Book Reviews

The Chosen Ones (Carol Wyer) @NetGalley @Bookouture @carolewyer

Author: Carol Wyer
Goodreads Rating: ★★★★ (4.44)
Pages: 374
Published: May 24, 2018 | Bookouture

Goodreads Synopsis:

They had not been forgiven. And they would never be forgotten… When a doting young father is murdered and his body discovered in a cornfield for his family to see, it’s a harrowing new case for Detective Robyn Carter. But just as Robyn starts to investigate, a popular local doctor and young mother, is found dead outside her surgery. As Robyn tries to find the link between the victims, she uncovers a dark web of secrets. Were these much-loved members of the community as innocent as they seemed?

The killer has a message for Robyn and the carefully chosen victims. Can Robyn get to the truth before she becomes the next target?

My Thoughts (5 STARS!)

Just when I think Wyer can’t top herself, she proves me wrong again! This novel is drop dead exciting and that ending was SHOCKING!

I think I say this every time I write a blog for Carol, but if you have yet to pick up the DI Robyn Carter series, I suggest you do it today! Her writing is full of suspense, crime, passion and cliff hangers. It’s everything I want and need in a story. I read this novel as a buddy read with my bestie Megan over at Coffee By the Novel. This read took us a little while to get through due to our own personal issues NOT due to the book itself.

I was waiting for this novel to give me ALL the answers from thee extremely huge cliff hanger I was left with in The Silent Children and I am still not any closer to knowing the big “event” than I did in the last book. I need to know what happened to Davies!!!

The Chosen Ones was perfectly written to keep readers on their toes by second guessing characters, feeling heartbroken for characters and for almost making them want to cry (or maybe that was just me!). Wyer is the master when it comes to creating characters. Inside the pages of this novel, she creates her villain so readers can identify their pain. I related to this villain and felt extremely sorry for this person until the end that is. I love that she made this character a real human being rather than some psycho killer who had past issues.

From the beginning, when I picked up Little Lost Girl, Wyer had sunk her claws into me and I’m so glad that this series is not finished yet because I’m not ready for her or DI Carter to let me go just yet.!

Don’t forget to look for her new novel coming soon: The Birthday releasing September 27, 2018.


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Book Reviews

Close To Me (Amanda Reynolds) @NetGalley

Author: Amanda Reynolds
Goodreads Rating: ★★★★☆ (3.69)
Pages: 384
Published: July 27, 2017 | Wildfire

Goodreads Synopsis

She can’t remember the last year. Her husband wants to keep it that way. When Jo Harding falls down the stairs at home, she wakes up in hospital with partial amnesia-she’s lost a whole year of memories. A lot can happen in a year. Was Jo having an affair? Lying to her family? Starting a new life? She can’t remember what she did – or what happened the night she fell. But she’s beginning to realize she might not be as good a wife and mother as she thought.

My Thoughts (3 Stars)

I struggled a lot with this novel. It started out very slow for my liking and held true for 3/4 of the book. As a reader, I am not one to quit a book and I have to say I was interested to find out what exactly happened to Jo and her family. The book picked up speed within the last 100-150 pages. I’m usually not one to dislike characters very much either. In each and every book I read or have read, I’ve always attached to a character or two. In this novel I unfortunately did not have that take on any character within these pages. I could not find the sympathy for any of the Harding family. All of the lies and betrayal each member hid from Jo and vise versa I was almost hoping myself her memory stayed gone so everyone could just move on.

Knowing that this is Reynolds debut novel, it is a very good start. I cannot wait to see what she has coming next. I will definitely be picking it up to read. Unfortunately this book was just not a favorite. If any of you bloggers/readers enjoy a more slow read, I thoroughly think you will enjoy it.

Thank you to NetGalley, Quercus and Amanda Reynolds for a free copy to read for an honest review.


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Book Reviews

Force of Nature (Jane Harper) @NetGalley @Flatironbooks @janeharperautho

Author: Jane Harper
Goodreads Rating: 
★★★★☆ (3.95)
Pages:
326
Published: February 6th, 2018 | Flatiron Books

Goodreads Rating:

Five women go on a hike. Only four return. Jane Harper, the New York Times bestselling author of The Dry, asks: How well do you really know the people you work with?

When five colleagues are forced to go on a corporate retreat in the wilderness, they reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking down the muddy path. But one of the women doesn’t come out of the woods. And each of her companions tells a slightly different story about what happened.

Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing hiker. In an investigation that takes him deep into isolated forest, Falk discovers secrets lurking in the mountains, and a tangled web of personal and professional friendship, suspicion, and betrayal among the hikers. But did that lead to murder?

My Thoughts: (5 Stars!)

I wish I could be a character within Jane Harper’s stories because I am so in love with Aaron Falk. *Insert: Eye Heart Emoji*

Force of Nature was a read as a buddy ready with my girl Megan over at Coffee By the Novel. We also read The Dry together when it first came out. You can check out our reviews here: Megan’s Review  My Review.

