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Siren

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Enter a world of beauty and danger, of French cabaret and terrible revenge Mak Vanderwall - beautiful, street-wise daughter of a cop, graduate in forensic psychology, and now PI - is hired by a widowed mother to track down her missing nineteen-year-old son. Has he come to harm? Or has he run off with a bizarre troupe of shady French cabaret artists sweeping through Australi Enter a world of beauty and danger, of French cabaret and terrible revenge Mak Vanderwall - beautiful, street-wise daughter of a cop, graduate in forensic psychology, and now PI - is hired by a widowed mother to track down her missing nineteen-year-old son. Has he come to harm? Or has he run off with a bizarre troupe of shady French cabaret artists sweeping through Australia? Has the dark beauty of the burlesque, the magic, the mind-bending contortion, beguiled him? Or has he been seduced by the mysterious and amoral older woman who has a terrifying starring role in the troupe's modern performances of the Grand Guignol 'Theatre of Fear', famous in Paris in the early 1900s? And what of the rumours of violence and tragedy that have plagued the troupe for the past decade? Is their horrifying past fact or fiction? Meanwhile, Mak is increasingly obsessed with the powerful Cavanagh family, one of Australia's richest and most ruthless families, whom she believes has got away with murder. And it seems their security adviser Mr White, and his hit man, Luther Hand, may not have forgotten about Mak either ...


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Enter a world of beauty and danger, of French cabaret and terrible revenge Mak Vanderwall - beautiful, street-wise daughter of a cop, graduate in forensic psychology, and now PI - is hired by a widowed mother to track down her missing nineteen-year-old son. Has he come to harm? Or has he run off with a bizarre troupe of shady French cabaret artists sweeping through Australi Enter a world of beauty and danger, of French cabaret and terrible revenge Mak Vanderwall - beautiful, street-wise daughter of a cop, graduate in forensic psychology, and now PI - is hired by a widowed mother to track down her missing nineteen-year-old son. Has he come to harm? Or has he run off with a bizarre troupe of shady French cabaret artists sweeping through Australia? Has the dark beauty of the burlesque, the magic, the mind-bending contortion, beguiled him? Or has he been seduced by the mysterious and amoral older woman who has a terrifying starring role in the troupe's modern performances of the Grand Guignol 'Theatre of Fear', famous in Paris in the early 1900s? And what of the rumours of violence and tragedy that have plagued the troupe for the past decade? Is their horrifying past fact or fiction? Meanwhile, Mak is increasingly obsessed with the powerful Cavanagh family, one of Australia's richest and most ruthless families, whom she believes has got away with murder. And it seems their security adviser Mr White, and his hit man, Luther Hand, may not have forgotten about Mak either ...

