I can’t put into words how EXCITED I am to be taking part in Rob Parker’s THE PENNY BLACK blog tour today! Before I rave about his fantastic book, I just have to say that Rob Parker is one of the nicest people you will ever meet – always supportive of his fellow authors, bloggers, readers and the writing community in general – it has been my absolute pleasure to finally have the opportunity to read one of his novels! Massive thanks to the author and Endeavour Media for the invite and ARC of this absolutely GRIPPING read! Before I share my review, I’d like to share a bit about the author and this book!
About the Author
Robert Parker is a married father of three, who lives in a village near Manchester, UK. The author of the Ben Bracken books A Wanted Man and Morte Point, and the standalone post-Brexit country-noir Crook’s Hollow, he enjoys a rural life on an old pig farm (now minus pigs), writing horrible things between school runs.
He writes full time, as well as organising and attending various author events across the UK – while boxing regularly for charity. Passionate about inspiring a love of the written word in young people, he spends a lot of time in schools across the North West, encouraging literacy, story-telling, creative-writing and how good old fashioned hard work tends to help good things happen.
I’m dead, for all intents and purposes. Nobody knows I’m alive…
Ben Bracken is on the run for his life. Keeping a low profile from the agencies seeking to silence him, he finds refuge in the quiet town of Horning. Working in a boat yard and lodging with an older couple, Eric and Dot, Ben uses this time to plan. He needs to escape, and realising his only chance will reveal his whereabouts to some unsavoury characters, he plans every detail. Little does he know, even that won’t be enough…
Just before he walks away, murder strikes the quiet town. Ben cannot leave until he is sure that he has not brought any further trouble to the townsfolk. Will he be able to exact revenge? One thing is certain, there is a lot more going on in the town of Horning than meets the eye…
The Penny Black is action packed from beginning to end, keeping you guessing right the way through.
Set in Horning, a little village in Norfolk the reader is faced with regrets, the past, greed, righting wrongs, conspiracy, corruption, loss, change, new beginnings and escape – as our protagonist searches for the answers, are they what he wants to hear?
BOOM! ?? What a nail-biting opening! Told from first person POV, the reader instantly becomes part of this high octane thriller. There’s a great sense of place, with just enough description to pull you in but not too much to distract you. Your imagination is spurred to picture the scenery and setting without drowning in purple prose – PERFECT! This was my first book in the series, even though it is technically the third book – however I didn’t feel lost at all. The author gives you just enough backstory to keep you informed and pique your interest. I will certainly be searching my kindle for the other two in the series, which I had purchased ages ago! And OMG that ending…Damn! ? No spoilers – but it is bloody brilliant!
Character wise can we talk about Ben Bracken?! ? Wow! Wow! Wow! I can’t believe I am only just ‘meeting’ this character, what is wrong with me!? He is intelligent, courageous, a risk taker, loyal and protective…just the kind of guy you want on your side. What I absolutely loved about him was his strength …not physical, the strength of his character. He’s a fighter in all senses. I think I may have a new fictional crush! #JustSaying
There are so many great characters in this novel – the townsfolk, the baddies, the possible romantic interest… each carefully crafted and intertwined to add to and move the story forward. The baddies will make your skin crawl, most of the villagers will make you smile and the others will leave you highly suspicious. I simply loved it! ??
This book had everything that an action thriller should … and then some! A great build up of suspense until ? BOOM ?- all hell breaks loose and your heart races until you reach the final conclusion.
Would I recommend this read? Ab-so-friggin-lutely I would. If you are looking for a tense, action-packed, explosive read …THIS is the book for you!