Looking back at reading The Dry, we loved it. Everything about it had us completely captured. I felt the same way with Force of Nature. Looking at the two novels, they do go together in developing Falk’s character but could be read as stand alones. I do not suggest this however. I love getting to know a characters full background before jumping ahead.

The ending was perfectly twisted in it’s own way separated from the rest of the book. Reading this novel beginning to end, I was totally engrossed with Harper’s writing. But that ending!? Woah! I did not expect that in any way. Nor did I expect who the culprit was. I thought for sure I had everyone pegged for who they truly were but I was incredibly wrong!

For me, novels that are written this way are my absolute favorite. I don’t mind the predictable stories but I have way more fun and are more in tune with the novel instead!

If you have not picked up either of these books, do so now. These two are high on my recommendation list!

For those of you who have read this, how excited were you about the duo at the end? I was ecstatic! And more importantly hope they both rollover into the next book!


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Book Reviews

Baby Doll (Hollie Overton)

Author: Hollie Overton
Goodreads Rating: 
★★★ (3.78)
Pages:
278
Published:
July 12th, 2016 | Redhook

Goodreads Synopsis

Held captive for eight years, Lily has grown from a teenager to an adult in a small basement prison. Her daughter Sky has been a captive her whole life. But one day their captor leaves the deadbolt unlocked. This is what happens next… to her twin sister, to her mother, to her daughter … and to her captor.

My Thoughts (4 Stars)

This was an insane storyline. I was gripped from the beginning of the book till about mid way through. The middle of the novel I become a little bored but the ending picked up quit nicely.

This story is every girl and woman’s worst nightmare. Being held captive. And what is worse, being held captive by someone you know.

The first 3 chapters told the story of Lily being held captive in the here and now. Every chapter after was the aftermath to Lily and her family’s lives. This novel was a whirlwind of emotions for me. This section of the book was the hardest for me to get through. I had a really hard time identifying with Lily’s feelings along with trying to understand and like her sister Abby.

Abby’s character was very impulsive and reckless. For her circumstances in her personal life, I feel like she probably should have taken a step back. To me, she also acted like she was more traumatized than Lily did when Lily finally returned home.

Lily’s character throughout the book really troubled me. Lily had such a calmness to her that it was almost like she believed she deserved what happened to her. Or she was glad it was her and not somebody else. Very odd to me.

But at the end of the novel, it ended perfectly how I would have wanted it to end and is a book I would totally recommend someone to read!


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Book Reviews

Killman Creek (Rachel Caine)

Author: Rachel Caine
Goodreads Rating: ★★★★★ (4.32)
Pages: 348
Published: December 12, 2017 | Thomas & Mercer

Goodreads Synopsis:

Every time Gwen closed her eyes, she saw him in her nightmares. Now her eyes are open, and he’s not going away. Gwen Proctor won the battle to save her kids from her ex-husband, serial killer Melvin Royal, and his league of psychotic accomplices. But the war is not over. Not since Melvin broke out of prison. Not since she received a chilling text… You’re not safe anywhere now. Her refuge at Stillhouse Lake has become a trap. Gwen leaves her children in the protective custody of a fortified, well-armed neighbor. Now, with the help of Sam Cade, brother of one of Melvin’s victims, Gwen is going hunting.

She’s learned how from one of the sickest killers alive. But what she’s up against is beyond anything she feared – a sophisticated and savage mind game calculated to destroy her. As trust beyond her small circle of friends begins to vanish, Gwen only has fury and vengeance to believe in as she closes in on her prey. And sure as the night, one of them will die.

My Thoughts (5 Stars)

This second installment to Stillhouse Lake blew me away. If you have not read the first novel, you need to and you need to read them in order. You will be lost on background knowledge if you don’t start with Stillhouse Lake.

From the first page to the last page, I was completely engaged, I was on the edge of my seat and I did not know what was going to happen. This was a thrill ride! I loved the first novel, but I loved this one even more.

The book opens up with a little background story (not enough to fill you in though) of where the last book ended off. Gwen Proctor previously know as Gina Royal in her past life will stop at nothing when hunting down her ex-husband. During this adventure, Sam Cade stays by her side even though he has all the reason in the world to turn against her and kill her himself. Her ex-husband has brutally murdered his sister and how is he to know if Gwen actually helped. The evidence that shows up in this novel doesn’t make it look good for her in his eyes, or her children’s.

Not only does Gwen face the sicko patrol, Absalom, and her ex-husband she has to face the small circle of friends she does has and the reasons they turned against her when she needed them the most.

Gwen is at a fight for her life to protect her children and it was the most suspenseful read I have read. I could not read this book fast enough for how busy my personal life is. If I had no other engagements, I could have easily read this book in a sitting or two.

Looking at characters, I have to share my love for Sam Cade. Not only is a huge character in the book but he is a strong character. I want to have my own Sam Cade when fighting issues. He is brave, supportive, strong, gentle and flies by the seat of his pants. My favorite kind of character.

