Read The Facts of Life and Death by Belinda Bauer Online


'Call your mother.''What do I say?''Say goodbye.'This is how it begins.Lone women terrorised and their helpless families forced to watch - in a sick game where only one player knows the rules. And when those rules change, the new game is Murder.Living with her parents in the dank beach community of Limeburn, ten-year-old Ruby Trick has her own fears. Bullies on the school'Call your mother.''What do I say?''Say goodbye.'This is how it begins.Lone women terrorised and their helpless families forced to watch - in a sick game where only one player knows the rules. And when those rules change, the new game is Murder.Living with her parents in the dank beach community of Limeburn, ten-year-old Ruby Trick has her own fears. Bullies on the school bus, the forest crowding her house into the sea, and the threat of divorce.Helping her Daddy to catch the killer might be the key to keeping him close.As long as the killer doesn't catch her first......

Title : The Facts of Life and Death
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780593072783
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 336 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Facts of Life and Death Reviews

  • Brenda
    2019-06-18 17:37

    The subtitle of this book is "Every killer has to start somewhere." This is an extremely chilling story. Someone is starting at the beginning, learning and growing, until madness completely overcomes.More than a story about a murderer, this is a story about a young girl learning the facts of life and death firsthand. Ruby is an innocent and inquisitive ten year old. As the book progresses, she gets smarter and more aware of what's happening. I wondered if she was being made into a killer or not. There are signs that give me hope for her.Bauer states at the end that she wrote this during a personally dark year. If she can write this well when her life is off kilter, imagine what her future books will be when life is kinder to her! I am so looking forward toThe Shut Eye.

  • Tim The Enchanter
    2019-05-27 21:40

    Posted toThe Literary Gold Gavel for Best Novel of 2014My #5 Read of 2014An All Round Dazzling Thriller - 5 StarsI feel a bit like I have hit the jackpot. I was first introduced to Belinda Bauer earlier this year in her delightfully odd novel,Rubbernecker . She followed up that effort with this equally delightful offering. Belinda Bauer displays a keen eye for detail and atmosphere and for the plucky, odd and charming child character. It was an all-round great read. Plot summary The majority of the story is told through the eyes of 10 year old Ruby Trick. She is a bit overweight, a tad socially awkward and she loves horses, mars bars, and her father. When her town faces a series of murders in which the victims are forced to call home and tell their mothers they are going to die, Ruby knows she has to help her daddy and his "posse" of wannabe cowboys help solve the crime. As the crime and the killer comes into focus she learns about love, family, pain and maturity and it all comes together in one of the most dramatic and exciting finishes I have read in any book all year. My ThoughtsLike an Artist The story is wonderfully atmospheric. You feel the dampness of the ocean mists, hear the rustling of the forest leaves and smell the moss covering the rocky ground. As the story is told through the eyes of a 10 year old girl, the author goes to great lengths to explore the world through the vivid colours of youth. The innocence of youth is superimposed on a backdrop that is ultimately violent, disturbed and not at all child friendly.I enjoyed the contrasts in the story. Ruby was a stark contrast to her best friend, her parents were contrasts of each other, her view of her world and the reality of it were very different and the list goes on. The theme was deftly used throughout the novel with great success. It resulted in a compelling coming of age story intertwined with a mystery.Yes there are children. Yes there is a coming of age story. No, this is not a book for children. Despite the innocent Ruby, there is lack of innocence in her town. While the reader bears the full brunt of the danger, murder and desperation, Ruby sees it as a chance to investigate with Dad and a chance to do grown up things. The story is occasionally disturbing and often suspenseful. Do not read this and think you are getting a "cozy" mystery. There is enough drama and thrills to cause palpations in the light of heart.While I often enjoy books with a slow pace, this one stated especially slow. Ultimately, my overall enjoyment of the story and the characters as well as the atmospheric setting led me to give it top honours and to highly recommend this to lovers of Thrillers and Suspense. If anything, hang on to the this book for the ending scenes. I did manage to clue into the killer before the big reveal but it was not a let down and I don't think it will disappoint you either.Content AdvisoriesIt is difficult to find commentary on the sex/violence/language content of book if you are interested. I make an effort to give you the information so you can make an informed decision before reading. *Disclaimer* I do not take note or count the occurrences of adult language as I read. I am simply giving approximations.Scale 1 - Lowest 5 - Highest Sex-2 We are told that the victims are forced to strip. That said, there is no descriptions of anatomy or graphic elements. There is some sexual language noted below. Language-3 Mild obscenities are used in a small amount and handful of f-words appears. The majority of adult language is language that was used was derogatory to women, i.e. whore, slag, bitch. The usage was low to moderate. Violence-3 There are multiple murder and multiple murder attempts. Realistically, the violence is a backdrop and counterpoint to the character of Ruby. The murders are disturbing in the fact that the women are forced to call their mothers first but they are not graphic. The violence is not pervasive but an ominous presence in the background. There final few scene are tense and filled with potential violence.

