Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Review - Desperate by Daniel Palmer

Book Summary from Amazon

Gage Dekker still blames himself for the car accident that claimed the lives of his first wife and young son. Then he meets Anna, who understands grief all too well. Within a year, Gage and Anna are married, his career is thriving, and both feel ready to become parents once more.

After a heartbreaking miscarriage, they begin the long adoption process, until fate brings Lily into their lives. Young, pregnant, and homeless, Lily agrees to give her baby to Gage and Anna in exchange for financial support. It's the perfect arrangement for everyone. Seeing his wife's happiness and optimism for their new life and child, Gage begins to feel a sense of hope he thought he'd lost forever.

But something isn't right once Lily enters their lives. At work and at home, Gage is being sabotaged, first in subtle ways, then things take a more sinister turn. Every attempt he makes to uncover the truth only drives a wedge between him and Anna. Even as he's propelled toward an unthinkable choice to save his marriage and his job, Gage discovers that the most chilling revelations are still to come. . .

Published - April 2014

My Review - 2

I received this review request and pushed my way through it.  I have always said torturing yourself through a book is not worth it but I feel I have to complete review requests.  This was more family drama then a thriller, but it was sold as a Domestic Thriller. If you enjoy con artists stories it may be worth a try.  The writing was not the problem other than to much detail at times, but that is a detail and style I don't enjoy.  The book overall was unbelievable to me, the whole story.  I would have gave up initially at approx 25%.  Once I got 50% I skimmed the rest, reading all dialogue right until the end, I was desperate to finish after giving this book 2 weeks of my life.

I cannot believe someone loves anyone enough to be completely naive and dumb. I wasn't a Gone Girl fan either, maybe fans of that one will enjoy this.  Gage and Anna who are married and decide to adopt directly, they find Lily and start the process, which was the beginning of the end.  

I am going to accept some of the story line due to Gage grieving his loss of wife and child and using prescription drugs to live life, unknown to his new wife.  I was unable to suspend belief enough to enjoy this book.  I am shocked with the amazon 5 stars for this book, thrilling...... not at all.  If you try it and are enjoying the story you will enjoy how it comes together at the end.  

I appreciate all review requests and would like to thank Kaye Publicity, Inc.

What do you find harder - Not finishing a review requests or not enjoying them and having to give an honest review?

Both are hard for me.  Not finishing, I feel like I let the author and publisher down without real feedback.  Not enjoying them is the torture part for me.  I try to give honest feedback without being cruel and in this case he has already received many 5 stars.

Monday, May 19, 2014

What are you reading - some personal

Sheila over at Book Journey has an incentive for networking so go over and have fun while adding to your 2014 Wishlist.

I am currently reading - I am finding it hard to get into this one but will stick to it as it is a review request.  More of a family drama than the thriller yet.

I am also reading - a personal one for me and so helpful already.

My ARC review - 5 stars - love Heather Gudenkauf

Some of you may remember......  My tenants officially moved out on Saturday, yaaaay.  We are waiting for our furniture, hoping to move in July.

I did a countdown post about inspiration for my bookshelf here.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

ARC Review - Little Mercies by Heather Gudenkauf

Book Summary from NetGalley

Veteran social worker Ellen Moore has seen the worst side of humanity—the vilest acts one person can commit against another. She is a fiercely dedicated children's advocate and a devoted mother and wife. But one blistering summer day, a simple moment of distraction will have repercussions that Ellen could never have imagined, threatening to shatter everything she holds dear, and trapping her between the gears of the system she works for.

Meanwhile, ten-year-old Jenny Briard has been living with her well-meaning but irresponsible father since her mother left them, sleeping on friends' couches and moving in and out of cheap motels. When Jenny suddenly finds herself on her own, she is forced to survive with nothing but a few dollars and her street smarts. The last thing she wants is a social worker, but when Ellen's and Jenny's lives collide, little do they know just how much they can help one another.

Release date - June 2014

My Review - 5

Heather Gudenkauf is a go to author when she releases a new book.  I loved her debut The Weight of Silence and loved this one just  as much.  Her writing style grabs you with a genuine embrace.  The emotional hold had me sitting on the edge of my seat.

There were two stories going on which started to intertwine and both took hold of me without competing but adding to the mystery and outcome of both.  One of the main things I enjoy about Heather G's books is I begin to love all the characters in some way, she makes you care and get completely engrossed with them and the story.  Sometimes when more then one story line is going on, I am involved with one not always caring for the other but with Ellen and Jenny each chapter rotating had me begging for more, this is a want to read in one sitting novel.

Ellen has three beautiful children with her husband and has a career as a social worker where she takes children away from their parents in order to protect them.  She deals with the tragedies of life that many of us hope never to have to.  Then her whole life stops when the tables are turned and she is dealing with the unknown to her, the life the abusers have put her victims through.

Jenny is a survivor of abuse, living with a loving but irresponsible dad.  She witnesses difficulty and ends up all alone after an 8 hour bus drive.  She meets Maudene who becomes her glimmer of hope, her Ma but as a survivor of abuse, she doesn't know who to trust and lies often without knowing there are still wonderful in the world to help.

This is a novel of compassion and love.  Heather Gudenkaur has a lyrical style that I find unique, beautiful writing.

Favourite Quote - please note ARC

Jenny also wanted to tell her father, but wasn't quite sure how to put it into words, that the very worst kind of hurt was the kind that wasn't there yet, but you knew was slowly creeping toward you.  Kindle at 11%

My Reviews of Heather Gudenkauf's other books

Monday, May 12, 2014

Happy Monday - What are you reading?

Sheila over at Book Journey has an incentive for networking so go over and have fun while adding to your 2014 Wishlist.

