Member Reviews

I have read a few books by this author and usually quite enjoy them. The cover is a similar design to B P Walter’s other books which I liked and it fits well with the story. The book was published recently, on 23rd November. Thanks to Harper Collins UK, One More Chapter, and NetGalley for the opportunity to read the book in exchange for a review.

Notes on a Murder follows troubled Oliver on a wellness retreat. He sees someone he was sure he killed twenty years ago on a Greek island and has to confront what happened. The story switches between then and now timelines, but for most of the book it focuses on what happened twenty years earlier. I haven’t read all of this author’s other books, but this one was a bit darker.

Unfortunately, I didn’t like any of the characters and they felt a bit flat to me. I was confused as to why Oliver’s parents treated their children the way they did, I felt like their odd behaviour wasn’t explained.
I liked the idea behind the plot but it didn’t quite work for me. Douglas went home and was never mentioned again, despite him and Oliver being close. I didn’t get why Oliver was ‘chosen’ to go to the island, was it because Argento could blackmail him and his family? It didn’t quite make sense to me, but I didn’t have the time to read much of the book in one sitting and maybe it would have been better if I’d done that. The first half of the book was slow and not much really happened, but it did pick up in the second half.

I didn’t dislike the book, it held my interest, but I thought the ending was quite abrupt. For me, the characters let it down and I thought the plot didn’t quite make sense, but that could just be me. I’ll still read other books by this author and would recommend his books.

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Thank you NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter, for this copy to review

Notes on a Murder follows Oliver at 2 times in his life. As a young man home for the summer from university and going to their Greek Villa. And as an adult at a wellness and addiction centre.

Oliver has a whirlwind summer romance with a supposed stranger and is drawn into a dark world by a business acquaintance of his fathers. As the weeks go on Oliver is blackmailed into killing people who have done terrible deeds. Until he ultimately kills the man he loves after seeing evidence of his betrayal

As an adult it seems Oliver has been deeply affected by what he did and now suffers with addiction. He cannot believe his eyes when he sees his old boyfriend who he thought he killed that summer. What follows is a masterpiece in manipulation. Who will survive this time?

I felt the characters were not very likeable and found it difficult to connect to them and it was quite slow in places

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3.5

Notes on a Murder is my first mystery thriller from B.P. Walter and it won't be the last. A recent release, this novel presents a captivating narrative that spans two distinct time periods in the life of the protagonist, Oliver.

The first timeline, set in 1997, follows Oliver's family as they embark on a summer trip to Greece. Here, Oliver becomes entangled in a whirlwind romance, encountering both dangerous individuals and intricate schemes. The second timeline, occurring two decades later, finds Oliver in a rehabilitation facility, haunted by dark memories of that fateful summer. To add to the intrigue, a person he believed to be dead appears at the facility, prompting Oliver to unravel the mysteries surrounding him.

One of the standout features of the novel is its atmospheric quality. Walter skillfully crafts the narration through Oliver, creating a stellar storytelling experience that kept me engrossed. I liked the first half more than the second one. This book felt tame compared to other thriller novels. While the narrative might benefit from an injection of more action and a heightened climax, the restrained approach has its own charm. But overall, this was an enjoyable reading.

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this book.

Seriously tried very hard to like this book. It is told in two different timeliness, butnthete seems to be nothing that connects them together.

It is a short book, so I took the time to read it a second time through to see if I missed the connection. Nope it made no more sense the second time.

Can not recommend.

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Thank you NetGalley for allowing me to receive this book for an honest review.

I loved the cover of this book and that is what drew me in. The book started off great but then about half way through I lost interest. I felt like I just wanted to put it down. I finished the book but was disappointed. Maybe for others they will enjoy.

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For a while I thought I was reading a romantic young adult novel. Set in the beautiful Greek island of Santorini, the people are golden and attractive and undress a lot, so a romantic relationship starts straight away. Add to that, the parents of the main character are annoying, complain a lot about attitudes, where their adult children spend the night and what they get up to during the day.

