The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

Book Description:

Published: February 11, 2014

The New York Times bestselling author of Promise Not to Tell returns with a simmering literary thriller about ghostly secrets, dark choices, and the unbreakable bond between mothers and daughters . . . sometimes too unbreakable.

West Hall, Vermont, has always been a town of strange disappearances and old legends. The most mysterious is that of Sara Harrison Shea, who, in 1908, was found dead in the field behind her house just months after the tragic death of her daughter, Gertie.

Now, in present day, nineteen-year-old Ruthie lives in Sara’s farmhouse with her mother, Alice, and her younger sister, Fawn. Alice has always insisted that they live off the grid, a decision that suddenly proves perilous when Ruthie wakes up one morning to find that Alice has vanished without a trace.

Searching for clues, she is startled to find a copy of Sara Harrison Shea’s diary hidden beneath the floorboards of her mother’s bedroom. As Ruthie gets sucked deeper into the mystery of Sara’s fate, she discovers that she’s not the only person who’s desperately looking for someone that they’ve lost. But she may be the only one who can stop history from repeating itself.

Review –

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

“The first time I saw a sleeper, I was nine years old.”

Best-selling author Jennifer McMahon (Promise Not to Tell) opens her new novel, The Winter People, with a sentence that offers a tantalizing glimpse of the horrors to come in this marvelously creepy page-turner.

In The Winter People, the author  gives readers just what they want from a good thriller: can’t-put-it-down, stay-up-until-dawn reading. In addition to being downright creepy, this novel is also a poignant reminder of what grief can drive humans to do. Lock your doors, check under your bed and soak up The Winter People, a legitimately chilling supernatural thriller.

Fantastic book!

Five stars *****

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

18007535

Liberty Falling (Anna Pigeon #7) by Nevada BarrA

Book Description:

Published: March 1, 2000

There is peril beneath the watchful eyes of the Lady…

When Anna Pigeon left New York City after her husband was killed, she hoped it would be forever. But now her sister Molly is clinging to life in an uptown hospital ICU, so Anna has reluctantly returned. Rooming with a friend and fellow park ranger in close quarters on Liberty Island—the small strip of land that is home to Lady Liberty—Anna spends her free time exploring the grand monument and the crumbling, overgrown, and eerie ruins in the unrestored sections of nearby Ellis Island. But the peace she seeks here is shattered when she finds herself among a crowd gathered at the Lady’s base, staring at the broken body of a teenager who fell—or was pushed—to her death.

The reason behind the youthful girl’s fatal plunge is not the only mystery alive on these historic sites—nor will hers be the only death. Hidden in a dangerous labyrinth of stone, glass, and steel are secrets Anna Pigeon is now compelled to uncover…and an insidious threat to herself and to others that could wreak havoc on a nation’s proudest day. There is peril beneath the watchful eyes of the Lady…

Review –

I ran across a book in the Anna Pigeon Series by Nevada Barr that I had not read or listened to so I jumped at the chance to listen to it in this case.

This is number seven so it’s relatively early in the series so I learned a bit more about Anna’s sister and the man she eventually married. 

This was a very pleasant read full of drama, suspense, mystery, mayhem and plenty of historical facts about the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and Liberty Island.

If you haven’t read any of this series, seriously think about it. I’m looking forward to reading or listening to Boar Island, number nineteen in the series, which takes place in Maine and involves a cyber stalker.

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

86444

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Book Description:

Published: May 13, 2014

Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat–blindfolded–with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.

Review –

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

This book was very  Stephen King-like and also reminded me of Blake Crouch’s Wayward Pines both of those authors are at the top of my favorites list.

There is a strange phenomenon causing people to go blind worldwide and aren’t told right away what exactly that is, but later we do find out that there are creatures from another place (world, time, parallel universe ) and they have some how found their way into our lives.

To survive one must always be blindfolded because it was discovered that just a glance at the unknown creatures causes blindness followed by madness. During the madness people kill others and sometimes themselves.

It’s the story of a mother and her “twins” and her desire to find a safer place to live.

The story is told in alternating past and present chapters and will keep you on the edge of your seat. It is mesmerizing and will keep you turning pages to the end.

It is fantastic!

Five stars *****

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

18498558

 

Eluded by Lyra Parish

Book Description:

Published: July 28,2014

Lives intersect only to be changed indefinitely…

Lauren
This isn’t your typical girl meets boy.
There isn’t a glass slipper or Prince Charming.
I’ve lived it and now it will be told.
Welcome to my personal hell…

Derrick
I once saved lives and now… I so easily end them.

Women are drawn to me like a moth to the flame, and like the moth not all of them continue on. Some are broken, others are damaged, and a few never make it out… but it’s their decision to live. Only they often don’t know that until it’s too late.

F*ck the rules, I create my own in a world where I have nothing left to lose. Living is a game, and I’m the reigning champion by being stronger and smarter than my prey.

