“For Paul and Debbie it was meant to be the happiest time of their lives. A small village wedding in front of their family and friends, followed by a quiet honeymoon in Devon.
Not everyone had been happy to see them together. A woman from their past refused to accept it. Her actions over the previous year had ended in tragedy, and had almost broken the happy couple apart.
Now, away from it all in a picturesque log cabin, Paul and Debbie look forward to time spent alone together… But she has found out where they are, and she will stop at nothing to make sure that the marriage is over… forever.
But Huntswood Cove isn’t just a beautiful Devonshire fishing town, it has its own secret. Recently, people have begun to disappear, only to turn up dead in suspicious circumstances. The locals begin to question what is going on.
Soon everything strange points to the abandoned house in the woods. The house that nobody wants to talk about. To them, it is the place that never existed.”
I am delighted to welcome you to my stop on the The Place That Never Existed blog tour. Towards the end of last year I took part in the Dark Minds blog tour. Dark Minds is a charity collection of short stories from the very best crime writers, and one of those who contributed was author Jim Ody. After reading Jim Ody’s short story I knew I wanted to read more by this author so was thrilled when the opportunity arose to read and review The Place That Never Existed.
This book and I got off to a rather shaky start. It took me a little while to warm to the author’s style but before long I was enjoying Debbie and Paul’s adventures in deepest, darkest Devon. Over time I found I warmed to the couple and wanted to know about the strange things which were happening to them. Particularly with regards to Paul’s ex-lover. The characters found in the small village also interested me, with their well-kept secrets and strange ways.
I was happily enjoying the book but then, I’m afraid, the ending happened. The ending of this book is like nothing I have read before (and I’m not 100% sure I would want to read again). I felt there were several unanswered questions which were left hanging. I like my crime novels to have a certain realism to them but I’m afraid I found it impossible to believe the conclusion of this book.
Saying that, I think I am in the minority because I’ve read so many fantastic reviews of this novel. Many of which highlight and praise the different ending. Jim Ody’s writing is good, his characters are believable but I’m afraid this book and I just didn’t gel. I also found one particular story-line quite predicable, which doesn’t normally tend to spoil a book for me and isn’t part of the reason this book and I didn’t click.
With the assurance that it doesn’t feature a similar conclusion, I would read another book written by Jim Ody as I think he’s a good storyteller and I liked the humour included in the novel. Would I recommend this book? If you’re looking for a crime thriller with something quite different then yes, I would. If however you like a certain amount of realism in your reads then maybe look elsewhere. Or if you’re an Oxford United fan….don’t read this book if you’re a U’s fan!
Three out of five stars.
I chose to read and review a copy of The Place That Never Existed. The above review is my own honest, unbiased opinion.
As a child Jim wanted to be a truck driver – more specifically Kris Kristofferson in the movie ‘Convoy’, however somehow this never happened, nor did he ever smuggle moonshine in Hazzard County, find treasure with his buddies in the Goondocks, or hunt sharks on Amity Island. He did win ‘The Spirit Of Judo’ award as a seven-year-old, and have published his design of a ‘Dog-Walking Machine’ in an English text book at the age of ten; so every cloud and all of that…
Jim has had poems and articles published on a number of websites, and for eight years, was a weekly music reviewer for a popular music website where he got to meet bands and see free gigs.
Jim has published two books ‘Lost Connections’ and ‘The Place That Never Existed’, and had his short story, ‘The Moth In The Jar’ selected and published in the charity anthology ‘Dark Minds’.
Jim lives with his wife and three children in Swindon, Wiltshire, and is currently writing his next novel ‘A Cold Retreat’ (due out in summer 2017); and more than likely eating chocolate. And watching football.