Review: Don’t You Cry

Don't You CryDon’t You Cry by Mary Kubica

Published May 17, 2016

MIRA

 

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A couple of years ago I read “The Good Girl” by Mary Kubica and really enjoyed it. I thought the book description for “Don’t You Cry” sounded promising and I was looking forward to reading it.

When I first started the book I had a bit of a hard time getting into it. I kept getting confused. I think part of my confusion with the book was due to some formatting issues. A couple of chapters or sections looked like they were kind of smooshed together which made it hard to figure out whose point of view it was. Because this was an advanced readers copy I’m sure that would have been fixed on the final copy.

The book opens on a Sunday morning in Chicago and is told at first from Quinn Collins point of view. Waking with a bit of a hangover to the jarring noise of her roommates alarm clock. Irritated with the noise, Quinn gets out of bed to see why on earth Esther has not turned it off yet. However, when she gets to her roommates room, she sees that Esther is not there. She sees the fire escape window open, but no sign of Esther anywhere in the apartment.

Quinn isn’t worried at first. She figures as it’s Sunday that Esther has probably left for church and has just forgotten to turn off her alarm clock. After most of the day has gone by with no sign of Esther, Quinn decides to have a look around Esther’s room to see if she can glean any information about where she could be.

When she finds a strange letter addressed to “My Dearest” she’s not sure what to make of it. Quinn is usually the one who is known for not making the best decisions (for example the stranger in bed with her when she woke up that morning). But all of a sudden she’s not so sure everything is okay with Saint Esther.

“I should have known right away that something wasn’t right”.

Quinn isn’t sure what to do as she doesn’t know Esther’s parents or anyone else to call. Where is Esther? Is it possible Quinn doesn’t know her roommate as well as she thinks she does?

Next we meet Alex. At this point we’re not sure who Alex is and what he has to do with the original plot. I was a bit confused but I decided to keep reading, and trust that everything would come together. Alex is an eighteen year old boy with an absent mother and alcoholic father. He doesn’t seem to have a lot of friends but is very friendly with fifty-year-old agoraphobic woman named Ingrid. He often delivers her groceries and runs other errands for her. He’s also recently become a bit obsessed with a woman who has recently started coming to the restaurant where he works as a dishwasher.

There was a whole lot going on in this novel. As the book alternates from Quinn’s point of view to Alex’s it almost felt like I was reading two different, but interesting stories. I was enjoying the read but I did find I had to pay very close attention to what was happening. Lots of twists and turns in this book.

I have to say i was very surprised by the ending. I think even if I had figured out what was happening I would still have enjoyed this book. But the fact that I wasn’t even close with any of my guesses made it even better.

Mary Kubica knows how to write an engrossing and suspenseful novel that kept me in its grips right up until the dramatic conclusion.

Thank you to NetGalley, MIRA, and Mary Kubica for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

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Review: The Girls

The GirlsThe Girls by Emma Cline

Published June 14, 2016

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book by Emma Cline. I wasn’t sure when I picked it up what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised.

It’s the start of summer in Northern California and Evie Boyd, an average teenager is a bit lonely and bored. Her parents are splitting up, she’s fighting with one of her only friends and feels like no one understands her. However, that all changes after she meets a wild and fun group of girls in the park who seem to be all about having fun and being free. She can sense an undercurrent of danger and it only makes her want to belong to this group even more.

It’s not long before Evie starts to pull away from her mother, spending more time with the group especially Suzanne. Suzanne is an older girl that Evie is completely enamored with.

“No one had ever looked at me before Suzanne, not really, so she became my definition. Her gaze softening my centre so easily that even photographs of her seemed aimed at me, ignited with private meaning.”

But Evie is quickly becoming obsessed. Especially once she’s been to the ranch and meets the larger than life Russell. Evie desperately wants to stay on the ranch. She feels like no one else understands her like these people do, especially Suzanne. But Evie doesn’t realize how quickly things can change and soon comes the time where everything changes…in what seems like the blink of an eye.

