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Hidden on the Fens, by Joy Ellis

A new case for DI Nikki Galena as a series of strange ‘gifts’ to an academic results in the discovery of a body on the couple’s land in a hidden cottage. The body is missing teen Jennifer and finding it calls into question the convitcion of Patrick Shale for her murder 15 years ago. Meanwhile, another girl has gone missing and the police are frantic to locate her before she becomes the next victim. A seemingly separate case of sexual assault also is being investigated and proves to be linked.
The plot is very cleverly written to weave together the strands of the different cases. There are plenty of suspects and clues but the cases do not get fully solved until right at the end.
The relationships between the police characters are well established as you would expect from the 11th book in the series! There is the romantic hint between Nikki and Joseph but we see nothing of their personal or home life. Joseph’s daughter takes centre stage in this book which adds to the emotional drama. Scenes were stolen by the flamboyant pathologist Rory and he was kept busy by author Joy Ellis in this book!
Hidden on the Fens could easily be read as a stand alone novel. It is a hugely enjoyable police procedural story with a strong female lead. The intricate plot will keep readers guessing and there is a little forensic detail but no graphic violence or information.
Here is my review of book 10 in the Galena series: Darkness on the Fens. And my review of a Jackman and Evans book, The Stolen Boys.

 

Hidden on the Fens (Detective Nikki Galena #11)
FROM TWO-MILLION SELLING AUTHOR, JOY ELLIS, COMES ONE OF THE MOST EAGERLY AWAITED CRIME THRILLERS OF 2019.
A DERELICT COTTAGE HIDDEN IN A COPSE OF TREES.
A MISSING GIRL WHOSE BODY WAS NEVER FOUND.
HAS HER KILLER RETURNED?
Detective Joseph Easter’s daughter discovers a cottage hidden in some trees on a large fenland farm. Someone has been living there.
The farm-owner’s wife has been receiving sinister pagan artefacts, including a witch’s knife. Are they some sort of warning or message?
Joseph and his daughter search the cottage and find an old satchel. Inside are photos of a beautiful girl, Jennifer Cowley. She went missing fifteen years ago. She had been stalked by a young man, who was convicted of her murder, even though her body was never found.
WHEN DI NIKKI GALENA EXAMINES THE COTTAGE, SHE FINDS SOMETHING FAR WORSE.
And in the satchel is a more recent photo of a girl who looks just like Jennifer.
The man who killed Jennifer is recently out of prison. Has he struck again?
At the same time, DC Cat Cullen and Dave Harris are trying to get evidence against a man who preys on widowed older women. Vernon Deacon is seemingly a pillar of society, with very influential friends. His victims are often not believed, so their job is not easy.
Full of twists and turns, this is a crime thriller that will keep you turning the pages until the heart-stopping ending.
This is book eleven of the international best-selling books featuring Nikki Galena.
Joy Ellis was nominated for audiobook of the year the British Book Awards 2018.
What readers are saying about JOY ELLIS
“Just wonderful to read.” Carole
Holds the reader’s attention from the first word to the last.” Nicki Richards
“Compulsive reading, I loved it.” Viv
Riveting tale from start to finish.” Lynne
“Absolutely engrossing.” Olga
“Brilliant book which kept me gripped from page 1.” Barbara
THE DETECTIVE
DI Nikki Galena: A police detective with nothing left to lose, she’s seen a girl die in her arms and her own family destroyed. She’s tough on criminals but fiercely loyal to her team.
HER PARTNER
DS Joseph Easter is the squeaky-clean member of the team. But his nickname “Holy Joe” belies his former life as a soldier. He has a daughter and an ex-wife who wants his attention.
THE SETTING
The Lincolnshire Fens: great open skies brood over marshes, farmland, and nature reserves. It is not easy terrain for the Fenland Constabulary to police, due to the distances between some of the remote fen villages, the dangerous and often misty lanes, and the poor telephone coverage. There are still villages where the oldest residents have never set foot outside their own farmland and a visit to the nearest town is a major event. But it has a strange airy beauty to it, and above it all are the biggest skies you’ve ever seen.
DISCOVER YOUR NEXT FAVOURITE MYSTERY SERIES NOW
Perfect for fans of Rachel Abbott, Robert Bryndza, Mel Sherratt, Angela Marsons, Colin Dexter, or Ruth Rendell.
ALSO BY JOY ELLIS
THE NIKKI GALENA SERIES
Book 1: CRIME ON THE FENS
Book 2: SHADOW OVER THE FENS
Book 3: HUNTED ON THE FENS
Book 4: KILLER ON THE FENS
Book 5: STALKER ON THE FENS
Book 6: CAPTIVE ON THE FENS
Book 7: BURIED ON THE FENS
Book 8: THIEVES ON THE FENS
Book 9: FIRE ON THE FENS
Book 10: DARKNESS ON THE FENS
Book 11: HIDDEN ON THE FENS
Join the Joffe Books mailing list for updates on the next Joy Ellis mystery.
JOY ELLIS – Author Bio
UK #1 Best Seller with THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS and THE FOURTH FRIEND
Over 1 million books sold!
“I was born in Kent but spent most of my working life in London and Surrey. I was an apprentice florist to Constance Spry Ltd, a prestigious Mayfair shop that throughout the sixties and seventies teemed with both royalty and ‘real’ celebrities. What an eye-opener for a working-class kid from the Garden of England! I swore then, probably whilst I was scrubbing the floor or making
the tea, that I would have a shop of my own one day. It took until the early eighties, but I did it. Sadly the recession wiped us out, and I embarked on a series of weird and wonderful jobs; the last one being a bookshop manager.
Surrounded by books all day, getting to order whatever you liked, and being paid for it! Oh bliss!
And now I live in a village in the Lincolnshire Fens with my partner, Jacqueline, and our four Springer spaniels. I had been writing mysteries for years but never had the time to take it seriously. Now I write full time, and as my partner is a highly decorated retired police officer; I find I have an in- house consultant on hand to make sure that the police and judicial procedure
is correct. She also makes very good tea! I have set my crime thrillers here in the misty fens because I sincerely love the remoteness and airy beauty of the marshlands. This area is steeped in superstitions and lends itself so well to murder!


