Review: It Happens All The Time

Book Title: It Happens All The Time
Author: Amy Hatvany
Reviewed By: CHELSEA
Series: None
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Women’s Fiction
Goodreads

Date Read: 03/26/17
Pub Date: 03/28/17

5 STARS

“I want to rewind the clock, take back the night when the world shattered. I want to erase everything that went wrong.”

Amber Bryant and Tyler Hicks have been best friends since they were teenagers—trusting and depending on each other through some of the darkest periods of their young lives. And while Amber has always felt that their relationship is strictly platonic, Tyler has long harbored the secret desire that they might one day become more than friends.

Returning home for the summer after her college graduation, Amber begins spending more time with Tyler than she has in years. Despite the fact that Amber is engaged to her college sweetheart, a flirtation begins to grow between them. One night, fueled by alcohol and concerns about whether she’s getting married too young, Amber kisses Tyler.

What happens next will change them forever.

If I’m being completely honest, this is the hardest review I’ve written to date. I won this book courtesy of Amy back in October and it’s been sitting on my shelf staring at me ever since. I had every intention of picking it up and getting this bad boy reviewed by January 1, but everytime I reached for it the lump in my throat and throbbing in my stomach won out and I chose an easier read. I’m going to stop right here and preface two things: 1) If you are wanting to go into this book completely blind (though I’m not sure how you would if you’ve seen any marketing for it yet) then stop right here. I’m not going to spoil the read, but I will be delving into the content matter a bit and wanted to give fair warning. 2) If you have a rape trigger, I normally advise against reading rape-related material, but if you’ve ever been a victim of sexual assault I’d highly encourage you to read this. Hopefully it’ll bring you some of the comfort you may never have received from your close ones at your lowest points.

“Violators cannot live with the truth; survivors cannot live without it.”
– Chrystine Oksana

 I’m sitting here with tears streaming down my face and snot pouring out my nose because I realized I’ve been searching for this book for the past decade; this coming October 20 will mark 10 years since the night I was raped. As difficult as it is to put those words to paper, it’s in the hope that I can reach someone who is silently suffering from a similar situation that needs an anchor. My intention is not to make this review about my experience or go into intricate detail; however, I want to establish the foundation of why this book is so necessary for women like myself. The media for years has pummeled our society with the notion that rape is a rare occurrence and only is acknowledged in the most brutal of circumstances. While film and literature tend to portray rape as only happening at the hands of serial killers, kidnappers, and psychopaths, most women are actually assaulted by someone they know, not a stranger. I spent many years questioning the validity of my own assault because my attacker was a “good guy”; he had always been kind to people and never once given the impression he was a monster of this sort. This book addresses that more realistic and messy type of situation and helped ease some of the confusion I had struggled with for years.

Consent– it is the entire foundation for Hatvany’s latest novel. I can already tell this book will ruffle some feathers and bring up all kinds of discussion and controversy amongst it’s readers. The plot revolves around Amber and Tyler; Amber is the only “miracle” child of her over protective parents (I could easily relate to this being an only child myself and the product of 10 years of trying to conceive after being told having children might not happen for my parents). She’s been shouldering the weight of feeling like she must succeed in everything to make up for the lack of other children her parents were unable have. Tyler moves in next door and becomes the older brother Amber never had; together they help each other through some extremely dark times, and although Tyler has always harbored feelings of more than friendship for Amber, she has never seen him as anything more than a brother. Enter here the controversy of consent. Without spoiling the read, we come to a point many years later that stops the reader in their tracks to consider their own belief on where consent lies.

All in all, this is the type of story that crosses genre barriers and holds us accountable for our views and how we treat victims. While this is a story about the attack and it’s ripple effect of consequences, it’s also a story of hope and redemption. Is it possible for someone to commit an unthinkable act and change? Can healing take place between two parties when this level of violation has occurred? I love how this book didn’t make it easy for the reader; there are no clear cut answers or magical happy endings. The reality of the attack altering Amber’s life forever is something all victims can relate to; while it is possible to work through the side effects (anxiety, depression, fear, and self-loathing) with therapy and sometimes medication, there’s never a fix all cure that can take back that horrible event. This book did, however, present the right questions that we as a society need to consider as we continually see rape cases being paraded across the media in a trivial fashion. If you are looking for a book that will grab your heart and cause you to think about some really tough, but timely issues, I highly encourage you to pick up a copy of It Happens All The Time. Amy chose to limit the graphic violence and sexual scenes; the rape scene is really a very small portion but I believe this made the book all the more powerful and readable while being less showy for the shock value. This is a story that will stay with me for years to come; I’m so proud of the author for sharing via social media her own experience with being assaulted at a young age, her drive to help overcome the stigma surrounding rape, and encouraging the support of victims everywhere.

