Latest Reads

The Guilty Party by Mel McGrath #Blogtour

As always I’d firstly like to say “Thank you” to the award winner Joe Thomas of HQ Stories, for inviting me to be part of this #Blogtour for the fabulously written The Guilty Party and of course, Mel McGrath for writting it.

On a Night out, four friends lose each other in a crowd – and, seperately, they witness a stranger in trouble.

One by one, they each decide to do nothing to help.

Later, a body washes up on the banks of the Thames – and the group knows that ignoring the woman has left blood on their hands.

But why did each of them refuse to step in?

Why did non of them want to be noticed that night?

Who is responsible?


photo courtesy of Twitter

Mel McGrath is an Essex girl, co-founder of Killer Women, and an award winning writer of fiction and non-fiction.

As MJ McGrath she writes the acclaimed Edie Kiglatuk series of Arctic mysteries, which have been optioned for TV, were twice long listed for the CWA Gold Dagger, and were Times and Finacial Times thrillers of the year. As Melanie McGrath she wrote the critically acclaimed, bestselling memoir Silvertown. As Mel McGrath she is the author os the bestselling psychological thriller Give Me the Child.

The Guilty Party is her latest novel.

My Review :

The Guilty Party follows four friends: who met at university and are still friends now. Cassie, single, a poorly paid teacher who lives in a bedsit and struggles to pay the rent. Anna, a well brought up mother of 1, wife with a lovely home in a well-to-do area. Bo, a self-made entrepreneur playboy, whos using his dating app he invented ever so well, he lives in a large apartment overlooking the Thames. And Dex, who used to date Cassie but has since declared he is, in fact, gay and now has a husband Gav. He dreams of becoming a paleontologist and it’s his Birthday that takes them down to the Jurassic coast to find fossils. That’s not all Cassie discovers when she meets Will and figures its time to stop filling the ‘Big Black Book’ in-joke of the group once for all.

This foray into the thoughts and actions of four people, connected by 15 years of friendship – what keeps them ticking, a slightly ‘odd mix’ of people having friends is wonderful – but what happens when cracks start to appear and 2 or 3 seems to know more about something than the other one – secrets and lies start interlacing the stories which were once clear in their mind and still humorous, become tinged with sad ponderous thoughts of ‘Did we, and why” they say opposites attract and Cassie and Anna are those people.

Is 15 years of friendship enough to keep them going, the closeness has gone and events stemming from August start to make sense when the ‘Group’ go away for the weekend in October. It soon turns into an edgy moral dilemma of a tangled web of lies, safer to keep those people that know close and keep you enemies closer – ‘Frenemies’ is what Cassie, Anna, Bo and Dex have become now.

A range of Complex characters – who met at Oxford University – which for me is excellent news, as this is my area of the country – so many of the places Mel mentions I know of and this makes the story so much richer in background for me, but this wouldn’t affect the story if you haven’t been anywhere near Oxford.

How Mel spun this fabulous web of a story and made it into The Guilty Party, I don’t know. It is stunning. It’s Compelling, and edgy whilst being funny at times too, with the tales of drunken antics – we all know about those, I mean who hasn’t found a space hopper and hopped along the road on it after a few….. ok just me and my friends then – (we returned it before you ask.)

A brilliantly written book, a truly twisty dark tale.

If you too would like to read this superb book – but it here:

@mcgrathmj @HQStories #AreYouGuilty @joe_thomas25

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