Fiction Book Reviews

Suspense | Lies Behind the Ruin | Helen Matthews

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We’re delighted to be on tour today sharing Laura’s thoughts for Lies Behind the Ruin by Helen Matthews.

Laura was captivated by this story and highly recommends.

There’s also a tour giveaway of 2 x signed copies – don’t miss it!

Lies Behind the Ruin by Helen Matthews (book cover)

Emma Willshire has overcome plenty of obstacles in her life. From student bride to single mum of a son, Owen, but she has found happiness with her second husband, Paul and another child, Mollie. Emma’s dark days seem far behind her until a fatal accident happens at Paul’s work and he is held responsible.

On holiday in France, Paul’s behaviour turns erratic. On impulse, he buys a cheap, dilapidated property and, to Emma’s dismay, persuades her they can renovate it into a holiday home.

Back in England, their problems spiral out of control. Escape to a new life in France seems the only solution but with heart-breaking loss for Emma. As the couple strive to renovate their ruin and open a small business, shadows from the past threaten their happiness and safety. Because, how can you build a new life on toxic foundations?

Lies Behind the Ruin by Helen Matthews is published by Hashtag Press and is available to purchase in digital and paperback formats. Buy from : | Author Website | Amazon UK | Amazon US |


I loved this book, it was so captivating that I finished reading in one day.

With a toddler it is a rare day for me to enjoy reading in long periods, however yesterday was an even rarer day as he had a three hour nap! I made good use of that time and then had to wait until his bedtime to finish.

The writing is superb and with short chapters, I found myself racing through them to discover more. With tension and secrets cleverly woven within the story, I was completely absorbed.

Emma Willshire seems to have found happiness with her second husband, Paul. Unfortunately a fatal accident at his work leads to an investigation, with Paul to take the blame. During their holiday in France with her son Owen and their daughter Mollie, Paul decides to impulse buy a dilapidated property.

The investigation seems to linger so Emma finds herself living in France with Mollie, overseeing the property and working in a bar while her husband sorts out his work situation.

Secondary characters are introduced to keep the suspense going in this story. I enjoyed the narration split between Paul and Emma, as his chapters certainly created more tension. It was also interesting to read about how our current political crisis has been included and the implications involved and voiced before the referendum.

A wonderful story depicting how our actions can have vast consequences on the whole family.

A great read and I highly recommend.

Jera's Jamboree

Helen Matthews author photo

Helen Matthews is the author of Lies Behind the Ruin, a contemporary suspense novel set in France, to be published in April 2019 by Hashtag Press.

Her debut novel After Leaving the Village, published in 2017, won first prize for the opening pages of a novel at Winchester Writers’ Festival.

Born in Cardiff, she read English at the University of Liverpool and holds an MA in Creative Writing from Oxford Brookes University. Helen’s short stories and flash fiction have won prizes and been published in Reflex Fiction, Ad Hoc, Artificium, Scribble and Love Sunday. Her freelance journalism has been published in the Guardian and broadcast on BBC radio. She is an ambassador for Unseen, a charity that campaigns to end human trafficking and modern slavery.

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Don’t forget to check out the other hosts on tour.

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The tour giveaway is for 2 x Signed copies of Lies Behind The Ruins (Europe Only)

*Terms and Conditions –European entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Please note, Jera’s Jamboree/Shaz Goodwin is not responsible for this giveaway.

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Good luck!

Family comes first! I'm married with two son's in their 20's and have a little more time now to follow my passions. I love my role as an Inclusion Lead in KS2 and I'm passionate about early help. I'm a member of Bournemouth's Early Help Operational Board working alongside others to instigate change and growth. I'm also passionate about my love of reading, being out in nature and creating with crochet. I've been blogging for eight years at Jera's Jamboree.

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