Ryder by Nick Pengelley…Blog tour stop & review

Ryder cover


Ayesha Ryder bears the scars of strife in the Middle East. Now her past is catching up to her as she races to unravel a mystery that spans centuries—and threatens to change the course of history.

As Israeli and Palestinian leaders prepare to make a joint announcement at the Tower of London, an influential scholar is tortured and murdered in his well-appointed home in St. John’s Wood. Academic researcher Ayesha Ryder believes the killing is no coincidence. Sir Evelyn Montagu had unearthed shocking revelations about T. E. Lawrence—the famed Lawrence of Arabia. Could Montagu have been targeted because of his discoveries?

Ryder’s search for answers takes her back to her old life in the Middle East and into a lion’s den of killers and traitors. As she draws the attention of agents from both sides of the conflict, including detectives from Scotland Yard and MI5, Ryder stumbles deeper into Lawrence’s secrets, an astounding case of royal blackmail, even the search for the Bible’s lost Ark of the Covenant.

Every step of the way, the endgame grows more terrifying. But when an attack rocks London, the real players show their hand—and Ayesha Ryder is left holding the final piece of the puzzle.


My Review:

Ryder is the debut work from author Nick Pengelley and was a wild ride from start to finish filled with history, mystery, riddles, murder, and intrigue.

Academic researcher Ayesha Ryder finds herself in the middle of an intense search for truths surrounding a mystery her recently murdered colleague, and former lover, had apparently stumbled upon. Mystery involving the potential of political secrets that have been kept hidden for decades and secrets that someone is desperately trying to keep hidden. It’s this quest for truth that will lead Ryder on one hell of a dangerous treasure hunt with the treasure in sight being an incredible and most important one that could potentially change the face of history for a dueling Palestine and Israel. Will she find this long-buried secret or will she die in her attempt?

While this isn’t my typical go-to genre, there was something about this story that called to me and I was really glad I picked it up. Yes, there is a lot of history and political aspects to this story but beyond that there was a ton of action that had me hooked from chapter to chapter. Ryder has an Angelina Jolie-esque quality about her, with a heart breaking past and a hardened resolve to never again live through the pain she once did. She is strong, both mentally and physically, and she was an amazing character to read. Along with Ryder there were a couple of characters that really stood out and brought a much-appreciated softer layer to this intense story. One such character being a wonderful woman in her later years who has one hell of an interesting past and drinks martinis at all hours of the day. My kind of gal!

Along with the great cast of characters was the feeling that we, the reader, were along on an Indian Jones type adventure. Trying to figure out riddles from the past, only to find another riddle waiting when that one was solved. It had me anxious and hyped while reading and a drive to continue reading non-stop and once and for all solve this puzzle. It was truly exciting!

I will undoubtedly be looking forward to the next installments in this series and cannot wait to see what author Pengelley has in store for Ryder. Thank you, Mr. Pengelley, for a literary roller coaster ride I truly appreciated!

4LovesRLBFour Loves


Book links:

 Amazon  |  B&N 

About the author:

Nick Pengelley cites many influences on his writing. Readers of “Ryder” will not be surprised that authors like H. Rider Haggard, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, John Buchan and Peter O’Donnell figure prominently. He is a fan of the ripping yarns of the inter-war years – by writers such as Sapper, Dornford Yates, Edgar Wallace and Leslie Charteris. His more modern favourites include Umberto Eco (particularly “The Name of the Rose”), Alan Furst, Douglas Adams, Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman and Elizabeth Kostova (“The Historian”). Nicholas reads a “book or so” a week (and is horrified to think that, if he lives to be 200, he may only get to read 10,000). These days, although he still reads fiction, he is mainly interested in modern European and Middle Eastern history, and biography, having discovered some years ago that truth really is stranger than fiction. He lists his heroes, literary adventurers all, as Winston Churchill, T.E. Lawrence, Gertrude Bell and Teddy Roosevelt.

Website  |  Twitter 


  1. Dear Jillian,
    Thank you for your terrific review of Ryder! I’m delighted that you enjoyed the book.

  2. This sounds like a great escapist read that would get my imagination rolling – I can’t wait to read it!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

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