Book Review

Book Review: The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides- 5 Stars

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Alicia has been in a mental health facility for six years after shooting her husband in the face and refusing to speak since that fateful night. Theo, a psychotherapist, is enamored with her case, and convinced he can get her to talk. Told in chapters that alternate from past to present, with Alicia’s diary entries sprinkled throughout, readers are swept up in a story that is so shocking, confusing, and twisty, you will be at a loss of who to root for and who to hate. What happened to Alicia that has caused her to choose to be mute? Does Theo have ulterior motives or does he really just want to help her?

I love thrillers with unreliable narrators and this one doesn’t disappoint in that aspect. I didn’t have the twist figured out until it smacked me in the face and my jaw DROPPED! This book really puts you right into the mindset of the mentally ill and it’s quite frightening to experience what they are dealing with. This was a fantastic debut from the author and I highly recommend.

Do you like psychological thrillers? If you’ve read this one, what did you think?

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Book Review

Book Review: The Date by Louise Jensen- 4 Stars

Summary from Goodreads:

Something bad has happened to Alison Taylor. 

Her Saturday night started normally. Recently separated from her husband, Ali has been persuaded by her friends to go on a date with a new man. She is ready, she is nervous, she is excited. She is about to take a step into her new future. 

By Sunday morning, Ali’s life is unrecognisable. She wakes, and she knows that something is wrong. She is home, she is alone, she is hurt and she has no memory of what happened to her. 

Worse still, when she looks in the mirror, Ali doesn’t recognise the face staring back at her. She can’t recognise her friends and family. And she can’t recognise the person who is trying to destroy her… 

At the persistence of her friends, Ali signs up for an online dating site, and immediately hits it off with Ewan. Yet the next morning she wakes up with injuries and no memory of what happened the night before but the most frightening thing is she doesn’t recognize her own face in the mirror, and when her brother comes by, she doesn’t know him either.

After several tests in the hospital, doctors diagnose her with Prosopagnosia, or face blindness. She can’t recognize her own face, her family, and definitely not the faces of strangers. She’s convinced her date, Ewan, hurt her, and sets out to find him once she receives threatening messages and ominous gifts on her doorstep. But how will she ever find him if she can’t remember what he looked like, nor discern who anyone is now that she’s suffered this injury?

While reading I felt this nagging in my brain that the villain was this particular person, and I definitely had them pegged, but had no idea why they were doing what they were doing until the end-and it was a crazy reveal!

Louise Jensen’s books always keep me glued to the page and on the edge of my seat! It’s almost like I can’t read them fast enough; I’ve just GOT to know what happens next! Pick this one up if you’re in the mood for a fast paced thriller!

I received a copy of this book thanks to NetGalley and Bookouture in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review

Book Review: The Breakdown by B.A. Paris- 3.5 Stars

Cass is having a hard time since the night she saw the car in the woods, on the winding rural road, in the middle of a downpour, with the woman sitting inside—the woman who was killed. She’s been trying to put the crime out of her mind; what could she have done, really? It’s a dangerous road to be on in the middle of a storm. Her husband would be furious if he knew she’d broken her promise not to take that shortcut home. And she probably would only have been hurt herself if she’d stopped.

But since then, she’s been forgetting every little thing: where she left the car, if she took her pills, the alarm code, why she ordered a pram when she doesn’t have a baby.

The only thing she can’t forget is that woman, the woman she might have saved, and the terrible nagging guilt.

Or the silent calls she’s receiving, or the feeling that someone’s watching her…

Cass feels like she’s going to go crazy with guilt. After leaving a woman in her car on the side of the road in a storm, finding out she’s dead the next day, finding out she had lunch with this same woman (Jane) recently, it’s all too much. On top of that, she’s still reeling from the death of her mother, who shockingly was wealthy, and Cass had no clue. Her mother had dementia, and Cass just knows she’s losing her mind as well. She forgets everything, and even does things she has no memory of doing. Cass starts getting silent phone calls not long after this incident with the murdered woman. Is it all connected? Is she just so stressed from this woman’s death that she cannot cope? Is she struggling with early onset dementia, or is something else at play here? Between talking to her husband, her best friend Rachel, and Jane’s husband, Cass tries to understand what is going on, but she might be running out of time…

Like the first book by Paris, Behind Closed Doors, this novel kept me hooked and eager to find out the truth. The ending shocker fell a little flat for me and I would have liked to see the plot go in a different direction, but I still enjoyed the story just the same.