*Many thanks to the author and publisher for providing my copy and the platform so that I would have the ability to share my own experience. 

**If you’ve been a victim of sexual assault, please don’t suffer alone. Reach out for help; secrets and trauma can only control you if kept alone and in the dark. I’ve included some national hotlines with resources to help victims of all kinds of sexual assault:

National Sexual Assault Hotline
1-800-656-4673 [24/7 hotline]

Self Injury Hotline
1-800-DON’T-CUT (366-8288)

Suicide Hotline  
1.800.SUICIDE (784-2433)

 

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Blog Tour: Deadly Game


Book Title: Deadly Game
Author: Matt Johnson
Reviewed By: Chelsea
Series: Robert Finlay #2
Genres: Crime Fiction, Suspense, Thriller, Mystery
Goodreads

Date Read: 03/21/17
Pub Date: 02/20/17

 


Reeling from the attempts on his life and that of his family, Police Inspector Robert Finlay returns to work to discover that any hope of a peaceful existence has been dashed. Assigned to investigate the Eastern European sex-slave industry just as a key witness is murdered. Finlay, along with his new partner Nina Brasov, finds himself facing a ruthless criminal gang, determined to keep control of the traffic of people into the UK. On the home front, Finlay’s efforts to protect his wife and child may have been in vain, as an MI5 protection officer uncovers a covert secret service operation that threatens them all… Picking up where the bestselling Wicked Game left off, Deadly Game sees Matt Johnson’s damaged hero fighting on two fronts. Aided by new allies, he must not only protect his family but save a colleague from an unseen enemy … and a shocking fate.

I’m going to keep this review very brief; I think to overly discuss the plot and it’s many facets would do the future reader a huge injustice and I don’t want to be responsible for taking away from another person’s experience. That being said… Wow! What a story! I’m new to the Finlay series and picked up Deadly Game to participate in the blog tour for Orenda, so I wasn’t sure what to expect and if I’d need to do some digging first to fill in the gaps I might be missing. The good news is that, if you should decide to pick this up as a standalone, you’re in luck as it’s easy to fall right in. You have the luxury of being filled in of the goings on in the previous book which means I didn’t miss a beat in enjoying such a thrilling story! The only slight downside I can see in this is that you won’t truly be able to go back and read the first book with the same expectations as if you’d read it first, as we are made aware of the twisty ending and such by picking up book #2.

The story was layered and blossomed over the course of the read; we of course have the main investigation that is central to this particular entry in the series, but there are some residual storylines tying in from what I imagine was a strong focus in the first book. The atmosphere in this book was tense and fierce; I was amazed at how suspenseful things felt even during the times of little to no action. The pacing was speedy and the chapters were brief snippets; my favorite type! It is clear, even if you have no previous background on the author, that he is well versed and knowledgable in the subject matter at hand and the occupations he writes about. I’ve had the pleasure of reading his guest posts provided by other bloggers in the past couple of weeks and am amazed at the real life experiences and stories he has to tell. If you enjoy a dark, tense thriller with sub genre focus on military and government conspiracy, this is the book for you. I’m under the impression that this is to be a trilogy featuring Robert Finlay and am very excited to see how he chooses to finish out the series.

*Many thanks to Karen Sullivan and the author for providing my copy; it was a delight to participate in the blog tour! 

AUTHOR BIO:

Matt Johnson served as a soldier and Metropolitan Police officer for 25 years. Blown off his feet at the London Baltic Exchange bombing in 1993, and one of the first police officers on the scene of the 1982 Regent’s Park bombing, Matt was also at the Libyan People’s Bureau shooting in 1984 where he escorted his mortally wounded friend and colleague, Yvonne Fletcher, to hospital. Hidden wounds took their toll. In 1999, Matt was discharged from the police with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. While undergoing treatment, he was encouraged by his counsellor to write about his career and his experience of murders, shootings and terrorism. One evening, Matt sat at his computer and started to weave these notes into a work of fiction that he described as having a tremendously cathartic effect on his own condition. His bestselling thriller, Wicked Game, which was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey Dagger, was the result. Deadly Game once again draws on Matt’s experiences and drips with the same raw authenticity of its predecessor.

