Wednesday 31 August 2022

BLOG TOUR: Cousin Ash (The Sandlin PI Series Book 2) - S.E. Shepherd

“Run for it!”

Those words were the highlight of a much-loved childhood game in the woods.

But were they also Ash’s last words?

A chance meeting with a school friend of Lottie’s brings Hannah a new case. She’s confident Sandlin Private Investigations can find out who’s responsible for the recent threats at Eliza’s house. But, as she and Lottie begin to unravel the facts of the present case, they also find themselves involved in a longstanding mystery.

Three cousins, once as close as siblings.

Ash, the black sheep
Grieving Ash loved her dad deeply, but swore no one else understood her. She’s been missing for twelve years, and is now presumed dead.
Eliza, the peacemaker
Eliza, rebuilding her life after heartbreak, inherits everything.
Scott the ‘baby’
Scott, broken and bitter, inherits nothing.

What made Auntie Miriam so angry that she left nothing in her will to Scott? And why did Scott and Eliza make a pact all those years ago never to admit the truth about the disappearance of their cousin Ash?

Ash may be presumed dead, but somehow, she’s still causing trouble.  Ultimately, the case can’t be solved without answering the question – what really happened the last time the three cousins were all together in Lullaby Woods?

What did I think?

Cousin Ash is the second book in the Sandlin PI series but oh my word, you can definitely read it as a standalone as it's absolutely brilliant and I loved every minute of it.  2022 is the year of Hobeck Books as they have published some corkers and Cousin Ash is no exception.

From looking at the cover, I thought this was going to be a fun, cosy mystery but it is a gripping double mystery with a dark and dangerous undertone.  Eliza inherited her Auntie Miriam's house when she passed away as Miriam's daughter Ash disappeared 12 years ago but Eliza is now being threatened, apparently by Ash.  What happened to Ash and who is threatening Eliza?

Eliza knows more about Ash's disappearance than she's letting on, but it's her cousin Scott who Miriam blamed for Ash going missing.  Oooh this was very intriguing and I couldn't read fast enough to find out what really happened that night in the woods.

Hannah Sandlin is a private investigator and, together with her friend Lottie, she intends to solve the mystery of Ash's disappearance and she seizes her chance when Eliza hires her to investigate the threats.  It is clear that the two cases are linked and Hannah is veering off into dangerous territory as someone wants Ash's disappearance to remain a mystery.

I loved Cousin Ash and couldn't put it down.  The writing is stunning, the characters virtually leap out of the page and the plotting is excellent.  It's one of those books that entertains from start to finish and as I turned the final page I actually said out loud: 'I really enjoyed that'.  

Cousin Ash is mysterious, intriguing, entertaining and addictive.  I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for more in the series.  Highly recommended.

I received an ARC to read and review for the blog tour; all opinions are my own.

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