  • Sharon Bolton
    2019-06-20 20:31

    “In Rock Cottage the living room floor had bulged and finally splintered to reveal a root of oak as thick as a man’s leg.” The village of Limeburn in Devon, beset by encroaching tides on one side, and the insidious creep of the forest on the other, in constant danger of being crushed to sand by twin forces of nature, is home to the Trick family. Ten year old, red-haired, lonely Ruby shares her father’s impatience with her mother, who always seems to be working or nagging them about sleep and vegetables. Ruby is Daddy’s little girl, especially since he joined the Gunslingers, a group of amateur cowboys who hang out in nearby Clovelly to talk spurs and replica weapons in fake American accents. John Trick buys his overweight child’s affection with tall tales, macho bragging and Mars Bars. The story begins quietly, unusually for Bauer, with a rather gentle tale of a small, struggling family in a dank Gothic setting. Ruby, of course, grabs a hold of our hearts and has us rooting for her very quickly but others in the small community are intriguing and engaging too. At this stage the book almost seems to be shaping up to be a 21st century Cranford. Then – oh my goodness – chapter five! One of the most terrifying scenes I’ve ever read. It comes from nowhere, it grabs hold of that Ruby-softened heart with a damp, cold hand and squeezes hard. No spoiler, this is included in the cover blurb, but if you’re a mother, this really is your WORST possible nightmare. After that, it’s only a matter of time before another of those horrible scenes jumps out at us. We can’t relax, and neither can the residents of Limeburn and Clovelly. To everyone who’s lived through the wettest British winter in living memory, this book will seem scarily, remarkably topical. When memories of seaside towns disappearing beneath waves, sea-walls being breached and even railways collapsing into the surf remain fresh in our minds, we feel the nervousness of Ruby, her friends and family, as the winds batter the house, the spray strikes the windows and the tides get ever higher. Once we know there’s a madman around, we share their terror. There is much to praise in this book. I loved the creepy, damp, dripping setting, and the dynamic between the three members of the Trick family. I loved the dopey, daydreaming detective, Calvin Bridge, facing an imminent shot-gun wedding, and drowning beneath a sea of hand-torn invitations, three-ply napkins and pink sugared-almonds. I loved plain, well-meaning, rabbit-keeping Miss Sharpe. One of Bauer’s great strengths is her ability to create funny, engaging characters who are both intriguingly different and completely believable at the same time. Is The Facts of Life and Death Bauer’s best? Not sure. I did love it, and really enjoyed her being Gothic for a change, but I suspect most readers will still plump for either Blacklands or Rubbernecker as their favourite. This book is quieter, more subtle, and may not get the same attention as it’s two flashier, older brothers. On the other hand, it’s an extremely credible addition to her body of work, and almost certainly one of the best crime novels we’ll see this year.

  • Kevin
    2019-06-08 19:18

    Ten-year old Ruby Trick lives in Devon on the edge of a dangerous sea on one side and the woods that seem to encroach on her family's home on the other. She is bullied on the bus with constant comments about her weight. Her father is her best friend..."Love you hundreds, Dad." He has been out of work for three years since the shipbuilding plant where he used to work has closed. He spends his time fishing, drinking cider and hanging out with Ruby. Ruby's mom seems to either be at work or nagging on either Ruby or her father. Her parents aren't getting along and it seems divorce is just around the corner.A killer has been abducting women and forcing them to call their mothers before they are killed.Ruby's father and his cowboy Friday group decide to go looking for the killer. Belinda Bauer is a wonder! Every time I read one of her books I think it is the best book I have read for a very long time. I'm a little sick because I now have read all of her brilliant books. Truly this book gets all five dazzling stars! I give this one the "Kevin's Gushing Guarantee."

  • Brenda
    2019-06-08 14:39

    Ten year old Ruby Trick loved her Daddy; she adored him and he loved her right back – “Love you hundreds” was their common refrain. But Ruby wasn’t too sure about Mummy. Daddy and Mummy never used to row, they would never raise their voices to each other, but since Daddy had lost his job and Mummy had to work twice as hard to support them all, things had been gradually getting worse. Mummy was always nagging Daddy and upsetting him…Their house was a ramshackle old dwelling called The Retreat – the cracks and holes in the walls would make whistling sounds with the wind, but Ruby was used to it. Their little village of Limeburn was right on the cliff overlooking the ocean – Ruby was always watching the sea and waiting for it to eat into the forest and then gobble up her house. Plus school was a torment for Ruby with the bullies always picking on her – but she loved her teacher, Miss Sharpe, who always had a kind word for Ruby.Suddenly young women were going missing from Limeburn – the terror of being told to call their mothers to say goodbye was only the beginning. The ghastly game that was being played by an evil and twisted killer had the local police stumped; so Ruby’s Daddy, John Trick and some of his friends decided to find the killer themselves. And Ruby begged her Daddy to let her go too….I loved this intense and gripping thriller! The twists and turns were great, the pace was fast and kept me reading well into the night. I have no hesitation in recommending this book to all thriller lovers.With thanks to The Reading Room and the publisher for my copy to read and review.

  • Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
    2019-05-21 18:18

    4.5 stars. Another piece of writing brilliance from Belinda Bauer! I just love the tension and atmosphere in her novels. This book is set in a seaside town in Devon, England. It should be a safe, quiet and happy place but something is going horribly wrong, women are dying, being murdered and the local police struggle to know what's going on. From the first murder scene you know this one will have you up reading because you too will want to know who did it.It's told from the perspective of ten year old Ruby, who dreams if owning her own pony one day. The book is excellent in that it really showcases how tricky it can be for a writer to see and then portray things from a child's perspective. Bauer does it exceptionally well. I loved Ruby for a million reasons.As the plot rolled out I was turning pages rapidly, I just wanted more. There were dark moments, funny moments and emotional moments too, Bauer is genius in putting that combination in her books and pulling it off well. As the police search for answers, Ruby is on her own journey and we go on it with her.There are moments in this book where if you are a parent, a mother you will just simply hold your breath. A brilliant atmospheric crime novel that builds up to an outstanding finale.The book has great characters, very easy to picture what's going on as you read, it has pace, thrills, scary moments, moments where you might hold your breath, revelation moments and is simply a cracking good read. I'm a huge Bauer fan, not one of her books has let me down yet. Read it, love it.

  • Liz Barnsley
    2019-06-07 19:20

    ‘Call your mother.’‘What do I say?’‘Say goodbye.’This is how it begins. Living with her parents in the dank beach community of Limeburn, ten-year-old Ruby Trick has her own fears. Bullies on the school bus, the forest crowding her house into the sea, and the threat of divorce.Helping her Daddy to catch a killer might be the key to keeping him close.As long as the killer doesn’t catch her first..So I recently read “Rubbernecker” from Belinda Bauer, also incidentally the first novel of hers I have read since Blacklands and it was so good that I was kind of worried that this one would fall flat. It absolutely did not do any such thing.We follow along mostly with ten year old Ruby as she explores her world, puts up with bullies, hangs out with her friends and observes her people – she adores Daddy and is determined that he will be happy despite the fact that her parents are not getting on. Meanwhile young women are going missing, as a fledgling killer becomes more confident.This was an extremely clever psychological thriller, especially as young Ruby’s viewpoint was so very authentic – she behaves like a ten year old with all the curiosity and wonder that time of life brings – and it was a different take on the way an adult would look at the world or peoples actions. Ruby, whilst helping her Dad try and track the killer, ends up with a lot of information that she doesnt realise is important. Offset that against the beautifully drawn police team (and not cliche at all – I thought Calvin was probably one of the most realistic sounding Police Officers I have ever read in fiction and boss Kirsty King was delightfully normal) and you have a cleverly constructed, character driven tale of the darker side of human nature. A thing that is a particular strength of Ms Bauers if this and Rubbernecker together are anything to go by.Aptly titled – The Facts of Life and Death are indeed right in here – I thought this was terrifically good. Certainly one of my favourite “crime” novels I have read in 2014 so far.Very much recommended.Happy Reading Folks!

  • Zoe
    2019-05-29 13:44

    Absorbing, gritty and exceptionally dark!This is a compelling story set in North Devon, England and is told from the perspective of Ruby, an innocent 10-year-old girl who finds herself not only struggling with coming-of-age but with a family in turmoil and a village plagued by a serial killer.The prose is direct and clear. The characterization is well done with a cast of characters that are troubled, raw and distinctive and a setting that is a character itself with its dreariness, history, rugged terrain and isolation.This truly is an intelligent, atmospheric novel with a clever, meticulous plot filled with tension, danger, suspense, twists, intrigue and murder that delves into the murkiest corners of the human psyche and highlights how much rage and malice can actually exist in those you least expect.Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.All my reviews can be found on my blog at

  • Roxann
    2019-05-30 17:46

    From the cover: On the beaches and cliffs of North Devon, lone women have become victims in a terrifying game where only one player knows the rules. And when those rules change, the new game is murder. But a madman on the loose feels very far from the crumbling, seaside home of ten-year-old Ruby Trick. Instead she lives in constant fear of school bullies, the dark forest crowding her house into the sea, and the threat of her parents’ divorce. Helping her father to catch the killer seems like the only way to keep him close. As long as the killer doesn’t catch her first.I received the book for free through Goodreads Giveaways.I loved this book all the way from its damp/wet setting, to the dysfunctional Trick family. I loved the main characters-the Trick family and the two detectives. All the characters seemed so real-even the very bad one. The plot with all its twists and turns was engaging. At first it was a slow moving book, but the pace picked up and kept me reading-it was hard to put down the book. I would recommend this book to people who like thrillers/mysteries.

