She also adores flowers.

Winner of the Patricia Highsmith award for ‘Most Exotic Location’.

TWITTER   |   FACEBOOK   |   WEBSITE

Other books in the George McKenzie Series…

the-girl-who-series-of-books

…And here are my Reviews

The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die – Book 1: http://wp.me/p5N83r-k9

The Girl Who Broke The Rules – Book 2: http://wp.me/p5N83r-GD

The Girl Who Walked In The Shadows – Book 3: http://wp.me/p5N83r-1nL

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Book Review: The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows (George McKenzie, Book 3), by Marnie Riches

Publisher: Avon Books (Harper Collins)   |   Publication date: 31st March 2016

The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows My Review

The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows CoverWell, well, well. The Girl Who series continues and it’s another consistently feisty one, just like it’s heroine.

The story is set two years later from the incident with the psychotic Butcher in Book Two, and not only is Georgina McKenzie back as a trained criminologist she’s now managed to involve her whole family in this case. They make a formidable team – and you wouldn’t want to cross them, that’s for sure!

Their origins and quirky family background helps to lift the oppressive plot of child trafficking, kidnap, and the appearance of a cold-hearted killer called Jack Frost, who settles his scores armed only with an icicle. This murder weapon leaves no clues as to his identity for the authorities, as no finger prints or witnesses remain.

Georgina McKenzie’s expertise stretches only so far, especially as her efforts are being concentrated on making Paul van de Bergen suffer for his non-committal in their relationship. But although he desperately needs George’s mind to help further his existing case, at the front of his own mind is his pregnant daughter, who is the same age as George, making him realise just how odd a crinkled detective and a fresh-faced criminologist must look when they’re together.

Now, not only does this character ‘Jack Frost’ feature heavily, the storyline follows a young couple’s ups and downs in the media spotlight when their two toddlers go missing from their back yard. Like the adverse weather conditions, the plot becomes weighty under several heavy layers until it’s hard to discriminate between the good and the bad guys in a complex investigation stretching between London, Cambridge, and Amsterdam. The inclusion of the three very different locations of this series keeps the flow moving rapidly – it’s never settles, not even for a second, a bit like George’s erratic life and the constant threat to it.

The Girl Who series wouldn’t be the same without its shady characters crawling out of the woodwork, including The Duke, a low life enjoying a high position of power and literally getting away with breaking every moral code you could think of. There are feuds and a long distance relationship to mend (mainly George’s), and deadly confrontations that’ll knock your socks off.

While this may not be my favourite plot of the series (but still a damned fine one, I would add), it is delivered with more precision and barbed wit than all of them put together. Where many people fail, Marnie Riches excels: the magnificent feat of drawing a colourful personality, a distinct odour, or misshapen appearance of one of her creations with only a few choice words has more impact than any photographic still.

I bet I’m not the only one hoping that George will in return in the future. Although the immediate case is wrapped up the rather warped ending has left the door somewhat ajar …

Enticingly gritty crime and as pacy as hell. 

Rating: 5/5

(My thanks to the publishers, Harper Collins – Avon Books – for providing a digital copy of this title via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)

The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows Book Summary

(Courtesy of Amazon UK)

Europe is in the grip of an extreme Arctic blast and at the mercy of a killer, who leaves no trace. His weapons of choice are razor-sharp icicles. This is Jack Frost.

Now a fully qualified criminologist, Georgina McKenzie is called upon by the Dutch police to profile this cunning and brutal murderer. Are they looking for a hit man or a frenzied serial-killer? Could there be a link to a cold missing persons’ case that George had worked with Chief Inspector Paul van den Bergen – two abducted toddlers he could never quite give up on?

The hunt for Jack Frost sparks a dangerous, heart-rending journey through the toughest neighbourhoods in Europe, where refugees and Romani gypsies scratch a living on the edge of society. Walking into the dark, violent world of a trans-national trafficking ring, can George outrun death to shed light on two terrible mysteries?

BUY THE BOOK

(Amazon kindly informs me I’ve had this on pre-order since 15th January!)

The Girl Who Walkd in the Shadows Author Profile

Marnie RichesMarnie Riches grew up on a rough estate in Manchester. She learned her way out of the ghetto, all the way to Cambridge University, where she gained a Masters degree in German & Dutch. She has been a punk, a trainee rock star, a pretend artist, a property developer and professional fundraiser. Previously a children’s author, now, she writes crime and contemporary women’s fiction.

Marnie Riches is the author of the George McKenzie crime thriller series, published by Maze and Avon at Harper Collins.