This is your warning. If you radiate vulnerability… Well, you could be my next victim. Don’t try to hide. I’m not easily eluded.

Abbot
It started with me and now it will end with me.
Some people call me an uncontrollable killing monster. I f*cking laugh at the mention of the word.
Monsters have no control.
I’ve got plenty.
I don’t kill without reason. I don’t kill the innocent.
I hunt the ones that deserve it, the real monsters, the ones without regret or a soul.

Review –

This was offered as a free digital book on Book Bub and was my first reading by Lyra Parish.

This is a very dark and edgy erotic romance with many possible triggers for some, those being- abduction, rape,torture and others.

Thank heavens it had a plot or it would have been almost impossible to read. I said almost. The chemistry between Abbot and Lauren was barely there at times but hot and steamy at others. Derrick was very easy to hate but the HEA made everything worth it.

If you like Dark and Edgy, this is the book for you.

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

21527865

Dare Me by Megan Abbott

Book Description:

Published:July 31,2012

Addy Hanlon has always been Beth Cassidy’s best friend and trusted lieutenant. Beth calls the shots and Addy carries them out, a long-established order of things that has brought them to the pinnacle of their high-school careers. Now they’re seniors who rule the intensely competitive cheer squad, feared and followed by the other girls — until the young new coach arrives.

Cool and commanding, an emissary from the adult world just beyond their reach, Coach Colette French draws Addy and the other cheerleaders into her life. Only Beth, unsettled by the new regime, remains outside Coach’s golden circle, waging a subtle but vicious campaign to regain her position as “top girl” — both with the team and with Addy herself.

Then a suicide focuses a police investigation on Coach and her squad. After the first wave of shock and grief, Addy tries to uncover the truth behind the death — and learns that the boundary between loyalty and love can be dangerous terrain.

The raw passions of girlhood are brought to life in this taut, unflinching exploration of friendship, ambition, and power. Award-winning novelist Megan Abbott, writing with what Tom Perrotta has hailed as “total authority and an almost desperate intensity,” provides a harrowing glimpse into the dark heart of the all-American girl.

Review –

Dare Me is the sixth  book by an American author Megan Abbott, and is centered on American cheerleading,( not just the pom-pom shaking kind) and an ambiguous death that takes place in the first few pages. The book explores themes of friendship, obsession and power. This is expressed through not only the events of the novel, but also the relationship between the protagonist, Addy Hanlon, and her best friend, Beth Cassidy.

While they might also have tans and wear glitter, those items are used as war paint: “You may have the bodies of young girls,” says a character at one point near the novel’s end, “but you have the hearts of warriors.” The girls in this book are not at all “sugar and spice and everything nice”, not by a long shot.

Besides the world of modern cheerleading there is a mystery subplot and again I am confused as to what genre to place this book. It reads like YA, but it mentions, wild keg parties, binge drinking at a house with an authority figure present, bullying, and make all of them seem like an everyday occurrence.

While I enjoyed reading this book I would not recommend it to any one under seventeen.

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

12982393

 

 

The Wrong Man by John Katzenbach

Book Description:

Published: September 26,2006

Scott Freeman is a man of reason-a college professor grounded in the rational and practical. But he becomes uneasy after finding an anonymous love letter hidden in his daughter’s room: “No one could ever love you like I do. No one ever will. We will be together forever. One way or another.” But the reality of Ashley’s plight far exceeds Scott’s worst suspicions.
One drink too many had led Ashley, a beautiful, bright art student, into what she thought was just a fling with a blue-collar bad boy. But now, no amount of pleading or reasoning can discourage his phone calls, ardent e-mails, and constant, watchful gaze.
Michael O’Connell is but a malignant shadow of a man. His brash, handsome features conceal a black and empty soul. Control is his religion. Cunning and criminal skill are his stock-in-trade. Rage is his language.
The harder Ashley tries to break free, the deeper Michael burrows into every aspect of her life, so she turns in desperation to her divorced parents and her mother’s new partner-three people still locked in a coldly civilized triangle of resentment. But their fierce devotion to Ashley is the common bond that will draw them together to face down a predator.
For Ashley’s family, it is a test of primal love that will drive them to the extreme edge-and beyond-in a battle of wills that escalates into a life-or-death war to protect their own.

From the bestselling master of suspense, John Katzenbach, The “Wrong Man” is an elegantly crafted and breathtakingly intense read that asks the question, “How far would you go to save the child you love?”

Review:

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

Just how far would you be willing to go to rid your only child of a crazed stalker? That is the question Ashley’s father, mother, her partner, Hope, and her partner’s mother, Katherine, ask themselves after they have tried several other  tactics to get rid of Michael O’Connell. They didn’t get a retraining order because Sally (Ashley’s mother, a lawyer) said it sometimes made things worse.

