#R3COMM3ND3D2019 with #Reviewer Sonja van der Westhuizen (@sonjavanderwest) #WestsWords #damppebbles #BookRecommendations #Publishedin2019

Hello and welcome to Thursday on damppebbles. Less than a week to go now until the big day. Are you perfectly in control? A picture of calm and Christmas poise? No, me neither 😂. I’m sure it will all turn out good in the end, right…..??

Today I am delighted to welcome the brilliant Sonja van der Westhuizen to the blog to share her three #R3COMM3ND3D2019 picks with us. Sonja has her own fantastic website over at West’s Words as well as contributing to one of my favourite crime fiction sites, the awesome Crime Fiction Lover. If you’re a crime fiction fan then you need to subscribe to both as otherwise, you’re missing out.

So, what is #R3COMM3ND3D2019? It’s about sharing the book love. It’s a chance for authors and book bloggers to shout about three (yes, *only* three) books they love. They can be written by any author, in any genre and published in any way (traditionally, indie press or self-published). But there is a catch. All three books must have been published in 2019. To make things interesting I have added a couple of teeny, tiny rules this year which are; 1) the book must have first been published in 2019 and 2) special editions and reissues do not count. I like to keep you lovely people on your toes. 😉

Here are Sonja’s three recommended reads…

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The Boy in the Headlights (Munch & Krüger #3) by Samuel Bjork
If you’re a Nordic Noir addict like I am, this will satisfy your craving for some dark, cold, twisted crime fiction. Bjork grips from the starts and delivers a satisfying story-line with a range of interesting characters.
Sonja’s Review of The Boy in the Headlights

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Blood Song (Roy & Castells #3) by Johana Gustawsson
Not only does Johana Gustawsson write a solid crime story, she weaves a horrid piece of Spain’s almost forgotten history into her novel without alienating her readers – on the contrary – this makes Blood Song so much more powerful.
Sonja’s Review of Blood Song

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The Dance of Death (Black Forest Investigations Series #3) by Oliver Bottini
As with many of 2019’s crime writers Bottini also addresses one of the major crisis the world is experiencing at the moment – that of immigrants and their lack of place in the world, as well as their struggles. He does this against the backdrop of an intriguing crime story.
Sonja’s Review of The Dance of Death

Thanks so much, Sonja. I’m adding two of your recommendations to my wish list and the other I have read and absolutely adore. People, if you haven’t read Johana Gustawsson’s Blood Song yet then make it your next read. One of my top books of the year!

If Sonja has managed to tempt you, or if you would like to find out more about the books she recommends, please see the following links:

The Boy in the Headlights by Samuel Bjork
Blood Song by Johana Gustawsson
The Dance of Death by Oliver Bottini

About Sonja:
Compulsive reader and reviewer for both print and online publications in South Africa and internationally. Running out of shelf space, yet keeps on buying Nordic Noir. Fuelled by coffee and travel.

Sonja’s Blog and Social Media Links:
| West’s Words | Twitter @sonjavanderwest | Instagram @westswords |

If you’re a book blogger or an author and you have three books published this year which you want to shout about then please complete the following form (or click this link: https://forms.gle/PE483qCyrKEgV5Uq6). But hurry, there’s only ONE space left!

#R3COMM3ND3D2019 with #BookBlogger, #Reviewer and #Commentator on #CrimeFiction Ayo Onatade (@Shotsblog) #ShotsmagConfidential #damppebbles #BookRecommendations #Publishedin2019

Happy Friday! Today I am delighted to welcome a crime fiction connoisseur to damppebbles to share the #R3COMM3ND3D2019 book love – the fabulous Ayo Onatade of Shotsmag Confidential. If like me you’re a fan of crime fiction then Shotsmag Confidential is the place to be. I haven’t had a look at which three books Ayo has chosen for us yet but I can guarantee they will be going straight on the wishlist!

So, what is #R3COMM3ND3D2019? It’s about sharing the book love. It’s a chance for authors and book bloggers to shout about three (yes, *only* three) books they love. They can be written by any author, in any genre and published in any way (traditionally, indie press or self-published). But there is a catch. All three books must have been published in 2019. To make things interesting I have added a couple of teeny, tiny rules this year which are; 1) the book must have first been published in 2019 and 2) special editions and reissues do not count. I like to keep you lovely people on your toes 😉.