In her spare time, Marnie likes to run (more of a long distance shuffle, really) travel, drink and eat all the things (especially if combined with travel) paint portraits, sniff expensive leather shoes (what woman doesn’t?) and renovate old houses. She also adores flowers.

Winner of the Patricia Highsmith award for ‘Most Exotic Location’.

CONNECT WITH MARNIE RICHES:

TWITTER   |   FACEBOOK   |   WEBSITE   |   AMAZON

COVER REVEAL: #TheGirlWho Walked in the Shadows by Marnie Riches

It’s almost time for the next THRILLING instalment of #TheGirlWho, by the marvellous Marnie Richies – it would be criminal to miss it … (erm, sorry about that).

Marnie’s third book in the Georgina McKenzie series, The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows, will be published on the 31st March 2016 in E-Book (that’s a Thursday, in case you’re interested, not that I’m counting the days or anything) and I’m OVER THE MOON to be able to share this TREMENDOUS, EYE-CATCHING COVER with you:

The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows

Wanna to know more? Well, here’s the book summary for you – it sounds like a good ‘un to me! :

Europe is in the grip of an extreme Arctic blast and at the mercy of a killer, who leaves no trace. His weapons of choice are razor-sharp icicles. This is Jack Frost.

Now a fully qualified criminologist, Georgina McKenzie is called upon by the Dutch police to profile this cunning and brutal murderer. Are they looking for a hit man or a frenzied serial-killer? Could there be a link to a cold missing persons’ case that George had worked with Chief Inspector Paul van den Bergen – two abducted toddlers he could never quite give up on?

The hunt for Jack Frost sparks a dangerous, heart-rending journey through the toughest neighbourhoods in Europe, where refugees and Romani gypsies scratch a living on the edge of society. Walking into the dark, violent world of a trans-national trafficking ring, can George outrun death to shed light on two terrible mysteries?

BUY THE BOOK

(My pre-order is IN, people. And I. Can’t. Waaaaait!)

Marnie RichesMarnie Riches grew up on a rough estate in Manchester. She learned her way out of the ghetto, all the way to Cambridge University, where she gained a Masters degree in German & Dutch. She has been a punk, a trainee rock star, a pretend artist, a property developer and professional fundraiser. Previously a children’s author, now, she writes crime and contemporary women’s fiction.

Marnie Riches is the author of the George McKenzie crime thriller series, published by Maze and Avon at Harper Collins.

In her spare time, Marnie likes to run (more of a long distance shuffle, really) travel, drink and eat all the things (especially if combined with travel) paint portraits, sniff expensive leather shoes (what woman doesn’t?) and renovate old houses. She also adores flowers.

Winner of the Patricia Highsmith award for ‘Most Exotic Location’.

CONNECT WITH MARNIE RICHES:

TWITTER   |   FACEBOOK   |   WEBSITE   |   AMAZON

In the meantime, you can read my 5/5 reviews for the first two #TheGirlWho books by clicking the covers below:

The Girl Who Wouldnt Die by Marie Richies    31MayThe Girl Who Broke the Rules

Thanks so much for stopping by, folks!

Wendy sig

 

 

 

BOOK TOUR REVIEW: The Girl Who Broke The Rules (George McKenzie, Book 2), By Marnie Riches #TheGirlWho

Publisher:  Avon Books UK (Maze)  |  Publication date: 20th August 2015  |  Edition: PDF (Review copy) – although I also pre-ordered my own Kindle copy too, as this series is just SO GOOD!

the girl who review

31MayThe Girl Who Broke the RulesThe Girl Who Broke the Rules, AKA Georgina McKenzie, resides in a harsh world where a different breed of criminal roams free. Welcome, to the murky world of sex workers, extreme decaying morals and close encounters of the eviscerating kind.

While I believe you could easily read this book without having clapped eyes on The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die, you may appreciate much of the backstory a little more if you did. Let’s be honest it’s a cracking book anyway, so I’d recommended you read it first, as you genuinely come to care about each and every one of the peeps and their undeniably unique traits.

Anyhow, back to book two. After her experience with the ‘Firestarter’ in book one, George is currently studying for her PHD in Criminal Psychology in Cambridge, while her boyfriend, Ad, stays in Amsterdam. As a result she gets the rare task of interviewing psychopath and expertly portrayed, all-round creepily-perverted bloke, Dr Silas Holm, from whom she hopes to gain insightful knowledge about what makes sexually motivated serial killers tick. Unbeknown to George and co, Psycho Silas will really relish his nice, comfortable back seat role in her research project…pulling people’s strings is a happy pastime for him inside the isolated walls of Broadmoor.

