Book Review

This Might Hurt by Stephanie Wrobel [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: This Might Hurt

Author: Stephanie Wrobel

Publisher: Berkley Books

Publish Date: February 22, 2022

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

This Might Hurt by Stephanie Wrobel

BOOK BLURB

Welcome to Wisewood. We’ll keep your secrets if you keep ours.

Natalie Collins hasn’t heard from her sister in more than half a year.

The last time they spoke, Kit was slogging from mundane workdays to obligatory happy hours to crying in the shower about their dead mother. She told Natalie she was sure there was something more out there. 

And then she found Wisewood.

On a private island off the coast of Maine, Wisewood’s guests commit to six-month stays. During this time, they’re prohibited from contact with the rest of the world—no Internet, no phones, no exceptions. But the rules are for a good reason: to keep guests focused on achieving true fearlessness so they can become their Maximized Selves. Natalie thinks it’s a bad idea, but Kit has had enough of her sister’s cynicism and voluntarily disappears off the grid.
 
Six months later Natalie receives a menacing e-mail from a Wisewood account threatening to reveal the secret she’s been keeping from Kit. Panicked, Natalie hurries north to come clean to her sister and bring her home. But she’s about to learn that Wisewood won’t let either of them go without a fight.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Natalie has not heard from her sister, Kit, in over six months. Kit took off to a remote retreat, and cut off contact with the outside world. After receiving a cryptic email, Natalie goes to the retreat in search of her sister.

This Might Hurt is told using multiple points of view and timelines. This was somewhat confusing at first, but eventually came together well. The characters were intriguing and unique. The story was complex and engaging.

This Might Hurt is a psychological thriller about sisters, cults, childhood trauma, and therapy. A creepy and atmospheric novel.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Stephanie Wrobel:
  1. Darling Rose Gold
  2. This Might Hurt
Book Review

Beneath the Stairs by Jennifer Fawcett [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: Beneath the Stairs

Author: Jennifer Fawcett

Publisher: Atria Books

Publish Date: February 22, 2022

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

Beneath the Stairs by Jennifer Fawcett

BOOK BLURB

Few in sleepy Sumner’s Mills have stumbled across the Octagon House hidden deep in the woods. Even fewer are brave enough to trespass. A man had killed his wife and two young daughters there, a shocking, gruesome crime that the sleepy upstate New York town tried to bury. One summer night, an emboldened fourteen-year-old Clare and her best friend, Abby, ventured into the Octagon House. Clare came out, but a piece of Abby never did.

Twenty years later, an adult Clare receives word that Abby has attempted suicide at the Octagon House and now lies in a coma. With little to lose and still grieving after a personal tragedy, Clare returns to her roots to uncover the darkness responsible for Abby’s accident.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Two girls, Clare and Abby, entered a local house rumored to be haunted. Twenty years later, Abby has returned to the house to commit suicide. The house has effected many people over the years, and Clare returns to uncover the mystery of the house.

Beneath the Stairs is a debut novel that combines mystery thriller with paranormal elements. It is told primarily through Clare’s viewpoint and uses alternating timelines. This one took me a while to get into, but I ended up enjoying the story.

Beneath the Stairs is a slow-burning read for fans of mysteries and horror.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Jennifer Fawcett
  1. Beneath the Stairs
Book Review

The End of Getting Lost by Robin Kirman [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: The End of Getting Lost

Author: Robin Kirman

Publisher: Simon Schuster

Publish Date: February 15, 2022

Genre: Domestic Suspense

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

The End of Getting Lost by Robin Kirman

BOOK BLURB

A young woman and her husband travel around Europe to celebrate their first year of marriage—a year that the woman has no memory of—in this searing novel of intimacy and deceit.

The year is 1996—a time before cell phones, status updates, and location tags—when you could still travel to a remote corner of the world and disappear. This is where we meet Gina and Duncan, a young couple madly in love, traveling around Europe on a romantic adventure. It’s a time both thrilling and dizzying for Gina, whose memories are hazy following a head injury—and the growing sense that the man at her side is keeping secrets from her.

