4 star reviews, thriller

Lies by T.M. Logan

4/5 stars

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My Review:

Riveting, enthralling, captivating, fast moving thriller

I liked Joe Lynch, he was a nice guy, if a little meek and mild, but he is a good dad and and a nice guy.

The whole story was crazy and kept me up late and had me thinking about the book during the day, anxious to get back to it and find out what happened.

Joe thinks his wife is at work, but he and his young son spot her car in traffic, then see her turn into a hotel parking lot.  They follow and Joe gets into an altercation with their family friend, Ben just as his son has an asthma attack.  When Joe returns to see if Ben is ok, Ben is gone.

Ben’s wife reports Ben missing.  But Ben starts sending Joe shocking messages that he is going to take everything from Joe.  But, since Ben is missing, Joe becomes the suspect behind Ben’s disappearance because of the altercation at the hotel.

My heart went out to Ben and I was rooting for him the whole time, but could not predict what would happen in this book.  I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes psychological thrillers.

I would like to thank Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for my review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

From the Publisher:

WHAT IF YOUR WHOLE LIFE WAS BASED ON LIES?
When Joe Lynch stumbles across his wife driving into a hotel car park while she’s supposed to be at work, he’s intrigued enough to follow her in.

And when he witnesses her in an angry altercation with family friend Ben, he knows he ought to intervene.

But just as the confrontation between the two men turns violent, and Ben is knocked unconscious, Joe’s young son has an asthma attack – and Joe must flee in order to help him.

When he returns, desperate to make sure Ben is OK, Joe is horrified to find that Ben has disappeared.

And that’s when Joe receives the first message . . .

 

4 star reviews, thriller, Women's Fiction

Everything You Want Me To Be by Mindy Mejia

4/5 stars

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Recently, I received a galley copy of Mindy Mejia’s new book, Leave No Trace, which is coming out September 4.  I had never read anything by Mindy Mejia and I absolutely LOVED Leave No Trace, so when I saw that she had another novel, I knew that I wanted to read it.

This book is about Hattie, an 18 year old girl who is wise beyond her years, growing up in a rural farming town in Minnesota and dreaming of moving to New York City.

My Review:

This book opens with Hattie attempting to run away.  The next chapter is the discovery of her dead body.  I have an 18 year old daughter and I almost put this book down because it hit too close to home.  But I LOVED–like I can not stress enough how much I LOVED “Leave No Trace” so I persisted.  And I am so glad that I did.  This book is a wild ride.  I thought I had figured out who murdered Hattie, but all I can say is: Read to the very last page.

This book is told from the point of view of three characters: Hattie; the chief of police of their small town and her dad’s best friend, Del; and Hattie’s teacher who also directs the school play that Hattie stars in, Peter Lund. I will be honest.  I did not like Hattie.  I think she was a sociopath.  She played people and was extremely self-centered, she had no feeling for other people.  But I really did like both Del and Peter and I found them sympathetic characters.

This book is different from other thrillers in that it takes you deep into the many layers of a sociopath’s personality.  It was also shocking in parts.  If you like thrillers, don’t miss this one and pre-order your copy of Leave No Trace or put in your library hold today!!

 

 

From the Publisher:

No one knows who she really is…

Hattie Hoffman has spent her whole life playing many parts: the good student, the good daughter, the good girlfriend. But Hattie wants something more, something bigger, and ultimately something that turns out to be exceedingly dangerous. When she’s found brutally stabbed to death, the tragedy rips right through the fabric of her small-town community.

It soon comes to light that Hattie was engaged in a highly compromising and potentially explosive secret online relationship. The question is: Did anyone else know? And to what lengths might they have gone to end it? Hattie’s boyfriend seems distraught over her death, but had he fallen so deeply in love with her that she had become an obsession? Or did Hattie’s impulsive, daredevil nature simply put her in the wrong place at the wrong time, leading her to a violent death at the hands of a stranger?

Full of twists and turns, Everything You Want Me to Be reconstructs a year in the life of a dangerously mesmerizing young woman, during which a small town’s darkest secrets come to the forefront…and she inches closer and closer to death.

 

4 star reviews, Book reviews, thriller

The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager

4/5 stars

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From the Publisher:

Two Truths and a Lie. The girls played it all the time in their cabin at Camp Nightingale. Vivian, Natalie, Allison, and first-time camper Emma Davis, the youngest of the group. But the games ended the night Emma sleepily watched the others sneak out of the cabin into the darkness. The last she–or anyone–saw of them was Vivian closing the cabin door behind her, hushing Emma with a finger pressed to her lips.

Now a rising star in the New York art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings–massive canvases filled with dark leaves and gnarled branches that cover ghostly shapes in white dresses. When the paintings catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the wealthy owner of Camp Nightingale, she implores Emma to return to the newly reopened camp as a painting instructor. Seeing an opportunity to find out what really happened to her friends all those years ago, Emma agrees.