Her education means travelling to locations between Amsterdam and Cambridge is a must for the young student, and it does allow us to revisit her not so ‘charming’ family again, while still keeping a foothold on her old haunts across the channel. Yet, long distance relationships can start to lose their vital signs and she has to fight to revive hers with Ad. Especially when her old friend, Paul Van De Berg, sends her an intriguing message inviting her to be part of a current investigation; this experienced copper, who is old enough to be her father, has come to truly respect the ballsy twenty-four year old.

Be warned, book two REALLY cranks criminology up a level. It doesn’t skimp on the graphic nature of the crime scenes, but it’s all in context with the shady criminal undercurrents Marnie Riches has wickedly created. And don’t be fooled into thinking that it’s all shock and no substance, there’s lots of ingenious detective work to be had with fingers being pointed in the wrong direction (not to mention other extremities on occasion).

Even with such killer-thriller storylines as these it’s a series that still manages to keep its feet on the ground, as every single character is spirited enough to keep pace, despite battling their own broken lives. There’s much more to discover about Van De Berg and McKenzie during this outing, and nothing is held in reserve. What I love is that the author isn’t afraid to cause grief, or push any boundary, regardless of whether you consider your favourite player to be out of bounds.

Okay. I admit it, damn it. I am HOPELESSLY ADDICTED to #TheGirlWho series: the pristine plot is laced with dry wit, and the sharpest dialogue lends its edge to slice through the darkest of subject matter, leaving other books quaking on their shelves.

After THAT epically, cruel cliffhanger I’m bracing myself for Book 3, The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows.  I CAN’T RUDDY WAIT! 

Rating: 5/5

My thanks to @AvonBooksUK for providing a copy of this book for review and offering a place on the book tour. Much appreciated. With thanks also to @cmwoods1993.

the girl who character profile

So you can see what you’re letting yourself in for:

George ‘Georgina’ McKenzie, feisty, takes chances, except with cleaning – closet OCD’er. Given her background you’d assume she have packed in any shred of optimism by now. Yet bad times only seem to irritate her and strengthen her resolve. Also on the breadline, and thoroughly confused about her current relationship with Ad, from book 1 The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die.

Paul Van De Bergen, a towering, divorced detective, secret worrier, close to a financial breadline and solitary member of the hate campaign against his daughter’s fiancé, “numb nuts”. We learn a thing or three about VDB in this instalment.

Ad, Georgina’s Boyfriend and all-round wet lettuce. Okay, he survived an attack on his life in book one, and he *might* have lost a finger, but lawdy, man up a little or you’ll be no match for George, mate.

George’s study subject, Silas Holm. Creepy dude extraordinaire. Exceedingly odd, with some bizarre ideas of recreation. Resides at Broadmoor. Erm, not really a bloke you’d like to find yourself in a dark room with (or indeed a well lit one), especially if there’s a spare roll of Gaffa tape and sharp things lying around. Well, you get the gist.

Many other vile residents, waaay too many to mention. All of whom could do with being incarcerated forthwith. Failing that, I’d certainly encourage you to run in the opposite direction upon meeting them – and quickly.

the girl who book Summary

The Girl Who…Broke The Rules

The pulse-pounding new thriller from Marnie Riches. For anyone who loves Jo Nesbo and Stieg Larsson, this book is for you!

When the mutilated bodies of two sex-workers are found in Amsterdam, Chief Inspector van den Bergen must find a brutal murderer before the red-light-district erupts into panic.

Georgina McKenzie is conducting research into pornography among the UK’s most violent sex-offenders but once van den Bergen calls on her criminology expertise, she is only too happy to come running.

The rising death toll forces George and van den Bergen to navigate the labyrinthine worlds of Soho strip-club sleaze and trans-national human trafficking. And with the case growing ever more complicated, George must walk the halls of Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, seeking advice from the brilliant serial murderer, Dr. Silas Holm…

the girl who author links

Connect with Award Winning Marnie Riches, or buy the book:

Marnie Riches

Twitter    |    Website    |    Amazon UK

 Next Blog Stop

Be sure to join GRAB THIS BOOK for the next stop on 6th September!

