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Book Review: A Very Mersey Murder by Brian L. Porter

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A Very Mersey Murder (Mersey Murder Mysteries Book 5)A Very Mersey Murder by Brian L. Porter

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

One thing’s for sure, I’m a fan of mystery series. When I find a new one I like, such as the Mersey Murder Mysteries, I have to devour them all. I usually read in order, but I found this one after several books had been published, so now I’m backtracking to catch up before #6 comes out soon. Today, I’m reviewing A Very Mersey Murder by Brian L. Porter.

The series focuses on a core group of British policemen and policewomen who handle special crimes–usually ones with complexity and longevity. In this edition, the first series of crimes happen in 1966 when three women were brutally attacked and killed. We read in the first few chapters what happens to one of the victims after she leaves a pub to walk home in a very quiet town. It’s not so quiet anymore. Then we jump 39 years later to when the murders start happening again in the same exact method and order. If what happened in the past rings true again, the third victim will be a policewoman. Will one of our beloved Mersey heroines say a final goodbye? Add in a few chapters where someone in the current time frame has found the killer’s old journal… and shares a little about the creepy nut’s imagination and emotional state. Is it the killer reading from the journal, or just someone else who found it? You’ll never guess until the very end!

Of the three I’ve read, this is by far my favorite in the series. Porter adeptly creates a believable and charismatic set of characters who work together to solve major crimes. Sometimes they fight, sometimes they bond. But they always try to find the killer in as little time as possible. When we meet some of the victims and her friends, colleagues and acquaintances, we feel a connection to the story and the lives being impacted by the crime. Add in some side stories with adoption, illegitimate children, gender identity issues, unrequited love, and friendship, the entire book is so well-rounded, I found it hard to put down.

At times, Porter’s story is visceral and graphic, but also tasteful. Some readers may shy away from the gory details and delicate topics being covered, but if you can handle them, you’ll be thrilled with how this comes together. Just when you think you’ve figured out who the culprit could be 39 years ago and who it is today, you’re thrown another curveball. Up until the very end, you’re not sure if it’s the same person, two different relatives, a copycat, or just a random series of events. That’s good writing, plot development, and suspense!

I encourage everyone to read Porter’s books, but I must say… I’m old-school and traditional — read them in order so you can cherish and enjoy all the little nuggets along the way. It’s not necessary, as each is a standalone mystery novel, but you’ll get to know the characters even better if you see them age and understand their relationships. Regardless, they’re well-drawn, complicated, and full of life. You know their likes and dislikes, strengths and weaknesses. Kudos to Porter for continuing to push his readers and deliver quality story with powerful messages and imagery. And if you just want a standalone murder mystery, this will still be a fantastic one to enjoy.

View all my reviews

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My stand-alone novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. The debut book, Academic Curveball, in my new mystery series, Braxton Campus Mysteries will fit those who love cozy mysteries and crime investigations. I read, write, and blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge –and multiple Readathons. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

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365 Challenge: Day 141 – Facts

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Facts: pieces of information used as evidence that are indisputably the case

facts

 

It’s been quite a fun morning – NOT! – as the teenager in me often used to say. Now my mother says it to me all the time, thinking she’s funny. I suppose she is… let’s back up a bit, shall we? Yesterday we celebrated my mom’s birthday; my other half and I cooked brunch (two different kinds of quiche [pancetta/asparagus & onion], corn salad, brussel sprouts with red chili flakes, prosciutto, green apples, cinnamon, sugar, herbs, and an Italian Cream birthday cake). My cousin who is visiting from Ukraine was here, as well as my dad. We finally put up the arbor on the NYC Terrace Garden. After everyone left, I decided to focus on catching up on some blogging work.

I apologize in advance for posting 7 awards and tags all on the same day. After looking through my draft folder, I realized there were a bunch sitting around, being lazy, which is never a good thing. So I worked through them and posted all evening… I hope I didn’t bore you, as I try to come up with different questions and responses, as well as incorporate a lot of humor… I attempt, at least. I love doing all the awards and tags, but sometimes it takes a while, as I want to put a good deal of effort into them. I want it to mean something, rather than just be a few quick words that don’t have a big impact on others. I feel the same way when I choose people to tag or nominate at the end of my posts. I like connections to be connections.

