Rating: 3.5 stars
Finn and Snow could speak to each other telepathically. Both of them went through hard times in their lives, and telepathy allowed them to connect in a way no one else could. They were an unlikely pair of friends considering they lead very different lives.
Their friendship worked. It was much easier to understand their connection since the story alternated between both of their POV. They were both lonely and depended on each other. Finn’s life was much more difficult since he was severely neglected as a child. One day Snow was kidnapped. Finn was the only one with any hope of finding her. Tracking her down wasn’t easy since he had no idea where she had lived.
The ending was completely unexpected. There weren’t any clues I can think of that would have lead me to think it would end the way it did. Although the ending was surprising somehow it fell flat. I hadn’t really expected such a solid explanation for everything. It twisted the whole story into something different. I didn’t completely love the ending, but it was definitely worth reading. The writing was great, and I would definitely read something else by this author.
I received this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Rating: 3 stars
Series: Fairfax #2
Although this is technically the second book in the series, it can be read as a standalone. The only connection between the books is the setting.
Victoria was in a mental hospital. Some of her memory was missing. How long she had been there and why she was there was a mystery. It was one Victoria wanted to figure out. The few things people did tell her about the past weren’t believable. One day she had a new visitor. The man said he knew her well, but she didn’t remember him at all. It was then when she realized a lot more happened than people were letting on.
Most of this book was really good. Pieces of her memory began to return, so some things were finally making make sense. Other things were going on that didn’t seem quite right. It was hard to tell if they were really happening or if Victoria was hallucinating. Her memories revealed an abusive relationship. This part of the story was handled well. The abuse began slowly and was done in a way that made ripped her life apart while making her appear to be the unstable one to the rest of the world.
I gave this 3 stars instead of 4 because of the ending. It did make sense, and I had only predicted part of it. The unpredictable part reminded me of the unbelievably wacky things that happen in soap operas. It was OTT and too dramatic. I had been expecting something slightly more realistic. Regardless of the end, it was still worth reading.
I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Rating: 2 stars
Psychological thriller my ass! Nothing about it was remotely thrilling. It took me almost a week to get through this because the pacing was so slow. Leah was being harassed and stalked by an unknown person over a devastating event from her past. The stalker was messing with her head but not to the degree that I’d label this book as psychological.
This alternated between scenes in the past and the present. It wasn’t until the end that the devastating event was revealed. What happened was horrible, but after all of the build up, I was expecting something more. Leah’s role in it was disappointing. She was a victim of circumstance rather than mastermind of evil.
The stalker was likely to be one of two people, and the stalker definitely turned out to be one of those people. There were some red herrings along the way, but none of them were truly believable. The characters could have used some work. It was hard to care about any of them because they were all one dimensional.
In the very last chapter, there was a twist I hadn’t seen coming. It really was malicious, and it was completely unexpected coming from that character. It did help tie together some minor things that hadn’t made sense earlier in the book.
I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Rating: 1 star
Series: Black Lotus #1
Honestly I can’t think of anything good to say about this other than it was well edited. All of the characters were assholes. Nina had a tragic past, but she was such a bitch in the present that it was hard to sympathize with her. Pike was a sleazy and white trash. He did love Nina in his own way; it was a selfish love, so even that wasn’t an endearing quality about him. Declan had his good points but was too controlling to be appealing. Bennett actually wasn’t an asshole, but there was so little development to his character that it was hard to give a shit about him one way or the other.
One woman. Three men. Lots of sex. But this is no romance. It’s a story about revenge. The story was vague at first, but by a third of the way through it, I had the plot figured out. Once Nina’s motives were revealed, it made her seem insane. She was right to be pissed about her past, but it wasn’t fair to blame it all on the person she did. It was ridiculous to blame someone who had been a child at the time for her rotten life. The actions of the child seemed odd. IDK any kid that would do what he did. It was something only an adult would do.
After the story moved at a snail’s pace, things got crazy at the very end. Some of the insanity was a surprise but some of it wasn’t. The title of the book is Bang, so take a wild guess as to what makes a big bang and what it does to somebody. If I had cared about any of the characters at all, the ending may have evoked some emotions. It ended on a big cliffy, but I have no desire to continue on with this disaster.