Thanks for stopping by  x

Wendy sig

COVER REVEAL: The Girl Who Broke the Rules, by Marnie Riches #TheGirlWho

The Girl Who Broke the Rules Cover reveal 2

Marnie Riches She's Back

This stunning cover sees the return of our feisty heroine from ‘The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die’ in…

THE GIRL WHO BROKE THE RULES (Georgina McKenzie Series, Book 2)

By Award Winning author, Marnie Riches

31MayThe Girl Who Broke the Rules

Published:  20th August 2015 – Don’t miss it!  Amazon UK

CRACKING, ISN’T IT?!


Marnie Riches Book Summary

When the mutilated bodies of two sex-workers are found in Amsterdam, Chief Inspector van den Bergen must find a brutal murderer before the red-light-district erupts into panic.

Georgina McKenzie is conducting research into pornography among the UK’s most violent sex-offenders but once van den Bergen calls on her criminology expertise, she is only too happy to come running.

The rising death toll forces George and van den Bergen to navigate the labyrinthine worlds of Soho strip-club sleaze and trans-national human trafficking. And with the case growing ever more complicated, George must walk the halls of Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, seeking advice from the brilliant serial murderer, Dr. Silas Holm…


Marnie Riches Author Profile

Marnie Riches

Marnie Riches grew up on a rough estate in Manchester. She learned her way out of the ghetto, all the way to Cambridge University, where she gained a Masters degree in German & Dutch. She has been a punk, a trainee rock star, a pretend artist, a property developer and professional fundraiser. Previously a children’s author, now, she writes crime and contemporary women’s fiction.

Marnie Riches is the author of The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die – the first installment of the George McKenzie crime thriller series, published by Maze and Avon at Harper Collins.

In her spare time, Marnie likes to run (more of a long distance shuffle, really) travel, drink and eat all the things (especially if combined with travel) paint portraits, sniff expensive leather shoes (what woman doesn’t?) and renovate old houses. She also adores flowers.

Winner of the Patricia Highsmith award for ‘Most Exotic Location’. Discover more about the nominees and winners here over at DEAD GOOD BOOKS

Twitter   |   Facebook   |   Website   |   Amazon UK


In the meantime, have YOU read the first book of the series yet?  Check out my 5* review here for:

THE GIRL WHO WOULDN’T DIE (Georgina McKenzie series, Book 1)

The Girl Who Wouldnt Die by Marie Richies

Hope you’ve enjoyed the cover reveal for The Girl Who Broke the Rules.  Remember, it’s published on 20th August 2015!

Thanks for stopping by x

Wendy sig

The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die (George McKenzie, Book 1), by Marnie Riches

Publisher:  Maze (Harper Collins)  |  Publication date:  2nd April 2015  |  Edition: Kindle

The Girl Who Wouldnt Die by Marie Riches

The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die will keep you on your toes.

I have one word for this suspense in this book – unrelenting. It’s meaty, gritty and raw. In fact, it has everything you want from a crime thriller.

Meet George (Georgina) McKenzie. Fiesty. Ballsy. Conceals an OCD side. She’s a young woman who thinks she’s in charge of her life, but as we will see it’s a life that is not entirely her own. She’s a complicated character, with a past she can’t forget.

There’s been an explosion. Due to the unusual circumstances, suspicions are pointing to a terror attack and the police need help to draw out the culprit. They ask George to write a controversial post on her student blog and wait for the comments to come flooding in, but the consequences are nothing like she or the authorities could ever imagine.

‘Creaking’ Paul van der Bergen is the officer on the case. He’s aloof and slightly touched by hypochondria, but like George he has a yearning for the truth. He now dwells among some of the best fictional people I’ve met in a book – Marnie Riches has achieved an incredible feat with her carefully placed, subtle descriptions of him. The conversation exchange he has with George is utterly brilliant.

Despite several warnings, George’s personality traits mean that she’s a meddler, when she should leave well alone (I do like a good meddler). More carnage later, a breadcrumb trail being left by a watcher in the shadows is starting to emerge, and the end of the road will have a massive impact for George and those around her.

From Amsterdam to Cambridge, circling the mean streets of London and back again, the story rages along – it stops to breathe periodically, but even then your mind’s ticking over and contemplating the ever changing plot.

The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die shows much of the seedier side of life – drugs, human trafficking, and prostitution – along with the good, the bad and the very ugly people involved in these activities (not to mention the incredibly unstable).

There’s plenty to keep even the most hardened crime fan occupied – its punchy twist is fan-bleeding-tastic.

Highly recommended, and in this case I mean VERY highly.

Rating: 5/5


You can follow the author on Twitter: @Marnie_Riches

Want to see what Marnie Riches is up to next? You can visit her website here:  http://marnieriches.com/