I try to match the topic or the subject of the post with the people I’m including as nominees, but it doesn’t always work out. I attempt to select people who are deserving of an award, need to be seen by other bloggers or have posted something really cool that week. When I nominate someone, I really want to read their responses, but I also understand not everyone wants to participate. And if they choose not to, it’s OK. I’m not upset or offended. I usually search my notifications to see who I’ve chatted with the most in the last few days and pick from that bunch, if it’s a fun tag. That said… I finished a few last night and look forward to everyone’s responses. But something was on my mind last night as I was picking everyone…

I let it go and went to sleep. This morning, I was chatting with a friend who shall remain anonymous… (s)he asked me a question about a fellow blogger, and we both realized, neither of us knew the answer for sure. And it was a simple question. It got me thinking… how well do we really know our fellow bloggers? Some people share a lot of information about themselves (like me). Others share very little, preferring to remain in anonymity, or using their blog as a way to be someone different than who they are in reality. I prefer to have a deeper connection with people when I’m chatting with them, hence why I sgare a lot. For instance, when I meet someone new, I want to know their name. Or if I’m highlighting their blog, I don’t like saying “their” because I can’t tell if it’s a “him” or a “her.” And then there’s those moments where I have no clue where the person lives, which can be awkward if they are not in the US and I’m asking them to do a tag about the US. D’Oh.

I suppose none of this is all that important… blogging can be light and fluffy, too. Or if it’s a deeper connection, does it really matter if you have all the basic FACTS about someone you are talking to? Perhaps not… perhaps it’s just the words you share that truly mean the most. So… I typed up the post earlier this morning. I was adding the featured image, and the whole thing froze. I had saved it, so I wasn’t worried. I exited WordPress and came back in. It hadn’t saved the last 30 minutes of updates, so I only had half a post. I was a tad annoyed. But I copied it and wanted to start a new one, in case it was corrupted. Somehow, I cut instead of copied… and then it shut down again. When I re-booted and brought WP back online, the saved post was the empty post. So I lost about an hour’s work. I might have said some nasty words to the air, my computer, the fly passing through on its (as I don’t know if it’s a male or female either) journey in my home… anyone or anything that would listen to me complain about the time I’d wasted. But it happened. I’m now re-writing from memory. And I’m sure this one will undoubtedly be worse in some parts and better in others.

The whole point of the post is FACTS. I’d like to know more about the folks that follow me. If we chat, I probably know some of this already. But if we don’t, please share. No pressure, if you don’t want to share, that’s OK. But instead of having to check everyone’s About Me page, what if we all had signatures at the bottom of our posts, telling others who we are so that we don’t have to look it up each time until we get to know someone better? And quite often, bloggers don’t even put the information in their About Me section either. So… today’s post, in lieu of you all getting to know more about me through the 365 Daily Challenge, I’m asking for more info about YOU.

If you want to skip a response, that’s OK. But if not, let’s share some information and then share it with all the rest of your bloggers, so we can learn more about one another. For starters, please respond with:

  • Name
  • Location
  • Gender (however you choose to interpret the word)

And if you are brave, and this is your truth now, share more like me:

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Jay / 40 / Male / New York City / Writer / Possibly Crazy / Reserved But Funny & Open-Minded / Should Be Working But Isn’t Right Now / Loves Ryder / Curious To Know You

__________________________________________________________________________________________

That was simple, right? Let’s see what everyone has to say…

 

RECOMMENDED BLOGGER

  • Today’s 365 Daily Challenge recommended blogger to know is Cindy @ Cindy Knoke Photography. Cindy and I met a few months ago when some of her stunning photos showed up in another blogger’s feed. I had to check them out, and once I did, I quickly decided it was a blog to follow. Cindy had been traveling in Germany and France at the time, stopping in small villages along the way. She stumbled into a few where my ancestors lived nearly 200 years ago. All of Cindy’s photos capture amazing aspects of life, including nature, people, animals, villages, scenery and life at its core. I adore her site and think other people would love to check it out. She’s a really friendly blogger, interacting and checking out other people’s blogs beyond just those with photography. I enjoy admiring her work and whatever she presents to us on her blog. If you love photography, you should definitely make the effort to stop at the site and find something worth adding to your list of followed blogs. At the end of the day, when you can’t read another review, peruse another tag or award, or listen to anything inspirational… and you just want to stare at beautiful photos to relax you, this is the place to be. I’m confident you will find yourself scrolling through it for a very long time.