Just what is Duncan hiding and how far will he go to keep their pasts at bay? As the pair hop borders across Europe, their former lives threatening to catch up with them while the truth grows more elusive, we witness how love can lead us astray, and what it means to lose oneself in love


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

In The End of Getting Lost, a married couple, Gina and Duncan, travel around Europe on a romantic adventure. Unfortunately, Gina suffers from amnesia due to a head injury. Gina feels that Duncan is hiding something from her, but she’s not all that forthcoming either.

The End of Getting Lost is told from the alternating viewpoints of Gina and Duncan. It is a domestic mystery of lies and deceit. The story takes place during the 1990s, which I enjoyed. However, I found the characters unlikable, and the story never fully grasped my attention.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Robin Kirman:
  1. The End of Getting Lost
Book Review

A Flicker in the Dark by Stacy Willingham [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: A Flicker in the Dark

Author: Stacy Willingham

Publisher: Minotaur Books

Publish Date: January 11, 2022

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 4/5

A Flicker in the Dark by Stacy Willingham

BOOK BLURB

When Chloe Davis was twelve, six teenage girls went missing in her small Louisiana town. By the end of the summer, her own father had confessed to the crimes and was put away for life, leaving Chloe and the rest of her family to grapple with the truth and try to move forward while dealing with the aftermath.

Now twenty years later, Chloe is a psychologist in Baton Rouge and getting ready for her wedding. While she finally has a fragile grasp on the happiness she’s worked so hard to achieve, she sometimes feels as out of control of her own life as the troubled teens who are her patients. So when a local teenage girl goes missing, and then another, that terrifying summer comes crashing back. Is she paranoid, seeing parallels from her past that aren’t actually there, or for the second time in her life, is Chloe about to unmask a killer?


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

When Chloe Davis was twelve years old, her father was convicted for killing six teenage girls. Twenty years later, teenage girls are being killed, and Chloe suspects there is a connection with her father.

Chloe had a traumatic childhood, but has worked to overcome her difficult past. She is a psychologist with her own practice, she’s planning her wedding, and has the support of her fiancé  and her brother. Unfortunately, she also self-medicates, which makes her a bit unreliable as a narrator. When teenage girls start missing again, Chloe is unsure if there is a connection with her father, or if it’s all unrelated and in her imagination.

A Flicker in the Dark is a gripping debut novel. Flawed characters and an atmospheric setting in this twisty thriller. I look forward to reading more by this author.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Stacy Willingham:
  1. A Flicker in the Dark
Book Review

The Appeal by Janice Hallett [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: The Appeal

Author: Janice Hallett

Publisher: Atria

Publish Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Crime Fiction

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

The Appeal by Janice Hallett

BOOK BLURB

The Fairway Players, a local theatre group, is in the midst of rehearsals when tragedy strikes the family of director Martin Hayward and his wife Helen, the play’s star. Their young granddaughter has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and with an experimental treatment costing a tremendous sum, their fellow castmates rally to raise the money to give her a chance at survival.

But not everybody is convinced of the experimental treatment’s efficacy—nor of the good intentions of those involved. As tension grows within the community, things come to a shocking head at the explosive dress rehearsal. The next day, a dead body is found, and soon, an arrest is made. In the run-up to the trial, two young lawyers sift through the material—emails, messages, letters—with a growing suspicion that a killer may be hiding in plain sight. The evidence is all there, between the lines, waiting to be uncovered.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

The Appeal is an epistolary novel told through emails, texts, and other written communications. I’ve read several books with this format, and usually end up enjoying them. A mystery written in this format allows the reader to attempt solving the crime as the story unfolds.

A local theater group rallies around a sick child in one of their families. Along with preparing for their next production, the group helps raise money for an experimental treatment for the child. Tensions and doubts arise, and then one of the theater group is found dead. As two lawyers sort through the correspondence between the players involved, they start to suspect a killer is on the loose.

