The Look Alike

by Erica Spindler

 

 

First off can we talk about this cover! I love it, it’s dark, mysterious and so pretty. Okay now on to The Look Alike I’ve read 2 other books by Erica Spindler and loved them so I knew I had to read this one. The Look Alike hooked me instantly and I really got immersed in the story. The characters were well written and seemed realistic and the story line flowed with a few twist and turns. She handled the mental illness of Sienna’s mother very well. It seemed well researched.

Did I figure out the mystery of who killed Sienna’s look alike? Yes with in the first 10 chapters. But that didn’t take away from the book. I still didn’t know how or why it all went down. She sprinkled many plot twist through out and those I didn’t see coming mostly. There was one with her brother that I knew was coming but again didn’t take anything away.

I would suggest this book to many mystery loving friends. I think any one who loves a good old mystery would really enjoy this and any other book by Erica Spindler. I think this is one I will be buying when it comes out because I’d love to have it on my bookshelf .

About the book: Sienna Scott grew up in the dark shadow of her mother’s paranoid delusions. Now, she’s returned home to confront her past and the unsolved murder that altered the course of her life.

In her mother’s shuttered house, an old fear that has haunted Sienna for years rears its ugly head —that it was she who had been the killer’s target that night. And now, with it, a new fear—that the killer not only intended to remedy his past mistake—he’s already begun. But are these fears any different from the ones that torment her mother?

As the walls close in, the line between truth and lie, reality and delusion disintegrate. Has Sienna’s worst nightmare come true? Or will she unmask a killer and finally prove she may be her mother’s look-alike, but she’s not her clone?

Thank you Netgalley and St Martin’s Press for allowing me to read an advance copy of The Look Alike. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Good Girls Lie

by J.T. Ellison

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Good Girls Lie is an eerie atmospheric thriller set at a boarding school. We get to follow a young girl who is heading to the Goode School in the small quint town of Marchburg Virginia. It opens with the murder of a young graduate and doesn’t stop. This tightly woven tale full of murder, hazing, and secrets will keep the reader turning the pages. You won’t be able to put this one down. If you are new to J.T. Ellison or a long time reader of her’s you will not be disappointed with Good Girls Lie.

 

About the book: Perched atop a hill in the tiny town of Marchburg, Virginia, The Goode School is a prestigious prep school known as a Silent Ivy. The boarding school of choice for daughters of the rich and influential, it accepts only the best and the brightest. Its elite status, long-held traditions and honor code are ideal for preparing exceptional young women for brilliant futures at Ivy League universities and beyond. But a stranger has come to Goode, and this ivy has turned poisonous.

In a world where appearances are everything, as long as students pretend to follow the rules, no one questions the cruelties of the secret societies or the dubious behavior of the privileged young women who expect to get away with murder. But when a popular student is found dead, the truth cannot be ignored. Rumors suggest she was struggling with a secret that drove her to suicide.

But look closely…because there are truths and there are lies, and then there is everything that really happened.

Book Excerpt: 

1

THE HANGING

The girl’s body dangles from the tall iron gates guarding the school’s entrance. A closer examination shows the ends of a red silk tie peeking out like a cardinal on a winter branch, forcing her neck into a brutal angle. She wears her graduation robe and multicolored stole as if knowing she’ll never see the achievement. It rained overnight and the thin robe clings to her body, dew sparkling on the edges. The last tendrils of dawn’s fog laze about her legs, which are five feet from the ground. 

There is no breeze, no birds singing or squirrels industriously gathering for the long winter ahead, no cars passing along the street, only the cool, misty morning air and the gentle metallic creaking of the gates under the weight of the dead girl. She is suspended in midair, her back to the street, her face hidden behind a curtain of dirty, wet hair, dark from the rains. 

Because of the damage to her face, it will take them some time to officially identify her. In the beginning, it isn’t even clear she attends the school, despite wearing The Goode School robes.

But she does. 

