Today on Love Books Group I review, The Cost of Living by Rachel Ward. I was very lucky to attend a Sandstone Press event in Edinburgh and I am delighted I got to meet Rachel Ward and hear her talk about the characters and actually to see her love for them.
So grab a cuppa and read my review below. It’s cold and windy here in Scotland today.
♥ Blurb ♥
When a young woman is attacked walking home from her local supermarket, Bea Jordan, a smart but unfulfilled checkout girl, is determined to investigate. Colleagues and customers become suspects, secrets are uncovered. While fear stalks the town, Bea finds an unlikely ally in Ant, the seemingly gormless new trainee, but risks losing the people she loves most as death comes close to home. The Cost of Living is a warm, contemporary story with likeable leads, an engaging cast of supporting characters and a dark thread running throughout.
♥ Author Rachel Ward ♥
I’m a fiftysomething author of thrillers for young adults and crime for adults. I live in Bath, England, and have a husband, two grown-up children a dog and a chicken. I’ve been a full-time writer for 5 years, before which I had ‘sensible’ jobs for 25 years. For young adults, I have published the Numbers trilogy, The Drowning and Water Born with Chicken House UK. The first book came out in the UK in 2009 and the USA in 2010. My Numbers books explore the gift of being able to see death dates. If you looked in somebody’s eyes and saw the date of their death, would it change the way you felt about people? Would it change the way you lived your life? They’ve been published in 26 countries and optioned for film. I’m now writing crime for adults, with the Ant and Bea mysteries – fairly cosy crime set in and around a supermarket. The first novel in the series, The Cost of Living, published in September 2017 by Sandstone Press.
Find out more about me at my website: http://www.rachelwardbooks.com or follow me on Twitter: @RachelWardbooks where you will see that I also paint and take photographs.
♥ Book Review ♥
What is it about?
Welcome to the town of Kingsleigh, where a whole host of characters work at Costsavers the supermarket. The story revolves around the supermarket staff, in particular, the main characters Bea and Ant. Bea has a heart of gold and she pays particular attention to make sure her customers are okay. She has a positive outlook even if all is not what it seems in her own life.
Ant is the rogue school drop out with a bad attitude, but with the help of Bea can he be a diamond in the rough?
When a host events make the town unsafe Bea and her accomplices take matters into there own hands. But are they just walking into the danger? You will have to pick up your own copy to find out.
The first chapter really drew me in, Rachel Ward’s humour shines through and I was hooked. I like that the characters all meant something different to me. I really care about Bea and she could be the girl in the local supermarket. I think now if I was asked which six fictitious characters would you have at a dinner party, Bea would be on the list because she would be fun and I would love to meet her.
So halfway into the book, I had a wee wobble. The reason being is that I usually read gritty intense and at time gory crime fiction. So the pace of The Cost of Living was by no means slow, it was just different for me personally as the reader. But as a book blogger, I don’t want to be specifically linked to one genre. I want to test myself with varying genres. So I stuck in and I am so glad I did, it was brilliant.
I had no idea how it was going to end and that in itself is a marvellous sign of great writing. Rachel Ward covers an array of topics in the book beautifully. But especially the delicate way in which agoraphobia is handled. A lot of people will have never have heard about it. But not only does it affect the person but the people closest to them have to adapt too. I was blown away by how on point Rachel Ward writes about it.
So Rachel Ward’s The Cost of Living flies into my top five reads list of 2018. It has everything you could want from a read. Great plot with versatile and interesting characters. Fantastic writing with attention to detail. An accurate and sensitive portrayal of mental illness and real heart at its core.
I am delighted to say that there is a second instalment for me to get my mitts onto and a third in the pipeline.
Rachel Ward is one to watch, a writer with heart and a whole community of folks that are dying to meet you.
Next time you hear the beep you will be thinking of the fun you could have with Bea and Ant at Costsavers…….
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Thank to the publisher for my free copy of the book, given in exchange for participation in the book blog tour and for an honest review.