I’ve just picked up her latest book, Bring Me Back, to read next and I can’t wait to dive in.

Have you read any from this author? What did you think? Share with me in the comments!

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Book Review

Book Review: Forget Me Not by A.M. Taylor-3 Stars

Ten years ago a seventeen year old girl named Nora goes missing. All that was found was her car, with an empty gas tank, not far from her family’s lake house. Her body was never found and she never returned either. Ten years to the exact day, her younger sister Noelle (Elle) is found murdered not far from where Nora’s car was abandoned. Maddie, one of Nora’s best friends, still deals with the grief over not having closure from Nora’s disappearance and makes it her mission to find out once and for all not only what happened to Nora but who killed Elle as well. The police aren’t necessarily convinced the two cases are connected, but all of Nora’s family and friends vehemently believe this.

This book was off to a great start. The pace and tone was perfect, and I had my suspicions of who the killer was, but I hadn’t quite figured out what became of Nora. I like being surprised in mysteries, I don’t usually enjoy figuring out the answer too early in advance as it kind of kills the book for me, so that aspect was great. What I did not like, and the reason for the 3 stars, is the fact I thought that what happened to Nora was completely absurd and unbelievable. (Spoiler down below!!!!)

 

 

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***SPOILER*** I can NOT believe the police wouldn’t have thought to dredge the lake NEAR HER LAKE HOUSE when they could not find a body!!! That baffles me.

Aside from this, this was an expertly crafted suspense that I really enjoyed for the most part!

I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review

Book Review: The Other Mother by Carol Goodman-5 Stars

I need to start this one off with a disclaimer. While I loved the suspenseful, thriller aspect, this book deals heavily with postpartum anxiety/depression/psychosis. I struggled with PPA and this book really hit home with me and brought back some of those fears I had when my son was really little.  I actually had nightmares over some of the scenes that occur. I give the author kudos for including a warning at the beginning of this book as well as an interview with an author who wrote a book that deals with postpartum psychosis.

Daphne is a new mom to Chloe. She becomes friends with Laurel, who also has a daughter named Chloe, at Mom Group. They are both dealing with first time mom/new mom struggles. Laurel is everything Daphne is not- elegant, rich, polished, skinny…but not long after meeting they are acting the same, dressing the same, going to the gym together, Daphne is losing weight and changing her hair to be like Laurel’s.

When Daphne decides to flee with her baby from her controlling husband, she takes a job as an archivist, posing as Laurel, for her favorite author. Schuyler, the author, lives on the grounds near a mental hospital that her father ran. Daphne/Laurel is already dealing with psychosis, but being near this institution and going through Sky’s father’s medical records is making her start to question things even more so.

This book will really make you be suspicious of everyone! Who is who? Who did what? Is anything and anyone like it seems? Told in narrative as well as journal entries by both Laurel and Daphne as well as Edith, a patient, the plot flows quickly and sucks you in.

This book was very complex and surprising. Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, the author drops a bomb and completely shocks you! I would recommend but only if you are aware of the heavy subjects this book deals with. I know I would not have been able to read it in the 6 months after my son was born.

Book Review

Book Review: Lies by T.M. Logan-4 Stars

In one moment, Joe Lynch’s life changes completely. He’s driving home with this young son when they spot his wife’s car at a hotel. William wants to surprise his mommy so of course Joe obliges, only to find her in an argument with one of their friends, Ben. They bicker and Joe knocks Ben unconscious and this is only the start of Joe’s terrifying days to come.

I was completely sucked into this book from the beginning. I HAD to know what was going to happen! It was twisted, fast paced, and full of tension that left me on the edge of my seat!

Lie after lie after lie came pummeling at Joe. The poor guy couldn’t catch a break. The ending completely took me by surprise, and I knocked off a star because I wasn’t fully convinced it was plausible, but I thoroughly enjoyed reading this thriller!

Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for the opportunity to read an ARC of “Lies”; all opinions are my own.

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Book Review

Book Review: An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen- 4.5 Stars

Seeking women ages 18–32 to participate in a study on ethics and morality. Generous compensation. Anonymity guaranteed. 