The fingerprints will prove it. Of course, there are a few people who know exactly who is hanging from the school’s gates. Know who, and know why. But they will never tell. As word spreads of the apparent suicide, The Goode School’s all-female student body begin to gather, paying silent, terrified homage to their fallen compatriot. The gates are closed and locked—as they always are overnight—buttressed on either side by an ivy-covered, ten-foot-high, redbrick wall, but it tapers off into a knee-wall near the back entrance to the school parking lot, and so is escapable by foot. The girls of Goode silently filter out from the dorms, around the end of Old West Hall and Old East Hall to Front Street—the main street of Marchburg, the small Virginia town housing the elite prep school—and take up their positions in front of the gate in a wedge of crying, scared, worried young women who glance over shoulders looking for the one who is missing from their ranks. To reassure themselves this isn’t their friend, their sister, their roommate. 

Another girl joins them, but no one notices she comes from the opposite direction, from town. She was not behind the redbrick wall. 

Whispers rise from the small crowd, nothing loud enough to be overheard but forming a single question. 

Who is it? Who? 

A solitary siren pierces the morning air, the sound bleeding upward from the bottom of the hill, a rising crescendo. Someone has called the sheriff. 

Goode perches like a gargoyle above the city’s small downtown, huddles behind its ivy-covered brick wall. The campus is flanked by two blocks of restaurants, bars, and necessary shops. The school’s buildings are tied together with trolleys—enclosed glass-and-wood bridges that make it easy for the girls to move from building to building in climate-controlled comfort. It is quiet, dignified, isolated.

 

 

About the Author:  J.T. Ellison is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than 20 novels, and the EMMY-award winning co-host of A WORD ON WORDS, Nashville’s premier literary show. With millions of books in print, her work has won critical acclaim, prestigious awards, and has been published in 26 countries. Ellison lives in Nashville with her husband and twin kittens.

 

Connect with the Author: WebsiteTwitterInstagramFacebookGoodreadsBook Bub

If you are lucky enough to live in a one of the cities she is doing a stop in grab a seat and go listen to her talk, meet her and get her to sign your book. I have to say you are so luck if you can! I wish she was coming to my city or heck anywhere close to my city!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you so much Netgalley and Harlequin – MIRA books for allowing me to read this nail biter. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

The Last Affair

by Margot Hunt

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I could not put this book down. I read it so fast and enjoyed every minute of it. This book was all over the place but in a good way. The author weaved such a story with so many characters and their take on the events as they unfolded. We got many different points of view and got the see the people and how 1 affair unraveled and destroyed so many people. Yet that wasn’t even the shocking moment. While I knew many of the characters were unhinged I never ever guessed that what went down was going to go down! WOW – totally didn’t see it coming.

I loved how the book opens with the murder then we get all the months leading up to the climatic moment. Got to say in this one I can’t think of one main character that was likable or reliable.

If your looking for a great book to gift this holiday season to you or a fellow bookworm. Please think about adding THE LAST AFFAIR to your list. I know I will be reading more by this author in the future.

About the book: Gwen Landon—poster woman for perfect wife, mother, and suburban bliss—is found brutally bludgeoned to death behind her Floridian McMansion. Beautiful and beloved by her community, Gwen makes an unlikely victim. But just a scratch below the surface of her perfectly curated world reveals one far more sinister. When looking back over the six months leading up to her death, the question of, “who would do this?” quickly shifts to, “who wouldn’t?”

Commercially successful food blogger and mother of three, Nora Holliday never imagined she would have the nerve, let alone time, to get involved an affair. Trapped in an unhappy marriage, she does whatever it takes to keep it all together. But when Nora runs into Gwen Landon’s husband at a hotel in Orlando, his easy kindness and warmth proves too tempting to resist. As their affair spirals dangerously out of control, it seems things can’t get more complicated—until Gwen turns up dead.

Prologue Excerpt: Other than the woman’s blood-covered body splayed facedown in the grass, it could have been any typical upscale Floridian backyard.