I really didn’t know how I was going to feel about this book. I really felt like it snuck up on me. There wasn’t non-stop action, but there didn’t need to be. The writing was great and I really liked how the story was laid out. We hear about Evie’s life both back then and now. We see how it all plays out and it’s fascinating. This is a well-written, intoxicating book that I won’t soon forget.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and Emma Cline for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

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Review : Daisy in Chains

Daisy in ChainsDaisy in Chains by Sharon Bolton

Published June 2, 2016

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

DAISY IN CHAINS in the first novel by Sharon Bolton that I have read and I am pretty sure that it won’t be the last.

This was an addictive read. Honestly I was only going to read a few pages as I wanted to get another book finished, but once I started I didn’t want to stop.

Maggie Rose is a lawyer and true crime writer. She is very well known for her work having many murderers convictions overturned. Maggie lives a rather reclusive life. She doesn’t appear in court or do interviews. There are no pictures of her online. Usually only meets people she is working with. However…she has bright blue hair. Is having such a noticeable color while appearing to want nothing to do with the public a type of distraction?

Is Maggie Rose hiding something or does she just like having blue hair?

****Possibly some minor spoilers****

Maggie has recently been approached by the mother of a notorious serial killer, Hamish Wolfe.
In 2014 thirty-eight year old Hamish Wolfe was convicted of killing three women and sentenced to life in prison.

The handsome former surgeon claims he’s innocent and he wants Maggie to help him get his conviction overturned as well as write his story.

“I’ve looked into that man’s eyes, and trust me, there isn’t anything human there. Wolfe isn’t a man Miss Rose. He’s a monster”.

Though many share that sentiment there are several others, besides his mother who believe in his innocence. Hamish Wolfe has a devoted group of followers that also believe him and want to see him released from prison. In addition he has a fan club which includes many teenage girls and women who write to him in prison, sending love letters and even explicit photos. Some of them think he’s fragile, broken and believe that they can fix him. Especially one woman, Sirocco Silverwood. Sirocco claims that she is in love with Hamish and he with her. People write her off as a bit of a loony who is imagining this relationship.

The story was told from multiple points of view but I found it easy enough to follow along. Intermixed throughout the story were, newspaper and magazine articles, blog posts, personal letters, court transcripts, police case files, and many other things that added to the story.

We learned a lot of the background of the murdered women and the different ways in which they were lured to their deaths. Plus a lot of information about Hamish’s past as a cocky medical student….

When Maggie agrees to meet with Hamish, he starts to try to convince her of his innocence.

Is Hamish Wolfe innocent of these crimes? Will Maggie believe him? What other secrets will come to light?

Although this was a fiction book, these fan clubs for serial killers and other prisoners do exist. There are plenty of women who write to these violent men behind bars. But why? Do they feel safe in knowing the men can’t get out? Do they think they can change them? There are women that marry these men, men that they can’t even be intimate with.

“Many of these women are addicted to violence. Many prison brides have a history of violent relationships. Becoming involved with a convicted killer allows them to feed this addiction, while remaining relatively safe”.

I watched a TV show a couple of years ago about women who had partners in jail. Some of the women were with the men before they were incarcerated and I believe they did have visits where they could stay together overnight in a trailer to visit. Other ladies started out as pen-pals and ended up marrying these men behind bars. Their lives revolve around prison visits, phone calls, Skyping, etc. There was one woman who’s husband was going to be released because of a mistake during his trial. You could see that she was a bit nervous about how this would work out.

I find it fascinating and really enjoyed how some of these situations were talked about throughout the book.

You can tell that Sharon Bolton really does her research. Of course being a fiction book there will often be times where things seem implausible. However, I didn’t feel that very often with this book. Things felt VERY real at times.

DAISY IN CHAINS is an intense psychological thriller that gripped me from beginning to the very end. Just when I thought I had things figured out, it would take off in another direction. It really was a great read!!!

I look forward to reading much more from Sharon Bolton.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and Sharon Bolton for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

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Hello!!

Hi, my name is Dee and I love to read. I’ve always loved to read. I’m in my early 40’s now and the addiction has only gotten worse. I joined Goodreads to keep track of books I’ve read. Then I started to rate the books I was reading and one day decided to write a review. Oh it was only a few words long but soon I was writing longer reviews and really enjoying it. Then I joined NetGalley and found even more books to read and review!! Now I find that I want to review every book I read and give my opinion. I’m not always great with punctuation and grammar but I love to give my thoughts on what I have read!

I decided to create this blog so that I can have all of my book reviews in once place.