Book Review: The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald

The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: The Night Olivia Fell
Author: Christina McDonald
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publish Date: February 5, 2019
Genre: Mystery Thriller
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 3.93

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
In the vein of Big Little Lies and Reconstructing Amelia comes an emotionally charged domestic suspense novel about a mother unraveling the truth behind how her daughter became brain dead. And pregnant.

A search for the truth. A lifetime of lies.

In the small hours of the morning, Abi Knight is startled awake by the phone call no mother ever wants to get: her teenage daughter Olivia has fallen off a bridge. Not only is Olivia brain dead, she’s pregnant and must remain on life support to keep her baby alive. And then Abi sees the angry bruises circling Olivia’s wrists.

When the police unexpectedly rule Olivia’s fall an accident, Abi decides to find out what really happened that night. Heartbroken and grieving, she unravels the threads of her daughter’s life. Was Olivia’s fall an accident? Or something far more sinister?

Christina McDonald weaves a suspenseful and heartwrenching tale of hidden relationships, devastating lies, and the power of a mother’s love. With flashbacks of Olivia’s own resolve to uncover family secrets, this taut and emotional novel asks: how well do you know your children? And how well do they know you?


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MY REVIEW
Abi gets a call that every parent fears. Her daughter, Olivia, is in the hospital. Abi rushes to the hospital to find that seventeen-year-old Olivia fell off a bridge and is brain dead. Olivia is dead, but she is on life support because she is pregnant. The police believe Olivia’s fall to be an accident, but Abi thinks someone killed her daughter. She starts to question the people in Olivia’s life, and also ends up learning more about her daughter.

Told with alternating points of view (Abi and Olivia) and timelines (before and after Olivia’s fall). Abi suspects that Olivia’s fall was not an accident, even though it seems everyone else wants her to believe that it was. To learn about what caused Oliva’s fall, Abi must learn about what was going on in Olivia’s life leading up to that night. Olivia’s POV provides insight as to what Olivia was thinking and doing in the months preceding the fall.

An emotional and suspenseful novel. No parent wants to get a call that their child has been in an accident, and even worse, has died as a result. Abi was a strong character in the way she pursued the truth about Oliva’s fall. Sadly, Olivia and Abi were not truthful with one another before the fall, and that hurt their relationship.

A compelling read for fans of domestic suspense. Intense, dramatic, and gripping.

I borrowed a copy of this book from my local library.

Book Review: The Women by S.E. Lynes

The Women by S.E. Lynes

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: The Women
Author: S.E. Lynes
Publisher: Bookouture
Publish Date: May 21, 2019
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 4.40

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
The night she moves in with Peter, she’s so happy, so exhilarated, so in love. Later, she will remember a much smaller feeling, a tiny one percent in her gut. And she will remember pushing that feeling aside…

Samantha Frayn doesn’t know why Peter Bridges picks her – a nobody with bitten fingernails and a troubled childhood behind her – but she falls quickly. He’s older, charming, likes fine wine and French films, and his beautiful home has real art on its walls.

Peter transforms Samantha’s life in an instant. He sees the better version of herself – the one she’s always wanted to be. It’s only normal that there’s a little friction, when she moves in, over domestic matters like where things are kept, or the proper times to eat, sleep and shower. She’s lucky to be with someone who can help her find a new job, move on from childish friends, and speak with greater sophistication.

But as Samantha notices, more and more, Peter’s temper, she starts to wonder if there might be consequences to breaking the rules of the world he has so quickly built around her.

And then she receives an anonymous note that makes her ask: is she the first woman to feel trapped by Peter? Is she being paranoid, manipulated, or could she be in danger?

You can tell the truth about your life, but someone needs to be listening. Someone needs to trust you. And someone needs to save you from the man you thought you loved.



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MY REVIEW
Samantha falls for Peter. Peter is quite a bit older than Samantha, and, at first, it seems like he is an encouraging and sophisticated man. After moving in together and having a baby, Samantha realizes Peter isn’t as great as she thought.

This book opens with Samantha and Peter on their honeymoon. It then goes back to when Samantha met Peter, a professor at her university. They get serious quickly, moving in together and having a baby. On Peter’s insistence, Samantha takes a job teaching a creative writing class. She soon starts receiving anonymous notes that lead her to believe Peter isn’t the dream man she envisioned.

A story of lies, manipulation, and control. An entertaining and fast-paced psychological thriller.

I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Don’t Loan Out

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is Books That I Refuse to Let Anyone Touch.

I usually don’t mind loaning books out, but there are some books I don’t lend. The books not loaned are mainly books that are part of a set or because I haven’t yet read them and plan to in the near future.

