Cover Image: Live Bait

Live Bait

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Member Reviews

A quick and easy read that I found myself picking up after a long day to unwind. The characters are beautifully written and I came to love them within the first few pages and was rooting for them all the way to the end. At times I wanted to stop reading because I just wanted the experience to go on for longer. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Quite good. This is a fairly traditional mystery featuring a likable, interesting lead. This is a good story with occasional humor, which kept me mostly engaged. Recommended for mystery fans.

I really appreciate the review copy!!
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This is a captivating, engaging and thoroughly original cosy mystery with bags of charm and I found escapades fun and entertaining from the beginning. Amongst the trials and tribulations faced, we are treated to a cast of characters who come alive on the page and have a special place in my heart. Each character is believable and relatable. It's sharply observed with a decent dollop of wit and playfulness and I found the narrative rich in detail and both enjoyable and thoroughly entertaining. If you loved the previous book in the series then you are in for another treat with the right honourable Tom Knight getting himself into all sorts of amusing kerfuffles. It is the perfect escape from our real-world issues with a genuinely cosy atmosphere. A warm, comforting and often farcical read I highly recommend.
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I would like to thank NetGalley and Duckworth Books for the opportunity to review this book with my honest opinion. 

Tom Knight is a detective well into his 70’s but that does not stop him from continuing to want to work as a private investigator. Although not having previously read the first of this series, I have come to love the character that is Knight. He is intriguing in a way that older people are with all their experience and wisdom they have to share, and he brings that with all his faults and ideals.

The partnership between Knight and Merv is one of my favourites in a novel because it is a realistic one. Although you may not always love everything about a person, sometimes the deep and hidden appreciation and fondness is more important. They may not always see eye to eye, but their work continues to bring them together and they continue to look out for each other. I think this brought an important and satisfying part of the story alive, because of both the platonic relationship we can see develop but also because of the added aspect of mystery and the whodunit. 

This story follows the private investigation of the death of a painter Knight had recently met because he just cannot believe that the way her death was reported can be true. His deep senses from decades of private investigator work tell him that the small connection he finds needs to be looked into further. And so takes us on a wild, fun, worrisome, sometimes thrilling and mysterious adventure of trying to solve this possible crime. 

Although somewhat of a slow start, in the beginning, Hodges does a wonderful job at describing the scenes with such detail that you can picture all the scenes in your head while reading, allowing the story to really come to life. I especially enjoyed the way in which the dialogue would switch with the narration, as it was not difficult to follow along. The amount of dialogue between characters was one of my favourite aspects of the writing as there was not too much dialogue, but just the right amount to really portray the little quirks and distinct personalities of each character. 

Throughout the book, with each new character and little hints at the truth you are trying just as hard as Knight to figure out the mystery, and the twist at the end is a fun and shocking ending that leaves you wanting more of Tom Knight’s adventures.
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Charlie Hodges' second Tom Knight mystery is an uproarious whodunit nestled inside a brilliant slapstick comedy. Once again we meet Tom Knight, a 70+ old, private detective down on his luck, trying to resolve a murder mystery that  involves stolen art, lobsters, pole dancers, Middle Eastern mobsters,  a Chinese butplugg, a kinky coffin and a bevy of hilarious characters going bonkers on land and at sea. If you are going to read this delightful novel at night be aware that you might disturb your neighbors with your laughter. Living currently on the Costa Brava by the French border, I'm sure that mine went over the Pyrenees and was heard all the way up in West Sussex where this marvellous novel takes place! Perfect read for the dreary times we are all going through nowadays. I can't wait for the next installment. 

Many thanks to Netgalley and the editor for allowing me the opportunity to read this very funny book prior to its release date
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Live Bait is another cracking story from Charlie Hodges. Tom Knight, the 73-year-old protagonist from Hodges’ previous thriller, Vanishing Act, is in severe financial difficulties. He agrees to be a live model for an artist. From that generous act (he had to strip off in a freezing studio; pose in a highly uncomfortable position; and only got £10 for it), things escalate.

Hodges keeps various sub-plots going in parallel very well indeed. Merv’s solo venture had me trying to read with one hand over my eyes, muttering “No, surely he isn’t going to…?”. But Merv did – often with the results we would anticipate. Although there is great humour in the book, the criminal acts that Tom uncovers are grim. The criminals that Tom discovers are behind it all are a more serious proposition than he anticipates at first. There were a couple of moments where I thought either Tom or Merv weren’t going to make it to the end of the book.

