In the Barren Ground by Loreth Anne White ~ #Mystery #BookReview

29243822This is the third book that I’ve read by this author, and I have to say that if you’re looking for suspense, she delivers! I didn’t like this one as much as the other two – I liked the characters and plot from the others better – but this kept my attention AND kept me guessing until the end.

The setting – the far, northern wilds of Canada – is almost a character in itself. It certainly makes for a creepy atmosphere.

This book was fast paced, well plotted, and sinister. Quite honestly, it almost bordered on horror. If you’re looking for a book to keep you up at night, this just might be it! 4 stars!

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn ~ #Mystery #BookReview

40389527I roll my eyes every time a book is hailed as, “The next Gone Girl.” Let’s be clear  – whether you loved it, hated it, or didn’t read it, there’s only one Gone Girl. Novels are creations; each should be considered on it’s own merits. Have you ever heard someone say a painting is going to be the next Mona Lisa?

Rant completed, I will say that while this book wasn’t the next Gone Girl, as advertised, it was good. Really good. I enjoyed it immensely, and was taken by surprise several times.

The story was easy to read. The plot was simple, yet at the same time, elaborate. The character was well developed, and her internal dialogue and memories do a good job of endearing her to readers, whether they like her or not. I felt myself rooting for her. And how can a mystery lover not love the Hitchcock references? This one was time well spent. 5 stars!

Vanishing Girls by Lisa Regan ~ #Mystery #BookReview

36441275This was a fast paced, adrenaline pumping mystery with high stakes. There was a little awkwardness, a sentence here and there that felt like the author was struggling to find her footing, but all in all it was well written, with a well developed protagonist and pacing that left me gasping for breath.

The intricate plot was slyly crafted and the author didn’t shy away from shocking the reader. I can’t say more without giving spoilers, which I detest, so I’ll just say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and wouldn’t mind spending more time with Detective Josie Quinn by reading more books in the series. 5 Stars!

 

Trespassing by Brandi Reeds ~ #Mystery #BookReview

38261058I could not put this book down! There were so many different directions that the author could take with the plot, and I couldn’t rest until I knew where she was taking me (the reader) on this wild journey.

I’m not going to claim that it was completely believable, and I actually really disliked the ending (I was hoping for something a little crazier), but I really liked this book and would definitely read more by this author. If you like unreliable narrators, you should give this one a try. And, (I hate any kind of spoiler, but I have to share this), the little girl has a naughty imaginary friend who lives in her hair. Gold!!! 5 stars from the critic that lives in my . . . ear? Nose? Shoe? (epic fail on my part)

My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni ~ Fiction #BookReview

22744701I have mixed feelings about this book. Parts of it aren’t entirely believable, but people are unpredictable and the book is fiction, so . . . might as well just go with it. Maybe a Chemistry teacher really would become a homicide detective after her sister’s murder???

I liked the writing, the plot was well thought, and the characters you were supposed to like were likable. It was by no means predictable, and felt fresh while I read it (so much better than overdone tropes that create a sense of deja vu 9 out of 10 pages).

For those who like both mysteries and legal thrillers, I’d recommend giving this one a try. It felt a bit odd in places, but, overall a success! 5 stars!

Sleep Tight by Rachel Abbott ~ Fiction Book Review

20894857This one was a tasty little thriller. I don’t know if I would call it a mystery or not – certainly there were mysteries within the story, and the outcome was unknown – but the suspense and tension in this book were created more by what the reader did know than what they didn’t.

There were a couple of aspects that were a bit unlikely, and some that were downright obvious to the reader but not the oblivious main character, but I’ve found that true with most stories I’ve read lately, and it is a work of fiction, after all. Suspending belief is part of the fun.

I had a hard time putting this book down during certain parts of the fast paced plot. It was a pleasure to move this story from the ‘unread’ to the ‘read’ collection on my Kindle after it sat there, ignored, for so long. 4.5 stars!

Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson ~ Fiction Book Review

9736927This book has been described as a cross between Shutter Island and Momento. I’m not sure if I’d go that far with the accolades. It was a good read – suspenseful and twisty.

But – the amnesia trope gets annoying. It’s like a license to fill up space with repetitiveness. I understand the difficulty in dealing with a character who has lost their memory without being a bit repetitive, but is slows down the pacing and creates an underlying dullness. I’ve read books that have carried it off better.

And – you have a character that can’t remember anything, yet the plot is still a touch on the predictable side. I didn’t know exactly what was going to happen, but it was obvious that it was going to go in one of several directions, which it did.

Despite all this, the writing was good, and as a whole, I enjoyed the book. 4 stars, and another book that’s been sitting on my Kindle forever crossed off the list.

Dead Souls by Angela Marsons ~ Fiction Book Review

Dead Souls: A gripping serial killer thriller with a shocking twist (Detective Kim Stone Crime Thriller Series Book 6) by [Marsons, Angela]There’s nothing like a D.I. Kim Stone thriller to get me out of a reading slump! I didn’t like this one quite as much as the others in the series, the author shook the characters up a bit and took them out of their comfort zone, which changed the dynamics in a way I didn’t quite like, but I still sped through this so quickly that my fingertips feel blistered and my Kindle screen is getting a worn spot!

Love the characters, the mystery, the action, and the way all the pieces always fit together so perfectly in the end! 5 stars!

Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner ~ Fiction Book Review

 

Right Behind You by [Gardner, Lisa]#1 New York Times Bestselling Author Lisa Gardner’s newest book, Right Behind You, was released January 31st of this year, but – if since I’m lucky enough to live in the Mt. Washington Valley, I was able to get a copy, signed, in person, by the author herself January 30th at the book  launch, sponsored by local indie bookstore White Birch Books and hosted by Horsefeathers Restaurant, both located in North Conway, NH.

This is a yearly event, with those in the valley getting exclusive first access to Gardner’s latest book. Why? Because Gardiner, among other famous authors and artists, lives in the valley. Jealous? You should be! 😛

Bragging aside, if you haven’t read the book, you should definitely add it to your list! And although it’s been months since this book was released, please don’t think it took me that long to get around to reading it. On the contrary, I immediately devoured this fast paced, suspenseful thriller that left me breathless! 5 stars!

Faceoff ~ Various Authors ~ Fiction Anthology Book Review

18775278This one’s been on my to-read list forever. First, I had to wait for it to come out. Then, I kind of forgot about it for a while. But once I finally had a copy in my hands, I could practically feel the heat seeping from the pages.

With so many wonderful authors, how could this be anything but a thoroughly enjoyable, fast paced, anthology full of thrilling tales? Some of the stories held my attention better than others, but, then again, some of these authors have spent time on my top 5 list, so I may be a bit biased. Bottom line, this book is fast, fun, and a fantastic face-off with some truly awesome author pairings. 4.5 stars!