The Appeal is a compelling and uniquely told murder mystery. A good read for fans of epistolary novels and armchair sleuths.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review

My Darling Husband by Kimberly Belle [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: My Darling Husband

Author: Kimberly Belle

Publisher: Park Row

Publish Date: December 28, 2021

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

My Darling Husband by Kimberly Belle

BOOK BLURB

Everyone is about to know what her husband isn’t telling her…

Jade and Cam Lasky are by all accounts a happily married couple with two adorable kids, a spacious home and a rapidly growing restaurant business. But their world is tipped upside down when Jade is confronted by a masked home invader. As Cam scrambles to gather the ransom money, Jade starts to wonder if they’re as financially secure as their lifestyle suggests, and what other secrets her husband is keeping from her.

Cam may be a good father, a celebrity chef and a darling husband, but there’s another side he’s kept hidden from Jade that has put their family in danger. Unbeknownst to Cam and Jade, the home invader has been watching them and is about to turn their family secrets into a public scandal.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

My Darling Husband starts strong. Jade and her two kids, a daughter and a son, are held hostage in their home. Jade contacts her husband, Cam, with the intruder’s ransom demands. Unfortunately, Cam hasn’t been completely forthcoming about his business and their finances. As Cam scrambles, Jade and the kids attempt to save themselves.

Three points of view are used – Jade, Cam, and Sebastian, the intruder. Each of the characters has a unique voice, though I believe the story could have been more suspenseful without Sebastian’s viewpoint. The characters are relatable and strong, including the kids.

My Darling Husband is an intense and gripping psychological thriller. A good read for fans of domestic thrillers and authors such as B.A. Paris and Liv Constantine.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Kimberly Belle:
  1. The Last Breath
  2. The Ones We Trust
  3. The Marriage Lie
  4. Three Days Missing
  5. Dear Wife
  6. Stranger in the Lake
  7. My Darling Husband
Book Review

Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: Rock Paper Scissors

Author: Alice Feeney

Publisher: Flatiron

Publish Date: September 7, 2021

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 4/5

Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney

BOOK BLURB

Things have been wrong with Mr and Mrs Wright for a long time. When Adam and Amelia win a weekend away to Scotland, it might be just what their marriage needs. Self-confessed workaholic and screenwriter Adam Wright has lived with face blindness his whole life. He can’t recognize friends or family, or even his own wife.

Every anniversary the couple exchange traditional gifts–paper, cotton, pottery, tin–and each year Adam’s wife writes him a letter that she never lets him read. Until now. They both know this weekend will make or break their marriage, but they didn’t randomly win this trip. One of them is lying, and someone doesn’t want them to live happily ever after.

Ten years of marriage. Ten years of secrets. And an anniversary they will never forget.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

A husband and wife win a weekend getaway. Adam and Amelia are hoping this weekend will help improve their marriage, but things do not go as planned.

Rock Paper Scissors is told from alternating points of view. Having viewpoints from both Adam and Amelia adds more to the story, plus letters written by Amelia on each of their anniversaries adds insight to their relationship. The novel starts slow, but it eventually picks up.

Rock Paper Scissors is an atmospheric and twisty domestic thriller. Fans of Alice Feeney’s other books are sure to enjoy this one too.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Alice Feeney:
  1. Sometimes I Lie
  2. I Know Who You Are
  3. His & Hers
  4. Rock Paper Scissors
Book Review

Good Rich People by Eliza Jane Brazier [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: Good Rich People

Author: Eliza Jane Brazier

Publisher: Berkley

Publish Date: January 25, 2022

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

Good Rich People by Eliza Jane Brazier

BOOK BLURB

A destitute woman deceives her way into the guesthouse of a Hollywood Hills mansion and inadvertently becomes a target in the twisted game of the wealthy family upstairs in the next intoxicating novel from Eliza Jane Brazier.

Lyla has always believed that life is a game she is destined to win, but her husband, Graham, takes the game to dangerous levels. The wealthy couple invites self-made success stories to live in their guesthouse and then conspires to ruin their lives. After all, there is nothing worse than a bootstrapper. 

Demi has always felt like the odds were stacked against her. At the end of her rope, she seizes a risky opportunity to take over another person’s life and unwittingly becomes the subject of the upstairs couple’s wicked entertainment. But Demi has been struggling forever, and she’s not about to go down without a fight.  