There was the ubiquitous pool with a water fountain feature, a patio furnished with both a dining set and outdoor sectional couch, and an enormous gas grill capable of cooking hamburgers by the dozen. A large pergola with a tropical vine trained over it covered part of the patio. The dining area was shaded by a black-and-white-striped awning. It was the very picture of suburban domestic bliss. It could have been the set for a commercial advertising anything from laundry detergent to allergy medicine.

Again, except for the dead body.

The area had already been taped off. The first officers on the scene appeared with an ambulance in response to a frantic 911 call placed by the woman’s daughter. The paramedics had assessed the situation, and quickly determined that the woman was dead. The fact that the back of her head had been bashed in with what looked like a paving stone, conveniently dropped next to her prone body, made it immediately clear that it had not been a natural death. The responding officers called the sheriff, who responded by sending in a full investigative team. The medical examiner was now doing a preliminary examination of the body, while police officers combed the area for additional evidence. Two detectives, Mike Monroe and Gavin Reddick—separated by twenty years and sixty pounds—were overseeing the operation, standing at the edge of the patio under the shade of the pergola. It was the third week in April, but this was South Florida and the temperature had already climbed into the low nineties.

“The paving stone came from the stack out in the front yard. They were delivered last week by the company who’s installing the driveway,” Detective Reddick said. He was the younger of the two men and had a wiry frame and angular face.

“Weapon of convenience. Suggests it wasn’t premeditated,” Detective Monroe said. He had a ruddy complexion and a full head of thick dark hair, swept back off his face. A strand never moved out of place, even in a strong wind.

Plus he dropped the weapon, rather than taking it with him. Probably panicked.”

“Could be a she,” Monroe said mildly.

Reddick shrugged. “Blunt force trauma to the back of the head? You know the stats. Overwhelming likelihood that it’s a man, and probably someone the victim was intimately involved with. Husband, maybe a boyfriend.”

“The husband was with the daughter when she called it in.”

“Doesn’t mean he didn’t do it, and then had her place the call.”

“No, it doesn’t.”

The family had been sequestered indoors, both to keep them out of the way, and so that the officers waiting in the house with them could observe anything they did or said. Other than the husband, there was a daughter in her early twenties and a teenage son. The daughter was reportedly distraught, while the husband and son had both been eerily quiet. It was possible they were in shock.

“Do we have an ID on the victim?” Reddick asked.

“It’s her house,” Monroe grunted.

“Yeah, but I like doing things the official way, you know? I’s dotted, t’s crossed, all of that. Building a case, basic detective work.”

Despite the chilling scene in front of them—the woman’s body still sprawled on the grass, the back of her head a pulpy, bloody mess—the corner of Monroe’s mouth quirked up in a half smile. “Sure, kid, tell me all about basic detective work. I’ve only been doing this for, what…thirty-two years now? The husband ID’d her. Victim is Gwen Landon, age forty-nine. Married, mother of two. Husband said she hasn’t had any recent conflict with anyone.”

“Other than the person who caved in the back of her head with a paving stone,” Reddick pointed out.

“Wouldn’t be the first time a husband didn’t know his wife as well as he thought he did.”

“Possible. But there’s another possibility, too.”

“What’s that?”

Reddick turned to look at his partner. His eyes were small and dark, and he had a habit of squinting when he concentrated intently on something.

“The husband is a liar,” Reddick said.

 

 

Author BioMargot Hunt is a critically acclaimed author of psychological suspense. Her work has been praised by Publisher’s Weekly, Booklist and Kirkus Reviews.

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Thank you Netgalley and MIRA books for allowing me to read an advanced copy of THE LAST AFFAIR.

The Escape Room

by Megan Goldin

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The Escape Room has probably been one of the most buzzed about books this summer on Instagram and such. So many people have it on their TBR’s so I was so happy to be able to read it before it’s publication date. I want to go on an escape room adventure sometime, however not if they are like this! 🙂 This book is such a great escape and I enjoyed reading it. Were the characters like-able? NO! I don’t think I liked any of them. They were some of the most hateful people. However I think that was the author’s intentions, at least I hope it was. Was the book believable? I’m not sure for me no it wasn’t, it was good and predictable and a entertaining book to read. The one thing I really liked that I think is absolutely perfect for this book is we read the ending more or less as the prologue and then we go back to the beginning where it all began. So while we know the ending we get to see how it all unfolds and unravels to get to that point. While some books this would ruin the whole story for The Escape Room it totally works. In the end I enjoyed it, would recommend it and gave it 4 solid stars. I will be seeking out the author’s previous book and will read anything else she publishes. This is in my top 10 of 2019 for sure.

