REVIEW – Killman Creek (Stillhouse Lake #2) by Rachel Caine

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Published December 12th 2017 by Thomas & Mercer

 

This is the second book in the “Stillhouse Lake” series by Rachel Caine. I really enjoyed the first novel. However, it did end with a cliffhanger which normally would have driven me up the wall. Thankfully I had this book ready to go.

Although this could be read as a stand-alone book, I really think it would be much more enjoyable if you read the first novel too. Having the background of the story and the characters would definitely add to the enjoyment.

We catch up with Gwen who has been on edge since receiving a terrifying text:

“You’re not safe anywhere now.

She must keep her children safe. She thinks she has people around her that she can trust, but if the past has taught her anything…it’s that she needs to be very careful about who she trusts.  Everyone has secrets. Even her children, Lanny and Connor, seem to be hiding something.

What aren’t they telling her?

In the back of her mind, Gwen always knew Mel’s reign of terror wasn’t over. But she’s ready for him this time. She’s not meek and subservient Gina anymore. Gina would have been afraid of Melvin hunting for her… but Gwen?

Gwen isn’t going to hide anymore. Let him come. She’s not going down without a fight.

 “The woman who’d been known as Gina Royal, wife of an especially horrible serial killer, is gone, another corpse Melvin left behind him. She’s better off dead. I am Gwen now. Gwen isn’t taking any more shit.”

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In the first novel, the story was told from Gwen’s point of view. However, this book has many pov’s. This worked out well for me and I especially liked hearing from Lanny and Connor. I think the author did a great job of portraying how conflicted they were.

Most thrillers would probably be boring if everything was entirely believable, but there were a few things that I thought were a bit over the top. However, I was completely engrossed in the story, flipping pages as fast as I could. As with book one, there are some pretty violent and graphic scenes…but again I was able to skim over them without missing much of the plot.

Killman Creek” was a heart-pounding, dark and intense read. Book one in the series was intense but I felt like this one took it up about twenty notches. This is the kind of book that leaves you drained and exhausted after you’re done reading….but still satisfied.

I just wish I had the next book in the series. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

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Throwback Thursday – Accidents of Marriage by Randy Susan Meyers

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Throwback Thursday is a meme created by Renee at It’s Book Talk to share old favorite books rather than just the new shiny ones. This is a great idea to bring back to life some much-loved books. Please feel free to join in.

My choice for this week is: 

Accidents of Marriage by Randy Susan Meyers

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Published September 2, 2014, by Atria Books

 

Goodreads Description:

Accidents of Marriage explores a topic rarely shown in fiction: the destruction left in the wake of spouse’s verbal fury. Ben never meant to hurt Maddy. He never imagined his recklessness would lead to tragedy.

Maddy is a social worker trying to balance her career and three children. Years ago, she fell in love with Ben, a public defender, drawn to his fiery passion, but now he’s lashing out at her during his periodic verbal furies. She vacillates between tiptoeing around him and asserting herself for the sake of their kids – which works to keep a fragile peace – until the rainy day when they’re together in the car and Ben’s volatile temper gets the best of him, leaving Maddy in the hospital fighting for her life.

Randy Susan Meyers takes us inside the hearts and minds of her characters, alternating among the perspectives of Maddy, Ben, and their fourteen-year-old daughter. Accidents of Marriage is a provocative and stunning novel that will resonate deeply with women from all walks of life, ultimately revealing the challenges of family, faith, and forgiveness.

Accidents of Marriage explores a topic rarely shown in fiction: the damaging effects of a spouse’s emotional abuse.

 

My Thoughts:

I read this novel a few years ago and its message has stayed with me.  This was one of the first fiction books I had read that addressed the damaging effects of emotional abuse. When we think of someone being abusive, we may often think of physical abuse first. However, emotional abuse is just as damaging. This novel made an effort to get those points across while still telling an interesting story.

I look forward to reading this novel again.

 

 

 

 

REVIEW: The Reunion by Samantha Hayes

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Published February 9, 2018 by Bookouture

 

They were all there the day your sister went missing…Who is lying? Who is next?

 

1996 – All thirteen-year-old Lenni wanted to do was walk to the store by herself to get an ice-cream. Her older sister, Claire thought it would be fine. Her parents were very overprotective. Lenni just wanted to have some of the freedom that Claire and her brother had.  It was just a short walk ….what could possibly happen?

Lenni never came back.

2017 – It has been twenty years since Lenni went missing from the beach. Claire is now married and has two children of her own. No one has forgotten Lenni but Claire has carried around a tremendous amount of guilt for letting her sister out of her sight that day.

Claire’s father, Patrick has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and it seems to be getting worse. Her mother feels that it is time to sell the family farm. Claire is upset…they’d made a promise….

Someone must always be here….

Claire decides that since they are selling the farm they should have one last get together…a reunion. Her friends always loved her father and she’s sure that seeing everyone will cheer him up. The whole gang will be there….including everyone who was at the beach the day Lenni disappeared.

But as more and more strange things start happening…suddenly the reunion that is meant to be a happy occasion….turns into a nightmare.

This story is told from many points of view and did take some time to get going. However, I was really intrigued by the characters and their individual stories. Sometimes with that many characters and side plots, I can find it hard to connect and/or keep everything straight. But I really didn’t have a problem in this case. With each perspective, we were given little hints. I started to question everyone’s intentions and whether or not that they could have had anything to do with what happened all those years before. Once I hit the halfway point, things really picked up and I was engrossed in everything that was happening. I had my suspicions and was eager to see if I was correct or way off base.

The Reunion” was a story full of secrets, lies, and deception. There was a lot going on, but I found it gripping. I became invested in many of these characters and couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen next.

This was a clever and twisted tale with many excellent red-herrings. I thought everything came together fairly well, although there were one or two things I could have used a little more clarification on. But overall, this was a satisfying psychological thriller that I really enjoyed.

I look forward to reading more from Samantha Hayes!

Many thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for providing an advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.

Teaser Tuesday : February 13, 2018

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by The Purple Booker.

It is very easy to play along:

• Grab your current read and open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!
• Share the title & author, too, so that other participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Here are my “teasers” :

“Noah wished he could run time backward, undo every decision until this moment.  He’d made so many mistakes. His entire world, destroyed.

It had all started with Anna”

From the novel:

After Anna by Lisa Scottoline

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Expected publication: April 10th 2018 by St. Martin’s Press

Goodreads Description:

Noah Alderman, a doctor and a widower, has remarried a wonderful woman, Maggie, and for the first time in a long time he and his son are happy. But their lives are turned upside down when Maggie’s daughter Anna moves in with them. Anna is a gorgeous seventeen-year-old who balks at living under their rules though Maggie, ecstatic to have her daughter back, ignores the red flags that hint at the trouble that is brewing. Events take a deadly turn when Anna is murdered and Noah is accused of the crime. Maggie must face not only the devastation of losing her only daughter, but the realization that her daughter’s murder was at the hands of a husband she loves. New information sends Maggie searching for the truth, leading her to discover something darker than she could have ever imagined.

My Thoughts:

I have read many of Lisa Scottoline’s novels but her stand-alones really seem to be my favorites. I really enjoyed her last novel “One Perfect Lie” and I’m hoping that I’ll enjoy “After Anna” just as much. I’m really intrigued by the description and the few pages I’ve read so far.  I am excited to read more!

I hope you liked my “teasers”.

Happy Reading Everyone!!