In a twist that neither woman sees coming, the game quickly devolves into chaos and rockets toward an explosive conclusion. 

Because every good rich person knows: in money and in life, it’s winner take all. Even if you have to leave a few bodies behind.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Good Rich People is a psychological thriller about a rich couple and a dark game they play. The couple rents out a guest cottage on their property. They choose people they can torment and attempt to ruin their lives. Unfortunately for them, their latest tenant is not one to go down easy.

Lyla, Graham, and Margo, Graham’s mother, are very rich. So rich they invent their own game to ruin other people’s lives. Their latest target, Demi, is tough to break though. The characters are well developed, unlikable, and fun to read about. The point of views alternate throughout the story, helping make it a more engaging read.

An over-the-top thrill ride of secrets and lies. Good Rich People is a gripping and twisty book for fans of psychological thriller.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Eliza Jane Brazier:
  1. If I Disappear
  2. Good Rich People
Book Review

Last Seen Alone by Laura Griffin [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: Last Seen Alone

Author: Laura Griffinin

Publisher: Berkley

Publish Date: September 28, 2021

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Series: na

My Rating: 4/5

Last Seen Alone by Laura Griffin

BOOK BLURB

Up-and-coming attorney Leigh Larson fights for victims of sexual extortion, harassment, and online abuse. She is not afraid to go after the sleaziest targets to get payback for her clients. Leigh is laser-focused on her career—to the exclusion of everything else—until a seemingly routine case and a determined cop turn her world upside down.

Austin homicide detective Brandon Reynolds is no stranger to midnight callouts. But when he gets summoned to an abandoned car on a desolate road, he quickly realizes he’s dealing with an unusual crime scene. A pool of blood in the nearby woods suggests a brutal homicide. But where is the victim? The vehicle is registered to twenty-six-year-old Vanessa Adams. Searching the car, all Brandon finds is a smear of blood and a business card for Leigh Larson, attorney-at-law.

Vanessa had hired Leigh just before her disappearance, but Leigh has no leads on who could have wanted her dead. Faced with bewildering evidence and shocking twists, Leigh and Brandon must work against the clock to chase down a ruthless criminal who is out for vengeance.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Leigh is an attorney focused on her career, which involves fighting for victims of harassment and online abuse. Brandon is a detective looking for a missing woman who’s car was found abandoned with a pool of blood nearby. Leigh and Brandon are thrown together because the missing woman is Leigh’s client.

Leigh and Brandon are likable characters. They are driven in their careers, and both want to get the answers they are looking for. The story is fast-paced and engaging.

Last Seen Alone combines mystery, action, and romance. Recommended for fans of romantic suspense.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Laura Griffin:
  1. Far Gone
  2. Last Seen Alone
Book Review

All These Bodies by Kendare Blake [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: All These Bodies

Author: Kendare Blake

Publisher: Quill Tree

Publish Date: September 21, 2021

Genre: YA Mystery

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

All These Bodies by Kendare Blake

BOOK BLURB

Summer 1958. A gruesome killer plagues the Midwest, leaving behind a trail of bodies completely drained of blood. 

Michael Jensen, an aspiring journalist whose father happens to be the town sheriff, never imagined that the Bloodless Murders would come to his backyard. Not until the night the Carlson family was found murdered in their home. Marie Catherine Hale, a diminutive fifteen-year-old, was discovered at the scene—covered in blood. She is the sole suspect in custody.

Michael didn’t think that he would be part of the investigation, but he is pulled in when Marie decides that he is the only one she will confess to. As Marie recounts her version of the story, it falls to Michael to find the truth: What really happened the night that the Carlsons were killed? And how did one girl wind up in the middle of all these bodies?


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

A series of murders that leaves the victim’s bodies drained of blood. Another gruesome murder, but this time a teen girl is found at the scene. At first, she appears to be a victim, but she is soon the suspect. A teen boy who aspires to be a journalist, and is the sheriff’s son, is the only one she will talk to.

All These Bodies is a young adult novel that combines historical fiction, mystery, and horror. The story is told from the boy’s point of view, and he’s not the best interrogated to find out what really happened.