  • Lady Delacour
    2019-05-27 13:32

    Simple minded, unusual characters,living dysfunctional lives...while a murderer is in there mist.Ok narration by Colleen Prendergast.

  • Richard
    2019-06-06 20:19

    This is another wonderful story from the pen of Belinda Bauer.Set, a little along the coast from Clovelly, in Limeburn a tiny village that once had a prosperous past, but never a pull for tourists to save its own economy. Slowly, the population and their homes seem to be surrendering to the economic reality, further squeezed by the advancing sea and the encroaching countryside. The hamlet has just 5 children who are forced to play together, one of whom is Ruby Trick. This is her story, during a changing time as she moves from small child into a young girl on the cusp of puberty. However, it is a wider threat to the whole of North Devon that will change her life forever and take her more rapidly into the world of adulthood. A serial killer is at work; no young woman appears safe and Ruby is determined to help her Daddy try to catch the murderer.The author has always to my great pleasure shown great skills in voicing young people and writing from a child's perspective. That strength is demonstrated here with compassion and wit, through Ruby's coming of age, in her relationships at home, at school and as a new appointed deputy in her Dad's gunslingers' posse. Her relationship with her Father is crucial to this story and is beautifully explored, especially in their dialogue and interactions.The sense of place is also beautifully drawn. I had visions of the author bribing local Welsh fisher folk to cross the Bristol Channel in secret to spy/research the geography and gather a sense of time and place. My partner suggested she probably used the Severn Bridge a couple of times. Whatever, Belinda Bauer has captured the locale and written so well that you can smell the sea, sense the damp and have to pause for breath as you climb one of the paths out of Limeburn.This is an easy book to read and you can quickly progress through the book on the back of this discerning storyteller.As with all her books, this novel has a dark side. The author's most clever attribute is her ability to look at stories from a fresh perspective. Here it is through the eyes of Ruby; the horrors of these crimes will change her life forever and live long for the reader long after you finish this excellent novel.

  • Karen
    2019-06-13 16:37

    I very much enjoyed a previous book by this author, Blacklands, and was delighted to be given the opportunity by Dead Good on Goodreads to read the latest release. The two books that I have so far read both appear to have the same very distinctive style – the location and plotline may differ but there is always that sense of atmospheric darkness to the story. The story is partly written in the voice of 10 year old Ruby Trick. Sad little Ruby captured my heart straight away. She lives with her parents, John and Alison in a ramshackle two bedroomed cottage in Limeburn, a small village community in Devon, sandwiched between the sea and the forest. Ruby doesn’t have many friends, she is bullied by other children and is the girl who is always left on her own in the school playground. For me it was her vulnerability and innocence that made her character so realistic. Her parents are having problems and are constantly arguing however Ruby adores her feckless father and will do anything to have his love and attention. She is overjoyed when he makes her his “Gunslinger Deputy” and takes her with him on late night drives looking for the attacker. The bleakness of the location, the stormy weather and the sense of isolation all add to the darkness of the story and when the attacks on young women escalate you can feel the fear and a sense of foreboding that worse is yet to come. This is not a fast paced story and is very much character driven with a superb cast who were all so believable. The scene is set very slowly and carefully for both character definition and location and then gradually the tension increases as does the body count. In the build up to the dramatic conclusion my heart was in my mouth and I certainly couldn’t put the book down until the end. Another success for Ms Bauer and I shall now be hunting out my copy of Darkside from my bookshelves to read. My thanks to Dead Good for the hardback copy to review.