This novel was full of twists and turns. Reading it, I could picture this movie as a motion picture and I’m really crossing my fingers in hope that might happen one day. This is a great two book story and would make a great movie!

The Stillhouse Lake Series is a series I will love for all time and will read again when necessary. Highly recommended!


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Book Reviews

The Silent Children (Carol Wyer) @carolewyer @bookouture @NetGalley

Author: Carol Wyer
Goodreads Rating: 
★★★★★ (4.37)
Pages:
360
Published:
December 7th, 2017 | Bookouture

Goodreads Synopsis:

The boy studied the bruise turning yellow at the base of this neck. With quick fingers his mother tightened his tie, and pulled his collar high above it. Her eyes along said, We will not speak of this… Years later, a man is found shot dead in a local park. On his phone is a draft text: I can’t keep this secret any longer. The recipient in unnamed. Detective Robyn Carter knows this secret is the key to the case, but his friends and family don’t offer any clues, and all her team have to go on is a size-ten footprint.

Then a woman is found in a pool of blood at the bottom of her staircase, and a seemingly insignificant detail in her stepdaughter’s statement makes Robyn wonder: are the two bodies connected, and has the killer only just begun? When another body confirms Robyn’s worst fears, she realizes she’s in a race against time to stop the killer before they strike again. But just as she thinks she’s closing in, one of her own team goes missing. Buried in the past is a terrible injustice. Can Robyn uncover the truth before another life is lost?

My Thoughts (5 Stars)

Carol, you have done it again! You have to stop leaving me on this cliff hanger…!

Readers/bloggers, if you have yet to pick up the DI Robyn Carter series I suggest you do TODAY! You are missing out on some amazing stories and an amazing writer. Carol Wyer in the past year has not only become a friend to me over social media but one of my most favorite authors to read.

Her writing is full of suspense, crime, passion, and cliff hangers. It’s everything I want and need in a story. Robyn Carter is hands down my hero. Which I’ve said before but I’ll keep saying it from here on out. Her character is determined to not only catch the bad guys but to make a difference in the community and it other people’s lives that she is a part of.

While Robyn has been fighting crime and solving murders she has a case of her own that hits a little too close to home in this novel. I have been waiting since book one for this “event” to happen and after reading book four I don’t what outcome I’d rather read.

Looking inside the story and the relationships that are forming make me so excited to get my hands on the next book to see how much further those relationships are going to go. My favorite one right now (and it’s not a total giveaway) is Shearer & Carter. It is so incredibly adorable how they both shy at the fact that there are feelings there.

Other than DI Carter my next favorite character who almost comes as close as the first is Robyn’s  cousin Ross. He is such a loveable man and willing to go above and beyond his job for Robyn. I would not mind if he ended up getting his own series either (hint, hint).

These books come highly recommended and if you have read them tell me what you think below in the comments. I love to hear what other readers and bloggers have to say about books that I am incredibly in love with!


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Book Reviews

The Christmas Gate (T.A. Cline) @Old_Farmer

Author: T.A. Cline
Goodreads Rating: 
★★★★☆ (4.22)
Pages:
100
Published:
December 6th, 2016 | Tate Publishing

Goodreads Synopsis:

Robert Robinson, a renown author from New York City, is traveling unwillingly through a snow storm on his way to a small farm in upstate New York owned by his editor. Robert’s fame from the success of his books has changed him. His indulgence in big-city parties and being in the spotlight has allowed his arrogance to swell and for him to lose focus of his obligations. Now, being excessively late on the third book of a three book contract, he is given an ultimatum.

Robert is oblivious to Christmas and all that goes along with it. His parents loved Christmas, but he hadn’t spoken  with them in over eight years. Over the years, he has slowly disconnected from everything that reminded him of them. Christmas just became a day for a bigger party. While at the old farm house, Robert discovers something that has been hidden there for possibly generations. What secrets lay just beyond an old screeching gate? Will the miracle of Christmas find its way to Robert?

My Thoughts (4 Stars)

This was an incredibly heart warming Christmas read. I am so glad I picked this book up to read for this specific season. This book is a novella and is part 1 of 2 that leaves you with a “to be continued…” The Christmas Gate 2 is the second book to this novella and I cannot wait to pick that up and hopefully finish it before the beginning of the New Year.

This novella could easily be turned into a Hallmark movie on the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries channel. This is a traditional Christmas story that touches on forgiveness, family hardships, greed and spiritual beliefs. This is more of a Christian based novella but is not over the top to make you feel uncomfortable if you don’t follow the belief. It’s a story that highlights the different stages of love and grief along with showing us that life is too short to not love and live life to the fullest. I love how it kind of goes along the lines of the story A Christmas Carol.

I enjoyed this book and highly recommend it if you are looking for a cute holiday read or simply if you’re looking to meet your Goodreads goal before 2018!


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