Cover Image: Hush Hush

Hush Hush

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Member Reviews

Due to a sudden, unexpected passing in the family a few years ago and another more recently and my subsequent (mental) health issues stemming from that, I was unable to download this book in time to review it before it was archived as I did not visit this site for several years after the bereavements. This meant I didn't read or venture onto netgalley for years as not only did it remind me of that person as they shared my passion for reading, but I also struggled to maintain interest in anything due to overwhelming depression. I was therefore unable to download this title in time and so I couldn't give a review as it wasn't successfully acquired before it was archived. The second issue that has happened with some of my other books is that I had them downloaded to one particular device and said device is now defunct, so I have no access to those books anymore, sadly.

This means I can't leave an accurate reflection of my feelings towards the book as I am unable to read it now and so I am leaving a message of explanation instead. I am now back to reading and reviewing full time as once considerable time had passed I have found that books have been helping me significantly in terms of my mindset and mental health - this was after having no interest in anything for quite a number of years after the passings. Anything requested and approved will be read and a review written and posted to Amazon (where I am a Hall of Famer & Top Reviewer), Goodreads (where I have several thousand friends and the same amount who follow my reviews) and Waterstones (or Barnes & Noble if the publisher is American based). Thank you for the opportunity and apologies for the inconvenience.

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A great read. I love this authors books. They are often cleverly woven with personal and professional relationships. I especially like strong female characters.

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It’s a fresh start for Grace following the death of both her husband Matt and mother Martha, but she has big shoes to fill as her colleagues held her predecessor in high esteem, and a lot to lose if they discover her connection to one of the towns notorious crime families.

As she returns to her home town of Stoke-in-Trent, for Grave she has to not only deal with memories and gossip but there is also links to her father, so now she has to prove she is nothing like him.

The Steele family is somewhere Grave finds herself landed in the middle of, murders stack up alongside the body count and it is all on Grace to solve the mystery as to what is going on and who is responsible.

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Tried and tried but just couldn’t fall in love with this.... I realize I’m probably in the majority here but couldn’t find enough redeeming qualities to this tale to complete it. May try again soon but for now, I’ll say, “No thank you - I’ll not have one now”.
Thanks for the ARC opportunity!

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Hush Hush is the first book in the DS Grace Allendale series. Grace is the newest DS on the team when a murder spree occurs. Several people with ties to the infamous Steele's family have been murdered and Grace's team is on the case. What most people do not know is that Grace is a related to these criminals and when the news gets out, it could derail her career.

This is a well-plotted and paced police procedural. There are some graphic and brutal murder scenes in the book, but they are necessary for this story. It is up to Grace and her team to figure out who is targeting Steele's crew and friends. The characters were well developed and very different from one another. They made a great team, but there was suspicion when Grace's secret was revealed. She found herself proving her ability, her duty and her loyalty to the team. We also learn about Grace's past and how it affected her decisions for her future and career. I found this part of the story very emotional. The investigation was very interesting and well described. I was putting things together as the story progressed, too bad that the twists had me changing my mind many times. The conclusion of this one was great and I liked how it all came together in a realistic way. A great police procedural in a series that I am trying to catch up on. I definitely recommend this one.

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I am a huge fan of Mel Sherratt and especially the Allie Shenton books so was excited I finally got around to reading about this new character! I must say I read this book in record time. Historically as a book blogger, I could read a book in a day or two, however since my working life has got super busy I no longer have as much time. However, this book…I admit I made time (let’s hope my boss doesn’t read this:-)). The lead character Grace comes across as super aloof and a little on edge from the get go, however learning that she lost her husband recently and has now moved back to where she grew up you can get an idea of why. However, I had no clue that her family secrets were a lot more tricky than that!

The Steele’s are a notorious family however, when you learn as a reader they are Grace’s family it just made it SO engaging. When murders seem to be surroundign the Steele’s and their businesses Grace has to walk a fine line. In addition she is working with a new team all of whom have their own opinion. I was so pleased the author made it clear where Grace stood from the outset, it made me admire her all the more. However the beauty of a story like this is how it will pan out in future books too. I read this book in a day and moved straight onto book 2. Looks like I’m headed for a Mel Sherratt binge to get myself up to date. Massively reccomended….and frankly the perfect choice for my first read of 2021.

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DS Grace Allendale has returned to her hometown after escaping with her mother from a father who heads a criminal empire. Grace must get right to work and is called to look into a murder that took place outside of a gym. Not just any gym though. One that her family owns. Grace does not let on that it is her family, the Steele’s, that are right in the middle of the investigation. Why should she tell them? She stands to lose a lot if found out. One at the gym she comes in contact with her step brothers. However, it is not a happy reunion. As more murders occur all looking as though the Steele family are responsible, Grace must try to get her ream of investigators to understand that she is no longer a part of that family. Can she figure out who the killer is? It looks like there is trouble from both sides. Great storyline and murder mystery. I really enjoyed this protagonist and how well the writer kept her engaging.