However, there are some strange people in this place and they quickly hone in on the naive young man, his brother and new friend. They discover they have a shared dark appetite, which continues throughout the summer. Intoxicated by the weather and good dining, they justify their activities with a warped type of morality.

This is basically a simple story simply told but manages to fully engage the reader. Set in two timelines - Then and Now - the present shows the personal consequences of the events that happened twenty years ago. Written in the first person, it gives the immediacy but the feel is that of a confession directed at "you": in this case, the lover and partner. A bit unusual and I'm not quite sure if it works.

This is a story about desire and how far people will go to satisfy the drive. The psychological tension rises as does the fear of not knowing where trust should lie. An exhilarating quick read.

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I should start by saying I am a fan of BP Walter. The first book I read I plowed through in a day in desperation to know how it ended. Unfortunately, I really tried with this book but I HATE books written in the second person. There was a bit of suspense when "you" was revealed (no spoilers) and then he continued to use it. I found it utterly distracting from the story and did not finish this book because I just couldn't get past it. Maybe if I could have hung in there, the necessity of using the "you" would have been illuminated but it just drove me so crazy I didn't care to find out.

Thank you to One More Chapter and Netgalley for this ARC.

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Oliver along with his brother and parents embark in their annual vacation to their villa in the Greek Islands. During his lazy days exploring, Oliver meets Aliater and forms a relationship. They are invited to the private island of Argento, a business associate of Oliver's father. So starts a dark and unique plot that I found original and riveting. Oliver and Argento find themselves lured into a frightening game that almost changes the book to a horror story. I had mixed feelings about the writers style and character development, but found myself very engaged, turning pages. The twists and turns were unpredictable and the ending was a surprise for me. Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to read this ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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Told in two timelines, NOTES ON A MURDER, examines actions and consequences as a young man makes a decision guaranteed to haunt him for the rest of his life......or so he thought. When a man Oliver thought dead and buried re-enters his life after twenty years, he must question every memory of the vacation that would change his life forever.

Anyone familiar with B P Walter's library knows that he will not show his cards until the last second and every thing you thought you knew will prove wrong. Each character plays a part in a twisted story that is not what it seems. The reveal will leave you shocked and looking for missed clues. another great 5 star read from a very skilled author.

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This book started off great and really drew me in, however, I couldnt help but feel that the ending let it down, it just kind of fizzled out half way through.

I liked the story idea but execution was just not there for me. Enjoyable but just not for me

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This is the first book I've read by this author, and I throughly enjoyed this Greece adventure from the past to the present day. The synopsis doesn't give much away so neither will I other than this is a fast-paced psychological thriller.

It's dark, ominous and begs the question "are you capable of murder?"

Thank you HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter, One More Chapter for the complimentary copy.

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I really didn’t get on with this book, which is such a shame as I have previously enjoyed reads from this author. This time, I thought the plot was not very thrilling nor intense and I disliked the key relationship that is explored within the story.

For sure, the sense of claustrophobia is portrayed with the Greek setting. The heat was palpable in this novel and I think this is reflected by less-than-sensible decisions made by key characters. The protagonist, Oliver, does not get along with his family and his time in Greece sees him fall for the beautiful and intoxicating Alistair. Yet, a meeting with one of his father’s work associates leads Oliver down a dark path that sees him abandon morality and what it means to be fair and moral.

The structure of the novel switches between present day, where Oliver is apparently recovering from an addiction, checked into a wellness retreat to aid his recovery. At the same time, we are taken back to this fateful Greek summer to get an understanding of what causes Oliver’s downfall. I enjoyed seeing this back story but disliked how the character constantly refers to Alistair as ‘you’, as if he is talking directly to him. Yes, it makes it seem quite chilling, but I did not enjoy this confessional style of narrative.