Yes, there is coincidence; yes, some aspects are rather far-fetched; but Live Bait is an excellent sequel to Vanishing Act. It’s a stand-alone book but if you’ve enjoyed one, you will enjoy the other – the order in which they’re read doesn’t really matter. I read it in less than a day – it’s a real page-turner.

#LiveBait #NetGalley
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Tom Knight is a seventy-three year old private detective who hasn't had much business of late so he's had to take on a few odd jobs like handing out fliers and nude modeling(!). Are you intrigued yet? 

Live Bait by Charlie Hodges is the second book in a fun series that features septuagenarian Tom Knight, a former military man working as a private investigator. He is assisted by his somewhat disreputable middle-aged associate, Merv, and, as always, in conflict with their nemesis Detective Constable Bullock. 

These books are more-or-less traditional mysteries with a modern spin. At first the plot seems rambling and going no place in particular but it's all building up the foundation for things to come.   Slow building with plenty of twists that all come together rapidly as the story proceeds, plus a healthy dose of humor. And there's a bit of wink-wink, nudge-nudge cleverness that is naughty but not obscene. It's just an awful lot of fun. 

One of the things I like best about these books (the two that I've read) is the character of Tom Knight. He's not a superman, he's not one of those "seventy is the new fifty" kind of guys. He's old, he's recovering from knee surgery, and he gets the kind of aches and pains that anyone his age would get. He worries about paying the bills and about whether he'll ever get the opportunity to have sex again. At the same time he's not a pitiful character, he's just an everyman who has been around awhile.

There are adult situations, and some strong language that could offend more sensitive readers. This is not a cozy mystery. It's for grownups with a bit of thick skin and an irreverent sense of humor. I think  older readers in particular might get a kick out of it.

***I received a free digital copy of this title through NetGalley.
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Charlie Hodge  has created intriguing characters the hero Tom Knight a private eye like you’ve never seen before an old age pensioner, bad heart, broke, no work and can’t fight his way out of a paper bag BUT what a hero you can’t help warming to him as he struggles to overcome a client who could be the villain or there again maybe not. Like all good private eyes he has an assistant Merv , who looks after him like a son, a son with not the most intelligence but plenty of brawn. A really really good story all told with a smile on every page but that doesn’t detract from a good story.Look forward to the next one featuring these characters.
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Tom Knight Returns.....
Tom Knight returns for another outing in this enjoyable comedy mystery. Tom Knight, ex SAS and private detective, finding his surveillance work all but extinguished decides to explore other avenues of income. Needless to say, it’s not long before mayhem ensues. Genuinely funny and entertaining with an engaging protagonist in Tom and a colourful cast of supporting characters. As you follow Tom and his misadventures you may find yourself rooting for him all the way. A worthy follow up to Tom’s first outing in ‘Vanishing Act’.
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A thoroughly entertaining fun book full of quirky characters, set on the south coast near Eastbourne.   Essentially a crime novel but humourous with many unexpected twists and turns.  With a slightly doddery but spirited 73 year old private detective and similarly aged side kick Merv plus a 60+ year old pole dancer in the mix it can't fail to entertain giving credence to the saying 'you're as young as you feel'. .  Many sub-plots as well to throw into the mix.  I understand that there is a previous novel with some of the same characters which I think I shall be searching out as a light easy read.
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Live Bait by Charlie Hodges was quite a fun read.

I especially loved the main character. Very well done. Now imagine a pole dancer in her sixties, love it!

As you read you realize that nothing is indeed as it seems. There are enough twists and turns to keep you wanting more.

Highly recommend.
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Had a lovely weekend reading this book. I haven't read the first one and it didn't spoil the read for me although I would now like to read more! Tom and Merv are great characters, full of spirit with real to life feelings, complex, interesting and fun! The plot was great, quite complex but an easy and enjoyable read. The places and scenes were described well and kept me engaged. I especially liked the boat scenes and the fun times selling lobsters!  Lots of twists and turns to keep you interested. Thank you for letting me read the ARC.
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The second outing for Tom Knight, the endearing 73 year old detective.  This time, Tom and his friend Merv are drawn into solving a mystery after Tom, short of cash, takes on a job as an artist's model.  
Full of humour and a very clever plot, this is a really entertaining book.  Very quick and easy to read, with great characters.  This is an excellent series and I look forward to reading the more.
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