Familiar faces, unchanged cabins, and the same dark lake haunt Nightingale, even though the camp is opening its doors for the first time since the disappearances. Emma is even assigned to the same cabin she slept in as a teenager, but soon discovers a security camera–the only one on the property–pointed directly at its door. Then cryptic clues that Vivian left behind about the camp’s twisted origins begin surfacing. As she digs deeper, Emma finds herself sorting through lies from the past while facing mysterious threats in the present. And the closer she gets to the truth about Camp Nightingale and what really happened to those girls, the more she realizes that closure could come at a deadly price.

My Review:

The Last Time I Lied was an unpredictable mystery.  I could not figure out who did it.  The main character, Emma Davis, is an artist.  She was the last person to see the girls that went missing and had been their friend.  When the summer camp re-opens, she is asked to be the art teacher.  She goes back to the camp 15 years later to try to figure out what happened to them.  Someone puts birds in her room and she knows someone is spying on her, but she doesn’t who.  It’s very creepy with a lot of twists and turns.

It was told in alternating narratives from 15 years ago (when the girls went missing) to now.  The pacing was very fast paced.  My daughter read it in 2 days.  It took me a bit longer because I had a lot going on, but we both enjoyed it immensely.

I would like to thank Netgalley for my copy.

4 star reviews, Book reviews, contemporary fiction, thriller

Believe Me by JP Delaney

4/5 stars

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Happy Pub Day!!

My Review:

Riveting, Intense, Edge of Your Seat Read

This book was twisted and creepy and had me staying up really late several nights because quite frankly, I was too caught up in the book to realize the time and I may or may not have been too scared to sleep.  Even when I turned off the light and all the next day, I found myself thinking about the book and counting down the minutes until I could read it again and find out what the heck happened!

I thought the eye on the cover looked like Nicole Kidman’s eye, so I kept picturing her as Claire.  I think she would make a good Claire.

I would like to thank Netgalley and Random House-Ballantine for my copy in exchange for my honest review.

From Publisher:

 

 

4 star reviews, Book reviews, contemporary fiction, thriller

Somebody’s Daughter by David Bell

4/5 stars

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My Review:

Easy to read, intense, twists I never saw coming

Michael and Angela are having fertility issues, but they have a good marriage, a happy life.  Until one day, Michael’s ex-wife, Erica, shows up and says that her 9 year old daughter, Felicity, is Michael’s daughter that resembles his dead sister and that Felicity is missing.  This books takes place over the course of just one crazy, life-changing night.

The characters were very well drawn, the plot moved quickly and there were twists I never saw coming.  This was a captivating, unpredictable, fast-paced psychological thriller.

I would like to thank Netgalley and Berkley Publishing Group for my copy in exchange for my honest review.

From the Publisher:

4 star reviews, Book reviews, contemporary fiction, Mother/Daughter Read, race relations, YA

The Child Finder/The Hate U Give

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The Child Finder by Rene Denfield

I was nervous about this book because, as a mom, child abductions have long been my worst fear.  I found the hunt for the abductor thrilling, I loved the strong main character and I was very interested in people who still live a very old-fashioned lifestyle of trapping game and trading furs.  The Pacific Northwest is on Jason and my shortlist of places to visit, so I ate up all the descriptions of the setting.

Naomi, a private investigator who had been abducted as a child, is hired to find Madison Culver, a little girl who went missing three years ago when her family was out looking in the woods for a Christmas tree.

The characters are very well developed, the plot is rock solid and the storyline was different and intriguing.  I give this book 4/5 stars.

While I was reading The Child Finder by Rene Denfield, my 15 year old was reading (and loving) The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

My daughter LOVED this book.  She found the main character, Starr, very relatable.  She said she wanted to be friends with Starr and help her through everything that was going on in her life.  Starr lives in a poor neighborhood but attends a prep school.  The other kids at the prep school can not relate to the issues Starr faces at home.  Starr’s best friend is fatally shot and killed by a police officer.  His shooting makes national headlines and some say he was a thug, while others say the police officer was wrong for shooting him.  Starr’s family is targeted by both the police and drug lords and Starr is the only one that knows what really happened that night.

My daughter’s review reminds me how different the world she is growing up in from the world I grew up in.  I grew up in an upper-middle class town, there were a few Black kids and I was and still am friends with them.  They may have been going through things – I am pretty sure that they were – but I did not know about it.  I just saw them as friends, we talked and joked and made plans to hang out.  I always thought that we were so much further along with race relations than we actually are.  I really believed, up until a few years ago, that we needed to be color blind and not so shallow as to judge people based on the color of their skin.  I was so proud to be an American in 2007 when Barack Hussein Obama accepted the Democratic Nomination for President of the United States and won the election.  I cried along with the prolific newscaster, who was on his knees weeping because he never thought he would see a black man become President, his own grandfather having been a slave–I think that was the moment that it hit me that I could never really understand this.  I could have sympathy.  I could support equality, but my experience as a white person would protect me from things and feelings and situations that I had no idea existed.  I wish that the world was the way I thought it was 15 years ago, but since it is not, I am glad that I have raised two girls who want to read books like this and want to stand up for people of color.  I am glad that publishers are publishing books like this and I am glad that we can have this conversation.  I hope that at some point soon, this conversation won’t be necessary and we will all be treated equally.