Book Review: Dead Heat by Lee Stone (and James Patterson)


I read a previous Bookshot by the James Patterson / Lee Stone (old school friend) combo earlier in the year and reviewed it here.  That was set during Wimbledon – and I read it with the tennis tournament as my backdrop.  This time the sporting event in question was the Rio Olympics, and I read the books straight afterwards, so that helped build the back story / atmosphere.

Now, when I downloaded them on to my Kindle they were in 4 individual books – which I thought was a strange concept – and this view was only backed up when I started reading – as there was no way each segment would standalone!  However, when going back on to Amazon to download a photo for this blog piece – I can see that it’s now offered as a single book, which is far more sensible and mitigates my only complaint!

This is what the Amazon blurb had to say:

“It’s the day of the opening ceremony of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and excitement is at fever pitch.

But a key athlete has gone missing and Detective Rafael Carvalho, on the brink of retirement, is assigned the case.

When the athlete suddenly appears at the ceremony, it seems the case is solved. But Carvalho soon discovers that he has returned with the deadliest of intentions.”

I immediately liked the 2 main cop characters – although very different people – and thought they were straight away given a good back story and personalities.

The plot twists and turns dramatically involving many different sports / countries / issues – and it’s not evident straight away who is behind this.

It builds to a huge climax which was really exciting – and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I read the entire story on a flight from Munich to Birmingham – so it really is a shot of a book not a long drink – but sometimes, that is just what you want!  Not everything has to be The Goldfinch (thank goodness!!)

But, I really enjoy Lee’s writing – and hope that these Book Shots are just the start – and we get some longer books to get our teeth in to in the future – just wondering what sporting event he’ll pick next?!?









Book Review: Break Point by Lee Stone

Bookshots is a new concept by the author James Patterson.  To quote the Bookshots website “BOOKSHOTS are all-new, original stories that feature a complete, cinematic storytelling experience in 150 pages. Characters include favorites like Alex Cross, Michael Bennett, and the Women’s Murder Club. For readers with busy schedules, BOOKSHOTS is the answer.”

Some of the books are written by Mr Patterson himself, others by authors he’s chosen – and that is where this book comes in – and most excitingly, it’s written by someone I went to school with (well, he was at the boys school next door – but we shared a sixth form block!)

When Lee posted on Facebook about this (he’s been writing for years at random times of the day and night whilst also working for the BBC and having a gorgeous little – very little at the start as she was really prem – daughter with his wife) I immediately pre ordered it from Amazon.  But I’m always nervous reading something written by someone I know – I want to be able to write a glowing review – but what if it’s really cringey?  Or just downright bad? Or, biggest crime to me, full of typos and bad grammar?!

Well – I need not have worried one bit – it was fantastic!

Break Point

This is what the Amazon blurb had to say:

“One point away from winning the French Open, tennis star Kirsten Keller breaks down and flees the court in tears.
Keller has been receiving death threats. Terrified and desperate, she hires former Metropolitan police officer Chris Foster to protect her at Wimbledon.
As the championship progresses, Keller’s tormentor gets ever closer. And the threats become horrifyingly real.”

The book had me intrigued from the start – and I immediately wanted to know more about the characters.  One of my concerns about it being short was that they wouldn’t be fully fleshed out – but they really were.

I was also concerned (honestly, I shouldn’t have read this with all of these ‘concerns’!) that it would have to be predictable because there wouldn’t be time to build the story – but again, I was very wrong!  I smugly thought I’d predicted who the ‘baddy’ was early on – but I was totally and utterly incorrect.

The setting of Wimbledon was very timely given that it’s in a few weeks – and having been to the championship, it was nice to recognise the setting – similarly with some of the London narrative.

It is fast paced and difficult to put down – you could easily read it on a plane flight to Europe this summer in a oner – but I didn’t feel short changed, and that the story should have been longer (which interestingly I do often feel with some longer books!)  I would definitely consider downloading more Bookshots in the future for when you don’t want to wallow in a book for ages.

All in all a fantastic read – and I look forward to reading more of Lee’s books in the future.

Phew – concerns all answered!!