Catwoman Soulstealer by Sarah J Maas

The Uncompromising Lord Flint

The Uncompromising Lord Flint
The Uncompromising Lord Flint by Virginia Heath

Saturday, February 1, 2014


Road Closed by Leigh Russell is a William Morrow/ Witness Impulse publication. This book has been re-issued in digital format. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Geraldine is dealing with the death of her mother and the guilt she feels at not having been as close to her as she could have and for not feeling the same level of grief as her sister. She is also seeing a guy, but things aren't going so well, her job of course being the issue.

Geraldine does have her hands full right now. A string of burglaries have resulted in the death of an elderly woman who surprised the thieves. In short order another person dies as a result of a break in, leaving behind a wife that is taking the death really hard. A few other attacks lead the team to a couple of real losers with little or no conscience. The problem is all the suspects seem to have the most convenient alibis.

This British police procedural is the second in the series. Geraldine will learn some shocking truths about her past, deal with several relationship issues, one involving a co-worker and one involving her best friend, Hannah. She is also dealing with her sister, and with her own issues of trying to balance work and a personal life.

Geraldine is complex character. Her work is in first place in her life. This is a problem many face in this occupation. Everyone close to her, or who wish to be closer, have complained about her job. Geraldine also finds she is turning to the company of red wine in the evenings. One wonders if this is going to become a bigger problem for her in the future.

The story gives us the third person perspective of Geraldine, and we see the point of view of the criminals as well. We also get insight into the victims thoughts and the thoughts of other characters with whom Geraldine has a relationship, whether personal or professional. So, the story is well rounded. The plot is a basic crime drama, but we see the results of these crimes on the victims and on those responsible for catching them.
I loved the darker atmosphere in this book. The story was gritty and real without being overly dependent on graphic violence. The novel is very absorbing and well plotted. I have a few other Leigh Russell novels in my TBR and I am really looking forward to digging into them. Overall this one gets an A.

I am so pleased to have THE Leigh Russell here to day! She has been nice enough to take the time to answer a few questions about The Geraldine Steel Series and the life of a crime writer. Welcome to The Book Review, Leigh!

1) How did you go about creating the character of "Geraldine"?
My debut, Cut Short, started with the idea of a crazed killer attacking young women in the park. With this story in mind, I needed to create a detective who was able to remain detached and unemotional when dealing with terrible crimes, without losing her sensitivity and humanity. Geraldine feels compassion for the dead, and for the people who cared about the murder victims. At the same time, she maintains a fierce commitment to justice. The reader doesn't learn very much about Geraldine in Cut Short. More is revealed about her in Road Closed, the second title in the series, and in each of the subsequent books the reader gets to know her better. Despite this, it isn't necessary to read the books in order. Each investigation is an independent story.

2) Who are your favorite fictional detectives?
There are so many, I'll just mention the brilliant creations of three authors who are fans of my own series. Lee Child's Jack Reacher, Jeffery Deaver's Lincoln Rhyme, and Peter James' Roy Grace. it doesn't get better than that!

3) How long have you been writing as a professional?
Cut Short was first published, in the UK, in 2009. That was the first time I was paid for writing a book. After that it took a further six books, and another four years, before I was earning a living from writing fiction. It took a few years, but most authors never reach that position, so I count myself fortunate.

4) What are the greatest challenges to writing crime fiction?
One problem is that there are not enough hours in the day! Crime fiction needs to be very tightly plotted, and I can get in a terrible muddle when the plot changes as it goes along, which usually happens. Writing a series is another challenge. When I started scribbling, I had no idea my story would ever be published, let alone turn out to be the first book in a long running series. That has posed a few challenges as well. But I'm not complaining, because I love writing!


5) What are you working on now?
The sixth Geraldine Steel novel, Fatal Act, has just come out in the UK, along with Cold Sacrifice, the first in my spin off series for Ian Peterson, Geraldine Steel's sergeant. The second Ian Peterson is with my editor and I'm now writing the seventh investigation in the Geraldine Steel series.

6) Where can readers contact you?
Readers can follow me on twitter, friend me on facebook, interact with Geraldine Steel on her facebook fan page, and follow my blog. Links to all of these sites can be found on my website, Readers can also contact me directly on my website. I always reply personally when people are kind enough to write to me, although it may take a couple of days for me to respond.

7) Do you have a favorite quote you would like to share?
'You don't write because you want to say something, you write because you have something to say.' (F. Scott Fitzgerald) That was my experience. I had no thoughts if becoming a writer until an idea struck me. It clamoured for attention and wouldn't leave me alone until I had written it out, by which time I was hooked on writing!

Thanks you SO much for stopping by today!

 LEIGH RUSSELL is described as "a brilliant talent" by Jeffery Deaver. CUT SHORT (2009) was shortlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger Award for Best First Novel. Road Closed (2010) was listed as a Top Read on Eurocrime. With Dead End (2011) Leigh's detective Geraldine Steel was Number 1 on amazon kindle's bestseller chart for female sleuths


  1. Oh this is one author that I must add to my TBR. Great review and interview!

    1. You will not be disappointed. She is also a very gracious author. Thanks for stopping by The Book Review!