Thank you to netgalley as well as the author/publisher for allowing me to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

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After the premature death of her husband DS Grace Allendale has returned to a place she hasn’t been for a very long time; her hometown of Stoke-on-Trent. She is thrown in at the deep end on her first day on a new investigation with all the evidence pointing towards a local gang, the Steele's. This poses a huge problem as the Steele's happen to be Grace's estranged family and has no intention of getting to know them. As the body count escalates will Grace stay loyal to her job and the laws that bound her or will family comes first? Will she ever earn the trust and respect of her new colleagues? Will she build some kind of relationship with her criminal half-brothers who she has never met? Will she even want to? And if she does, what will that cost her professionally? After all, they say blood is thicker than water.
I raced my way through this book, it had me gripped from start to finish, a solid start to another series. I have a feeling Grace is going to be a huge character in future books - I do love a strong female lead!

Thanks to HaperCollins for allowing me access to this book in exchange for a review, recommendations and shares.

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Thoroughly enjoyed this introduction to a new series. This was my first book by Mel Sherratt and I’m already looking forward to the next.
I was hooked on this from the outset and finished in only 2 days. This reminded me of Martina Cole novels involving families on the wrong side of the tracks versus the police.
I’m looking forward to reading more about Grace and her team.

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A gripping new series from Mel Sherratt.

D.S Grace Allendale has moved from Salford back to her childhood home in Stoke on Trent after the death of her estranged father George Steele.

Grace’s mother managed to escape from her abusive husband George when Grace was young, but George’s second wife and three children weren’t so lucky. The Steele family run a gym along with other criminal activities

Grace is keeping it secret from her new colleagues that she is related to the infamous Steele family. When she is called out to a murder enquiry, to her dismay it is outside the Steele families gym and she comes face to face with her stepbrothers.

When more murders are committed and they all linked to the Steele family, Grace finds herself trying to prove to her colleagues that she is on the right side of the law unlike her step family.

I couldn’t put this book down. The back story of Grace is gripping and I can’t wait to read the next one in this series.

I cannot recommend this book enough. Definitely merits more than 5 stars!!

Thank you to Netgalley for my copy in exchange for a review.

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I've seen some very dismissive reviews of this book, denigrating it for not following correct police procedure. These comments so infuriate me, it's fiction - it doesn't slavishly have to follow the rules. If you want a police procedural book that follows the rules, read a police procedure text book. Obviously there are moments in most works of fiction that require the reader to suspend fact and use their imagination, isn't that the point of fiction? I really warmed to Grace and felt for her, widowed and alone at such a young age. Thrust back into the place she ran away from with her first case involving her estranged family. She shows herself as a strong, both physically and mentally, and assertive woman. The plot moves along briskly and the denouement is suitably twisty. Well written and absorbing book and I will definitely read the next one in the series.

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Who will DS Grace Allendale choose when it comes to her being responsible for solving brutal murders? Will it be her team, or her family? That is the very dilemma facing her. There is a killer on the loose, and as the investigation progresses, Grace sees the unfortunate connection to her own family. Sadly, it seems that she has no one on her side. But, as a dedicated officer, Grace will do all she can to bring an end to the murders taking place,

Due to difficult circumstances, Grace has returned to her childhood home. In the town of Stoke, she has gotten the opportunity for a promotion. Unfortunately, not everyone is happy to have her there. Right away, she must deal with contention. Having a very difficult murder case almost as soon as she arrives certainly does not make her transition easy. Grace hates to admit her relation to one of the victims, but the facts are there, and she must work around them in order to stop what is happening.

Where will Grace's loyalties lie? Her past is indeed a difficult one. Will the goings on that are occurring right now bring her closer to the family she never knew? And, what of her new job? Will she be able to gain the respect of her coworkers and those in supervision of her?

This read by Mel Sherratt may be my first by her, but I already read the second book in the series, Tick Tock. I was definitely drawn into the story due to the crimes, family connection and all its drama. I was quite impressed with the writing style as well as the pacing in this read. Hush Hush is an excellent start to this new series. It was utterly intense and had me very interested in the next book.

Many thanks to Harper Collins and to NetGalley for this ARC for review in exchange for my honest opinion.

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I was hooked from the very beginning of this book! This is not your typical police procedural. Grace just moved back to the town where she grew up. Filled with horrific memories from her childhood, she is on a case and trying to solve the murders before others happen. Unfortunately, she is the half-sister of a well-known crime family. Not only is she trying to do her job, she is trying to protect herself from the present and the past!

I loved this book. There is so much depth to the story. Every time a new layer was pulled back and we learn more of the truth, a whirlwind of event occur! The author did an amazing job of revealing bits and pieces of the story at a time. It was easy to follow.