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Review: Bum Luck

Book Title: Bum Luck
Author: Paul Levine
Reviewed By: Chelsea
Series: Jake Lassiter #11
Genres: Mystery, Suspense, Sports Fiction, Legal Thriller
Goodreads

Date Read: 03/23/17
Pub Date: 03/28/17

“Thirty seconds after the jury announced its verdict, I decided to kill my client.”

Second-string linebacker turned trial lawyer Jake Lassiter squares off against his toughest, most unpredictable adversary yet: himself.

The downward spiral begins when Jake’s client, Miami Dolphins’ running back Thunder Thurston, is cleared of murdering his wife. Jake didn’t expect to win, didn’t want to win, since he is sure his client is guilty. When Thurston walks free, Lassiter vows to seek his own kind of justice. Street justice. Vigilante justice.

Law partners Steve Solomon and Victoria Lord can’t believe their friend has become so deeply, inexplicably obsessed with killing Thurston. Convinced Jake’s unhinged behavior is due to concussive brain injuries suffered during his pro football career, they beg him to seek treatment. But as Lassiter’s raging fixation on vengeance grows, Solomon and Lord wonder if they’re too late to help. Is it game over for Jake’s career…and his life?

Well. It’s not every day you read a story about a criminal defense lawyer who wants to kill his client right after getting him off murder charges for killing said client’s wife. That tiny sliver of plot is what initially made me want to pick this up, but I surprisingly enjoyed the continuous plot pieces even though I was jumping right in the middle of a series. Speaking of, there’s a reason this series has been running since 1990; for those of you who care to know that’s the year I was born and THIS SERIES IS AS OLD AS A CHELSEA. So that reason is, it’s darn good! I was filled with all kinds of excitement as it was reminiscent of Harlan Coben’s Myron Bolitar books, which is one of my all time favorite series to date. The humor and banter, the little quick, witty sayings, these were all reasons why this book was memorable. I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to pick up a story that can lighten the heavy, dark atmosphere set by a majority of the novels I review these days. We all need an occasional change of pace, and this was it for me.

I’ll be honest, when Wiley Saichek first pitched this one to me, I was a little hesitant as I’m a Nervous Nancy when it comes to starting a series out of order; however, I was clearly not going to fit 10 books in before March 28 and therefore took a leap of faith. What a leap it was! This was such an exciting book. I really don’t want to go into too much detail, but suffice it to say that the characters were full of life and well developed, the humor was more than welcome, and the questions behind whether Jake would get his justice kept me on my toes until the very end. I would highly recommend this to fans of Harlan Coben; I feel like I’m beating a dead horse but it’s been awhile since I’ve found a writer of similar style to match his competence and quality. While I’m sure I missed some of the subtle nuances between character’s backstories, I felt this was easily read like a standalone and can be picked up and enjoyed by anyone. I’ll have to go back and check out the rest of the series now that I’ve been so thoroughly entertained!

*Many thanks to Saichek publicity for providing my copy; it was a delight to return my honest thoughts on the blog. 

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Weekly Wrap-Up: 3/24/17

SURPRISE! I’m sure you’d given up hope of my ever starting up the weekly recaps again, but here I am! Better late than never, right? I’m still trying to figure out the best format of how I want this series to go forward, so bear with me as I try a few new things. I just wanted to also take a moment and thank you all for following, reading, and support my little blog over our move! You guys are the life and breath behind these posts and I couldn’t be more grateful for all of the encouragement each of you has sent me or made evident in the sharing of my posts. Below, I thought I’d share my latest NetGalley approvals, posts from the past week, and bookstagram posts. I’m short on time today but am hoping this will be more elegant and transition more appropriately in weeks to come. 🙂

NETGALLEY APPROVALS:

These are all the books I have on my NG to-read under approvals at the moment. I’ve worked really hard to catch up on these and been very cautious and careful in requesting; somehow I’ve managed to get my percentage up to 94%! Have you read any of these or been approved for any below? Would love to hear your thoughts!

POSTS FROM THIS WEEK:

St. Martin’s Surprise!

Review: The Cutaway

Review: Follow Me Down

Review: A Twist of the Knife

Review: Things We Have In Common

BOOKSTAGRAM:

Here’s some of the latest book mail I’ve received from authors and publishers, along with my huge haul from Book Depository for my anniversary. Thanks Mr. Humphrey!

