Mini Review Monday: 5/28

Welcome to another edition of Mini Review Monday. If you’re in the US-Happy Memorial Day! If you’re elsewhere-Happy Monday! In my quest to lower my number of review copies on my TBR, I’m taking the ones I feel less blab-worthy about (that’s a word, right?) and including them in my mini review segments. This doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy these novels, simply that I found I had less to discuss about them or that doing so would enter the realm of spoilers. If you’d like some brief, purposefully vague thoughts on my latest reads, follow along below! ❤ Have you read any of these books?



Book Title: Before And Again
Author: Barbara Delinsky
Series: None
Genres: Women’s Fiction
Pub Date: 06/26/18

Mackenzie Cooper took her eyes off the road for just a moment but the resulting collision was enough to rob her not only of her beloved daughter but ultimately of her marriage, family, and friends—and thanks to the nonstop media coverage, even her privacy. Now she lives in Vermont under the name Maggie Reid, in a small house with her cats and dog. She’s thankful for the new friends she’s made—though she can’t risk telling them too much. And she takes satisfaction in working as a makeup artist at the luxurious local spa, helping clients hide the visible outward signs of their weariness, illnesses, and injuries. Covering up scars is a skill she has mastered.

Her only goal is to stay under the radar and make it through her remaining probation. But she isn’t the only one in this peaceful town with secrets. When a friend’s teenage son is thrust into the national spotlight, accused of hacking a powerful man’s Twitter account, Maggie is torn between pulling away and protecting herself—or stepping into the glare to be at their side. As the stunning truth behind their case is slowly revealed, Maggie’s own carefully constructed story begins to unravel as well. She knows all too well that what we need from each other in this difficult world is comfort. But to provide it, sometimes we need to travel far outside our comfort zones.

I was blown away by this book. No really, I was assuming this would be your run-of-the-mill, standard type of women’s fiction, but it was so much more. This was a character driven study involving detrimental loss and how to rebuild yourself after making a fatal mistake. I found myself floundering about in a wide variety of emotions, and for a novel that isn’t intended to be plot driven, it has multiple twists and turns to keep the 400+ pages feeling like a breeze to flip through. So many important themes and issues are touched on, and I love how the cover captures the aspect of Maggie using her talents to cover other’s scars while battling her own that are invisible to those who don’t know her previous life story. Highly recommended to those looking for a summer read that is anything but light and fluffy. I dare you to not be moved by this novel.

*I received a review copy from the publisher via NetGalley.


Book Title: The Life Lucy Knew
Author: Karma Brown
Series: None
Genres: Women’s Fiction
Pub Date: 06/12/18

After hitting her head, Lucy Sparks awakens in the hospital to a shocking revelation: the man she’s known and loved for years-the man she recently married-is not actually her husband. In fact, they haven’t even spoken since their breakup four years earlier. The happily-ever-after she remembers in vivid detail-right down to the dress she wore to their wedding-is only one example of what her doctors call a false memory: recollections Lucy’s mind made up to fill in the blanks from the coma.

Her psychologist explains the condition as honest lying, because while Lucy’s memories are false, they still feel incredibly real. Now she has no idea which memories she can trust-a devastating experience not only for Lucy, but also for her family, friends and especially her devoted boyfriend, Matt, whom Lucy remembers merely as a work colleague.

When the life Lucy believes she had slams against the reality she’s been living for the past four years, she must make a difficult choice about which life she wants to lead, and who she really is.

No matter how many I come across, I’m always a sucker for a novel that features an amnesia component. There’s something about the protagonist’s journey across the unknown that grabs me, and Karma Brown has found a unique flair to make her story, The Life Lucy Knew, stand out in the crowd of others like it. While I did hope to grasp a little more of Lucy and Matt’s relationship by the end and desired a little more from the epilogue, I did immensely enjoy following Lucy along such a difficult journey. Highly recommended to fans of Brown’s previous work and for those looking to pick up a dependable read that is emotional, but not too heavy.

*I received a review copy from the publisher via NetGalley.


Book Title: Whisper Of The Tide
Author: Sarah Tolcser
Series: Song Of The Current #2
Genres: YA, Fantasy Fiction
Pub Date: 06/05/18

Caro Oresteia spent her life waiting to be called by the river god, as those in her family had been for generations. But when she’s swept away on an adventure to save the Akhaian royal prince, Markos, her destiny is sealed by the sea god instead.

For now, Caro is landlocked, helping Markos reclaim his throne after nearly his entire family was assassinated in a political coup. Without any financial or military support, Markos is desperate for allies, and Caro has fought off more than one attempt on his life. When a powerful Archon offers his army in exchange for Markos’s marriage to his daughter, Caro must choose: Her love for Markos, or the fate of Akhaia? And more importantly: How much is she willing to risk to defy the sea god’s wishes and chart her own course? 

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t wholly enjoying all the YA pirate fantasy fiction that’s being released, and the Song Of The Current series consistently has the most gorgeous covers. The first book in the series was a solid debut to an intriguing twist on some of the ancient folklore in the genre, and I felt Whisper Of The Tide was just as solid of a sequel. The story continues in the following of a strong female protagonist, and this plot also features mystery, action sequences, and just enough romance. There was a satisfying wrap-up to most of the threads that were left open in the first novel and upon finishing the book I realized just how much I’ve enjoyed reading about these characters, and also just how much I’ll miss them again. Highly recommended to fans looking for another pirate fantasy adventure, but definitely start with Song Of The Current to keep from being confused and spoiled for the many twists and turns.

*I received a review copy from the publisher via NetGalley.




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