  • Leah
    2019-06-11 16:44

    Daddy's gone a-huntin'...Little Ruby Trick lives with her parents in a broken-down cottage called The Retreat in the tiny village of Limeburn in Devon. With the forest encroaching on one side and the sea threatening on the other, Limeburn is not the idyllic English village of fiction. This is a rain-soaked, muddy place, barely putting up a fight any longer against the forces of nature that are slowly crushing it into extinction. And Ruby’s family is under as much threat as her home – with Daddy long out of work and no longer making much effort to do anything about it, while Mummy works full time and worries about money and Ruby’s welfare. Daddy’s much more fun, though – he’s a part-time cowboy in the local Gunslingers club and spoils plump little Ruby with Mars Bars and chips. So Ruby always takes Daddy’s side against Mummy and would do anything to keep his love. Including helping him hunt a serial killer…By day, it was easy to forget that the trees and the ocean were lying in wait…But by night Ruby could feel the tides tugging at her belly, while the forest tested The Retreat, squealing against the glass and tapping on the tiles.And she wondered what it would be like – when the outside finally broke in.This book starts off slowly by introducing us to Ruby’s life. The descriptions of the village and its life are vivid and extremely topical given the amount of rain and flood damage the country has been suffering recently for real. And the constant threat of natural disaster combines with the isolation of the village to provide a nicely chilling backdrop for a story that suddenly darkens into something much more disturbing than the first few chapters might suggest. Because somewhere in this area of Devon, a man is beginning on a course of action that will eventually turn him into a serial killer; as the tagline says - every killer has to start somewhere. And this killer starts by abducting a young woman, then forcing her to phone her mother and tell her goodbye. As the attacks mount, John Trick and his fellow Gunslingers decide to hunt down the killer themselves, and Ruby gets the chance to join their ‘posse’…Bauer has given us an original twist on the serial killer novel and writes with all her usual skill. The main adult characters are very well developed – we see them through Ruby’s eyes but Bauer manages to give us enough information so that our interpretation of their actions is different from hers. However I felt the structure of the book wasn’t as tight as Bauer’s plots have been in the past, meaning that most of the surprises were revealed well before the thriller-like ending.Bauer has given us a child’s eye view in some of her earlier books, and is no less effective in this one in taking us into the mind of 10-year-old Ruby. However, I must admit that I got fairly tired of all the Mummy/Daddy stuff as the book wore on, especially since Bauer mainly kept the language very much at the level of a fairly immature 10-year-old’s. It’s very well done and I admire the skill, but for my personal taste I don’t want to read vast swathes of over-simplified language and the half-understanding that a child’s viewpoint inevitably gives if it is to be convincing. I did also wonder if many of today’s 10-year-olds are quite as naïve as Ruby seems to be.I feel I’m being hyper-critical of a book that overall I thought was very readable and enjoyed quite a lot. Bauer’s last book Rubbernecker was one of my favourites of last year and I suspect that’s making me judge this one more harshly than I should, because it didn’t quite live up to my perhaps too-high hopes for it. However, that still leaves it as a very good thriller with some novel twists, strong characterisation and a beautifully-evoked setting – so, despite my criticisms, highly recommended. 4½ stars for me, so rounded

  • Cleo Bannister
    2019-06-11 14:21

    The book is told by the viewpoint of ten-year old Ruby Trick who lives in Limeburn, Devon where she lives with her Mummy who works at the posh hotel and her Daddy a lover of all things Cowboy. He no longer has a job since the industry he was trained for has dissolved. The summer that the killer came to the area was one of those wet, dank summers that we do so well in the UK. Occasionally the sun managed to make a half-hearted appearance but for the rest of the time, it was damp and dismal.Limeburn is sandwiched between the forest on one side, Ruby is to go no further than the stile, and the sea on the other, the sea where Ruby’s father fishes for their dinner and occasionally to sell. The few children in the village stick together, they have to if they want any companions at all, because it is a way to the larger town and so Ruby spends time in the ‘haunted house’ with her friend Adam throwing sticks into the sea and the rest of her time living for her weekly copy of Pony & Rider and her Mars bar that take up the entirety of her pocket money which she takes back home to The Retreat.'It was owned by a family in London who had bought it and named it and then found ti was too distant, too dreary, too damp to retreat to – even just once a summer – and had rented it out until they could sell at a profit.'Meanwhile a twisted man is taking young women off the streets and getting them to strip and call their mothers to say goodbye. The mothers then get to watch and listen as the life is snuffed out of their daughters. Absolutely horrific, need I say more?The absolute beauty of this book is that although much of what is happening is seen through Ruby’s eyes, with a childhood that is recognisable to many I should imagine, with petty jealousies, nasty boys, priggish girls and a fair smattering of boredom, Ruby is also worried about her Daddy leaving. Daddy is so much more fun than Mummy who is boring but there are rows which Ruby tries to remove herself from:'Whenever the row started, it always ended up at the job. It got there without her.'Then there is school where Ruby’s problems are magnified, not the most attractive of children with red hair and a fondness for sweets, which Daddy often indulges, she has a teacher Miss Sharpe who tells them all to write a diary daily. As any self-respecting child would, this meant that Ruby spent one day a week filling in her entries in her ‘Dairy’ Seriously I could have been Ruby and I adored Miss Sharpe’s character:'A couple of the other teachers tittered nervously. Not Miss Sharpe. If Miss Sharpe ever caught herself tittering, she’d give herself a good smack.'So it is a story of childhood, a world interpreted without the context to fully understand, it is also funny which makes it a real joy to read… and scary – I don’t want to think about the terror of those women, particularly those caught later on, who knew all about the murderer, or their poor mothers. The juxtaposition of childhood innocence with depravity makes for an incredibly powerful story and the outstanding plotting, the steady pace where there is not one scene too many, nor a single word seemingly without importance.An outstanding read which was truly exceptional. If you haven’t read any of Belinda Bauer’s books, all of which I highly recommend, The Facts of Life and Death is up there with my favourite crime novels of all time, because it is about so much more than just crime; it is a reflection of a type of household, a type of community, a type of school and a type of man – all of which could be just around the corner from you or me

  • Frue_s
    2019-05-27 14:41

    Läste klart den under ett dygn, ca 5 h. Så otroligt bra och otäck på ett sätt som kändes i själen! Min 10:e roman under januari!!