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
I have several copies of this book. Some copies I will loan out, others aren’t leaving my home library.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

2. Stillhouse Lake and Killman Creek by Rachel Caine
I have signed copies of this book. Rachel Caine is one of my favorite authors, and I went to a book signing for these.

Rachel Caine signed books

3. Vintage Classics (Red Spines)
I have a small collection of these books, and don’t plan on lending of them out. Some of these books I have other copies of, so I’ll happily share those instead.

Vintage Classics

4. Little Black Classics set
I have the first 80 books in this set by Penguin. I don’t want to lose track of any of the books.

Little Black Classics

5. A Song of Fire and Ice series by George R.R. Martin
I haven’t yet finished reading these books, but plan on finishing them this year.

A Song of Fire and Ice series by George R.R. Martin

6. The Walking Dead series by Robert Kirkman
I haven’t read all of these yet, but it’s another one I plan on catching up on this year.

The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman

7. Puffin Classics
This is another small collection that I don’t lend out.

Puffin Classics

8. Penguin Modern Classics
I only have a few of these books, but I prefer the ones I have not get lost.

Modern Classics

9. Assorted children’s books
My son has his favorites and we reread the same books. His favorites aren’t going anyway. His favorites change weekly though, so we keep a variety of books on his shelves for any occasion.

Children's Books

10. Any book on my upcoming TBR
Some of the books I own are on my to-read list for this year, so I’d rather not loan them out until I’ve read them. I’ll stick with loaning out books I’ve read or books I have no intention of reading in the near future. Since I don’t have my upcoming to-read books shelved separately, I’ll just post a photo of a wall of bookshelves. I’m guessing I’ve read about half of these.

Home library bookshelves

Book Review: Murder by the Sea by Kathleen Bridge

Murder by the Sea by Kathleen Bridge

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: Murder by the Sea
Author: Kathleen Bridge
Publisher: Lyrical Underground
Publish Date: May 21, 2019
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: A By the Sea Mystery #3
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 3.95

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
When a murderer crashes a masquerade ball, it’s up to Liz to unmask the killer…

It’s been quite a year for novelist Liz Holt. She’s overcome a lot and is finally feeling at peace with her new life at her family’s hotel, the Indialantic by the Sea, on the beautiful barrier island of Melbourne Beach, Florida. She’s exactly where she needs to be to ring in the New Year at the Florida Writes Literary Masquerade Ball.

But when her ex-boyfriend surprises her at the ball, she can’t disguise her anger, and the two engage in a very public argument. Naturally, after her ex is found dead on the hotel grounds, shot through the heart, Liz tops the suspect list. With the help of family and friends, she needs to clear her name before the real killer waltzes away scot-free…



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MY REVIEW
Liz and friends are celebrating New Year’s Eve with a masquerade ball. When Liz’s ex-boyfriend shows up at the ball, Liz is surprised and angry with his arrival. Even more surprising is his sudden demise, and Liz is the primary suspect. Fortunately, Liz has some good friends to help sleuth and discover the truth.

This is the third book in the A By the Sea Mystery series by Kathleen Bridge. I recommend reading this series in order. There are a number of characters, and their relationships progress through the series.

This is a highly entertaining cozy mystery. Quirky characters in a fun and light read. I especially enjoyed the masquerade ball of literary characters and the talk of favorite sleuths, including Sherlock Holmes and Nancy Drew. A recommended read for fans of cozy mysteries.

I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Weekly Wrap-Up (May 11 – May 17)

Weekly Wrap-Up

I’m on vacation, and taking a break from reading. That means no books read or acquired this week. So weird.


BOOKS READ

Zero books read this week.


BOOKS ACQUIRED

Zero books acquired this week.


ON THE BLOG

THIS WEEK

MONDAY – Book Review: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
TUESDAY – Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Page to Screen Adaptations
WEDNESDAY – Book Review: King of Fools by Amanda Foody
THURSDAY – Book Review: No Exit by Taylor Adams
FRIDAY – Weekly Wrap-Up (May 11 – May 17)

NEXT WEEK

MONDAY – TBD
TUESDAY – Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Don’t Loan Out
WEDNESDAY – TBD
THURSDAY – Book Review: The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald
FRIDAY – Weekly Wrap-Up (May 18 – May 24)

Thanks for stopping by Nightcap Books. Happy Reading!

Book Review: No Exit by Taylor Adams

No Exit by Taylor Adams

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: No Exit
Author: Taylor Adams
Publisher: William Morrow
Publish Date: January 15, 2019
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 4.11

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
A brilliant, edgy thriller about four strangers, a blizzard, a kidnapped child, and a determined young woman desperate to unmask and outwit a vicious psychopath.

