Blog Tour – The Tale of the Tailor and the Three Dead Kings by Dan Jones

Welcome to my stop on the The Tale of the Tailor and the Three Dead Kings blog tour! Huge thanks to Head of Zeus for giving me the opportunity to take part in this! I was provided a copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher: Head of Zeus
Publication Date:
14/10/2021
Length: 96 pages
Genre:
Historical Fiction | Gothic Horror

CW: N/A

Blackwells.co.uk

One winter, in the dark days of King Richard II, a tailor was riding home on the road from Gilling to Ampleforth. It was dank, wet and gloomy; he couldn’t wait to get home and sit in front of a blazing fire.

Then, out of nowhere, the tailor is knocked off his horse by a raven, who then transforms into a hideous dog, his mouth writhing with its own innards. The dog issues the tailor with a warning: he must go to a priest and ask for absolution and return to the road, or else there will be consequences…

First recorded in the early fifteenth century by an unknown monk, The Tale of the Tailor and the Three Dead Kings was transcribed from the Latin by the great medievalist M.R. James in 1922. Building on that tradition, now bestselling historian Dan Jones retells this medieval ghost story in crisp and creepy prose.

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Blog Tour – The Watchers by A.M. Shine

Welcome to my stop on The Watchers blog tour! Huge thanks to Head of Zeus and Aries for giving me the opportunity to take part in this! I was provided a copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher: Aries, Head of Zeus
Publication Date:
14/10/2021
Length: 240 pages
Genre:
Horror | Gothic

CW: mentions of past abuse

Blackwells.co.uk

You can’t see them. But they can see you. 

This forest isn’t charted on any map. Every car breaks down at its treeline. Mina’s is no different. Left stranded, she is forced into the dark woodland only to find a woman shouting, urging Mina to run to a concrete bunker. As the door slams behind her, the building is besieged by screams.

Mina finds herself in a room with a wall of glass, and an electric light that activates at nightfall, when the Watchers come above ground. These creatures emerge to observe their captive humans and terrible things happen to anyone who doesn’t reach the bunker in time. 

Afraid and trapped among strangers, Mina is desperate for answers. Who are the Watchers and why are these creatures keeping them imprisoned, keen to watch their every move?

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Blog Tour – Cabin Fever by Alex Dahl

Welcome to my stop on the Cabin Fever blog tour! Huge thanks to Midas PR and Head of Zeus for giving me the opportunity to take part in this! I was provided a copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher: Head of Zeus
Publication Date:
08/07/2021
Length: 400 pages
Genre:
Thriller | Scandinavian Thriller

CW: drug use, suicide ideation, suicide, graphic depictions of death, attempted sexual assault, references to domestic violence

Blackwells.co.uk

You are her therapist.
Kristina is a successful therapist in central Oslo. She spends her days helping clients navigate their lives with a cool professionalism that has got her to the top.

She is your client.
But when her client Leah, a successful novelist, arrives at her office clearly distressed, begging Kristina to come to her remote cabin in the woods, she feels the balance begin to slip.

But out here in the woods.
When Leah fails to turn up to her next two sessions, Kristina reluctantly heads out into the wilderness to find her.

Nothing is as it seems.
Alone and isolated, Kristina finds Leah’s unfinished manuscript, and as she reads she realises the main character is terrifyingly familiar…

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Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Publisher: Apollo
Publication Date: 13/03/2020 (reissue)
Length: 552 pages
Genre: Historical fiction | Asian Literature

CW: suicide

In the early 1900s, teenaged Sunja, the adored daughter of a crippled fisherman, falls for a wealthy stranger at the seashore near her home in Korea. He promises her the world, but when she discovers she is pregnant — and that her lover is married — she refuses to be bought. Instead, she accepts an offer of marriage from a gentle, sickly minister passing through on his way to Japan. But her decision to abandon her home, and to reject her son’s powerful father, sets off a dramatic saga that will echo down through the generations.

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Review

This year, as you will soon see from the coming reviews that I post, I have been on a kick of reading Japanese and Korean fiction. So, naturally, this book seemed like a perfect one to get stuck into and get stuck into it I did!

Although the novel spans four generation and covers several decades, many of which being some of the most important in the 20th Century, the novel flew by. The pacing was excellent, each change in setting or year was clearly identified at the beginning of the chapter so you were always aware of how much time had passed. The transition from year to year and character to character flowed so naturally. When the protagonists shifted from Sunja, to her sons, to her grandson, I was barely aware of it because it was done seamlessly. It felt right to have the shifts happen when they did as you have built a relationship with the characters from their lives as told by the previous protagonists.

This was also achieved through how Lee depicted each of the characters. You could tell that not only is she a talented writer but she really understands the people that she was portraying. There were several times where the characters just felt like real people and I became so invested in their lives because of this. Sunja is so admirable, I certainly wouldn’t have been as strong as her. I would have immediately caved and lived as Hansu’s kept woman. I was also fascinated by her sons Noa and Mozasu, seeing how they can be raised in the same situations but turn out so different (or so it seems at first).

Whilst this is a work of fiction, it isn’t difficult to believe that there were many Korean families that experienced hardships like this in Japan. Who most likely still face some similar hardships now. Min Jin Lee does a superb job of weaving history into the novel without it dominating the novel or the characters. You are aware of the wars going on, however they are not the sole focus and you see the events through how the family develops and reacts.

I could talk about this book for hours, as it’s one of my favourite novels that I read this year and potentially in general. However, I will restrain myself before this post becomes too long, and simply urge you to pick this book up for yourself!

Rating: 5 out of 5.