Full on gangster with knobs on… yet there is also wit and tenderness to discover between the pages.
A hammer-hard blast of a novel set in the underworld of Essex. Alfie and Vaughn return from Spain looking to become kingpins in the world of crime, however the local criminals are already forming a queue ready to take them down.
Jacqui Rose immediately sets the action loose in a fast-paced wild ride and I just leapt straight in. There are characters full of bravado and swagger who set the pages on fire. The chapters are short, snappy, and full of menace. I raised my eyebrows and smirked at the brilliantly snarky quips and retorts. A mystery of whispers from the past gather to meet the present setting up a tidal wave, ready to crash into the ending. ‘Toxic' comes with shocks a plenty and a tommy gun of wise-cracking comebacks, plus there is a particular storyline ready to melt hearts, all resulting in a captivating, absolutely cracking read.
Sometimes love is toxic... Bree Dwyer is desperate to escape her husband, take the children and run. But he's always watching. And she always gets caught. Until her first love, Alfie Jennings, returns to Essex... Gangsters Alfie and Vaughn have been out of the game for a while, but a life of crime is one you never forget. To get back on top they need serious money, because loyalty and power don't come for free. One dangerous job and they'll have the payoff they need. And Alfie isn't going to let anyone get in the way, least of all a pretty face like Bree. It's time to show Essex what they're made of. And this time, Alfie and Vaughn aren't backing down.
|Publication date:||12th July 2018|
|Publisher:||AVON, a division of HarperCollins Publishers Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers|
|Primary Genre||Thriller and Suspense|
Closing date: 30/09/2021
In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.
Jacqui kept me hooked from the very first page.
Jacqui kept me hooked from the very first page.You really get to feel for the characters, especially Bree, who simply wants to escape her abusive partner. But even the reader knows Johnny is not to be messed with. All she wants is to protect her children, will anyone come along to save her? Its gritty and dangerous throughout and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I haven't for some strange reason read any of her previous books but I certainly will be now and have already been online to seek out her other titles.
Gripping, action-packed thriller that is absolutely loaded with violence, crime, drama and suspense. Save this book for the weekend because you won’t want to put it down!
Toxic is a truly gripping, action-packed thriller full of drama and suspense. The story of Bree, her abusive husband and her overbearing mother-in-law provides an emotional rollercoaster of violence and crime with genuinely believable characters. For those readers who haven’t read the previous book, it is a little hard to pick up the thread of the story initially because it tends to jump back in time but it is well worth the effort. Once I got into this book, I could hardly put it down and I was pleased that the open ending offered the promise of more to come. I will definitely be reading any follow-up!
Gangland deals, violent betrayal and loyalty tested in this fast paced and violent thriller.
The most recent in a series of linked but standalone novels about Essex gangland, this one finds returning gangsters Alfie and Vaughn having to fight to rebuild their position in Essex after Alfie’s girlfriend runs off with their stake in a multimillion pound criminal organisation. Coupled to that is Alfie’s first love Bree, desperate to escape her abusive and violent gangster husband and things become more complicated.
I think if you enjoy authors such as Martina Cole, Mandasue Heller and Roberta Kray you will probably really enjoy this one. It didn’t quite work for me but it was certainly well paced and violent but perfectly in keeping with the world Jacqui Rose is writing about. While there were obviously back stories for several characters in previous novels, this in no way detracted from following what was happening in this one. The characters all worked although personally I really only empathised with Bree, and while there were some who seemed more of a cliché than others, it all fitted together and felt convincing.
Welcome to the underworld of Essex. It is time to find out who is the greatest, strongest and most terrifying leader of Essex. Johnny has been trying hto get this place but Alfie & Vaughan have returned to reclaim this status and then you have a Eddie who wants this status from the background. Throw a concealment that everyone wants and let battle commence.
It was supposed to be easy for Alfie and Vaughan to return, buy a planned business and set up as the leaders in Essex but when there cash never arrives they need to find another way to get some money and fast. They take over a concealment and find that there was a much greater deal than the drugs expected. The only downside is that other people are looking for the package and they are not people you want to cross. An old girlfriend and a sister are in relationships with the other parties and no one knows who they can trust.
In the end it shows that most people cannot be trusted but some will try & do what’s right. It was a bit longer than needed and then the ending was probably more rushed to bring an end to the solution but there is a twist that means the journey may not have finished.
Praise for Jacqui Rose:
`Gritty and gripping - by a star in the making.' Kimberley Chambers
`A thrilling and gripping novel.' Roberta Kray
`A cracking good read.' Jessie Keane
`A captivating read from one of my favourite emerging authors' Mel Sherratt
Jacqui Rose is a novelist who now lives in London, although she hails from South Yorkshire. She has always written for pleasure but the ideas in her book have come from her own experiences.More About Jacqui Rose