As the plot thickens, it is like Oliver has become enchanted by his new friends. Again, this links brilliantly with the setting, providing a heady and intoxicating atmosphere. Yet, when it becomes clear the purpose of some of the macabre actions taking place, I thought that Walter lost my attention and the story was more far-fetched. I did not connect with the extent that Oliver is influenced and was frustrated by his naivety towards Alistair and Argento. The vigilante theme felt a convenient plot device and I did not find this a thrilling way to explain what was taking place on the island.

At times the narrative felt forced, other times unrealistic and I grew bored by how easily Oliver was manipulated by the more awful characters in the story. They take advantage of Oliver’s narrow view of the world and I think this is still reflected in the present-day timeline. As the story progressed, I thought it was a far cry from what the blurb implied, just adding to my disappointment in the read.

With thanks to Harper Collins, One More Chapter and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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📚 arc review 📚

Notes On A Murder
B.P. Walter
November 23, 2023

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

Summary:

Everyone is capable of murder. Are you?
It started with an invitation to dinner. An evening of good food and good company at a luxury villa. But as the night progresses, the party takes a dark turn.

The host makes you an offer, a party favour he calls it: another guest has committed a heinous crime, you can end their life, stop their terror. He tells you there will be no consequences; do you believe him?

Your decision will change your life. Choose carefully.

Thoughts:

This book’s cover and title pulled me in. I’ve been feeling all the thriller murder vibes this fall and I was excited to have this arc on my list.
There were many promising elements, including being set in beautiful Santorini, Greece. This dual timeline thriller pieces together future and past to unravel the storyline. Based on the writing style, a more fitting title for this book would be Notes From A Murderer.
The first 175 pages of the 304 were a bit slow and entirely sans murder. Once the pace and content picked up, so did the murders. I enjoyed some of the twists and the contrast in main characters. Ultimately, there were a few too many loose ends for the last 100 pages to bring this one the fourth star.

Thank you NetGalley and One More Chapter for the advanced copy in exchange for an honest review!

#bookstagram #bookreview #newreleasebooks #netgalley #fallvibes #thrillertbr #thrillerbooks #reading #arcreader #arcreview

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I chose to read a free eARC of Notes on a Murder but that has in no way influenced my review.

Twenty-one year old Oliver Churchfield is spending the Summer with his parents and older brother at their villa on the Greek island of Santorini. When Oliver's father suddenly announces on their first night that he has an important business dinner he must attend, it causes instant ructions. Bored already, Oliver and brother Doug, decide to take an evening stroll into the local town where they inadvertently stumble across their father's business meeting. Shooed away by their angry father, Oliver is surprised when he recognises the man at the beach the following day. He's even more surprised when he is invited to the man's island villa for dinner the following Saturday. But the invitation is far from innocent. The host of the dinner has an offer for Oliver, one he will find very hard to refuse...

Notes on a Murder is a highly intriguing, suspense laden tale which I devoured in two short sittings. This is a very quick, easy read told in both the past and the present, twenty years apart. The prologue opens with a choice and it sets the tone for the entire book perfectly. In the past, we meet twenty-one year old Oliver as he nearly misses the family's taxi to the airport and their Summer-long holiday (which sounds divine!). Thankfully he wakes in time and makes the flight. On arrival, there isn't a lot for either Oliver or his older brother to do other than exploring the local area, sunbathing or reading. On one such excursion to the local town Oliver spots an attractive man of a similar age and is immediately drawn to him. In the present day, twenty years after the family's last visit to Santorini, Oliver has checked himself into a wellness centre to help him overcome his addictions. He's shocked when a familiar face arrives at the resort. Even more so when a disturbing proposition is put to him.

Would I recommend this book? I would, yes. Notes on a Murder is a suspense filled tale that builds slowly over the course of the book. After the prologue it does take a little while for the pace to pick up and for the events of the blurb to start happening (around the 40% mark) but during this time the author is spending time wisely introducing his characters and building relationships. For those who want thrills and spills from the start, it is worth investing in Notes on a Murder as those shocks and surprises do come along at a later point. The writing is solid and the characters are interesting. I did question a couple of times whether Oliver was just a bystander in proceedings or whether he was as fully committed to the cause as other characters in the book were. It wasn't until the end of the book that I finally reached a firm decision. And I thought the ending was superb. It rounded everything off nicely. All in all, I enjoyed this slow build, suspenseful read and won't hesitate to read another book by the author in the future. Recommended.

