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The Fallen Girls, by Kathryn Casey


The Fallen Girls book cover

Clara Jefferies escaped from the polygamous Mormon community she grew up in. But now she is called in to help search for her missing sister. Her personal feelings threaten to get in the way of her professional behaviour: she is now a detective, but her estranged family see only a fallen girl who has rejected their way of life. Can Clara find Delilah…?
The Fallen Girls deals with strong themes of faith and family alongside the main plot of the abduction of young girls.I felt that there was a sensitivity and careful balance in the attitudes presented towards Mormons and their religion as portrayed in the book.
Clara is a likeable lead character and I hope we see her again in her home environment as we caught glimpses of her professional dedication in the opening chapter. However, I wonder if she willl return to her old community to rebuild relationships especially with her siblings. She also has a history with Max that could lead to a romantic thread for future books.
Much of The Fallen Girls is told through Clara’s first person narrative so we see and feel the events as she does. Other viewpoints are provided in the third person including Max and Delilah. Seeing Delilah’s experience increases the tension in the book as we urge Clara to keep invetigating despite the lack of local police support.
This is the first of Kathryn Casey’s books that I have read and I certainly plan to change that! The Fallen Girls is an interesting police thriller and the family dynamic gives us a great introduction to a new lead detective.

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The Fallen Girls book description:
She didn’t notice the corn stalks shiver a few feet to her right. By the time she looked up, the man towered above her. In a single movement he wrapped one thick hand around her waist, the other he clamped over her mouth, muffling her screams.
Detective Clara Jefferies has spent years running from her childhood in Alber, Utah. But when she hears that her baby sister Delilah has disappeared, she knows that the peaceful community will be shattered, her family vulnerable, and that that she must face up to her past and go home.
Clara returns to find that her mother, Ardeth, has isolated her family by moving to the edge of town, in the shadow of the mountains. Ardeth refuses to talk to the police and won’t let Clara through the front door, believing she and her sister-wives can protect their own. But Clara knows better than anyone that her mother isn’t always capable of protecting her children.
When Clara finds out that two more girls have disappeared, all last seen around the cornfields near her family’s home, she realizes it’s not just Delilah who’s in danger. And then she gets a call that a body has been found…
Clara will have to dig deep into the town’s secrets if she’s going to find Delilah. But that will mean confronting the reason she left. And as she gets closer to Delilah, she might be putting her more at risk…
Gripping and spine-chilling, readers will love Detective Clara Jefferies, reading The Fallen Girls deep into the night. Fans of Kendra Elliot, Lisa Regan and Melinda Leigh won’t stop turning the pages of this unforgettable new series from bestselling and award-winning author Kathryn Casey.
author Kathryn Casey
Author Bio:
A novelist and award-winning journalist, Kathryn Casey is the author of eleven highly acclaimed true crime books and the creator of the Sarah Armstrong mystery series. Library Journal picked THE KILLING STORM as one of the best mysteries of 2010. Her latest true crime, IN PLAIN SIGHT, investigates the Kaufman County prosecutor murders, a case that made worldwide headlines. Casey has appeared on Oprah, 20/20, the Today Show, Good Morning America, the Biography Channel, Reelz, The Travel Network, Investigation Discovery, and many other venues. Ann Rule called Casey “one of the best in the true crime genre.”
Buy Links:
Amazon: https://bit.ly/2zDKLbP
Apple: https://apple.co/2AgcCic
Kobo: https://bit.ly/3c8HMWa
Google: https://bit.ly/2THaEyb

#StayClassyMama 85

Hello and welcome to the #StayClassyMama linky.
June already: I hope you are all still staying healthy and safe! Thank you for joining us as we try to maintain some normality during this strange year!
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It is no longer enough to not be racist

People are angry. Rightly so. Social media was muted on Tuesday as many shared blacked out posts in solidarity with Black Lives Matter. I feel very uncomfortable writing about race from my white privileged viewpoint. But I feel that I can no longer stay silent.
Avoiding the problem, staying in my comfort zone, being merely non-racist instead of proactively anti-racist is no longer good enough. It is horrifying and shameful that racism still exists in 2020. The only way it will stop is for all of us to raise our voices in outrage, to educate our children and lead by example.