I love Karen White’s books although I’m not generally a big fan of contemporary fiction. However this book in particular was not one of her best. Merritt was a widow and inherited a house that had belonged to her husband’s grandmother. She moved from Maine to South Carolina to live in the house where she met her husband’s brother. Shortly after arriving her estranged stepmother and brother showed up asking for a place to stay.
Merritt had experienced some hardships in life, so she kept herself emotionally detached from others. All of her problems were solved too easily considering much of this was baggage she had carried around since she was young. A little bit of love and kindness doesn’t make those problems go away.
Loralee, the stepmother, drove me nuts. She had good intentions but was overbearing, pushy, and vain. She dispensed advice often that her mother had bestowed upon her. The advice wouldn’t have been so bad if she didn’t have to mention her mother all the time. She was only 5 years older than Merritt but she acted as if she were old enough to actually be her mother. Her obsession with appearances was annoying. She wanted to change the way Merritt dressed. Who was she to tell a grown woman how to dress? Not all women want to be dolled up in makeup and high heels, and there is nothing wrong with that.
The book dealt with the issues of spousal abuse and orphaned children whether through abandonment or death. Almost every character had one or both of these problems. It seemed incredibly unlikely all of these characters were connected through these similar experiences.
There were some generalizations about New Englanders that were bizarre. I was raised in New England. I know what people are like there. There was the misconception that people in New England don’t eat watermelon, which is not true at all. It was also mentioned that she wouldn’t get rid of some raggedy shoes because they hadn’t completely fallen apart yet. That one left me scratching my head because that doesn’t sound like the people I know in New England. It was mentioned that people there are cold and standoffish. At least this one made sense. Many people view New Englanders that way. When they really prefer to stick to themselves. The intention isn’t to snub other people.
There was a mystery involving a plane crash. The resolution to that was unexpected. The book wasn’t bad. I don’t think this book was for me. Plenty of other people will probably love it.
I received a copy of this from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
2 1/2 stars
Rating: 2 1/2 stars
The Amazing Arden was a famous illusionist. The story began with her husband being murdered. Arden was nowhere to be found, and everyone suspected it was her. A policeman Victor found her on the run. He was the only cop in his small town. He brought her to the police station and listened to her story.
At first it was interesting. Arden’s story was entertaining. She escaped from her childhood home at a young age to be free of her demented, obsessive cousin Ray. Then she met Clyde who she had feelings for, but their relationship was complicated. Around 30-35% it started to feel like the story wasn’t going anywhere, and it really dragged for a long time after that. None of it seemed to have anything to do with the murdered husband. It wasn’t much of a mystery. It was just a story about Arden’s life, which eventually lead up to the murder. There weren’t any lies as the title would lead you to believe. For a story about a female illusionist, there wasn’t any misdirection or illusions in her story. Parts of the story were predictable.
Certain things that happened seemed unlikely (but I admit not impossible) based on my historical knowledge of the time period, which was the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. None of them ruined the story, but they irritated me. First of all in modern times the spouse is the first suspect in a murder, but back then the family members were the last people police suspected. The police had some reasons to suspect her, but they were convinced of her guilt instantly. It didn’t add up for the time period IMO. Secondly the police station in a tiny town with only one cop had a phone, and the cop had a phone at his house since his wife kept calling. Really? It was freaking 1905! I know phones were around back then, but they certainly weren’t common especially in poor, tiny towns. I guess it could have been possible, but it didn’t sit right with me. Also Arden used protection when she had sex. Yeah? Like what kind? There were ways, but it wasn’t as easy as walking to the pharmacy to pick up the pill. I wanted more explanation on this to make it more believable. Last but not least, at one point Arden threatened to sue someone if they contacted her. People didn’t do shit like that back then! The phenomenon of suing people over every little grievance is a modern thing.
Anyway this wasn’t a complete waste of time. It was written well enough that I did enjoy parts of it, but I can’t exactly say I’d recommend this either.