That’s it for this week! Feel free to follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and Goodreads. Until next week, have a great weekend and happy reading! ❤

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Review: Things We Have In Common

Book Title: Things We Have In Common
Author: Tasha Kavanagh
Reviewed By: Mary
Series: None
Genres: Psychological Thriller, Suspense, YA, Mystery

Date Read: 03/20/17
Pub Date: 01/31/17

3.5 STARS

 

Reader beware: You’ll think you know what’s happening, and you’ll think you see what’s coming next… But you’ll be very, very wrong.

Fifteen-year-old Yasmin Doner is a social misfit—obese, obsessive and deemed a freak by her peers at school. With her father dead and her mother in a new relationship, Yasmin yearns for a sense of belonging, finding comfort only in food and the fantasy of being close to Alice Taylor, a girl at school. Yasmin will do anything to become friends with pretty and popular Alice—even if Alice, like everyone else, thinks she’s a freak.

When Yasmin notices a sinister-looking man watching Alice from the school fence, she sees a way of finally winning Alice’s affection—because how this stranger is staring is far more than just looking, it’s wanting. Because this stranger, Yasmin believes, is going to take Alice. Yasmin decides to find out more about this man so that when he does take Alice, Yasmin will be the only one who knows his name and where he lives…the only one who can save her.

But as Yasmin discovers more about him, her affections begin to shift. Perhaps she was wrong about him. Perhaps she doesn’t need Alice after all.

And then Alice vanishes.

Being a teenager is hard. It was a whole lifetime ago and I still remember how hard it was and I had a relatively easy go of it. Every fleeting drama with your friends feels like the end of the world. The hormones, the crushes, the pressures of school, the crushes, thinking about college, the crushes, it was madness and we didn’t even have cell phones! I cannot even imagine being a teenager in the age of social media. #TooMuchPressure I’m breaking out just thinking about it. It’s a lot to handle for an average, mostly well-adjusted teenager.

Yasmin Doner is not your average teenager. Aside from being overweight as a result of her grief from the death of her father, Yasmin is rather socially inept. When she feels uncomfortable or gets stuck in a train of thought she whispers to herself. It doesn’t help her social status in the slightest. While Yasmin certainly doesn’t enjoy being called a freak or a fatty, it’s hurtful and lonely; she’s grown accustomed to such cruel behavior from her peers. As a coping mechanism Yasmin retreats within herself and fantasizes. She fantasizes about being thin and popular or at least having one special person with which to share her hopes and dreams, secrets, fears and more than anything, time.

But those fantasies turn to obsession when it comes to her classmate Alice. Alice embodies everything Yasmin wants, she’s beautiful, she’s smart, she’s a gifted artist, she’s popular, she’s effortless, in Yasmin’s eyes, Alice is perfection. When Yasmin sees Alice being watched by a predatory older man, she knows his intentions are sinister. She knows, because she recognizes the desire to encompass the perfection, to hold it, to have it. But in the end…no one is perfect.

THINGS WE HAVE IN COMMON does a wonderful job at giving the reader an outside looking in perspective. Allowing the reader to see things through Yasmin’s eyes, watching as she distorts reality so that it becomes what she needs it to be in that moment is an eerie experience. I went from feeling pity, to befuddlement, to concern, to fear in the span of 2 pages. The range of emotions this character feels all at once are dizzying. Loneliness, sadness, disappointment and despair, then changes to delusion, elation and hope in a whisper.

As Yasmin’s lies and half truths start revealing themselves, the ability to change her emotions based on her interpretation of reality becomes a survival tactic, as well as a way to protect her ever evolving fantasies, without which she would come undone entirely.

I give THINGS WE HAVE IN COMMON 3.5 stars. It’s a fast, compelling read that gives a chilling look into the mind of a very misguided, if not sociopathic young girl. While the suspense level lays low in this one, the creep factor is ever present in the peculiarity of the main character. It pairs well with a bottle of Murphy-Goode Cabernet and a walk down memory lane to visit your teenage self.

*Many thanks to the author and publisher for my copy; it was a pleasure to provide an honest review.

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Review: A Twist of the Knife

Book Title: A Twist of the Knife
Author: Becky Masterman
Reviewed By: Chelsea
Series: Brigid Quinn #3
Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Suspense, Crime Fiction
Goodreads

Date Read: 03/18/17
Pub Date: 03/21/17

4 STARS


Ex-FBI agent Brigid Quinn, now happily settled in Tucson, doesn’t go back to visit her family in Florida much. But her former partner Laura Coleman, whose life she has saved and who saved her life, is living there now. When Laura calls about a case that is not going well, Brigid doesn’t hesitate to get on a plane.