I chose to read and review a free eARC of Notes on a Murder. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.

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'Notes on a Murder' – this title doesn’t give much away about what you should expect within this novel’s pages, other than the occurrence of a murder – but by who? and when? and why? It’s hard not to be intrigued when the book starts with the main character Oliver at a ‘wellness centre’, suddenly seeing someone he thought had died 20 years ago…

After that impactful start, we go back in time to a family holiday with Oliver, his brother Douglas, and their two parents heading to Greece for a break in the sun – a break that ends up causing tension, drama and a shocking turn of events…

I loved reading about the mysterious characters we meet – from the man Oliver has a summer fling with, Alastair, to the strange couple they stumble across at dinner with their father one evening… there’s plenty of intrigue here. Oliver has plenty of faults and, though he may not be wholly likeable, he’s not as awful as some of the other characters we meet (damning with faint praise!) and his parents seem like they could test anyone’s patience! As they inadvertently push him towards some shady goings on, which we know will end badly – though we don’t know exactly how or why – the tension ramps up.

This book is a slower burn than I expected, as we join the family on their holiday and get to know the family and their (many) flaws, but I really enjoyed the build-up as the novel takes a darker, more shocking turn. For me, it was the perfect mix of dual timelines, unlikeable characters, and a dark and twisted storyline – all delivered in short, sharp chapters that leave you wanting more and more!

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this book was gripping and dark however it did read as a YA novel however the story kept me hooked and i read it in less than 24 hours - very easy reading to increase your goal.

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3.5 stars
Notes on a Murder, by B.P. Walter, is a dark cautionary tale of murder, manipulation, and the depths of raw emotion that can motivate and unleash the savagery inside some otherwise rational individuals.
The story itself involves Douglas and Oliver, brothers from England who vacation each year with their boring parents on Santorini, Greece. They become involved with a wealthy investor, Argento, who has a luxury villa and hosts decadent parties on his private island. All is not as it seems, and Oliver becomes enmeshed in Argento’s brutal schemes.
No spoilers here—the action is twisted and the moral dilemmas for Oliver and his new friend Alastair are serious and intense.
I like the author’s use of dual timelines (20 years apart) and the story as told from Oliver’s POV. Some brutal scenes were not enjoyable, but necessary for plot movement. The prose is strong and well-crafted.
This is a very dark tale of psychological suspense that will find its audience, but for me, it was more disturbing and twisted than expected.

Thank you to One More Chapter and NetGalley for the ARC. This is my honest review.

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A chilling and compelling storyline. I was hooked from the very start and turned the pages with trepidation mixed with excitement. Way darker than I had imagined but loved it.

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This was such a well done thriller novel, it had a great overall feel to it. I enjoyed how dark it was and that it had a strong plot overall. The characters worked with what I wanted and glad I got to read this. B P Walter does a great job writing this and I can’t wait to read more from the author.

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A mystery thriller, Notes on a Murder by B P Walter (2023) begins with the confession of a murder. Two brothers, Oliver and Douglas spend the summer at their Greek villa, whilst their parents bicker. Each brother is besotted by a lover, until a dinner invitation to an island mansion results in a secretive deadly game. The summer heat and squabbling parents increase tensions and then a betrayal will have unforeseen consequences. Twenty years later, a surprising visitor brings back all the memories and passions of that summer and a final reckoning of that weekly ritual. Part summer romance and borderline horror tale, this thriller is unsatisfactory at either and a fizzler with a two stars read rating. With thanks to HarperCollins UK and the author, for an uncorrected advanced review copy for review purposes. As always, the opinions herein are totally my own, freely given and without inducement.

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