It is Monday again but i'm going to be HAPPY :-)

How many of you love Pharrell's Happy song?  It is the addictive pick me up in my household.  It is currently getting me through the pre-Monday Blues hahaha

I'm currently reading - have you heard of Brian Freeman?  He is new to me but my Goodreads group, Good Thriller have highly recommended him.

I just finished and loved Little Mercies - review up on Wednesday

I reviewed Now You See Me - 4 star, my review

I also reviewed- 4 star I've Got Me Under Your Skin

A favourite 5 star Thriller from April, My Review

I hope everyone had a great weekend and Mothers Day

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Review - Now You See Me by S. J. Bolton

Book Summary from Amazon

One night after interviewing a reluctant witness at a London apartment complex, Lacey Flint, a young detective constable, stumbles onto a woman brutally stabbed just moments before in the building’s darkened parking lot. Within twenty-four hours a reporter receives an anonymous letter that points out alarming similarities between the murder and Jack the Ripper’s first murder—a letter that calls out Lacey by name. If it’s real, and they have a killer bent on re-creating London’s bloody past, history shows they have just five days until the next attempt.

No one believes the connections are anything more than a sadistic killer’s game, not even Lacey, whom the killer seems to be taunting specifically. However, as they investigate the details of the case start reminding her more and more of a part of her past she’d rather keep hidden. And the only way to do that is to catch the killer herself.

Published - June 2011

My Review - 4 

This is my first S. J. Bolton and definitely won't be my last, she has a masterful imagination which gives her the edge of being a successful unique author in the Thriller genre.  Now You See Me reminded me of so many favourite books and authors - Bone Collector would be the most similar including an amazing psychological thriller spin.

DI Lacey Flint becomes directly involved as a woman stumbles into her bloody and dies in her hands within seconds.  She is unable to officially be a part of the investigation as she is now involved, possibly even an accomplice.  Then the letter comes in calling Lacey by name. The why, when, where investigation starts and the similarity to the Jack the Ripper murders.  I enjoyed the history of Jack the Ripper which made me want to read about it but I do think it was a bit overboard.  The murders were set in London and with perfect distinction, S. J. Bolton helped the reader to picture and have a great feel for London while continuing the dark mystery.

What was amazing was at half way, they caught the murderer, or so they thought, the book was brilliant but now it became interesting and highly entertaining, edge of your seat, blow your mind brilliance.  S. J. Bolton was now showing her talent, love the imagination and story line she takes you on.

Lacey Flints obsession with Jack the Ripper help her to share knowledge with the investigators. With every murder, lots of bloodshed they feel closer to figuring it out but also become obsessed which is all part of the game, they completely fell for it. 'An early fascination with serial killers,' I replied... I'd been intrigued by violent crime and its perpetrators for as long as I could remember...  'Sadistic, psychopathic predators specifically.'  There was one Detective that had Lacey has the murderer or accomplice, she did have a dark secret but was she withholding critical information, it did seem like the case was all about her.

There was a lot going on in this book, I enjoyed it for the most part and it helped with numerous twists but I just didn't like Lacey, she did not fit the expected Police Officer mold.  This was dealt with though but can't say I bought it, if she was older yes, but she is young and system should have been better than it was.

The ending, oh my, brilliant, even though you have some figured it, this is a Thriller you will never be able to have it all right as S. J. Bolton will take you on a mind blowing journey.  A great book hangover at the end as it was intricate, complicated and will have you reading into the night.

Can you recommend what book to read for Jack the Ripper crimes please?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Review - I've Got You Under My Skin by Mary Higgins Clark

Book Summary from Amazon

When Laurie Moran's husband was brutally murdered, only three-year-old Timmy saw the face of his father's killer.  Five years later his piercing blue eyes still haunt Timmy's dreams.  Laurie is haunted by more - the killer's threat to her son as he fled the scene:  "Tell your mother she's next, then it's your turn..."

Now Laurie is dealing with murder again, this time as the producer of a true-crime, cold-case television show.  The series will launch with the twenty-year-old unsolved murder of Betsy Powell.  Betsy, a socialite, was found suffocated in her bed after a gala celebrating the graduation of her daughter and three friends.  The sensational murder was news nationwide.  Reopening the case in its lavish setting and with the cooperation of the surviving guests that night, Laurie is sure to have a hit on her hands.  But when the estranged friends begin filming, it becomes clear each is hiding secrets... small and large.

And a pair of blue eyes is watching events unfold, too....

Published - April 2014

My Review - 4

I love Mary Higgins Clark, her books turned me into a Mystery lover, so I am a fan for life.  As I was reading this one it reminded me of another book, Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot's Christmas, which I highly recommend.

A daughters mother is murdered during a Graduate Gala for her and four friends.  They live for 20 years as suspects as the murder was not solved.  All coming together to clear their name.

Laurie, a TV producer has an idea to do a reality show, Unsolved Crimes and bring everyone together to reenact parts of the weekend.  All of them had reasons to dislike the mother, Betsy, and were hiding secrets that can pinpoint them as the murderer but was have to figure out who.

I was able to figure out the murderer, it was fun to be right but I do prefer to be surprised.

There was an underlying mystery also going on.  Laurie's husband was murdered in front of their 3 year old boy and he remembered him as "Blue Eyes killed my dad".  Blue Eyes told the child your mom is next and then you.  They lived in fear and Blue Eyes has decided to use the reality show filming as his next strike on the family.

I enjoyed this one, not as intricate as others and details repeated but the last 30% I was on the edge of my seat and read late into the night for the ending.  I love the games and blackmailing going on with the genuine hate instead of grieving, this made the story entertaining.