This week I have had difficult conversations with my children. Explaining the current events including the tragic death of George Floyd amidst the greater historical and cultural context.
Previously I had thought it was enough to be ‘colour-blind’ but this fails to celebrate the diversity of our wonderful human race and hides the issue of racism.
All lives matter, but this cannot be true until black lives matter.

‘There is no more neutrality in the world. You either have to be part of the solution, or you’re going to be part of the problem.’ Eldridge Cleaver
I am angry that our leaders are not standing up for what is right. Why are they not addressing the problem, only looking at the symptoms, the violence that has erupted from depair?
I am appalled that celebrities are making comments decrying the insidious racism inherent in our Western culture when these should be coming from our politicians. I am relieved that most people are not staying silent, that they are finally challenging the ‘neutrality’.

White people, like me, now have to join the fight for freedom from institutional racism. We can use our privilege to demand change. We can listen. We can love, educate and pledge our commitment to equality. We can make a difference.
To end this post, I will quiet my voice and use Martin Luther King’s:

A riot is the language of the unheard.

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

No Escape, by Casey Kelleher

No Escape book cover

TRIGGER WARNING: this book deals with violence and abuse of vulnerable people and animals, drugs trafficking and alcoholism
Kian and Shannon Winters live in the shadow of their mother’s alcoholism and the violence rife on their estate. Lucy Murphy lives with the trauma of her mother’s murder on the same estate twenty years earlier, which has inspired her to become a police officer.
No Escape is an excellent title for this book as Kian and Shannon search for a way out of their life experience. Shannon tries to help her mother while Kian turns to a gang. In the safeguarding training I receive annually, I have been shocked to learn about the prevalence of County Lines and I never would have believed that our area would be prey to it. But it is…
Lucy’s story was also upsetting due to her grandmother’s deteriorating mental health and the painful choice of putting her in a home. As well as this, she is still haunted by her mother’s murder which she witnessed but couldn’t describe the killer.
The abuse and violence contained in No Escape towards a vulnerable adult, children and animals is unpleasant and very difficult to read. This is not a book to enjoy as such but it is utterly compelling. The empathy the reader feels for the likeable characters powers through the abominable actions of Jax’s gang and the Winters’ alcoholic mother.
I felt angry with Michelle for putting her own needs first. I understand that alcoholism is a disease but she had no self awareness or consideration for her children. I felt desperately sad for the children that they didn’t want to go into care and am aware from professional anecdotes that our care system is hideously inadequate and often more traumatic than the original situation.
Overall, I really engaged with this book and was swept along with the plot and characters, appalled and anxious about the events. It certainly isn’t a light read, but is is a good one! I hope that there is a sequel so we can see more of Lucy’s character and hopefully she will find some answers about her mother’s death…
I have previously review The Forgotten by Casey Kelleher.

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Author:     Casey Kelleher
Book:                   NO ESCAPE   
Publication Day:  June 2nd 2020
Buy Link: https://geni.us/B085S4G4WQSocial
Book drescription:
The one place she never wanted to go back to. The one place she can’t escape.
When she was just five years old, Lucy Murphy witnessed her mother’s brutal murder in their home on London’s notorious Griffin Estate. The case was never solved. Now a newly qualified police officer, Lucy has been given her first job: she’s going back to the Griffin Estate.
She is there to protect the estate’s vulnerable residents, including Shannon and Kian Winters, two kids struggling to deal with their alcoholic mother. Fifteen-year-old Shannon is working every spare hour to keep a roof over their heads, but thirteen-year-old Kian has fallen under the sway of gang leader Jax Priestly. And now Jax has plans for Shannon too…
As Lucy gets to know Kian and Shannon she becomes determined not to let the two teenagers become Jax’s victims. But time is running out. Jax is out of control, and the gang’s violent reprisals are escalating. Can Lucy face down her own demons in time to prevent a tragedy? As a child, she already witnessed the murder of one innocent person. It will take all her courage and training to stop another.
A shocking, fast-paced read that will keep you gripped from beginning to end. Fans of Kimberley Chambers and Martina Cole won’t be able to put this down.
author Casey Kelleher
Author Bio:
Born in Cuckfield, West Sussex, Casey Kelleher grew up as an avid reader and a huge fan of author Martina Cole.
Whilst working as a beauty therapist and bringing up her three children together with her husband, Casey penned her debut novel Rotten to the Core. Its success meant that she could give up her day job and concentrate on writing full time.
For all news and updates:
Twitter: @caseykelleher

#GlobalBlogging 165

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