book reviews

All the Books I’ve Finished This Month

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I’m back with all the books I “read” (I actually listen to audiobooks because it’s more convenient) in the month of June. I got through a ton of books though a handful were great while the others were not worth a read.

1. The Lies We Told – A good ol’ mystery thriller. Nothing too exciting but a fun easy read. Clara’s boyfriend Luke disappears one day and leaves no indication as to why he would leave. As Clara begins to look into his seemingly perfect family’s past, she uncovers secrets and answers to his mysterious disappearance. Rating: 8

2. When You See Me – Flora and Keith are part of a special FBI civilian task force and are called by Sergeant Quincy and Warren to investigate a possible connection to a deceased serial killer. They head to a small town in Georgia to learn more and are soon swept into a tangled web of the serial killer’s past and they find out it’s more depraved then they imagined. Rating: 8

3. You are Not Alone – Lots of buzz around this book, but it was only ok for me. When Shay Miller befriends sisters Cassandra and Jane under rather odd circumstances, she feels like she’s met her new best friends. She becomes obsessed with pleasing them and doing anything to keep their friendship, even if it means ruining her own life. Rating: 6

4. The Good Daughter – Now this was a thriller I enjoyed!! Charlotte and Samantha Quinn are sisters that had to endure a horrific event in their youth that left them scarred for life. When tragedy strikes again as adults, Samantha comes home to help Charlotte deal with the aftermath of a brutal school shooting. But what is uncovered is much more sinister and awful. Rating: 8.5

5. The Mother-in-Law – Lucy desperately wants to be accepted by her new husband’s family and is for the most part – except for her mother-in-law. Diana is very hard to get close to and Lucy doesn’t understand why. After Diana is found dead in her home from an apparent suicide, Lucy tries to figure out the reason behind her sudden death. Rating: 8.5

6. Once More We Saw Stars – A devastating memoir of Jayson Greene’s loss of his daughter. I believe I remember hearing about this when I lived in NYC because it happened on the Upper West Side. Jayson’s two year old daughter, Greta, was visiting her grandmother and they were sitting on a bench near her apartment. Suddenly a brick fell from the building above and struck Greta in the head and the injury was fatal. This story is about their time through that grief and how they navigated bringing another child into the world after Greta’s death. It’s an emotional but beautiful read. Rating: 8.5

7. Gone Too Long – This one dragged on too much and was not a favorite. Imogene’s father was a KKK clan member and she has spent her life trying to avoid him and his reputation. After his death, Imogene returns home and is cleaning out her father’s home when she discovers a child locked in a basement on the property. She rescues the child and fears that her father has kept this boy imprisoned for years. But after she begins to uncover more about her father, she realizes that she may be wrong about the person that has committed this heinous crime. Rating: 5

8. The Paris Wife – Though this story is fiction, it’s written about Ernest Hemingway and his first wife, Hadley. Though they divorced early into their marriage, Hemingway always said that he would “have died rather than fallen in love with anyone but Hadley”. Though they were deeply in love at the beginning, Hemingway’s need to succeed and his fondness for women drove them apart. While I thought I would enjoy this book, it fell flat for me. Rating: 4

9. The Other Mrs. – What a book!!! So entertaining and I loved every minute of it. There were tons of twists and turns and the ending was a big surprise. Sadie and Will recently moved their family from Chicago to a small town in Maine to become legal guardian’s for Will’s niece. Will’s sister committed suicide leaving behind 16 year old Imogene who is a very difficult child to deal with. Sadie and Will are trying to acclimate to their new life in Maine when a neighbor is brutally murdered in the middle of the night. The murder really terrifies Sadie and she begins to question her new life here. Rating: 9

The Books I’ve Recently Finished

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I’ve been all over the place during quarantine when it comes to things keeping me busy. Sometimes I’ve been listening to podcasts, sometimes watching new shows and sometimes listening to audiobooks. I managed to finish 7 books over the past few weeks and some were really amazing! Here are all the books I’ve recently finished:

1. The Turn of the Key – Not the most gripping thriller I have ever read, but I really enjoyed it! It kept my interest until the very end and then there was a twist which I love. Rowan takes a live-in nanny position with a wealthy family and the position seems almost too good to be true. But soon things began to happen around the house and she is worried for her safety. Ultimately she is charged with murder of one of the children she is watching after though things are not what they seem. Rating: 8.5

2. A Great Reckoning – I forgot that I had already read a book by this author before and didn’t like it. And sadly I didn’t like this one either. Armand Gamache takes over as head of the police academy after retiring from being the Chief of Homicide. Shortly after he takes over his position, a lead professor is murdered. It’s a typical murder mystery but I found it painfully boring. Rating: 4

3. In Five Years – I couldn’t put this book down! I loved it so much. Dannie has her entire life mapped out in her head and she is trying to adhere to the timeline she has for herself. One night she goes to sleep and wakes up five years in the future and nothing is as she had imagined. She is with a different partner, living a different life and doesn’t know how she got there. That premonition haunts her as she tries to figure out if the path she thinks she wants is really not the right one for her. Rating: 9

4. The Last Wife – This is an easy beach read thriller type book. Not the most amazing story but enjoyable and easy to get through. Ria married into a wealthy and prominent Chicago family but sadly her marriage didn’t last. Even though she is no longer married to her husband, she stays close with his family for the sake of her daughter. Her husband had a few brothers, but Ria doesn’t get along with them. It isn’t until she receives an anonymous email sharing dirty secrets on her family members, that she begins to wonder if someone is targeting the family. The ending is a bit predictable but still a fun read. Rating: 7.5

5. Someone We Know – This book may seem similar to the other thrillers from this list but I actually could not figure out the ending (which I love!). A local teenager has been sneaking into his neighbors’ homes to snoop around on their computers. When his parents find out, they are livid and his mother leaves anonymous letters on the people’s doorsteps apologizing for his behavior. At the same time as this is going on, one of the women in the neighborhood is found murdered and the boy may have seen something and not even realized it. This kept my attention and really was fun to read. Rating: 8.5

6. American Dirt – A true masterpiece. I loved this book so much though it was very different from the rest of the books in this list. Lydia lives in Acapulco with her husband and son and owns a small bookstore in town. A regular customer of hers becomes her friend over their shared love of books. Unfortunately Lydia discovers that this new friend is actually the leader of one of the largest drug cartels in Mexico. Lydia’s husband is a local reporter and exposes the man in an article for the newspaper and he comes after her family. She is forced to flee Mexico and this story documents her journey to get to America – the dangers, the perils and the heartbreaking stories of the people she meets along the way.  Rating: 9

7. The Lost Ones – Sadly this was not a hit with me. It was a mystery but dragged on and didn’t really keep my interest. Nora Watts receives a call after fifteen years from the family who adopted her daughter that she gave up at birth. Bonnie is missing and the parents are hoping that Nora can help them find her. Even though Nora doesn’t know her daughter, she decides to help them. There are a few good twists and turns in the book, but definitely not as exciting as I anticipated. Rating: 5

Past Posts

All the Books I’ve Finished Recently

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