Secrets on the Fens, by Joy Ellis

 

Secrets on the Fens book coverNikki Galena is called in to investigate a murdered couple and finds herself in the midst of a gang war. The scene reminds the police of Romeo and Juliet and the warring families adds to this impression. But then another couple are discovered…
Secrets on the Fens is the 12th book in Joy Ellis’ Galena series. The books can be read as stand alone stories but there are threads from previous books that are continued in this one.
The main murder plot is strong and takes a long time to unpick due to the complicated family relationships. Nikki and her team need to persuade witnesses to reveal their secrets to understand the motive behind the killings which in turn leads to the culprit.
Nikki’s mum Eve is hot on the trail of the missing artist that she has been searching for in previous books. She still manages to get involved in the murder case and also has medical concerns she is hiding from her friends and family.
I admit that I found the first part of the book quite confusing as there seemed to be a lot of characters. There are the police, the warring families and the victims have real names and aliases. Nikki’s mum has her own subplot with yet more characters! Once again, the pathologist Rory steals every scene he is in. He continues to be my favourite character in this series.
Secrets on the Fens is a solid police procedural novel.

Secrets on the Fens blog tour banner

 

Secrets on the Fens BLURB:
FROM TWO-MILLION SELLING AUTHOR JOY ELLIS COMES ONE OF THE MOST EAGERLY AWAITED MYSTERIES THIS YEAR.
One moonlit night, the bodies of two young people are discovered lying entwined on a blanket in the woods. The young man is clutching a red rose. It appears to be a lovers’ suicide pact . . .
Until Detective Nikki Galena and DS Joseph Easter look more closely. Romeo and Juliet, as they decide to call them, were murdered somewhere else and brought to the woods. But why?
Then another young couple are found dead, again beautifully posed as lovers. And Nikki knows they have a twisted serial killer on their hands. Who are the next victims?
EVERYONE HAS SECRETS. BUT SOME PEOPLE WILL KILL TO KEEP THEM.
What readers are saying about JOY ELLIS
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Just wonderful to read.” Carole
“Holds the reader’s attention from the first word to the last.” Nicki R.
“Compulsive reading, I loved it.” Viv
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Riveting tale from start to finish.” Lynne
“Absolutely engrossing.” Olga
“Brilliant book which kept me gripped from page 1.” Barbara
THE DETECTIVE
DI Nikki Galena: A police detective with nothing left to lose, she’s seen a girl die in her arms and her own family destroyed. She’s tough on criminals but fiercely loyal to her team.
THE SETTING
The Lincolnshire Fens: great open skies brood over marshes, farmland, and nature reserves. It is not easy terrain for the Fenland Constabulary to police, due to the distances between some of the remote fen villages, the dangerous and often misty lanes, and the poor telephone coverage. There are still villages where the oldest residents have never set foot outside their own farmland and a visit to the nearest town is a major event. But it has a strange airy beauty to it, and above it all are the biggest skies you’ve ever seen.

