Crime, Mystery, Thriller

Sam’s Song by Hannah Howe


If you like psychological detective stories with a touch of humour and romance, you will love

Sam Smith.”

Love Hurts. For Derwena de Caro, songstress, female icon, teenage dream, success brought

drugs, alcohol and a philandering boyfriend. It also brought wealth, fame and a stalker, or so she claimed. And that’s where I came in, to investigate the identity of the stal

ker, little realising that the trail would lead to murder and a scandal that would make the newspaper headlines for months on end.

Love Hurts. For me, Samantha Smith, Enquiry Agent, love arrived at the end of a fist. First, I had to contend with an alcoholic mother, who took her frustrations out on me throughout my childhood, then my husband, Dan, who regarded domestic violence as an integral part of marriage. But I survived. I obtained a divorce, kept my sense of humour and retained an air of optimism. I established my business and gained the respect of my peers. However, I was not prepared for Dan when he re-entered my life, or for the affection showered on me by Dr Alan Storey, a compassionate and rather handsome psychologist.

Sam’s Song. This is the story of a week that changed my life forever.

Amazon UK
Amazon US

Karen’ Magic Review

If you are a regular reader of my reviews you’ll have noticed I’ve changed things up slightly. The new name for Karen’s Book Buzz Blog now fits in with my main website The Magic of Stories.

I recently joined a website called, it’s a good place to find free and cheap books. Actually, that’s not strictly true, although I have downloaded several books from there, this one came from the Gainread’s Facebook group.

The author had posted about the book, just to it was feee and a detective series. I enjoy crime books, so downloaded it without reading the description. I was pleasantly surprised on two counts. Firstly I thought Sam Smith was a man, perhaps I was thinking of the singer, and secondly assumed it was based in the US.

Sam, is short for Samantha, and it’s British, based in Cardiff, Wales. I live in the north and Cardiff is way down south, a place I’ve never visited. Immediately, I felt an affinity with this Welsh enquiry agent.

The story is told in the first person, by Sam herself, and the writing was straight to the point and succinct. I soon came to the conclusion I was reading a book by a very professional writer. So much so, I went back to Amazon to look who wrote it and do I know her. The answer was I didn’t, I’d never come across Hannah Howe before, and when I saw the book had a massive 333 reviews, I wasn’t the least bit surprised.

Being such a prolific reader, another thing I really liked about it was that it wasn’t big. My kindle told me it would take just over three hours to complete, and Amazon says 260 pages. That’s a perfect size for me.

Sam, is a flawed character, right away we get into her terrible marriage, and her terrible upbringing. She hides behind her long hair at times and is the first to admit she has issues. In her professional life things are very different. She may have offices in a seedy part of town but she is very good at what she does.

A friend in the local police department is a good asset, and Hannah Howe is great with describing every character physicality. You can just about ‘see’ what they look like. It enhances the story, and many of the other characters have some kind of quirk that makes them appear very real.

The storyline was exciting, tense, and dangerous in every way. Sam works her case and within a short time gets it resolved in a satisfactory manner.

If you are a regularly reader of this blog, you’ll know how many times I’ve said I don’t particularly like series. Then, I read and review one saying there are always exceptions. This is one. So going forward, I’ll just say I’m very selective with series as I don’t like cliff hangers. This is a complete story and you don’t have to read the next one but I guarantee when you have finished, you’ll want to. I wanted more of Sam, I also wanted to see if anything comes of her new relationship because she more or less told him her issues were coming between them and she didn’t know how to be a girlfriend.

So, the next book is downloaded and I’ve a sneaky feeling I’ll be getting the next one as well.

An absolute thrilling read that will literally leave you wanting more!

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