  • AnnetteOlsson
    2019-06-04 18:22

    Mina tankar om boken på:

  • Gerard Oconnell
    2019-06-10 15:35

    i enjoyed this book,a gripping story, i will be reading more from this writer.

  • Plum-crazy
    2019-06-07 21:26

    Another really atmospheric & gripping read from Bauer who does a fantastic job of giving the ten-year old narrator such a believable voice.Ruby lives a rather lonely life, overweight & picked on at school she idolises her father & is a real daddy girls, indeed at times its almost heart breaking to hear her sometimes pathetic attempts to please him. When the village becomes the hunting ground of a serial killer, Ruby joins her dad in tracking the killer down, a killer who cruelly makes his victims call their mothers to say goodbye.To the reader, interpreting Ruby's childish version of events, it's obvious very early on who the killer is but even after that's confirmed the tension still builds beautifully as Ruby becomes more aware of what is happening around her & comes to her own conclusion.An excellent read deserving five stars if only for my joy with this sentence on page 73 "The rain had stopped and the night smelled like green and river.".....& I have taken great delight in pointing this out to hubby. Why? Because he always looks at me as if I'm mad when I say something smells GREEN -'s not just me!

  • Karolyn
    2019-05-28 13:38

    Didn't really enjoy this book, very slow moving and took awhile before the first body. Set in a small Devon village, it sees girls who get to ring home before being found murdered

  • Janette Fleming
    2019-06-20 20:27

    Call your mother.''What do I say?''Say goodbye.' This is how it begins.Lone women terrorised and their helpless families forced to watch - in a sick game where only one player knows the rules. And when those rules change, the new game is Murder.Living with her parents in the dank beach community of Limeburn, ten-year-old Ruby Trick has her own fears. Bullies on the school bus, the forest crowding her house into the sea, and the threat of divorce.Helping her Daddy to catch the killer might be the key to keeping him close.As long as the killer doesn't catch her first...From the author‘I am intrigued by the secret lives of children. It seems to me that parents trust too easily that their children are safe as long as they are not alone. In fact, children are in the greatest danger when they are with other people – be they friends or foes. And because children can be confused by loyalty and guilt, when something bad happens, many parents will never even know.In this book I wanted to explore the way a child negotiates her own secret fears – the forest that presses against her ramshackle home, the sea that creeps up the slipway, the bullies on the school bus and – the most frightening thing of all – her dread that her Daddy might leave.Limeburn is based on Bucks Mills in North Devon – an eerie hamlet caught between the forest and the waves, and a grim reflection of the way Ruby is squeezed between unhappy parents; corruption and manipulation; childhood and adolescence.All in the shadow of a serial killer…’Brilliant atmospheric novel by one of my favourite authors. You never know what to expect from Bauer whether it is the bleak Blacklands trilogy or her stand alone novels.The Facts is an manipulative coming of age novel where no one or nothing is as they first appear. Slow to start but quickly picks up pace and sustains it. Likeable characters, outstanding writing and Bauer's trademark black humour made this a wonderful read.

  • Nedyah
    2019-06-06 15:35

    Últimamente estoy añadiendo más novelas de este género a mi lista de lecturas. Hace unos meses leí Morir No Es Tan Fácil, otro thriller de Belinda Bauer que me encantó; razón por la que me animé a seguir descubriendo a esta autora con Una Lección de Vida y Muerte donde nos presenta una historia original y, como en su anterior novela, marcada por una protagonista única y especial que hace de la lectura y la historia algo mucho más destacable y memorable. Ruby es una niña de diez años que vive en una casa que se cae a pedazos no sólo en el sentido literal; Ruby es consciente también de que la relación entre sus padres va de mal en peor. Por si eso no fuera poco, es una niña gordita y se enfrenta a diario al acoso de sus compañeros del cole, al control alimentario de su madre y a las constantes peleas entre sus padres. Por suerte, su padre, un hombre en paro al que le apasiona el oeste y los vaqueros, la apoya en todo y le da los ánimos y los caprichos que necesita, encontrando en él al mejor amigo que puede esperar cualquier cría de su edad. Es más, debido a una serie de asesinatos que empiezan a tener lugar en el condado, el padre de Ruby, con su grupo de amigos apodados Los Pistoleros, emprende una búsqueda nocturna para controlar las calles y tratar de hallar al asesino antes de que mate a más mujeres; y pese a ser una cría de diez años, Ruby logra convencer a su padre para que la añada a la partida de vigilancia, lo que le permite disfrutar más de la cercanía de su padre, pero también de descubrir algunos aspectos de su personalidad que desconocía.Al mismo tiempo, la inspectora jefe Kirsty King y su ayudante Calvin Bridge, tratarán de resolver el caso y atrapar al asesino con las escasas pruebas y evidencias que va dejando a su paso, pues el asesino no es ningún profesional y va aprendiendo sobre la marcha, algo en clara ventaja para el curso de la investigación. [...]Seguir leyendo en:

  • Marisolea
    2019-05-24 17:26

    En "Una lección de vida y muerte" nos encontramos a Ruby, una niña de doce años que vive en una casucha al sur de Inglaterra con su padre, que está en paro, y su madre, que trabaja en un hotel. Ruby está gordita y sufre acoso escolar. Su madre procura esconder las galeltas y que coma sano. Su padre la mima y la consiente. La relación entre los padres de Ruby no es buena, pues el padre no soporta que sea su mujer la que traiga el dinero a casa. Al mismo tiempo, un asesino anda suelto por la zona. Un asesino particularmente sádico, que obliga a sus víctimas, todas mujeres, a llamar a sus madres por teléfono y decirles que las va a matar. La gente del pueblo y en especial el grupo de los vaqueros, del que forma parte el padre de Ruby, se reúne en una especie de patrulla para vigilar el pueblo. El padre de Ruby aprovecha que la madre trabaja de noche para llevarse a la niña con él.Los dos policías encargados de la investigación de los crímenes tienen poco peso en la novela, si bien es desternillante la historia de uno de ellos, que ha aceptado la propuesta de matrimonio de su novia solo para poder ver la carrera de Fórmula 1 y de pronto se ve inmerso en un mundo en el que hay catálogos y más catálogos de servilletas, invitaciones, lazos, adornos y flores. (view spoiler)[A medida que la historia avanza, el padre de Ruby va mostrando su cara más celosa y patológica respecto de las mujeres. Y las mujeres que le rodean empiezan a correr peligro...(hide spoiler)]Novela breve, entretenida, con su poquito de intriga, su poquito de risa y su poquito de pena. Se lee en un suspiro y no está nada mal.

  • Bev
    2019-06-14 19:32

    If you scroll through my blog or my Goodreads news feed, you will notice that July 2015 was a very successful reading month for me. And having spent most of the month ill in bed, I didn’t get out much, which meant that my “to-read” pile, which had previously threatened to kill me if I left it on my bedside table, was looking far more respectable.When my husband, pitying me for not being able to drive or shop for books, handed me a wrapped book-shaped parcel, I had mixed emotions. I had so much still to read, but oh my word, I love new books. I should have trusted him. It was the Belinda Bauer I was dying to read. This one.The Facts of Life and Death is Belinda Bauer’s second stand-alone novel (after Rubbernecker), and like her other novels, it is an intense psychological thriller.Set in the village of Limeburn in Devon, you feel the danger immediately – from the sea and the weather, which threaten to repossess the village reclaimed once already from the ocean. Ruby Trick is ten years old and she lives here with her mother and father. In an atmosphere already creepy and haunting, we find out there have been a series of murders in which the victims are forced to call home and tell their mothers they are going to die. Ruby is eager to help her Dad and his "posse" of wannabe cowboys help solve the crime.Bauer is gifted at storytelling, setting crimes in the midst of everyday life, and creating tension between her characters that is tangible. Read my full review here:

  • A.J. Waines
    2019-05-31 17:29

    What I love about Belinda Bauer's books is that they are so much more than the story. The quality of the writing seems to encapsulate so many different facets. There's a bizarre macabre humour, a quirky, original view of the world, innocence and tenderness - all within a dark and cracking-good crime thriller!In The facts of Life and Death, there are two strands - a serial killer in a small seaside village, snatching late-night foolish hitch-hikers and a family that centres around a girl of ten, Ruby, learning to cope with bullying at school and discord at home between her parents. The police are on the trail of the twisted killer who forces the women to strip, then call their mothers to say 'goodbye'. Creepy indeed. Ruby starts writing a diary and what she sees and who she's with begins to hold significance for both threads of the novel.Ruby is portrayed with humanity and there's a 'coming of age', transformational element to her story. She is so well drawn in 3D, she jumps off the page. I did not know where the story was heading, which I always love and the unpredictability is coupled with unusual, clever, true to life, even laugh out loud moments.I thoroughly recommend this book - I was sad to reach the end.