 

ALSO BY JOY ELLIS
THE NIKKI GALENA SERIES
Book 1: CRIME ON THE FENS
Book 2: SHADOW OVER THE FENS
Book 3: HUNTED ON THE FENS
Book 4: KILLER ON THE FENS
Book 5: STALKER ON THE FENS
Book 6: CAPTIVE ON THE FENS
Book 7: BURIED ON THE FENS
Book 8: THIEVES ON THE FENS
Book 9: FIRE ON THE FENS
Book 10: DARKNESS ON THE FENS
Book 11: HIDDEN ON THE FENS
JACKMAN & EVANS
Book 1: THE MURDERER’S SON
Book 2: THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS
Book 3: THE FOURTH FRIEND
Book 4: THE GUILTY ONES
Book 5: THE STOLEN BOYS
Book 6: THE PATIENT MAN
Book 7: THEY DISAPPEARED

 

author Joy Ellis

JOY ELLIS
UK #1 BEST SELLER WITH THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS, DARKNESS ON THE FENS, THE FOURTH FRIEND, BEWARE THE PAST, FIRE ON THE FENS, AND THE GUILTY ONES
OVER 2 MILLION BOOKS SOLD!
“I was born in Kent but spent most of my working life in London and Surrey. I was an apprentice florist to Constance Spry Ltd, a prestigious Mayfair shop that throughout the sixties and seventies teemed with both royalty and ‘real’ celebrities. What an eye-opener for a working-class kid from the Garden of England! I swore then, probably whilst I was scrubbing the floor or making the tea, that I would have a shop of my own one day. It took until the early eighties, but I did it. Sadly the recession wiped us out, and I embarked on a series of weird and wonderful jobs; the last one being a bookshop manager. Surrounded by books all day, getting to order whatever you liked, and being paid for it! Oh bliss!
And now I live in a village in the Lincolnshire Fens with my partner, Jacqueline, a highly decorated retired police officer, and our four barking mad Springer spaniels. If I do get any spare time, which is rare these days, my one relaxation is painting, especially using soft pastels. We have been here for twenty years now and although I’ll never be a true ‘Yeller Belly’, a native born to this county, I have adopted it as my own. I love the mists, the big skies and the endless waterways. All my books are set here on the Fens, and why not? The location is perfect for murder!”
OTHER BOOKS BY JOY ELLIS
MATT BALLARD SERIES:
BEWARE THE PAST
FIVE BLOODY HEARTS
THE DYING LIGHT
STANDALONE NOVELS:
GUIDE STAR
FIND JOY ON
AUTHOR WEBSITE
FACEBOOK
GOODREADS

 


Mystery on Hidden Lane, by Clare Chase

 

 

A gentle crime novel with a freelance journalist trying to write an obituary of an acclaimed cellist, only to find herself investigating a murder. This has the classical feel of an Agatha Christie or MC Beaton novel, or Midsomer Murders: a traditional English village murder mystery.
Eve and her dachshund Gus are warm and likeable lead characters. She has a natural inquisitiveness without coming across as nosy. Eve interacts with the villagers and makes friends easily. In the background we have her annoying ex Ian being patronising and a little controlling, whilst she has a loving relationship with her twins.
The plot itself is intricate with plenty of suspects and a second murder. The insular nature of the English village is clearly evoked to keep the action contained. The descriptions of the scenery make the setting very easy to imagine, making me long for summer!
Murder on Hidden Lane is much softer and gentler than Clare Chase’s other books. There is no violence and the focus is very much on Eve’s interviews for her obituary that just happen to form her own investigation into the cellists’s death. I can easily imagine this as a Sunday night drama on TV. I really hope there are more in this series!
I have previously reviewed the third and fourth books in Clare Chase’s Tara Thorpe series: Death Comes To Call, and Murder In The Fens.