A kidnapped little girl locked in a stranger’s van. No help for miles. What would you do?

On her way to Utah to see her dying mother, college student Darby Thorne gets caught in a fierce blizzard in the mountains of Colorado. With the roads impassable, she’s forced to wait out the storm at a remote highway rest stop. Inside are some vending machines, a coffee maker, and four complete strangers.

Desperate to find a signal to call home, Darby goes back out into the storm… and makes a horrifying discovery. In the back of the van parked next to her car, a little girl is locked in an animal crate.

Who is the child? Why has she been taken? And how can Darby save her?

There is no cell phone reception, no telephone, and no way out. One of her fellow travelers is a kidnapper. But which one?

Trapped in an increasingly dangerous situation, with a child’s life and her own on the line, Darby must find a way to break the girl out of the van and escape.

But who can she trust?

With exquisitely controlled pacing, Taylor Adams diabolically ratchets up the tension with every page. Full of terrifying twists and hairpin turns, No Exit will have you on the edge of your seat and leave you breathless.


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MY REVIEW
Darby is driving home to see her dying mother when she gets caught in a blizzard. Having to exit the road, Darby pulls into a rest area to wait out the storm. Inside the building are some vending machines, restrooms, and four strangers. Darby needs to contact her family, but there is no cell reception. When she wanders outside trying to get a signal, she makes a horrifying discovery. In the van parked next to her is a little girl in a cage. With no cell reception and no way to contact anyone for help, Darby must decide what to do.

An intriguing and suspenseful novel. Darby stumbles across something that is clearly not right, but she’s not sure what to do. She knows she needs to find out who the girl is and why she’s locked in a cage. Beyond that, she must discover which of the strangers is behind it. How to find everything out without drawing attention to herself is the trick.

This reads almost like a closed room mystery. It’s not a closed room, instead it’s a rest area that no one can leave due to weather. With no outside contact, Darby is left with only her wits to save the little girl.

An exciting thriller with interesting characters and an amazing atmosphere. My only complaint has to do with the ending… so, I won’t post it to keep this spoiler free. Otherwise, this is a top-notch thriller. Complex, gripping, and binge-worthy.

I borrowed a copy of this book from my local library.

Book Review: King of Fools by Amanda Foody

King of Fools by Amanda Foody

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: King of Fools
Author: Amanda Foody
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Publish Date: April 30, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Series: The Shadow Game #2
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 4.24

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
Indulge your vices in the City of Sin, where a sinister street war is brewing and fame is the deadliest killer of them all…

On the quest to find her missing mother, prim and proper Enne Salta became reluctant allies with Levi Glaisyer, the city’s most famous con man. Saving his life in the Shadow Game forced Enne to assume the identity of Séance, a mysterious underworld figure. Now, with the Chancellor of the Republic dead and bounties on both their heads, she and Levi must play a dangerous game of crime and politics…with the very fate of New Reynes at stake.

Thirsting for his freedom and the chance to build an empire, Levi enters an unlikely partnership with the estranged son of mafia donna Vianca Augustine. Meanwhile, Enne remains trapped by Vianca’s binding oath, playing the roles of both darling lady and cunning street lord, unsure which side of herself reflects the truth.

As Enne and Levi walk a path of unimaginable wealth and opportunity, new relationships and deadly secrets could quickly lead them into ruin. And when unforeseen players enter the game, they must each make an impossible choice: sacrifice everything they’ve earned in order to survive…



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MY REVIEW
The second book in The Shadow Game series by Amanda Foody. This book picks up where the first book, Ace of Shadows, ended.

Favorite characters are back (Enne, Levi, Jac) and new characters are introduced. The characters in this series are so intriguing. This novel is told using multiple points of view, which gives insight into several characters. I especially love the strong female characters.

The fun thing about this series is the politics in New Reynes. With so many people trying to be in power, nobody can be trusted. That’s made very clear in this book.

This YA fantasy series is action-packed and fun to read. I can’t wait for the next book… especially after that ending.

I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Page to Screen Adaptations

Top Ten Tuesday

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is a Page to Screen Freebie.

Page to screen adaptations. Like most book lovers, I tend to prefer the book over the movie. Sometimes though, the book and the movie are both great. Listed below are ten page to screen adaptations that I enjoyed both the book and the movie.

1. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

2. The Shining by Stephen King

The Shining by Stephen King

3. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

4. The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

5. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

6. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

7. Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote

Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote

8. The Firm by John Grisham

The Firm by John Grisham

9. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling

10. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Book Review: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.