Here are Ayo’s three recommendations…

blood and sugar

Blood and Sugar by Laura Shepherd-Robinson
A stunning debut novel set in Georgian England that deals with a rather tragic period in British society. Incredibly well written that is harrowing as it is thought provoking. A brilliant read.

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Heaven My Home by Attica Locke
This is the second book in the Highway 59 series and continues to be a thrilling series which explores ethics, race and family and also reflects today’s America and its rippling effects. A story that demands to be read.
Ayo’s Review of Heaven My Home

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The Hooded Gunman: An Illustrated History of Collins Crime Club by John Curran
A luscious full-colour celebration of the 2000 books by more than 250 authors published by the iconic Collins Crime Club between 1930 and 1994. This is a book for readers who love reading about the history of crime fiction. Dip in and out of it at your leisure and revel in the information and gorgeous covers. A stunning book.

Wonderful choices, thanks Ayo. I already have Blood and Sugar on the wishlist and the other two will be added immediately!

If Ayo has managed to tempt you, or if you would like to find out more about the books she recommends, please see the following links:

Blood and Sugar by Laura Shepherd-Robinson
Heaven My Home by Attica Locke
The Hooded Gunman by John Curran

About Ayo:
Ayo Onatade is a CWA Red Herring Award winning freelance crime fiction critic and blogger. She has written a number of articles on different aspects of crime fiction and has also given papers on the subject as well. She has an eclectic taste in crime fiction, which runs the gamut from historical crime fiction to hardboiled and short stories. Her research interests include historical fiction especially crime fiction and crime fiction literary criticism. She is also a visiting lecturer at Kingston University. She also judges a number of book awards.

Ayo’s Blog and Social Media Links:
Shotsmag ConfidentialTwitter @ShotsblogFacebook |

If you’re a book blogger or an author and you have three books published this year which you want to shout about then please complete the following form (or click this link: https://forms.gle/PE483qCyrKEgV5Uq6)

#R3COMM3ND3D2018 with Freelance Blogger, Reviewer and Commentator on Crime Fiction Ayo Onatade (@shotsblog) #ShotsmagConfidential

I am thrilled to welcome a widely respected freelance blogger, reviewer and commentator who has her finger on the pulse of all things crime fiction. The fabulous Ayo Onatade of Shotsmag Confidential joins me to share her #R3COMM3ND3D2018 reads. If you’re a crime fiction fan and you’re not already following the brilliant Shotsmag Confidential then I strongly suggest you do. It’s a treasure trove of bookish goodies.

#R3COMM3ND3D2018 is a chance for bookish folk to shout about three books they love. I’m not fussy about the author, the title or the publisher. It could be anything…providing it was published this year in 2018. Not as easy as it sounds (or so I have been told).

Here are Ayo’s choices…

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Hellbent by Gregg Hurwitz (Orphan X #3)
The third book in the brilliant OrphanX series. Raw, visceral action writing layered with rare depth and emotion, that will keep you turning the pages. A fun thriller that with each book getting better and better.

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Sunburn by Laura Lippman
Modern noir written by one of the best chronicles of American life. A suspenseful, page turner that has you wishing for more. A very twisty satisfying read.

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The Woman in the Woods by John Connolly (A Charlie Parker Thriller #16)
A beautifully written but disturbing story with a supernatural element that does not take away from the brutality of the crime. Totally enthralling and unsettling but a brilliant read.

Thanks Ayo, all three of your choices have gone straight onto the wish list! All three sound excellent reads and I can’t wait to get my mitts on them all.

If Ayo has managed to tempt you, or if you would like to find out more about the books she recommends then please see the following links:

| Hellbent by Gregg Hurwitz | Sunburn by Laura Lippman | The Woman in the Woods by John Connolly |

About Ayo:
Ayo Onatade is a freelance crime fiction critic and blogger. She has written a number of articles on different aspects of crime fiction and has also given papers on the subject as well. She has an eclectic taste in crime fiction, which runs the gamut from historical crime fiction to hardboiled and short stories. Her research interests include historical fiction especially crime fiction and crime fiction literary criticism. She is also a visiting lecturer at Kingston University.

Ayo’s Social Media Links:
| Shotsmag Confidential | Twitter @Shotsblog | Facebook |

Normally at this point I would be encouraging you to sign up for #R3COMM3ND3D2018 but it’s full for the year, YAY! Lots more posts to come before the end of the year though – we’ll have book recommendations coming out of our ears and I can’t wait!