 

Media Kit:
 
Title:                  Mystery on Hidden Lane  
 
Author:     Clare Chase  
 
Publication Day:  30/01/2020
 
BUY LINKS: https://geni.us/B07ZVYJ8WJSocial
Description:    
        
Seasoned obituary writer Eve Mallow has a new assignment: to tell the life story of famed musician Bernard Fitzpatrick. A chance to spend a few days in the sweet little village of Saxford St Peter, walking the country lanes with her beloved dachshund Gus and meeting new people sounds like a dream. But it turns out that Bernard’s life was much less interesting than his death. On the day she arrives, news breaks that the charismatic cellist was the victim of a grisly murder. Could this quaint English village be hiding a dark secret?
As Eve starts to interview Bernard’s friends and colleagues, she finds that he’d ruffled a few feathers. In fact, from the keepers of the Cross Keys Inn to his own staff at High House, there’s barely a person in town who doesn’t have some reason to hate him… is one of the friendly villagers a cold-blooded killer?
Eve hoped Saxford St Peter would be the perfect escape from her busy city life. But there is darkness even in the most sunlit of settings. And when a second body is found, Eve becomes certain that one of the people she’s met must be the murderer. She has never done any detective work before… but is there something in her notes that can crack the case?
An unputdownable page-turner, perfect for fans of Faith Martin, Agatha Christie and Betty Rowlands.

 

Author Bio:
 
Clare Chase writes women sleuth mysteries. After graduating from London University with a degree in English Literature, Clare moved to Cambridge and has lived there ever since. She’s fascinated by the city’s contrasts and contradictions, which feed into her writing. She’s worked in diverse settings – from the 800-year-old University to one of the local prisons – and lived everywhere from the house of a Lord to a slug-infested flat. The terrace she now occupies, with her husband and teenage children, presents a good happy medium.
As well as writing, Clare loves family time, art and architecture, cooking, and of course, reading other people’s books.
You can find Clare’s website and blog at www.clarechase.com
 
Author Social Media Links:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ClareChase_
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/10204574.Clare_Chase
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ClareChaseAuthor/

 


Murder in the Fens, by Clare Chase

 

This is the 4th Tara Thorpe book from author Clare Chase. Previously a journalist and now a police officer, Tara and her colleagues are called in to investigate the murder of Cambridge student Julie.
The victim’s personal and political background must be investigated for potential motives for her death. During the investigation, police discover another body but it is not immediately clear if this is another murder, accidental death or suicide.
This book has lots of background to the police officers especially the relationship between Tara and Blake. I think it would work as a standalone novel because the case is contained and resolved within its pages but I feel like I benefitted from understanding the development of the police team through the previous books.
The murder itself is not described graphically at any point and the focus of the book is upon the police investigation and the potential motives of the characters. The author’s choice of setting in Cambridge is reminiscent of Colin Dexter’s Morse series so it feels familiar yet unique.
Murder in the Fens sets up the next book and I can’t wait to read it and find out what happens next between Tara and Blake, plus I’m wondering what will happen with the news uncovered by disgraced former police officer Patrick…
Read my review of the third Clare Chase book featuring Tara Thorpe: Death Comes To Call
Media Kit:
 
Title:         Murder in the Fens
Author:     Clare Chase  
Publication Day:  24/06/2019
 
BUY LINKS:
https://geni.us/B07Q36TPG8Social
 
Description:    
        