Ashley and Katherine are given minimal parts to play in the “let’s frame Michael for a crime and have him put in jail  for a very long time” scenario so that they can honestly say they didn’t know anything if the police should come around asking questions. 

Scott, Ashley’s father, Sally and Hope plan a crime of murder but something goes horribly wrong and the consequences are far-reaching. Even though they attain their goal, their lives are never the same.

The story starts out with a woman (we learn her identity near the end of the book) asks a writer if he wants to hear a story and then starts to relate the facts of the case. The the chapters go from current day to the time a few years ago when the “murder” occurred. 

This is a long book, over 450 pages if reading or over  16 hours if listening, but don’t let that deter you-you will be mesmerized by the story, characters and the cruelty of the stalker. It’s a love story about death which is a strange way to put it but it’s true.

Please put this on your “to be read” list. You WILL NOT be disappointed.

Five stars *****

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

67930

 

 

 

 

Yellow Brick War (Dorothy Must Die #3) by Danielle Paige

Book Description:

Published: March 15, 2016

Once upon a time, there was a girl from Kansas named Dorothy.

You might know her as the Girl Who Rode the Cyclone. She ended up in Oz, where she became friends with the Tin Woodman, the Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion. But the temptation of magic was too much for her. She let it change her. Her friends became twisted versions of their former selves.

The magical land of Oz is now a dark and menacing place.

My name is Amy Gumm. Tornadoes must have a thing about girls from Kansas, because I got swept away on one too. I also landed in Oz, where Good is Wicked, Wicked is Good, and the Wicked Witches clued me in to my true calling:

Assassin.

The only way to stop Dorothy from destroying Oz—and Kansas—is to kill her. And I’m the only one who can do it.

But I failed. Others died for my mistakes. Because of me, the portal between the worlds has been opened and Kansas and Oz are both in danger. And if I don’t find a way to close it?

Dorothy will make sure I never get to go home again.

Review –

Amy Gumm had one mission after she got whisked from her trailer-park home in Kansas to Oz. To kill Dorothy Gale, who has stolen Oz’s magic and is turning the place dead and dark.
Amy failed.
And now she and the four Witches of Oz are stuck. In Kansas.
You see, things are brewing – bad bad things. Oz and Kansas are linked together with magic – and Dorothy wants to blow both of them off the map.
Can Amy help the Wicked Witches (including the boy she loves, Nox, who has lied to her and can never be hers) to stop Dorothy from destroying both places? Preferably without letting Oz’s magic turn her as twisted as Dorothy – without letting herself become the monster she’s so afraid to be…?

I really do love the other characters in this book – but I loved seeing some familiar old faces from Kansas, loved the Wicked Witches and Lulu the monkey queen…
And then there are our Big Bads. Dorothy is just the most fascinating character and I loved that we go to understand her more in this book. Every scene she’s in is brilliant – she’s such a perfect villain; sickly sweet on the surface and rotten to the core, but with the kind of background that makes you almost empathise with her. 

If you haven’t read this series, I just can’t recommend it enough. It is the ultimate escape with the most fantastic world building and one of the coolest classical twists ever written. Which, for a fairy-tale-twist lover like myself, is sayin’ something. Yellow Brick War kept me hooked from the word go and has left me absolutely desperate for more.

Can’t wait for Book Four !

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

18602406

The Fever by Megan Abbott

Book Description:

Published: June 17, 2014

The panic unleashed by a mysterious contagion threatens the bonds of family and community in a seemingly idyllic suburban community.

The Nash family is close-knit. Tom is a popular teacher, father of two teens: Eli, a hockey star and girl magnet, and his sister Deenie, a diligent student. Their seeming stability, however, is thrown into chaos when Deenie’s best friend is struck by a terrifying, unexplained seizure in class. Rumors of a hazardous outbreak spread through the family, school and community.

As hysteria and contagion swell, a series of tightly held secrets emerges, threatening to unravel friendships, families and the town’s fragile idea of security.

A chilling story about guilt, family secrets and the lethal power of desire, The Fever affirms Megan Abbot’s reputation as “one of the most exciting and original voices of her generation” (Laura Lippman).

Review –

I’m assuming this is a YA book (I need to do more checking) but the language and some discussions between characters seem inappropriate for young teen readers. That being said, I, not a young teen, loved this book and it was the first time I had read or as in this case listened to anything by Megan Abbott.

It looks like the author is a writer of contemporary thrillers but I don’t know if that is how I would classify this book. It’s exciting, puzzling, fast paced and deals with the complicated friendships of adolescent girls.

I couldn’t stop listening once I started and was totally hooked and bought into the premise that a horrific epidemic was causing the girls to fall sick and become debilitated. to find out the true cause you’ll have to read it yourself.

I loved it and will definitely be looking for more of her books.

C758484C9C9106E2B09FB2547B1149C8

feverPB