On leave from the Bureau, Laura has been volunteering for a legal group that is trying to prove the innocence of a man who is on death row for killing his family. Laura is firmly convinced that he didn’t do it, while Brigid isn’t so sure—but the date for his execution is coming up so quickly that she shares Laura’s fear that any evidence absolving him from the crime may come too late.

For those new to the series, you need to know something; Brigid Quinn is one hard core senior citizen. Basically, because I’m an old soul, she’s my spirit animal and I connected well with her right from book one. Who doesn’t like to go hunting for peculiar stones and snuggle their pet pugs during retirement? We’ve followed Quinn from her first moments in being dragged out of retirement from the FBI (Book #1), to taking down a silent killer (Book #2), and now on to assisting in the case of a death row inmate. I had no idea what to expect this go around, as the third book in a series tends to be the “make or break” point on whether I’ll continue to put in the time and effort to carry on reading, but I’m really pleased with the direction Masterman chose to go here. Also, is it coincidence that autocorrect keeps trying to change Masterman to Mastermind? I think not.

“Revenge, Revenge,
See the furies arise.”
-John Dryden

 We lead off in the prologue witnessing a man being executed on death row via the electric chair in the 1980’s. One of the things I love about the author is how she puts so much careful consideration into making sure her descriptions of procedures via law enforcement are detailed and as accurate as possible. This was a chilling scene; I felt like I was in the room watching alongside young Brigid and got a glimpse of one tiny fracture in the full blown chasm that has shaped who she became. In fact, the first half of the book is mostly dedicated to personal characterization of Brigid and her immediate family. There isn’t a lot of action during this section; we are introduced to the case she will be helping on and are able to catch up on how Laura Coleman (remember her from Rage Against the Dying?) is healing from the trauma she previously faced alongside Quinn. We are mainly focused on Brigid’s private life, something we haven’t been privy to much of in the past; her father is very ill and she travels over to Florida to visit, which happens to be where the case is concerning the death row inmate petitioning for a stay of execution. Two birds with one stone, right?

“Sentences weren’t as stiff in the nineties for that kind of thing, and the guy would have gotten out of jail in another two years if he hadn’t died. I’m sure you’ve already heard what happens to child molesters in prison. So I know what you can do with fingerprints to convict a guy. That’s me, and that deed I did once was not lawful but it was righteous. I bet you would have done it, too. Right?
PS: I followed the life of the daughter, and she’s okay. She’s okay.”

 The above describes Brigid to a T. She is ruthless, devouring anything deemed evil in her path, while ironically could be called evil herself. She’s so concerned about getting the proper outcome she’ll do it by any means necessary. This is no surprise for those who have read the series up until this point; we know of her past transgressions and what she’s capable of, but this book let’s us in to see a whole new side of Brigid, one that’s frankly a little terrifying and haunting. While the pacing was slow up until about the 50% point, I think it was necessary to give us that deeper insight into Quinn and understanding her and why everyone in her family is so hard. I also loved the parallels between Brigid and Laura that show how we can watch someone start down the same path we went and what lengths we’ll go to protect them from the same outcomes.

If you enjoyed Quinn’s snarky attitude and potty mouth before, don’t worry, it’s still evident here. I spent most of my time reading this one on the elliptical and I swear people think I have some weird snorting disease. Yes I can’t seem to make myself go to the gym unless I’m reading, sue me. I missed having her husband Carlos being a central focus of the book, but I understand why he had to take a backseat in this installment to let Brigid shine on her own. There was definitely a more intimate feel to this book than the previous two; the focus wasn’t on the action and the individual case, so it gave it a tender and heartfelt atmosphere. If you have been following the series and waiting for the book that contains more backstory into Brigid, this is it baby. I can’t wait to hear what other’s think of this one. I feel if people keep an open mind and appreciate this for what it is, an insight necessary into connecting deeper with Brigid Quinn and her crew, they will enjoy savoring this book and be very pleased with their new understanding of our retired heroine.

*Many thanks to the publisher for providing my copy; it was a delight to post my honest thoughts in a review here.

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Review: Follow Me Down

Book Title: Follow Me Down
Author: Sherri Smith
Reviewed By: Chelsea
Series: None
Genres: Psychological Thriller, Suspense, Mystery, Crime Fiction
Goodreads

Date Read: 03/20/17
Pub Date: 03/21/17

 

Mia Haas has built a life for herself far from the North Dakota town where she grew up, but when she receives word that her twin brother is missing, she’s forced to return home. Once hailed as the golden boy of their small town, Lucas Haas disappeared the same day the body of one of his high school students is pulled from the river. Trying to wrap her head around the rumors of Lucas’s affair with the teen, and unable to reconcile the media’s portrayal of Lucas as a murderer with her own memories of him, Mia is desperate to find another suspect.