When the body of twenty-year-old Julie Cooper is found – her pockets stuffed full of wilting flowers – in an iron-age hill fort on the edge of the fens, Detective Tara Thorpe and her team are called in to investigate. The evidence points to an illicit affair gone wrong… but is there more to the story?
As always at the Cambridge Constabulary, the case turns personal. Detective Blake is exhausted after the arrival of a new baby with wayward wife Babette, and Tara is keen to put as much distance between herself and Blake as she can – both at the station and on the hunt for the killer. Charming rookie officer Jez is the perfect distraction… but is he a little too good to be true?
Then Tara makes a startling breakthrough when she finds an unsettling family heirloom hidden in the late victim’s bedroom – a golden statue of a sinister-looking cat with emerald eyes. As she traces its origins, Tara begins to realise that Julie’s murder is no one-off crime, but a sinister plot with its roots in a terrible secret that was covered up decades earlier.
An unputdownable page-turner, perfect for fans of Faith Martin, Agatha Christie and Joy Ellis. Can be read as a standalone.
The Tara Thorpe Mystery Series:
Book 1 – Murder on the Marshes
Book 2 – Death on the River
Book 3 – Death Comes to Call
Book 4 – Murder in the Fens

 

 

Author Bio:
 
Clare Chase writes women sleuth mysteries and recently signed a three-book deal with Bookouture for a new crime series set in Cambridge. The opening book, Murder on the Marshes, is available for pre-order and will publish in July 2018. The mystery follows investigative journalist Tara Thorpe as she teams up with Detective Garstin Blake to solve the murder of a young female professor at Cambridge University. The case takes them through the dark underbelly of Cambridge and in to the murky fens that surround the centuries-old city. The second and third books in the series are scheduled for publication in late 2018/early 2019.
After graduating from London University with a degree in English Literature, Clare moved to Cambridge and has lived there ever since. She’s fascinated by the city’s contrasts and contradictions, which feed into her writing. She’s worked in diverse settings – from the 800-year-old University to one of the local prisons – and lived everywhere from the house of a Lord to a slug-infested flat. The terrace she now occupies, with her husband and teenage children, presents a good happy medium.
As well as writing, Clare loves family time, art and architecture, cooking, and of course, reading other people’s books.
Clare’s debut novel, You Think You Know Me, was shortlisted for the Novelicious Undiscovered Award 2012, and an EPIC award in 2015. It was also chosen as a debut of the month by Lovereading.
You can find Clare’s website and blog at www.clarechase.com
  
Author Social Media Links:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ClareChase_
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/10204574.Clare_Chase
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ClareChaseAuthor/


Marshlight, by Joy Ellis

Christie visits the fens to conduct research for her employer’s book. She stays with her cousin Liz and partner Matt, retired cops now private investigators. The couple are investigating a woman’s disappearance and are then invited by the police to help with a murder enquiry. But Christie soon provides them with another case…
Marshlight is the fourth book in Joy Ellis’ Matt Ballard series but it can be easily read as a stand alone novel.
Matt and Liz have failed to locate their friend’s missing sister and now their latest case is a murder. However, this plot takes second place as the main plotline for this novel emerges: the majority of the first half of the book is dedicated to Christie and her developing friendships and antagonistic relationship with the locals. As a result of Christie’s interactions, she is involved when a woman goes missing.
Christie and the range of local characters provide a new dynamic as personal politics are established. Gina is a fabulous character that it perfect for us to love to hate and we share Christie’s suspicions about her behaviour. This is explored over the first half of the book to allow plot developments in the second half when the disappearance occurs and is investigated.
The setting of the Fens is vividly brought to life with Christie’s excursions to research the area for her employer’s book. The atmosphere created by the curious light phenomenon is unsettling and provides a great backdrop to the muliple plotlines.
Marshlight is an enjoyable mix of psychological and crime thriller. I have read and reviewed book 3 in this series, The Dying Light. Take a look at the blue links in the list at the end of this blog post for my reviews.
Marshlight book cover

 

MARSHLIGHT (Matt Ballard #4)

 

A new psychological thriller from bestselling author and British Book Awards Crime & Thriller of the Year nominee Joy Ellis.

MATT AND LIZ MAY HAVE RETIRED FROM THE POLICE, BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN A QUIET LIFE.

An old friend’s sister disappears without a trace. There’s no sign of foul play, but she’d been acting very peculiarly . . .

