All is not well in Castleby.
Her life hangs in the balance… He needs to be sure she’s dead…
Jesse Stevens lies in a coma after being pulled off a cliff by a psychopath who escaped from prison to find her.
He is in hiding, also hurt from the fall, but fuelled with rage. He needs to make sure she’s dead. If she isn’t, he’ll finish the job once and for all.
Military Intelligence Officer, Sam Jones, missing presumed dead, returns from Afghanistan after two years of brutal torture in captivity. Struggling to cope, Sam has no desire to carry on living, or return to family life, with his wife, Sophie, and son, Marcus. Sophie is desperate to help Sam recover and leans heavily on her friend and ex-forces soldier Foxy for support.
Castleby is plagued by a series of unexplained deaths among the elderly and that of a local fisherman. Inspector Steve Miller works closely with the new local GP, Kate Cooper, to try and find an explanation and they eventually uncover the sinister truth.
Intrigue, drama, suspense and a hint of romance continue in the third of the Castleby Series.
Suspenseful and emotionally intense – 5 stars
Sea Shaken is the latest release in J. M. Simpson’s Castleby series, set in a fictional coastal town. It is a character driven and suspenseful crime thriller with elements of romance, and I was hooked from start to finish! It was my first time reading this author’s work and although the book worked for me as a standalone, I will be checking out earlier books in the series which reference the backstory of some of the characters.
Castleby is a town where traumatic events have left a shadow over the lives of a number of its inhabitants. One if these is Jesse, back from the brink of death, after being brutally attacked by her ex-husband, intent on murdering her. There is also Sam, rescued from two years of torture in Afghanistan. After suffering unimaginable horrors during his captivity, he is not the same man and wants nothing of his old life with hwife Sophie and son Marcus. Luckily Sophie has a good friend Foxy who is on hand to help out, but he has his own issues… As if this wasn’t enough, the new GP Kate Cooper and Chief Inspector Steve Miller (my two favourite characters!) have their work cut out in trying to get to the bottom of unexplained deaths within the community. I was rooting for the main characters throughout, whilst asking myself if anyone was safe in Castleby.
Sea Shaken was a suspenseful and at times emotionally intense read and I really felt for what some of the characters were going through, whilst wanting those responsible for the crimes to be held to account. The plot is harrowing at times, particularly the references to those characters experiencing PTSD, but there are also moments of humour and a great deal of warmth due to the friendships and romantic elements inherent in the plot. The author is certainly skilled at creating believable and relatable characters, in which the reader very soon becomes invested. I particularly loved how she effortlessly wove their individual stories into the overall story and enjoyed the many twists and turns.
All in all, a fantastic read for lovers of crime thrillers and suspense.
Please note, a copy of the book was made available to me by the author, and I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.