When I saw Hendricks and Pekkanen had written another book together I was so excited! I devoured “The Wife Between Us” earlier this year as it was so riveting and had such a unique premise! I’m happy to report “An Anonymous Girl” was just as riveting, if not more so! I read this in one day, and that’s saying A LOT because I have a rambunctious one year old that takes up most of my time and attention, so that’s how you know I loved this one! Every second I had to myself I was reading!

Jess, a makeup artist, sneaks her way in to a psychiatrist’s study on ethics and morality after she overhears one of her clients talking about it. Jess becomes involved in a study sitting in front of a computer answering questions and revealing her deepest secrets, all anonymously, and she gets paid. A LOT. Sounds great, and easy, right? But what is the point? What purpose is being served, where Jess must answer some really thought provoking questions about herself?

Soon, Jess finds herself not just Subject 52 in an anonymous study seated in front of a computer, but seated in the office of the psychiatrist herself, Dr. Shields. Shields has taken quite the interest in Jess, and the study becomes more personal and expands from beyond a computer survey to going places, doing different things, meeting various people.

Jess begins to question her safety and the sanity of the Dr. but her family really needs the money she’s making from this study. How far will she go to help those she loves? What REALLY is the point of this study?

“An Anonymous Girl” is loaded with twists and ‘oh my gosh’ moments that will leave your jaw hanging in shock! This psychological thriller will grab you from the first page and you will not want to stop reading once you’re sucked in to this ethical and moral study along with Jess!

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review! This does not affect my opinions of the book. “An Anonymous Girl” releases January 8th, 2019.

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Book Review

Book Review: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins- 5 Stars

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I don’t know why it took me so long to read this but I’m glad I finally did! I was completely shocked at the ending!

Rachel takes the 8:04 train into London every day. It passes by a row of houses, one of which she used to live in, where her now ex husband lives with the woman he left Rachel for. Another house is occupied by whom Rachel refers to as Jason and Jess. She is obsessed with their seemingly happy, head over heels in love life, and has created their perfect life in her head.

Rachel though, isn’t happy. She’s an alcoholic, divorced, and unemployed. She drinks so much she blacks out at times and can’t remember things. I love a good suspense with an unreliable narrator. They keep me guessing and keep the book interesting!

When something happens, Rachel inserts herself directly into a police investigation. But can she be trusted when she can’t even trust her own memories? This was a very fast paced story and I did not want to put it down until I had some answers! If you haven’t read this yet and enjoy psychological suspense, definitely give it a go!

Book Review

Book Review: Good as Gone by Amy Gentry-4 Stars

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This was a great suspense! I was completely taken by surprise at every twist and turn!

When Julie is thirteen she is taken from her home while her younger sister Jane saw everything while hiding in a closet. Now, eight years later, a young woman shows up who is apparently Julie…

But is it truly her? How could so many years pass and they find no trace of her? But if it’s not her, why does she know things about the family? Her story seems sketchy and unreliable. These are all questions Julie’s mom Anna must face, but truly, she seems in denial. Her baby has come home and she doesn’t care how strange it seems.

This expertly crafted suspenseful novel will leave you wide eyed and shocked. There were so many layers to Julie’s story and it was so fast paced that you will not want to stop reading.

 

Book Review

Book Review: The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn- 4 Stars

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Another fast-paced thrilling suspense! I loved it!

Anna is a recluse. She lives alone, and she can’t go outside. She spends her days creeping on her neighbors through a camera lens, kept company by wine and anxiety meds. Her family doesn’t live with her but she talks to her husband and daughter frequently.

When a new family moves in, Anna befriends their teenage son and soon after meets his mother. They hit it off immediately and Anna is thrilled someone wants to hang out with her, considering her unstable condition.

Late one night Anna sees something horrible happen next door through the window. She calls 911, and the next thing she knows, she is waking up in the hospital.

What really happened? Did all those bottles of wine and meds finally bring Anna to the brink of insanity? Did she imagine things? Surely, she can’t be trusted. But who can?

Anna is in a race against time to figure out what’s real and who is and isn’t what they seem. This high speed read kept me hooked for hours and the ending was such a shocker! It’s intense, emotional, and riveting; I highly recommend!