30 review for Siren

  1. 4 out of 5

    M - The long hot spell

    Yes, I’m back. You’d think that Covid-19 would give me more time to read (and write) but instead it upset my routine. Oh well, no harm, no foul - though I hope you, my reader friends, are managing okay. Now, on to Siren. :) This might be my favourite of the series yet. Firstly I have to say two things regarding the audio recordings of this series: 1. This is the first time that one of the books has been narrated by someone other than Moss, in this case, it was Edwina Wren. Wren did a fantastic job Yes, I’m back. You’d think that Covid-19 would give me more time to read (and write) but instead it upset my routine. Oh well, no harm, no foul - though I hope you, my reader friends, are managing okay. Now, on to Siren. :) This might be my favourite of the series yet. Firstly I have to say two things regarding the audio recordings of this series: 1. This is the first time that one of the books has been narrated by someone other than Moss, in this case, it was Edwina Wren. Wren did a fantastic job. Really! She managed to sound very much like Moss’s Mak, so there was no jarring as I listened. Also, Wren was great with accents (French accents are dotted throughout the book) and she provided a lot of variation in character voices as she read the story. Very impressive. 2. I have to say that, though perhaps Wren did a more professional job of it, I always liked Moss's readings before. When I realised it wasn’t Moss reading I had a little ‘oh, no’ moment. Moving on from the recordings, I started the book with a gripe over Mak's relationship with Andy. I pretty much was beyond caring about bloody Andy (even if the sex was good…and supposedly it was), and about Andy and Mak and their inability to get along and make it work. In any early Goodreads update I believe my words to Mak were along these lines: Just move on, Mak, you’re better than that. Anyhoo…very soon I forgot my annoyance and got into the story which, naturally, involves Mak being in danger. Hey, just accept it. The novel was a mix of mystery and thrills involving burlesque (very welcome), a visit to France, a missing person, murder, other odd creepy stuff (which Moss is very skilled at bringing) and, well, there is a man in Mak’s life. But, I’m not saying whether it is Andy or not. Siren ended on a rather interesting note. Will Mak continue her career goal to be a forensic psychology or will she settle into her private investigation work? Or, is she going rogue? I enjoy Moss’s Makedde Vanderwall series because even though it deals with dark and disturbing happenings it still - somehow - doesn’t leave me needing therapy. :P The books are easy-read in that ‘great yarn’ sort of way. Only one book to go...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kerryn (RatherBeReading)

    While I have enjoyed this series it does become increasingly far fetched as it goes on. The main character Makedde is apparently Wonder Woman - she is not only ridiculously good looking (tall, blonde, ex-model) but is very smart and outwits everyone around her constantly - police, criminals, professional hitmen... Everyone. This, to me, becomes increasingly annoying. Without giving anything away, I don't know if I'm happy with how the romance aspect has played out. Not necessarily her decisions b While I have enjoyed this series it does become increasingly far fetched as it goes on. The main character Makedde is apparently Wonder Woman - she is not only ridiculously good looking (tall, blonde, ex-model) but is very smart and outwits everyone around her constantly - police, criminals, professional hitmen... Everyone. This, to me, becomes increasingly annoying. Without giving anything away, I don't know if I'm happy with how the romance aspect has played out. Not necessarily her decisions but the reasoning behind them. It sometimes seems that the writer has purposefully jumped time period between books in order to contrive some reason for the characters to be at odds but these issues are never really explained properly and I find that extremely frustrating. I think the next book is the final one in the series and I do like the direction it seems to be heading in so I will finish off the series. Particularly as I am five books in so I would like to see how it plays out.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tricia

    This is the 5th in the Makedde Vanderwall series. I am persisting with it but I find her really frustrating at times. There is a reason why people keep coming after her. I actually felt empathy for the hit man in this book. I am not sure if that was supposed to be the case but that is how it ended up for me. I am going to go for the last book just to finish off the series

  4. 4 out of 5

    Phrynne

    I enjoyed this book but somehow not as much as I did Fetish. It seemed to go just a little too far and become just a little far fetched especially towards the end. And since the ending is what stays with you after you finish a book it is also what influences your review and how many stars you give it. I did really enjoy the setting because I live in Sydney too and there is nothing better than being able to actually see where your heroine is because you have been there yourself. ( although not to I enjoyed this book but somehow not as much as I did Fetish. It seemed to go just a little too far and become just a little far fetched especially towards the end. And since the ending is what stays with you after you finish a book it is also what influences your review and how many stars you give it. I did really enjoy the setting because I live in Sydney too and there is nothing better than being able to actually see where your heroine is because you have been there yourself. ( although not to the outrageous night club or the weird theater.) A good book but not an outstanding one.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tatterededges

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This might have been an alright book if only it had ended with the non-sensical Adam Hart case but instead the reader has to endure the excruciating kidnap/hostage sex/escape tripe. I call bullshit on the whole thing. Honestly by around the halfway point I was just reading in the hope that Luther would kill her in the end.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Eleni Konstantine

