I’m delighted to be part of the launch celebrations for The Girls Next Door by Mel Sherratt. The Girls Next Door was published by Bookouture on 27th October 2016 and is available for purchase in e-book here.
The Girls Next Door
One warm spring evening, five teenagers meet in a local park. Only four will come out alive.
Six months after the stabbing of sixteen-year-old Deanna Barker, someone is coming after the teenagers of Stockleigh, as a spate of vicious assaults rocks this small community. Revenge for Deanna? Or something more?
Detective Eden Berrisford is locked into a race against time to catch the twisted individual behind the attacks – but when her own niece, Jess Mountford, goes missing, the case gets personal.
With the kidnapper threatening Jess’s life, can Eden bring back her niece to safety? Or will the people of Stockleigh be forced to mourn another daughter…?
My Review of The Girls Next Door
Katie feels under pressure to be Nathan’s so-called girlfriend, but events on the night she goes to meet him are going to rock her life and that of the whole community.
Good gracious. I know Mel Sharratt writes gritty, fast paced thrillers, but I really wasn’t expecting the break-neck speed of events in The Girls Next Door. Reading this book was somewhat akin to being on an aeroplane in turbulence. I felt jolted and my stomach dropped time after time and just when I though there might be a breather off we went again. The short chapter structure of the book also adds to this effect and although it took me a while to work out who was who with all the quick changes of character and scene to begin with, I soon had a real sense of who everyone was. Indeed I felt the cast of characters was highly realistic and reminded me very much of some people I used to teach in a very deprived area years ago. In fact, the depiction of those living in deprivation, and the various ways with which they deal with their situation, was extremely accurate.
I really enjoyed the interconnectedness of the plot and had to admire Mel Sherratt’s skill in keeping all the various threads so cleanly and clearly defined, whilst simultaneously so well drawn together and linked through the various characters.
What I hadn’t expected alongside the thriller pace was the underpinning theme of mental heath and how we are affected by grief and guilt. I thought Mel Sherratt handled these elements sensitively without detracting from the breakneck plot.
The Girls Next Door is a highly entertaining, fast paced and exciting read and I’m sure this book is going to be a huge hit with crime fans everywhere. I’m really looking forward to reading more about Eden in the future.
About Mel Sherratt
Mel writes gritty crime dramas, psychological suspense and fiction with a punch – or grit-lit, as she calls it. Shortlisted for the prestigious CWA (Crime Writer’s Association) Dagger in Library Award 2014, Mel’s inspiration comes from authors such as Martina Cole, Lynda la Plante, Mandasue Heller and Elizabeth Haynes. Since 2012, all eight of her crime novels have been bestsellers, each one climbing into the kindle UK top 20 and she has had several number ones. Mel has also had numerous Kindle All-star awards, for best read author and best titles.
Mel also writes contemporary fiction under the name of Marcie Steele – Stirred with Love was published in September 2015, The Little Market Stall of Hope and Heartbreak in December 2015 and The Second Chance Shoe Shop in April 2016.
(You can read my review of The Second Chance Shoe Shop here.)
Mel lives in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, with her husband and terrier, Dexter (named after the TV serial killer) and makes liberal use of her hometown as a backdrop for some of her books.
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