About the book: 

Vincent, Jules, Sylvie, and Sam are ruthlessly ambitious high-flyers working in the lucrative world of Wall Street finance where deception and intimidation thrive. Getting rich is all that matters, and they’ll do anything to reach the top.

When they are ordered to participate in a corporate team-building exercise that requires them to escape from a locked elevator, dark secrets of their team begin to be laid bare.

The biggest mystery to solve in this lethal game: What happened to Sara Hall? Once a young shining star—”now gone but not forgotten”.

This is no longer a game.
They’re fighting for their lives.

About the author:

 

 

MEGAN GOLDIN worked as a correspondent for Reuters and other media outlets where she covered war, peace, international terrorism and financial meltdowns in the Middle East and Asia. She is now based in Melbourne, Australia where she raises three sons and is a foster mum to Labrador puppies learning to be guide dogs. THE ESCAPE ROOM is her debut novel.

 

Thank you St Martin Press and Netgalley for allowing me to read The Escape Room. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Gretchen

by Shannon Kirk

Publication date: July 23 2019

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Oh. My. Stars! This is the first book I’ve read by Shannon Kirk and it will not be the last. I’m on hold right now for her first one In The Vines. I couldn’t stop reading this book I was walking around my house cleaning and cooking all one handed because my kindle was glued to my hand. There was so many plot twist and turns, I couldn’t figure it out and I loved that I was surprised through out the whole book. I some what figured out the cat angle but that was it. Gretchen was probably the most creepy person I’ve read about in a thriller fiction. My stars she has more than a screw loose she is beyond words. Lucy and her mom’s dynamic was believable and I liked Lucy. She was a strong girl who had a lot of questions, no friends till she meets Gretchen and she’s not to sure about her but happy they are staying put and laying down some roots. She is getting older and starting to question things and that’s when her whole life takes a huge detour.  This whole book is like that one thread that is hanging off a blanket or shirt and you pull it to tighten but the whole thing just falls in a puddle. In this case it’s totally a good thing!  This book is a creepy, get under your skin unnerving psychological thrill ride that I didn’t want to get off. I was so sad when I finished it but I will read it again in a year or so but it will be one I re-read and buy the physical copy of the book when it comes to have on my shelf. I am going pre-ordered 2 books one for me and  I’m gifting one to my mom to read during her chemo treatments. She is going to love it and it will defiantly make time fly by. Gretchen gets 5 stars from me and is right now number 1 on my best books I’ve read in 2019 (and I’ve read 45 so far this year!) Will it fall from number 1 I really don’t see that happening but I do still need to read In The Vines so we will see. 🙂

About the book: The new tenants have a terrible secret. So do the landlord and his daughter… Ever since Lucy was two, she’s been on the run alongside her mother. She’s never understood the reason for a lifetime of paranoia, aliases, and lies. All she understands are the rules: never lock eyes with strangers, never let down your guard, and always be ready to move on. Finally, after thirteen years and eleven states, their next hideaway seems perfect. An isolated, fortress like place in the New Hampshire woods is the new home they share with its owner, a gentlemanly pianist, and his lonely daughter, Gretchen. She’s Lucy’s age and soon becomes Lucy’s first real friend. But Gretchen and her father have secrets of their own—and an obsession with puzzles that draws Lucy into a terrifying new game of hide-and-seek. Lucy’s dark past is about to come calling. And this time, for her and her mother in the house on the hill, it might be too late to run.

Thank you Netgalley for allowing me to read Gretchen by Shannon Kirk. All thoughts and opinions are mine and not influenced by the free book.

