Acid House the True Story: Luke Bainbridge

Acid House the True Story by Luke Bainbridge

Being 17 in 1989, living in Manchester and being a regular at a lot of the Northern clubs in this potted history makes this a right blast from the past. The history of the house music explosion in the UK is well documented by a lot of the main players of the time in a series of interviews chopped up to make a timeline of the rapid rise of the music and the clubs.

It’s heavily focuses on London and Manchester with nods to Leeds, Liverpool and Blackburn, but for me this doesn’t detract from the wider picture as really, they were the two centres of the rise of the culture.

Some of the characters from down south seem to be solely concerned with claiming to be the first to do this, that or the other, or to have played a certain record first, and this did leave me a little cold, but overall it’s an enjoyable read that captures the mood and the optimism of the time perfectly. As a North Manc lad though, they were well harsh on the Thunderdome! Maybe… 🙂

Manchester vibes in the area!

@lukebainbridge

Fool Moon: Jim Butcher

Fool Moon by Jim Butcher book 2 in the Harry Dresden series.

Harry’s back and thrown right into the mire when a series of murders seem to have be perpetrated by werewolves. The fall out from the previous book leads to a somewhat frosty relationship with the police, putting it mildly!

Big business, gangsters, biker gangs and a mysterious youth cult are all in the frame but with Harry’s powers faltering can he get to the bottom of it whilst the full moon is still in the sky?

It’s another cracker from Jim Butcher and he somehow gets you to suspend disbelief and have you thinking this world is entirely plausible. It’s a fast paced thriller with a good dose of whodunnit thrown into the mix. I’m rubbish at guessing endings and this was no exception. I can’t recommend this series highly enough up to now and can’t wait to carry on the roller coaster ride with Harry and the rest. I’d quite like to go for a pint or two in McAnally’s too!

To see more of Harry’s world and get the latest news click here.

@longshotauthor

The Moor: LJ Ross

The Moor by LJ Ross book 12 in the DCI Ryan series.

We’re back in the present for the latest installment of the popular series. This follows on from Longstone and sees Ryan and the team prowling around a travelling circus encamped on the outskirts of Newcastle city centre.

A disappearance from the past comes to light when a feisty young girl presents herself at Ryan’s house. There’s also a sub-plot concerning the ongoing blossoming love story between the junior members of the team, Jack Lowerson and Melanie Yates and their investigations into the spiralling gang wars in the city.

Again it would be possible to read this as a standalone novel, but there’s so much character development from the preceding books that you’d be missing out severely. LJ Ross weaves an engrossing tale once again and no doubt will be well into her next installment*. Get on it before it’s snapped up for a television series and you can be the authority in your workplace!

* Edit: Penshaw is available for pre-order and will be released on the 27th of July!

Beyond the Point: Damien Boyd

Beyond the Point by Damien Boyd book 9 in the DI Nick Dixon series.

Set in Somerset, these books began with As the Crow Flies and follow Nick Dixon and his team as they patrol the towns and villages around Weston-super-Mare and Bridgewater. Nick Dixon lives in sleepy Burnham-on-Sea with his dog Monty and drives around in his clapped out Land Rover. The series progresses at a fast pace with the characters developing nicely.

As with most books in this genre, it’s best to read them in order. Indeed, book nine follows on from the previous one and would be quite confusing read as a stand-alone novel.

A serial killer is on the run and DI Dixon has a vested interest in capturing him. Things get rather twisty when a civilian police worker is found to be missing and her house is covered in blood. The team are stretched to the limits with political pressure from on high making a tense situation almost unworkable.

The series has yet to disappoint and this book is up there with the best in the series. Roll on number ten!

https://www.damienboyd.com/

@DamienBoydBooks

A Man Walks On To a Pitch: Harry Redknapp

A Man Walks On To a Pitch by Harry Redknapp

I can count the number of football books I’ve enjoyed on the fingers of one hand. Odd Man Out by Brian McClair, Provided You Don’t Kiss Me: 20 Years with Brian Clough by Duncan Hamilton and Kicked into Touch by Fred Eyre just about completes the list. Harry Redknapp’s book isn’t your usual story of a footballer’s life, instead it’s a journey from the 1950s to the present day with the author picking his greatest team of each decade and giving anecdotes along the way.

There’s plenty of funny stories peppered throughout and a little of his life and career through the decades. Each decade is broken down into eleven short entries on each player making it very easy to pick up and put down. His teams aren’t bad either, although Brian McClair is notable by his absence.

It’s an easy read and well written with a light hearted style that draws you in. I think it’s made it onto my very short list of enjoyable football books and may well consider his proper autobiography at some point in the future. Not too soon though, I don’t want to overdo it…

Next up is Beyond the Point by Damien Boyd, book 9 of the DI Nick Dixon series.

The Bat: Jo Nesbo

The Bat by Jo Nesbo book 1 in the Harry Hole series.

It had been a long time on my virtual shelf, but keeping up with my recent delving into new authors I thought I’d give this a go. I bought it as I was going to holiday in Norway and thought it’d give me some local flavour. How wrong could I be! Whilst the lead character Harry Hole is indeed a fictional Norwegian detective, this book takes place in Sydney, Australia and is full of Aboriginal culture and folklore.

A Norwegian national is brutally murdered and Harry is sent over to liaise with the local police. He soon ingratiates himself with the locals and is paired up with an Aboriginal detective who shows him the ropes, the sights and some unexpected spots such asa travelling boxing troupe and a transvestite club.

It’s a fast-paced thriller that quickly morphs into the hunt for a serial killer. There are clowns, guillotines and sharks peppered through the tale. Harry Hole is a complex character and his backstory is nicely filled out throughout.

I found it to be an enjoyable read and will definitely be revisiting the series. As is (quite often) usual with this genre it’s a little unbelievable, but the writing is good and the action keeps on coming.

Next up is a departure from fiction with Harry Redknapp’s A Man Walks On To a Pitch. I’m not one for football books despite being a fan of the sport, but Redknapp seems a likeable character so I thought I’d give it a go.

Storm Front: Jim Butcher

Storm Front by Jim Butcher book 1 in The Dresden Files series.

I’m on a reading group social page on the intranet at work and this series is constantly mentioned. I’d been meaning to start the series for ages and as I was going away for a week camping in Somerset decided it’d be a good time to start.

Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden is a private investigator in modern day Chicago, and also a wizard. It’s an odd setting, but I was drawn in from the start. The group at work largely say that the series takes three or four books to get going but I loved this book so should be in for a treat further down the line.

When a gangster and his “date” for the night are found in a sleazy hotel with their hearts exploded the local police turn to Harry as they suspect magic has been employed. From the off Harry is a likeable character. The story is told in the first person and Harry struck me as a cross between Fletch and a cooler, grown up Ron Weasley. It’s written with humour and considering the gruesome nature of the crimes is tastefully done and an easy read.

The supporting cast are well portrayed and promise development in the subsequent books. I can’t wait to read the rest of them, and they’ll be on heavy rotation in the coming months. As I was in the middle of nowhere with no Wi-Fi I couldn’t go straight to book two, but instead chose The Bat by Jo Nesbo, book one in the Harry Hole series. I’d downloaded this for my holiday in 2018 but it had been slipping off the first page of my Kindle for months.