BOOK INFO
Title: The Unhoneymooners
Author: Christina Lauren
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publish Date: May 14, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 4.17

BOOK BLURB
from Amazon:
For two sworn enemies, anything can happen during the Hawaiian trip of a lifetime—maybe even love—in this romantic comedy from the New York Times bestselling authors of Roomies.

Olive Torres is used to being the unlucky twin: from inexplicable mishaps to a recent layoff, her life seems to be almost comically jinxed. By contrast, her sister Ami is an eternal champion… she even managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a slew of contests. Unfortunately for Olive, the only thing worse than constant bad luck is having to spend the wedding day with the best man (and her nemesis), Ethan Thomas.

Olive braces herself for wedding hell, determined to put on a brave face, but when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. Suddenly there’s a free honeymoon up for grabs, and Olive will be damned if Ethan gets to enjoy paradise solo.

Agreeing to a temporary truce, the pair head for Maui. After all, ten days of bliss is worth having to assume the role of loving newlyweds, right? But the weird thing is… Olive doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, the more she pretends to be the luckiest woman alive, the more it feels like she might be.

With Christina Lauren’s “uniquely hilarious and touching voice” (Entertainment Weekly), The Unhoneymooners is a romance for anyone who has ever felt unlucky in love.



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MY REVIEW
Olive’s sister is marrying Ethan’s brother. After the hilariously horrifying wedding reception, Olive and Ethan’s siblings are not able to make their nonrefundable honeymoon. They offer the trip to their siblings. Olive and Ethan are not friends. Olive and Ethan both want the trip, and aren’t going to let a little thing like traveling with the enemy get in their way. As they spend time together, Olive and Ethan realize they are definitely not enemies.

Told from Olive’s point of view. At first, it seems like she and Ethan have nothing in common. The romance develops as they realize they don’t know one another at all, and their ideas of each other change.

As usual, the writing duo of Christina Lauren has written a humorous, fun, and sexy contemporary romance. A lot of humor, a little drama, and some downright silly situations make for an entertaining read. For me, this wasn’t the best Christina Lauren novel, but I still highly recommended it for fans of Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating and My Favorite Half-Night Stand.

I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Weekly Wrap-Up (May 4 – May 10)

Weekly Wrap-Up

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase.


Happy Friday!

I’m getting ready to go on vacation, so I’ve been trying to catch up on some reading before leaving. I usually don’t read much when traveling. It’s been crazy weather with lots of rain here in Texas, which makes for some nice reading weather.

I worked on book reviews last weekend, and, for the first time in months, was caught up. For, like, a day. Anyway, that day was nice. My goal for this summer is to stay on top of reviews. We’ll see how that goes.


BOOKS READ

• Two print books – Death Overdue by Alison Brook and Little Darlings by Melanie Golding
• One ebook – King of Fools by Amanda Foody
• Nine audiobooks – At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen, Hide and Seek and Red by Jack Ketchum, Bag of Bones by Stephen King, The Good Samaritan by John Marrs, All the Little Lights by Jamie McGuire, The Revenant by Michael Punke, Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes, Evelyn, After by Victoria Helen Stone

Death Overdue by Allison BrookLittle Darlings by Melanie GoldingKing of Fools by Amanda FoodyAt the Water's Edge by Sara GruenHide and Seek by Jack KetchumRed by Jack KetchumBag of Bones by Stephen KingThe Good Samaritan by John MarrsAll the Little Lights by Jamie McGuireThe Revenant by Michael PunkeYear of Yes by Shonda RhimesEvelyn, After by Victoria Helen Stone


BOOKS ACQUIRED

Amazon’s First Reads – Valencia and Valentine by Suzy Krause

Valencia and Valentine by Suzy Krause


CURRENTLY READING

Currently reading three books – one print book (Homicide in Hardcover by Kate Carlisle), one ebook (Murder by the Sea by Kathleen Bridge), and one audiobook (I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll).

Homicide in Hardcover by Kate CarlisleMurder by the Sea by Kathleen BridgeI Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll


ON THE BLOG

THIS WEEK

MONDAY – Book Review: The Last Time I Saw You by Liv Constantine
TUESDAY – Top Ten Tuesday: Characters That Remind Me of Myself
WEDNESDAY – Book Review: The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
THURSDAY – Book Review: Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte
FRIDAY – Weekly Wrap-Up (Apr 4 – May 10)

NEXT WEEK

MONDAY – Book Review: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
TUESDAY – Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Page to Screen Adaptations
WEDNESDAY – Book Review: King of Fools by Amanda Foody
THURSDAY – Book Review: No Exit by Taylor Adams
FRIDAY – Weekly Wrap-Up (May 11 – May 17)

Thanks for stopping by Nightcap Books. Happy Reading!