    4.5 stars Mak is back in Sydney after breaking up with her in-off again partner. She’s back to PI work and wants to tackle a past case which she has been warned off. Instead she tracks down a missing young adult and tries to restart her life. I think the series has gotten better even with the dramatic plot points. I’d accidentally read the blurb for the last book in the series so the ending of this book wasn’t a surprise. But it definitely is a shock. It’s the first time I read the book rather th 4.5 stars Mak is back in Sydney after breaking up with her in-off again partner. She’s back to PI work and wants to tackle a past case which she has been warned off. Instead she tracks down a missing young adult and tries to restart her life. I think the series has gotten better even with the dramatic plot points. I’d accidentally read the blurb for the last book in the series so the ending of this book wasn’t a surprise. But it definitely is a shock. It’s the first time I read the book rather than listening to the audio so that felt strange but had Moss’ narration voice in my head. I look forward to reading the last book in the series.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lyddie

    Characters in the fifth installment of the Makedde Vanderwall series seemed one dimensional and lackluster. However, the crazy ending made up for all of the romantic preoccupations and stiff dialogue. Reminded me of superhero mythology, or the beginnings of a Femme Fatale like Nikita. A truly shocking ending, and that alone deserves the 3 stars. Not sure if I want to read the last book, Assassin, but I'm definitely curious. Characters in the fifth installment of the Makedde Vanderwall series seemed one dimensional and lackluster. However, the crazy ending made up for all of the romantic preoccupations and stiff dialogue. Reminded me of superhero mythology, or the beginnings of a Femme Fatale like Nikita. A truly shocking ending, and that alone deserves the 3 stars. Not sure if I want to read the last book, Assassin, but I'm definitely curious.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tony

    Overall, this was a pretty corny story. I accept it is well written but the story line did not wash with me. I enjoyed the background of the streets of Pigalle in Paris and Surry Hills in Sydney but the cliche trained killer story who suddenly falls in love with his intended victim just did not work.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Richard Warlow

    Good, previous books were better

  10. 4 out of 5

    Tracy

    Good

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rob Barker

    Am a fan of this series but Siren is not Tara Moss’s best

  12. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    A touch of Fantasy and excellent mystery.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Natasha

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Ok....probably didn't find this story line as thrilling as all the others in this series so far but still found it to be a great read. I loved the pairing of Mak and Bogey and thought they would have made a cute couple. The ending was the heart wrencher for me. Here I was starting to actually feel sorry for Luther and wondering if maybe Mak could have saved him and made him a better man and then she tricked him and had him believing she truly wanted him. I couldn't believe Mak had it in her to t Ok....probably didn't find this story line as thrilling as all the others in this series so far but still found it to be a great read. I loved the pairing of Mak and Bogey and thought they would have made a cute couple. The ending was the heart wrencher for me. Here I was starting to actually feel sorry for Luther and wondering if maybe Mak could have saved him and made him a better man and then she tricked him and had him believing she truly wanted him. I couldn't believe Mak had it in her to treat him that way even though he was a hitman and was there for all intense purposes of killing her. Well that feeling didn't last long.....probably up to the part where Mak found those black shoes. I actually cried, Luther did it, he murdered Bogey, for what purposes who knows but he did and it made me sad. I really hoped for things to work out for Mak and Bogey. I thought she had finally found some one that could love her and be there for her to look after her. Wow....didn't see that one coming. So so sad. My heart broke for Mak. I can see where the next story is going now and can't wait to read it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Helensvale Library