A slow burning novel. Fans of true crime and horror are likely to enjoy All These Bodies.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review

The Stowaway by James S. Murray and Darren Wearmouth [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: The Stowaway

Author: James S. Murray and Darren Wearmouth

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Publish Date: September 21, 2021

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 3/5

The Stowaway by James S. Murray and Darren Wearmouth

BOOK BLURB

Two years ago, Maria Fontana, the head of the Psychology Department at Columbia University, sat on a jury for one of the most depraved cases ever to pass through the hallowed halls of City Hall. Wyatt Butler, an antique watch restorer and alleged serial killer, was portrayed in the courtroom as a brutal monster. But Maria had to make the tough choice. In good conscience, she couldn’t convict him based purely on circumstantial evidence, and her deciding vote set Wyatt Butler free. The media soon outed her as the lone juror and her successful and quaint life was turned upside down. The victims of Wyatt’s ritualistic killings never forgave her either.

Now, she and her family have decided to take a vacation to get away from everything: a two-week-long transatlantic cruise. Nothing, and nobody should be able to bother her there. With her two twins and her fiancé Steve, she is set to put the past behind her as soon as the ship leaves port. But when a passenger mysteriously disappears, Maria is left to wonder if maybe this was no coincidence. When another passenger is discovered brutally murdered in a similar way to Butler’s ritualistic MO, the ship goes on lockdown.

Maria, one of only twelve people in the world with intimate knowledge of the case, faces a perilous ticking clock. Is it a copycat? Or is she trapped on board with the bloodthirsty maniac she chose to set free?


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Maria served on a jury for an alleged serial killer. She decided to vote not guilty, and it created some challenges in her life. She became the target of threats, and wants to get away for a while. She and her boyfriend and two kids go on a cruise. Soon a murder occurs, and Maria has to figure out if it’s the killer she set free or a copycat.

The Stowaway is a fast-paced plot driven thriller. Gruesome crimes against children make for a difficult read. Intriguing story that kept me interested in how it would end.

The Stowaway is a disturbing and twisty thriller. Fans of serial killer mysteries are likely to enjoy this one.

I received a digital copy of this book from Macmillan in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review

The Necklace by Matt Witten [Book Review]

Book Review

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy,


BOOK INFO

Title: The Necklace

Author: Matt Witten

Publisher: Oceanview Publishing

Publish Date: September 7, 2021

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: na

My Rating: 4/5

The Necklace by Matt Witten

BOOK BLURB

The clock ticks down in a heart-pounding crusade for justice

Susan Lentigo’s daughter was murdered twenty years ago—and now, at long last, this small-town waitress sets out on a road trip all the way from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the killer’s execution.

On her journey she discovers shocking new evidence that leads her to suspect the condemned man is innocent—and the real killer is still free. Even worse, her prime suspect has a young daughter who’s at terrible risk. With no money and no time to spare, Susan sets out to uncover the truth before an innocent man gets executed and another little girl is killed.

But the FBI refuses to reopen the case. They—and Susan’s own mother—believe she’s just having an emotional breakdown. Reaching deep, Susan finds an inner strength she never knew she had. With the help of two unlikely allies—a cynical, defiant teenage girl and the retired cop who made the original arrest—Susan battles the FBI to put the real killer behind bars. Will she win justice for the condemned man—and her daughter—at last?


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Susan’s daughter was murdered years ago, and now it’s time for the killer’s execution. While traveling to the execution, she starts to consider the condemned man was not the killer. Others seem to believe Susan is having an emotional breakdown, so she looks for evidence to prove she’s right.

The Necklace is a mystery thriller. A mother is grieving her daughter, who was murder as a child twenty years earlier. This makes for an emotional read with disturbing subject matter. Susan misses her daughter, and wants the guilty man to suffer for killing her child. However, she starts to realize someone else may have killed her daughter. She’s emotional though, so it’s hard to get anyone to believe her.

A dark and intense mystery. Mystery readers who enjoy Karin Slaughter and Lisa Gardner are likely to enjoy The Necklace.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books by Matt Witten:
  1. The Necklace