Morecambe and Vice with author Nicki Thornton @BOTBSPublicity @MorecambeVice @nicki_thornton

Today it’s my stop on The Morecambe and Vice blog tour and it’s my pleasure to have children’s author Nicki Thornton on My Chestnut Reading Tree and review the prize winning Last Chance Hotel. Many thanks to Sarah Hardy for inviting me onto the tour.

Morecambe and Vice…

In September 2017, Morecambe & Vice made its sparkling debut at the glorious Morecambe Winter Gardens. Described as a weekend ‘full of warmth, wit and wisdom’, authors, speakers and guests from across the globe flocked to the sunny seaside for a weekend filled with criminal shenanigans.

Now, in 2019 it is back for the third year running! This year the North West’s quirkiest crime-writing festival will be bigger and better than ever before!

This year, the theme for Morecambe & Vice is (rather fittingly!) :

‘Bring Me Sunshine’ 

They will be shining a bright positive light on the world of crime fiction, filling the festival with tales of inspiration, overcoming hardships and that warm fuzzy feeling you get when good things happen!

Nicki Thornton…

‘The Last Chance Hotel’ is Nicki Thornton’s debut novel and was chosen as Waterstones Book of the Month for October 2018.

It is a murder mystery set in a magical world and was nominated for the Carnegie Medal 2019, was shortlisted for the 2019 CrimeFest Best Crime Novel for Children, the 2019 Oxfordshire Book Award Best Junior Novel, Shortlisted for the Warwickshire 2019 Junior Book Award and longlisted for the Specsavers National Book Awards 2018

It was a ‘Best Book of 2018′ in The Observer, The Telegraph and The Sunday Times.

Nicki lives in Oxfordshire where she ran a bookshop for more than ten years. She is passionate about books, bookshops and anything that celebrates reading for pleasure.’

Nicki Thornton will be appearing at Morecambe and Vice tomorrow Saturday 28th September on the “Let Them Lead The Way” panel at The Midland Hotel 1045-1130.

You can find out more by visiting the website HERE

The Last Chance Hotel…

Seth is the oppressed kitchen boy at the remote Last Chance Hotel. But when a strange gathering of magicians arrives for dinner, their leader is poisoned. A locked-room murder investigation ensues – and Seth is the main suspect. Can he solve the mystery and clear his name, especially when magic’s afoot?  

My review…

This is a wonderfully magical murder mystery that would be perfect for children age 10+ although I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it as an adult. It certainly has a complex enough plot to keep the attention of adult readers which could put off some younger readers but I think that by year 5 they can cope with this intriguing narrative.

The first few chapters set the scene nicely introducing Seth Seppi the kitchen boy and Henri (who I’d like to have seen more of to be honest). They work for the owners of The Last Chance Hotel, the terrible Bunn family, who are preparing for some very special guests. But when one of those guests is murdered, seemingly by a special desert made by Seth himself, in a room where no one could get in or out then Seth is the main suspect in their death.

The characters who have assembled are there for a reason and I loved watching how that reason unfolded alongside their explanations of the magical world they interacted with. When Seth finds something mysterious in his room, it totally changes his perspective on what is happening around him as he try’s to prove his innocence. He’s helped by his cat Nightshade who definitely comes to life once his new talent debuts!

I can see why The Last Chance Hotel has won and been nominated for so many awards. It’s gripping, creative and intriguing storyline maintains the readers interest throughout and leaves them wanting to know more about Seth especially after those shocking last few pages.

Highly recommended by me!

And make sure you follow the other bloggers on the tour…

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I am a Norfolk girl living in leafy Cheshire with my grumpy Scotsman. A mum and nana who lives for my family but who is also addicted to reading (and Marmite!) I will read almost anything but my preferred genres to review are psychological thrillers, crime procedural novels or women's fiction. My kindle is my life but I also have a substantial bookshelf in my cosy reading room where I can go to escape the stresses of family life with plenty of tea and chocolate. I am a member of netgalley and bookbridg. I review on Amazon, where I'm a Top 500 reviewer, and Goodreads. You can always find me over on Twitter @jocatrobertson for any review requests.

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