Meanwhile, Liz’s cousin Christie comes to stay. She takes an immediate — and uncharacteristic — dislike to the local bookshop owner, Gina. Why does everyone put up with her awful behaviour?

HUNTING WILL-O’-THE-WISPS ON THE MARSHES CAN BE A VERY DANGEROUS HOBBY.

Christie is convinced that Gina is manipulating everyone around her. Is she onto something dangerous or just pushing her new friends away?

No one believes her suspicions until another friend goes missing late at night on the misty Fen marshes.

Can Matt and Liz uncover the truth in time to save lives?

DISCOVER A TOTALLY ENTHRALLING PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER

What readers are saying about JOY ELLIS:

“The suspense starts on page 1 and continues through the twists and turns until the very surprising ending.” Linda Strong

“OMG, this book was fantastic. I absolutely loved it. I was gripped from the first page, but as the tension and suspense mounted throughout the book it just got better and better. And that ending, well, just WOW!” Dawn

“I absolutely loved it.” Viv

“Will keep you guessing until the end of the book.” Barbara

What a book!!!” Sian

“I was so engrossed I sat up way too late to finish it in one sitting.” Elaine

THE SETTING
England’s rural fenland is a strange place, with its never-ending fields, winding tracks, and long straight droves (the old livestock routes) that lead to nowhere. The lonely lanes are flanked either side by deep drainage ditches and are, for a good part of the year, filled with tall, whispering reeds. Closer to the Wash, high seabanks form a barrier between river and marsh, and the richly fertile soil of the drained land. But when the mists come down, as they so often do, perspective is destroyed and all sense of direction lost, and then the fens become a rather frightening place of mystery and danger. Somewhere that you do not want to be at night.

 

Marshlight author Joy Ellis

JOY ELLIS
UK #1 BEST SELLER WITH THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS, DARKNESS ON THE FENS, THE FOURTH FRIEND, BEWARE THE PAST, FIRE ON THE FENS, AND THE GUILTY ONES
OVER 2 MILLION BOOKS SOLD!
“I was born in Kent but spent most of my working life in London and Surrey. I was an apprentice florist to Constance Spry Ltd, a prestigious Mayfair shop that throughout the sixties and seventies teemed with both royalty and ‘real’ celebrities. What an eye-opener for a working-class kid from the Garden of England! I swore then, probably whilst I was scrubbing the floor or making the tea, that I would have a shop of my own one day. It took until the early eighties, but I did it. Sadly the recession wiped us out, and I embarked on a series of weird and wonderful jobs; the last one being a bookshop manager. Surrounded by books all day, getting to order whatever you liked, and being paid for it! Oh bliss!
And now I live in a village in the Lincolnshire Fens with my partner, Jacqueline, a highly decorated retired police officer, and our four barking mad Springer spaniels. If I do get any spare time, which is rare these days, my one relaxation is painting, especially using soft pastels. We have been here for twenty years now and although I’ll never be a true ‘Yeller Belly’, a native born to this county, I have adopted it as my own. I love the mists, the big skies and the endless waterways. All my books are set here on the Fens, and why not? The location is perfect for murder!”

ALSO BY JOY ELLIS
THE BESTSELLING NIKKI GALENA SERIES
Book 1: CRIME ON THE FENS
          2: SHADOW OVER THE FENS
3: HUNTED ON THE FENS
          4: KILLER ON THE FENS
          5: STALKER ON THE FENS
          6: CAPTIVE ON THE FENS
          7: BURIED ON THE FENS
          8: THIEVES ON THE FENS
          9: FIRE ON THE FENS
        10: DARKNESS ON THE FENS
        11: HIDDEN ON THE FENS
        12: SECRETS ON THE FENS

JACKMAN & EVANS
Book 1: THE MURDERER’S SON
          2: THEIR LOST DAUGHTERS
          3: THE FOURTH FRIEND
          4: THE GUILTY ONES
5: THE STOLEN BOYS
6: THE PATIENT MAN
          7: THEY DISAPPEARED

DETECTIVE MATT BALLARD
Book 1: BEWARE THE PAST
          2: FIVE BLOODY HEARTS
          3: THE DYING LIGHT
          4: MARSHLIGHT

STANDALONES
GUIDE STAR