Blog Tour · Book Review · Crime/Thriller · Fiction · Psycological · thriller

Bloody Scotland by Various Authors (Book Review) @BloodyScotland @Brownlee_Donald #Anthology #Scotland

Welcome to my stop on the Bloody Scotland Blog Tour! I have a review to share with you all. What a collection of stories! The authors involved in this anthology are outstanding talents and I appreciate the opportunity to share my thoughts on the book. Enjoy the review and please check out all the other amazing blogs that are taking part in the tour.


Sent to me by Fiona Brownlee in exchange for an honest review.

Release Date: 07/09/17

Publisher: Historic Environment Scotland

ISBN: 978-1849172431

Format: Hardback, 288pp

Genre: Crime/Thriller

Rating: 4/5

Summed up in a word: Pertinent

First Impressions

I was chuffed when Fiona got in touch with me about reviewing Bloody Scotland on the blog tour. The list of authors involved was all I needed to immediately put this on my TBR! Chris Brookmyre is one of my all time favourite authors, as well as E S Thomson and Stuart MacBride. Their work is brilliant and they definitely brought their A game to this anthology. Bloody Scotland is a collection of short stories from some of the most passionate and talented Scottish authors. The material is all centred around historical buildings/sites in Scotland and the stories capture the essence of each location perfectly. I couldn’t recommend this enough to all those readers who love a vivid, shocking and meaningful collection of stories from fantastic modern talents.

Book Synopsis

In Bloody Scotland twelve of Scotland’s best crime writers use the sinister side of the country’s built heritage in stories that are by turns gripping, chilling and redemptive. Stellar contributors Val McDermid, Chris Brookmyre, Denise Mina, Gordon Brown, Ann Cleeves, Louise Welsh, Lin Anderson, Doug Johnstone, Craig Robertson, E S Thomson, Sara Sheridan and Stuart MacBride explore the thrilling potential of Scotland’s iconic sites and structures. From murder in an Iron Age broch and a macabre tale of revenge among the furious clamour of an eighteenth century mill, to a dark psychological thriller set within the tourist throng of Edinburgh Castle and a rivalry turning fatal in the concrete galleries of an abandoned modernist ruin, this collection uncovers the intimate – and deadly – connections between people and places. Prepare for a dangerous journey into the dark shadows of our nation’s buildings – where passion, fury, desire and death collide.

My Review

I was really eager to read Bloody Scotland for so many reasons. Short Stories! Crime writing! Scotland! Ticks all the boxes for me. I adore short stories as they are both intense and capture so much story in such a short amount of words. This is what made Bloody Scotland a brilliant read for me. All the authors managed to perfectly capture the essence of each location with short stories true to their own writing style. Each piece is linked in with the real history of every building and it was truly fascinating. These stories encapsulate the significance of each site through the medium of a cracking crime/thriller story. This is a must read for every crime fan.

Inspired by the influences that buildings/locations have on our memories and psyche, Bloody Scotland brings together some of the most talented and relevant Scottish authors working today. I was already excited by the familiarity of authors such as Chris Brookmyre, Stuart MacBride and E S Thomson, but it was actually the opportunity to indulge in new authors that made this book for me. Especially Denise Mina and her narrative centred around Edinburgh Castle, so good! I also appreciated the fact that we got insights to each locations at the end of the book, that brought the whole atmosphere of the book together for me.

In Bloody Scotland we get 12 short stories inspired by 12 distinctly different locations. Each narrative is crafted in a way that honours the buildings memory and the style of writing each author is comfortable with. From Stuart MacBride and his ominous, fearsome and nail-biting story surrounding Kinnaird Head Lighthouse.


To Chris Brookmyre’s bold, brash and intense hostage situation that takes place with the fortified walls of Bothwell Castle.


Bloody Scotland has a story to suit each and every crime reader. A vast selection of tones, atmospheres and themes are hiding within to treat the reader to a fascinating read. Obviously being a short story collection, not every story connected with me but it is safe to say I appreciated the details behind each tale. Whether it was mythology, ghost stories and rebellion or darker themes like violence, cannibalism, abuse or murder. The stories are there to evoke the readers imagination, to connect with each site with captivating stories. As I mention before, my favourite stand out story has to be Denise Misa’s story that takes place in Edinburgh castle. It is a story that captured my full attention and wouldn’t let go even when I had to put the book down. I was shocked by the characters and impressed that Misa managed to use the castle to its full effect in a short narrative.

Whether it is the setting of a hostage of situation or a place that reminds you how much you love your daughter, we all have locations that mean the world to us or remind us of harder time; times we would rather forget. When we walk across the threshold of the past, all the memories flood back either fully formed or broken and misshapen. That is what Bloody Scotland is all about. That and spinning great crime stories that the reader can sink their teeth into. Highly recommend to a wide base of fans from crime and drama to horror, ghost stories and psychological thriller. I also appreciated the fact that we got insights to each location at the end, with pictures and information which pulled the whole book together. I hope there is going to be more additions to collection in the future, I will be ready.

Pick up a copy of Bloody Scotland here:  Amazon UK / Goodreads

Thank you for stopping by to check out my stop on the Bloody Scotland Blog Tour. A huge thanks to Fiona for including me on the tour. I hope everyone who reads this gets the opportunity to read Bloody Scotland as it is worth your time. Big names writing bold and brash stories that will stick on your mind. What is not to love. Enjoy!


8 thoughts on “Bloody Scotland by Various Authors (Book Review) @BloodyScotland @Brownlee_Donald #Anthology #Scotland

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