It’s always a great thrill to receive a review on one of my books from a fellow author. This one came in a few days ago from US mystery author, Randy Overbeck. He emailed, opening with the words ‘I finished Fox Hunter and really loved it. Your best yet, I think.’
Here’s Randy’s review:
‘I’ve been a fan of thriller writer Zoë Sharp for years and have read several of her books, enjoying every one, especially the Charlie Fox series. Just to name a few, in First Drop, she took her readers on a dizzying roller coaster ride in the middle of an assassination attempt of a teen Charlie is guarding, and in Road Kill readers get strapped in for an electrifying ride atop a few sleek motorcycles when Charlie infiltrates a biker gang, almost becoming road kill herself in the process.
‘But in Fox Hunter, the latest in the series, Sharp has outdone herself. In this twelfth entry, Charlie Fox is sent on a mission to rescue—or apprehend—her old mentor and lover, Sean Meyer, who may have gone off the reservation and tortured and killed a man from their mutual past. A man Charlie has every reason to be glad is dead.
‘Her search takes her from the scorched landscapes of the Iraqi desert and up to the snowy mountains of Bulgaria. Along the way she encounters a Russian hit squad, an Iraqi teen raped and then disfigured and abandoned by her own family, black market antiquities smugglers and a former client, a major crime boss. One aspect that makes Ms. Sharp’s writing so sterling is her ability to transport the reader vividly to the settings of her narratives, whether it be the sights and smells of Disney World in First Drop or the twisting switchbacks of the Irish countryside in Road Kill.
‘In Fox Hunter, the scenes of the desert are real, I swear I could feel the hot sun and the grit of the sand in my face (and it was in the middle of a freezing January). Of course, my teeth practically chattered when I was riding alongside Charlie atop a snowmobile up the frozen slopes to a mountain fortress.
‘Did I mention that Charlie Fox is one tough broad? There’s a reason why Lee Child calls Charlie Fox a female Jack Reacher.
‘If you’ve not yet had a chance to discover this brilliant British writer, you’ve been missing some really great rides. And Fox Hunter would be a great place to start. But so would First Drop or Die Easy or Hard Knocks. You get the picture. By all means, if you want a thriller with a kick-ass heroine, add Zoë Sharp to your list of must reads.’
The amazing Noelle Holten at CrimeBookJunkie is host to today’s stop on the DANCING ON THE GRAVE Blog Tour. I loved Noelle’s review for FOX HUNTER last year. Her enthusiasm is just a breath of fresh air. But, this is not a Charlie Fox book and rather different in tone from that series, so I was keeping my fingers crossed that she might like it just as much. Turns out I needn’t have worried…
After finally reading my first#CharlieFox book last year, and hearing so much over the years about how awesome Zoë Sharp is, I knew I could not turn down the opportunity to read a#newseriesfrom this fantastic author! I’d like to thank Ayo Onatade and Zoë Sharp for the invite and ARC.
Ooooooh-eeeee! What an incredible treat it was to read this action-packed thriller! Set in Cumbria/the Lake District, the reader is taken on a whirlwind ride of retribution, fear, manipulation, vulnerability, conflict, truth, mental health issues, vengeance, lost souls and the search for the truth. I bloody LOVED it!
The opening…WOW…talk about taking no prisoners! But this is what you get when it comes to Zoë Sharp – sharp in name but also in writing! Told from various POVs, this was a fast-paced plot with a wonderfully believable and engaging narrative, interesting characters and descriptions that have you right in the heart of the Lake District. Tension-filled, addictive and compelling – it is no wonder that I found myself a new series to follow! (I know the blurb on Amazon describes it as a standalone…but OMFG…this NEEDS to be a series!
I’ve only just discovered that Fox Hunter was nominated for a Beltie Mystery Award back in December last year. How on earth did I miss that? (Not paying attention, that’s how.) The Award is in its first year and is presented by McIntyre’s Books in Fearrington Village near Pittsburgh, NC.
The longlist, announced in December 2017, was eight titles:
James Anderson The Never-Open Desert Diner
Ryan Gattis Safe
Joe Ide IQ
Julia Keller Fast Falls The Night
Bill Loefhelm The Devil’s Muse
Thomas Mullen Lightning Men
Thomas Perry The Old Man
Zoë Sharp Fox Hunter
The shortlist, announced in January 2018, was whittled down to just three titles:
Ryan Gattis Safe
“A gritty urban Robin Hood story featuring a young safe-cracker working for the DEA just before the last Great Recession. His girlfriend is a loan officer who sees the housing crisis coming and knows who’s going to get screwed. Together they begin to skim from the safes he cracks and thus the trouble begins.”