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

365 Challenge: Day 103 – Tolerant

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Tolerant: showing willingness to allow the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with

tolerant

I do not like the word tolerant. It is clinical. Institutional. Incendiary. It annoys me to accept we need to have a word like tolerant in order to do what should just be the innate and natural thing we all want to do. To have to tell someone or teach someone to be tolerant [of differences] is just an unacceptable truth, as well as one of the areas of life that truly frustrates me. Not because I don’t believe in it, but because there are people in this world who think they are so perfect that any difference is wrong — and that it has become our responsibility to have to educate them to be tolerant.

No, I’m not going to rant on about injustice or inequality. I’m simply making a small statement that while being tolerant is absolutely the right thing to do, it concerns me that we need a word for doing the right thing. I’m not an activist. I am not political. I don’t push my beliefs and thoughts on other people. I just live and breathe each day in the way in which I feel is proper and fair. I’m sure you’ve previously noticed this approach of mine when I’ve posted about being non-judgmental or open-minded. But today, I felt the need to use the word tolerant, as that was the concept being thrown around last night at an event I attended.

A very good friend of mine invited me to the NYC Mayor’s PRIDE month reception at Gracie Mansion last evening. My partner and I eagerly accepted the invitation and explored the wonderful grounds and buildings where our mayor lives. Both the mayor and his wife spoke about how amazing NYC is when it comes to being tolerant and accepting of people’s differences. And then they invited a special guest to the stage: Laverne Cox. For those who don’t know who Laverne is, you can find out more here. As a quick intro, she’s a transgender pioneer who moved from Alabama to NYC where she was able to become who she was inside, as well as a star on the TV show “Orange is the New Black.” She’s also the first Black Transgender Woman to appear on the cover of TIME Magazine. Enough Said.

As I wandered around the party last night, then chatted with friends at dinner, and ultimately when I woke up this morning, this concept of being tolerant has been front and center on my mind. I am not a religious person, but I was raised Catholic and went to church for nearly twenty years. I have little desire (other than to correct wrongs) to get involved in heated political discussions or banter over what’s right and what’s wrong. To me, there’s a simple fact when it comes to… ugh… hate saying it this way… being tolerant of others:

“Your life is none of my business. If you are not hurting me or someone else, you are free to do whatever you want.”

It’s simple. It’s direct. It’s not about religion or hate. It simply means… embrace who you are, do what you want to do and don’t harm others. For anyone to have the audacity to claim otherwise is selfish and uneducated. And to think you can tell someone else what is right or wrong makes no sense. None of us created the concept of life. None of us have the answers or explanations. None of us are inside someone else’s head. We have absolutely no idea what makes another person who they are. Yes, we have science and history and analysis. I believe in all of it. But I also believe that there is something unique to each of us, and that tiny little thing is enough to tell me that I cannot judge another person when I am not that person. What’s right for you is what’s right for you.

We each have our life and own responsibilities and should focus on those things — not whether someone feels more like a man or a woman, or both… loves a man or a woman, or both… wants to change their gender… is more attracted to a certain look about someone else… feels more comfortable using a specific restroom… If I’m gonna use the bathroom… seriously… I’m going in there for ONE PURPOSE… to get it over and done with as quickly as possible… not to engage with anyone else while in there… I will wash my hands and leave… and then it’s out of my mind. I don’t care who else is in there with me. That’s certainly not my first priority. And why would it be anyone else’s?

I really am not ranting. I’m attempting to just be honest and funny. And I’m fairly certain 99% of the people reading this post, i.e. following me, you probably feel the same way. And if you don’t, and I’ve offended you, I certainly didn’t intend to and I accept any consequences. All I can say is that I tolerate your inability to be a more open-minded person and wish you well in your own journey. But for those of us who read this, believe this or preach this… being tolerant, that is, I’m glad to be part of your life.

And so… Happy PRIDE. Happy June. Happy Friday. Happy Everything… because we have one single life that we know of… and I’m not gonna spend it worrying about what other people think or do with their own life. I’ve got better things to do… like read and blog. And make a fool of myself in this 365 Daily Challenge — among other things! Unplanned RANT done. Back to reality. Ah…

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.