    Siren is the 5th instalment in the series in which Makedde Vanderwall gets thrust into a world of deadly innocence. The first book, Fetish introduces the readers to model and forensic psychology student Mak Vanderwall as she travels to Australia to strut down the fashion runways. However, Mak receives bad news upon her arrival that her close friend Catherine Gerber, has been hideously killed and the police are unable to find the killer. Mak then begins to investigate using what she has learned i Siren is the 5th instalment in the series in which Makedde Vanderwall gets thrust into a world of deadly innocence. The first book, Fetish introduces the readers to model and forensic psychology student Mak Vanderwall as she travels to Australia to strut down the fashion runways. However, Mak receives bad news upon her arrival that her close friend Catherine Gerber, has been hideously killed and the police are unable to find the killer. Mak then begins to investigate using what she has learned in school, unaware that the killer is honing in on her as his next target! The story line is fast-paced especially when Mak begins to make inquires or when the villain takes centre stage. All of the books in the series, Split, Covet and now Siren carry on at an intriguing thrilling pace set by the first book. The reader will be hooked from the very first chapter of this series.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Tyson Adams

    Definitely not the ending I was expecting. Mak has moved back to Sydney and has picked up more PI work. This time a young man has gone missing and she has been asked to find him. But her recent experiences with a very powerful family are still looming in her life, much more ominously than she realises. Tara still ranks as one of my favourite crime thriller authors and Siren's ending left me wanting the next instalment now. The good news for me is that all of her books have just been launched on K Definitely not the ending I was expecting. Mak has moved back to Sydney and has picked up more PI work. This time a young man has gone missing and she has been asked to find him. But her recent experiences with a very powerful family are still looming in her life, much more ominously than she realises. Tara still ranks as one of my favourite crime thriller authors and Siren's ending left me wanting the next instalment now. The good news for me is that all of her books have just been launched on Kindle. The bad news is that the next Makede Vanderwall novel is still a while away yet.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Josh Wallace

    It's not often that I reach the end of a movie and think "Holy Crap! What just happened? That's one epically shocking finish that'll take a while to recover from. Bring on the sequel!" Congrats to Tara Moss because I just got that from a book. I'm referring to the kind of event depicted on screen that in the first half hour of a movie or the end of a pilot episode that lets you know it's all action packed epic from this point on and the bad guys better run. I'm only giving a 4 out 5 because I hav It's not often that I reach the end of a movie and think "Holy Crap! What just happened? That's one epically shocking finish that'll take a while to recover from. Bring on the sequel!" Congrats to Tara Moss because I just got that from a book. I'm referring to the kind of event depicted on screen that in the first half hour of a movie or the end of a pilot episode that lets you know it's all action packed epic from this point on and the bad guys better run. I'm only giving a 4 out 5 because I have a feeling that if I give it the 5 it deserves I'll want to give the next book a 6 out of 5.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lyn Richards

    This book was the most gripping Makkede Vanderwall adventure to date. There were just so many unexpected twists and turns in this story. I couldn't wait to see where here adventures next led Mak. Moss is a talented writer and I have come to love the Makkede Vanderwall character. I was enraptured by this story, so much so I have already started Assassin, the next book in the Mak series.....cant wait to see where Moss takes us to next! This book was the most gripping Makkede Vanderwall adventure to date. There were just so many unexpected twists and turns in this story. I couldn't wait to see where here adventures next led Mak. Moss is a talented writer and I have come to love the Makkede Vanderwall character. I was enraptured by this story, so much so I have already started Assassin, the next book in the Mak series.....cant wait to see where Moss takes us to next!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Balthazar Lawson

    The fifth book in the Makadee Vanderwall series and a continuation of the story. Some book series just feature the same characters, but this one is the same story and to fully appreciate it, one should really read the books in order. The ending of this book is rather sad in many ways but sets up the next book nicely.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mel

    I was not expecting much from this book having read The Blood Countess and not enjoyed it. However this was fantastic and I now feel like going and buying the other books in the series. It's all not ur typical happy go lucky book you would expect from a model author. It shows the dirt and grit with an ending that is not what you would call happily ever after. I was not expecting much from this book having read The Blood Countess and not enjoyed it. However this was fantastic and I now feel like going and buying the other books in the series. It's all not ur typical happy go lucky book you would expect from a model author. It shows the dirt and grit with an ending that is not what you would call happily ever after.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