The Night Before

by Wendy Walker

Publication Date: May 14 2019

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The Night Before was really good and while I thought I might have figured out what was going on I was wrong about a few things. Once it started to unfold I couldn’t believe I missed some clues. I’m usually really good at figuring things out but not this time. I got about 80% of the mystery right so the author did a great job at keeping me in the dark. I was thrown but the curve balls within the story line that had some holes that I couldn’t figure out. As the ending was drawing near and everything was spelled out I saw it all and was like yes this makes perfect sense, now why didn’t I see that! This was non stop not sure I’d call it action but it was a non stop roller coaster ride with a lot of loops and turns. It was told in 3 story lines: What Laura was experiencing – What Rosie (Laura’s sister) was experiencing – and lastly Laura and Dr Brody’s transcripts.

The characters are fully developed and while they all grew up together they still have their own secrets that they don’t necessarily want to be exposed. I felt for Rosie she was in the dark most of the time throughout the book. She trusted her sister Laura and would do anything for her. She is trying to unravel what went on the night her sister didn’t come home but she might be the only one that really wants the whole truth.

This was a mystery suspense with both a past mystery that unravels the book progresses and the new mystery of where is Laura and what really happened the night of her first date in a long time. I won’t say much because anything more would start a spoiler. Overall I enjoyed every minute of this book and it was the first Wendy Walker book I’ve read. I do own Emma At Night and moving that one up my TBR stack so I can read it soon. If it is as good as The Night Before I know I won’t be disappointed!

About the book: The night before…and the nightmare after.

Rosie and Laura are as different as two sisters can be. One is stable and has the perfect family. The other struggles to break free from her troubled past. When Laura disappears after going on a blind date, Rosie takes matters into her own hands.

But as Rosie begins to search for her sister, her greatest fears come to the surface. Could Laura be more of a danger than the stranger she meets or is the night before her last night alive?

Told in dual timelines—the night before and the day after—The Night Before is a riveting thriller about family loyalty, obsession, and what happens when the desire for love spins out of control

Thank you Netgalley and St Martin Press for allowing me to read The Night Before. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Deliver Me

by Karen Cole

 

 

This book was so interesting! I don’t think I’ve ever read a book with this story line before. Abby isn’t feeling well and goes to the doctor. She finds out she is pregnant but that is impossible there is no way that could have happened. Then she starts thinking about a party she went to several months ago. She learns something horrible and unthinkable happened and the evil person that did this is not going to go away. He torments her and doesn’t leave her alone. He wants the baby and Abby. She is scared for herself and the baby and can’t let her guard down. This was such a fast paced non stop read. I didn’t guess who the perpetrator was till it was revealed. I love when I get ahold of a book that doesn’t make it easy to guess. I will say this book was hard at times and not for everyone. Usually I don’t read books that deal with this topic but I decided to go out of my comfort zone. This book deals with rape and the aftermath taking it one step further and having to deal with the torment for months afterwards because he won’t let her go. I can’t even imagine having to live through something like what happens in this book. The scary thing is I’m sure it does happen and that just makes it that much scarier of a book to read!  I was very surprised to find out this was Karen Cole’s first novel. She really delivered an intense thriller with Deliver Me, and I can’t wait to see what she comes out with next!

About the book: THE NIGHT SHE DOESN’T REMEMBER WILL BE THE ONE SHE CAN’T FORGET

When Abby’s doctor tells her she’s two months pregnant she doesn’t believe him. She can’t be – she hasn’t had sex for over a year. But to her astonishment and dismay, multiple tests confirm it’s true.

Desperately searching for an explanation, Abby recalls New Year’s Day – the terrible hangover, the hole in her memory where the night before should have been and the inexplicable sense of unease – and realises that this baby must have been conceived at her best friend Danny’s NYE party.

Horrified that someone would have taken advantage of her intoxicated state, Abby enlists the help of Danny to find out which of the party guests assaulted her. But when she starts to receive anonymous messages it seems that while she has been looking into the father of her baby, someone has been watching her…

Thank you Quercus Publishing and Netgalley for allowing me to read Deliver Me. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.