Thomas Perry The Old Man
“One of the first mysteries I ever read was Thomas Perry’s Butcher’s Boy. Now, thirty years later, here he is with The Old Man. Like a fine wine, he ages well. All hail Thomas Perry!”
Zoë Sharp Fox Hunter
“You know you’re doing something right when Lee Child writes an intro for your books, and he’s right when he says, ‘If Jack Reacher were a woman, he’d be Charlie Fox.’ She’s ex-military turned bodyguard and someone you don’t want to mess with—though if she’s your friend, you have a friend for life.”
The eventual winner, announced in February, was Ryan Gattis with Safe. (I’m always the bridesmaid, never the bride) The book sounds like a great premise and I’ll be reading it as soon as I can lay my hands on a copy!
MURDER IS EVERYWHERE—Sunday, 28th January 2018
[dropcap]T[/dropcap]his weekend I find myself moving house, yet again. Nothing quite like it for making you get rid of clutter. And I have indeed taken the opportunity to thin out my “stuff” but nevertheless, I seem to have a depressing amount of it still.
I always start off with the best of intentions. I swear that this time I will not simply pack and move everything, but will sort through things in an organised manner and only move the things I really want to keep. And, as always, I have ended up throwing things into boxes with a cry of “I’ll get round to eBaying that later!”
Meanwhile, I was invited to a party last week to celebrate the birthday of Robert Burns, Scotland’s most famous poet. The haggis was superb, as were the tatties and neeps! And the Ecclefechan tart. I passed on the whisky, though, being a lightweight.
Our hosts did make one request of their guests, that we bring a favourite poem or two to read out. The first of my choices was this one, written by Rose Milligan in 1998 and which first appeared, apparently, in The Lady magazine. It most accurately reflects my attitude to housework.
DUST IF YOU MUST
Dust if you must, but wouldn’t it be better
To paint a picture or write a letter
Bake a cake or plant a seed,
Ponder the difference between want and need?
Dust if you must, but there’s not much time…
This week’s Word of the Week is defenestration, meaning to be thrown out of a window, and comes from an incident in Prague Castle in 1618, which kicked off the Thirty Years’ War. In its turn, that incident was known as The Second Defenestration of Prague as there had already been one such event, in Prague City Hall in 1419, which started the Hussite war. The word comes from New Latin, de- being out or away from/removal, and fenestra being a window or opening. It’s particularly apt if the window in question is broken in the process.
[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he wonderful Ayo Onatade has organised a Blog Tour so I can talk to as many people as possible about FOX HUNTER, book 12 in the Charlie Fox series.
For this, I’ll be making virtual visits to numerous very generous bloggers and reviewers around the globe, who’ve invited me to talk about my writing, my characters, and all manner of other interesting subjects.
It won’t be as much fun as meeting readers in person, but it comes a close second, and it means you might just get to read the next book a bit sooner…
- 17th October: Random Things Through My Letterbox – My Life in Books: Zoë Sharp.
- 16th October: Jen Med’s Book Reviews – Jen Lucas reviews Fox Hunter.
- 15th October: Damp Pebbles – Emma Welton reviews Fox Hunter.
- 14th October: Hair Past A Freckle – Karen Cole reviews Fox Hunter.
- 13th October: Anne Bonny Book Reviews – The Iraq War and Charlie Fox.
- 11th October: Crime Watch (New Zealand) – Craig Sisterson reviews Fox Hunter.
- 9th October: Blue Book Balloon – Fox Hunter Q & A with Zoë Sharp.
- 8th October: Shots Crime & Thriller Ezine – Why Charlie Fox, by Zoë Sharp.
- 7th October: Rachel’s Random Reads – Q & A with Zoë Sharp – on the 12-book Charlie Fox series.
- 6th October: The Book Trail – Follow in the footsteps of Charlie Fox on her FOX HUNTER journey.
- 5th October: A Lover of Books – Zoë Sharp Guest Post – My Writing Day
- 3rd October: Crime Book Junkie – Character Assassination: Charlie Fox
- 2nd October: Victoria Watson – Zoë Sharp on Keeping a Series Fresh