The subject matter in this book is mature and may be hard for some to read. While it is very sensitive in nature, the author did a good job of leaving most details to the imagination. Grace has so much strength in coming to terms with her past. Her new team is skeptical of her, but as the story progresses, so does their trust.

I’m so happy to have learned about this series and can not wait until the next book!

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Hush Hush – Mel Sherratt

I’m a big fan of Mel Sherratts book, they are always a good read, she usually picks a good storyline and I like the way that she deals with sensitive issues. This is the first in a new police procedural series so I’d like to welcome Detective Grace Allendale to my bookcase she’s got good company.

Grace moves back to her hometown of Stoke on Trent for a fresh start following the death of her husband oh and a promotion to the Murder Investigation Unit. Initially moving back brings a different set of problems for Grace to deal with. One being the struggle to fit in her new team misses their old gaffer Allie Shenton who moved on and then secondly the fact that she is related to the Steele family a secret that she never wanted to keep in the first place. We learn more about Grace as we go along, about her abusive childhood her and her mother ran away from her father George Allendale.

The first body is a close friend of Eddie Steele and was found in the car park of Steele’s gym this draws her back to Eddie and Leon Steele her stepbrothers, Leon is openly hostile towards Grace. I have to say the feeling is mutual, it comes across that Grace would rather stick pins in her eyes than have any contact with them. As the murder victims stack up Grace knows that she has to pick a side family or her team.

Read for an honest review. Thank you Netgalley and HarperCollins

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This is book 1 in the DS Grace Allendale series. DS Allendale has been promoted and has been transferred from Manchester to her home town of Stoke on Trent. People are being killed and it’s Grace and her teams job to find the killer before more people are killed. The killings lead to a criminal family in Stoke called The Steeles. What is Graces connection to this family ?

I loved this book and right from the start it had me gripped. A total page turner.

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I’m a big fan of Mel Sherratt and feel somewhat guilty that it’s taken me this long to get a review of Hush Hush up here on the (though as anyone who’s been following me a while knows all my reviews have been going up way too late lately thanks to the pressures of everyday life). Why the guilt? Because I really enjoyed the book. It was great to be back in Stafford, a place I used to spend a lot of time in for work, even if the city is a lot more violent than in my experience. I love the place and the people and Sherratt does a great job of bringing both to life.
She also does a great job with the central character in Hush Hush, Grace, a woman who has returned home to get over the loss of her husband and to confront a painful childhood, one where she was the daughter of a local gangster. Her father is dead by the start of the book, but her half-brothers and sisters are still around and continuing the family business. It’s something Grace wants to stay as far away from as possible. Unfortunately, as a police officer, she can’t help but be dragged into their lives when the first case that falls on her desk involves one of their (legitimate) employees ending up dead in the car park of the gym they run.
I enjoyed getting to know Grace, and her family too if I’m honest, even if they were a bad lot. It meant there was plenty going on and plenty of people to like, dislike, trust and think were up to no good…I was wrong on more than one occasion, which is always a good thing with this type of book I think. There were plenty of twists and turns here to keep me interested and wondering just who did it (I was right, then wrong, then right again – go me!) and more than enough in Grace and her team to see how this could turn into a great series.
And, while books of this type do have a style and follow a pattern to a degree, this still felt fresh and interesting enough to make me want to come back for the next book when it’s released.

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Solid, gritty crime thriller. My first by this author, but I will definitely be looking out for more, especially from this series.

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Absolutely fantastic
Held my attention from start to finish
Gritty crime novel gangland Britain I’m in awe of Mel Sherratt I’ve recommended this to so many of my friends.

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This is my first Mel Sherratt and won’t be my last. I enjoyed the characters and the story. DS Grace Allendake is sent back to her home town and put in charge of a new team that don’t want her. The first case she starts is a series of murders where the victims are killed at their workplace. This first victim is killed at the gym her half brother runs. The Steeles are the crime family of the area and share a father with Grace.
I liked the characters and how the story unfolded. I’m guessing this will be the first in a series and I look forward the next instalment.
Thanks to Avon books and NetGalley for an ARC.
#HushHush #NetGalley

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When DI Grace Allendale returns to Stoke to lead the major crimes team she is returning to her hometown. Recently widowed, Grace is in need of a change of scenery but Stoke has a lot of negative memories for her. Grace's mother managed to escape her violent husband but Grace's half brothers and sister were not so lucky and now, as adults, they form one of the more notorious families around. When Grace's first case causes her to link to her estranged family she has to decide where her loyalties lie.
Sherratt is developing into a great writer of undemanding but satisfying police procedurals. What I really like is the fact that she has set her novels in the Stoke area and there are links between the characters. The plot are pleasingly complex but not so that the reader can't follow them. Here a new character is introduced, DI Grace Allendale, and Sherratt gives just enough information to allow the reader to warm to the character without overdoing it. Sherratt is fast becoming a guilty pleasure!

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