  • Amanda Patterson
    2019-05-21 16:38

    I want to give this book 3.5 stars.10-year-old Ruby Trick is a bit overweight and rather socially awkward. She is angry with her mother who always seems angry with her husband, Ruby’s father, John Trick. Ruby loves horses, Mars bars, and she adores her unemployed father. Her mother is hardly ever home as she is the breadwinner, working as a chef at a nearby hotel.They live in the grim, damp seaside town of Limeburn where the forest crowds their house on the one side and the sea on the other. Ruby has to deal with bullies on the bus, awkward encounters with children who live in the area and the unhappiness of her parents’ marriage.When a series of women are murdered, after they are forced to call their mothers and tell them they are going to die, Ruby wants to help her father and his ‘posse’ of cowboys solve the crime. What she slowly discovers about the killer and his victims is terrifying.Rubbernecker, Bauer’s previous novel was excellent. The Facts of Life and Death is a good read. Bauer has an uncanny knack for getting under the skin of some extraordinary characters. I will definitely read more of her books.

  • Renita D'Silva
    2019-06-16 15:22

    Thrilling and tense. Loved Ruby. What an amazing girl!

  • Jo
    2019-06-08 15:27

    I loved this novel. Set in Devon in an area I know well (Clovelly, Bideford, Appledore, Instow) a seemingly ordinary family is thrown into the middle of an investigation into a serial killer who forces young women to strip naked, then phone their mothers before they are murdered. Much of the novel is seen through the eyes of 10-year-old Ruby Trick who idolises her unemployed father, John who likes to dress as a cowboy and takes her out in his car at night, giving lifts home to young, vulnerable women. Ruby's mother is a distant figure, who spends most of her time at work in a local hotel or having secret assignations with her lover. The family live in a ramshackle cottage on the coast and their community is under threat from rising sea levels, as well as the serial killer in their midst. The saga of the bumbling young detective's impending marriage provides light relief from the gruesome details of the murders and Bauer reminds us of what it was like to be a child with the seaside as a playground.

  • Kim Kimselius
    2019-06-14 13:38

    Ännu en riktigt ruskig rysare av författaren som med sina tidigare böcker har trollbundet mig från första till sista sidan. Denna bok var inget undantag, utan är minst lika fängslande som de tidigare.Belinda Bauer är mästerlig på personskildringar och lyckats få läsaren att se det goda även hos en mördare, för allting är inte svart och vitt, författaren leker med gråzonerna och bygger upp en olidlig spänning.Unga, vackra kvinnor tillfångatas av en maskerad man som uppmanar dem att klä av sig, sedan ber han dem ringa sin mor med videosamtal och berätta att han tänker mörda den unga kvinnan.Tioåriga Ruby Trick ser upp till sin far, John, och vill precis som han bli en riktig cowboy, en sheriff som skyddar andra. Därför blir hon överlycklig när hon tillsammans med sin far får åka runt i nattens mörker för att beskydda unga kvinnor. Ofta stannar de till och skjutsar någon kvinna hem. Först tvekar kvinnorna att stiga in i bilen, men när de ser barnet åker de med.En psykologisk thriller när den är som bäst! Läs den!

  • Abrir un Libro
    2019-06-19 15:31

    3,50 Esta es una novela que con algunos peros -entre ellos, por ejemplo, la traducción al castellano donde me he encontrado que en vez de decir "monte de Venus" se traduce como "huerto de Venus"... ???-, se consigue leer con mucho interés y dispone de un buen suspense. "... Ruby, la protagonista indiscutible de Una lección de vida y muerte, es una niña de diez años que vive también en el condado, en un pueblo llamado Limeburn, y que tiene sus propios miedos: a no ser guapa, a estar gordita, al acoso de sus compañeros en el autobús escolar, al divorcio de sus padres, a que su padre -un hombre en el paro que dispone de un grupo de amigos apodados los Pistoleros que les apasiona el oeste y los vaqueros-, deje de quererla… Mientras, el asesino no descansará y la inspectora jefe Kirsty King junto a su ayudante Calvin Bridge, intentarán resolver el caso y atrapar al asesino"...

  • LindaBranham Greenwell
    2019-06-03 17:20

    The story is written mainly through the eyes of Ruby Trick, a ten year old girl. Ruby's parents are Allison and John. Allison works in a hotel - and John has lost is his job and is unable to find work. We learn about Ruby's day to day life - her friends, her problems with bullies at school, the arguments between her parents.Then a murder occurs, and a group of citizens decide to help the police search for the killer - John is one of that group. Ruby decides to go with John on his nightly searches for the killer - even though she is only 10 years old - because she wants to keep John, her dad, connected to her so that he won;t leave because of the arguments between him and her momWe also learn about the situation from the perspective of a local police officer, Calvin, - who is new as a detective and is involved in his first murder caseA really good mystery - story