All the while, she wonders, if he’s innocent, why did he run?

As Mia reevaluates their difficult, shared history and launches her own investigation into the grisly murder, she uncovers secrets that could exonerate Lucas—or seal his fate. In a small town where everyone’s history is intertwined, Mia will be forced to confront her own demons, placing her right in the killer’s crosshairs.

I’m fully confident this will be one of the most talked about book of the Spring 2017 season, and why shouldn’t it be? It was a deliciously compulsive read, has an attention grabbing cover, and even the title hints at dragging us down the rabbit hole of deceit and despair alongside the characters. It’s almost as if it taunts the reader to come along for the ride, if you dare. Anyone who knows me well knows that I love dark and twisty psychological thrillers, yet it’s been really hard to find ones that tickle my fancy since the Gone Girl frenzy of the 2010’s. RIP unique and original books. While I cringe at even making this comparison, I must admit this book is the first in awhile to give me the same feeling I received when stumbling upon Gone Girl many years ago. The plot is entirely different; it had that dark feeling of spiraling down a funnel where you start out slow and steady on the wide brim and gain momentum as you draw closer to the grand finale. I love stories that are structured this way and think they are a staple in suspense fiction; while it seems mostly police procedurals are tailored this way, I found it refreshing to happen across the formatting in Follow Me Down without all the cumbersome details from the law enforcement side of things.

“The past was crammed down your throat everywhere you turned here; you could never escape it.”

The entire premise and plot surrounding this story is dark. The characters are unlikeable and there are copious amounts of drinking alongside the recreational use of prescription drugs. Without getting spoilery, there are dark subjects riddled throughout this book from just about every angle imaginable. My point is, many times I just can’t connect with a book that has so many unlikable and heavy aspects; most books that sound similar from the points mentioned above I have ended up not finishing due to the distracting nature of being bombarded with so many unpleasant details. Not so with this book! Even though she was flawed and highly irritating at times, I found myself cheering Mia on in the search for answers regarding her brother and poor Joanna. Smith infused just enough snarky attitude and dark humor into the narrative to lighten the mood where I could fully relax into this mid-western world that almost featured a noir-like atmosphere. I think Mia was purposefully written this way to give her flesh and bones, allowing her to come alive and walk alongside us instead of just sitting as another two-dimensional wilting flower we want to throw a book at. Maybe also a shoe. My point is, these characters are massively flawed and highly dysfunctional and all my dark tingly recesses LOVED IT.

 “Mimi would go around, ice clinking in her glass, saying she was estranged from her family, drawing out the word “estranged” like it was a sophisticated, glittery term.”

I completely and unashamedly adored Mimi’s character! I know she was rotten and all kinds of screwed up (and clearly a full on narcissist as gleaned from above), but there’s something refreshing about a character who takes her issues and plays them up for the sheer drama of it all. While there is the overall big mystery surrounding the disappearance of Lucas, there were tiny nugget mysteries as well surrounding Mia’s mother, Mimi, and the question of who the twin’s father really is. I’ve always enjoyed novels that contain a family tree of secrets, so when this one revealed itself as such, in part, I became elated at the possibilities of the who’s, the why’s, and how it would pertain to the bigger picture. I really enjoyed how everything wrapped up in the end; the major questions were answered, but things were left a little messy in places and everything wasn’t magically fixed to perfection.

Again, I truly believe we’ll be hearing lots of buzz surrounding this debut throughout 2017. What more do you need besides an endorsement from both Chevy Stevens and Diane Chamberlain on the front cover? I’d highly recommend this to fans of the psychological thriller; this truly had the feel of a classic whodunnit while adding in fresh, modern, and unique traits to separate it from the traditional suspense novels that are being touted left and right. I want to emphasize that while there are twists and turns, the brilliance of this novel isn’t based on a single plot element; this was a well rounded read that is fully capable of standing on it’s own without being compared to other books or marketed as the next (fill in the blank). The cover only begins to touch at how haunting and disturbing of a read this was; you’ll want to go ahead and snag your copy to discuss with your friends so you aren’t the last one in on what a highly delectable book this was.

*Many thanks to the author and publisher for providing my copy; it was a delight to review my honest thoughts on my blog. 

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