    There's not much to say about this book except poor poor (won't ruin the story). By this book I don't know who I was rooting for Andy to make a come back, mr hand to find some shred of happiness, or Makedde and her new love to run away forever after. Of course none of this happens and there is a great set up for the final book. There's not much to say about this book except poor poor (won't ruin the story). By this book I don't know who I was rooting for Andy to make a come back, mr hand to find some shred of happiness, or Makedde and her new love to run away forever after. Of course none of this happens and there is a great set up for the final book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Don

    Siren is Tara Moss' fifth book in the Makedde Vanderwall series. It is a fast paced story about a private detective who has some issues of her own to resolve while solving a case. Sounds a bit familiar, doesn't it? The story is well worth reading, or listening to. It does, however, end rather abruptly leaving us with twist in the tale and the possibility of a sequel. Siren is Tara Moss' fifth book in the Makedde Vanderwall series. It is a fast paced story about a private detective who has some issues of her own to resolve while solving a case. Sounds a bit familiar, doesn't it? The story is well worth reading, or listening to. It does, however, end rather abruptly leaving us with twist in the tale and the possibility of a sequel.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Madelaine

    The first lot of novels weren't too bad... but hey Tara, this one you could have left. Hope it made you some money because it definitely won't win any prizes! Oh, and please, please fire your editor - I have rarely seen so many grammar and typing errors in a published work! The first lot of novels weren't too bad... but hey Tara, this one you could have left. Hope it made you some money because it definitely won't win any prizes! Oh, and please, please fire your editor - I have rarely seen so many grammar and typing errors in a published work!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Danai Keir

    What an awesome book! Typical Tara Moss. As usual I was unable to put this book down. All filled with suspense, intrigue, horror. Love the incorporation of the Paris and it's mystery. Cannot wait to read Assassin. What an awesome book! Typical Tara Moss. As usual I was unable to put this book down. All filled with suspense, intrigue, horror. Love the incorporation of the Paris and it's mystery. Cannot wait to read Assassin.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Tracy

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book - making the Makedde Vanderwall series one of my picks for the year, as a great series that helped pass the horrible winter days. Read the full review at OurBookClub I thoroughly enjoyed this book - making the Makedde Vanderwall series one of my picks for the year, as a great series that helped pass the horrible winter days. Read the full review at OurBookClub

  25. 5 out of 5

    Niamh

    I liked this book. Probably more than the ones before it. The ending wasn't at all what I was expecting. Definitely want to read the next (and last) of the Mak series. Quite a bit of referring back to the prior books in the series so not one to read on its own. A solid 4 star read. I liked this book. Probably more than the ones before it. The ending wasn't at all what I was expecting. Definitely want to read the next (and last) of the Mak series. Quite a bit of referring back to the prior books in the series so not one to read on its own. A solid 4 star read.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Joanne Quick

    Loved it! The ending has me wishing I had the next book though.....

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jacqui

    These books just keep getting better and better. This was my favourite in the series by a mile. The next one has just finished being written and I can't wait for more Mak! These books just keep getting better and better. This was my favourite in the series by a mile. The next one has just finished being written and I can't wait for more Mak!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sharyn

    Still loving these Mak stories. Can't wait to read the next one! Still loving these Mak stories. Can't wait to read the next one!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sharon

    You know what you're getting with Mak Vanderwall, a high energy mystery romp Great beach reading! You know what you're getting with Mak Vanderwall, a high energy mystery romp Great beach reading!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Moss's best to date. Interesting back story and a strong, if repetitive, ending. Was sad to see Bogey dispatched so quickly after Andy. Would have liked more on the deconstruction of Luther Hand. Moss's best to date. Interesting back story and a strong, if repetitive, ending. Was sad to see Bogey dispatched so quickly after Andy. Would have liked more on the deconstruction of Luther Hand.

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