Review: Look for Her by Emily Winslow

Look For Her (Keene and Frohmann, #4)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Everyone loves a beautiful missing girl… a gripping psychological thriller that delves into the grief, jealousy, and unresolved mystery surrounding a cold case kidnapping, in the vein of Gilly MacMillan and Mary Kubica.

Just outside of Cambridge, Lilling seems like an unassuming idyllic English village, but it’s home to a dark history. In 1976, a teenage girl named Annalise Wood disappeared while riding her bike home from school. Though her body was later discovered in a shallow grave, the culprit was never found. Decades later, Annalise maintains a perverse kind of celebrity in the small town, and is still the focus of grief, speculation, and for one young woman, a disturbing, escalating jealousy.

When DNA linked to the Annalise murder unexpectedly surfaces, cold case investigator Morris Keene realizes he may now have the chance of his career. Morris and his former partner, Chloe Frohmann, hope to finally solve this perplexing mystery, and bring closure to a traumatized community. But the new evidence that should be the simple solution instead undoes the case’s only certainty: the buried body that had long ago been confidently identified as Annalise may be someone else entirely, and instead of answers, the investigators face only new puzzles.

Whose body was unearthed all those years ago, and what happened to the real Annalise? Could she have had a secret child? Is someone interfering with the investigation? And is there a link to a present-day drowning with eerie connections?

With piercing insight and fascinating twists, Emily Winslow explores the dark side of sensationalized crime in this haunting psychological thriller.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Look for Her by Emily Winslow is a living nightmare. One young girl disappears and her cold case connects to a newer one. I found it intriguing. So many questions popped up in how they were connected, who dun it, and etc. Emily Winslow has a way of capturing my interest with every page. Twists and turns kept me guessing the whole way. This novel was definitely a psychological thriller but more of a mystery. The psychological part is where the missing Annalise girl and another by the same name come into play. One is completely crazy…but there’s a story behind that as well. A story within another story. This kept up the edgy vibe and fear factor. The fact that a doctor was easily chilled by her patient, Annalise made goosebumps appear on my arms.

A call comes in…

“I have so much to say next time I see you…” says Annalise.

Then just silence…the sound of the patient breathing on the other end…handing onto the call.

The doctor was the same age as the Annalise girl that went missing years ago.

That only made me more curious. Overall, a great plot worth reading.

Review: The Lost Ones

 

Synopsis:

Single, childless and reduced to writing celebrity profiles, investigative journalist Suzannah Quinn’s life is not going to plan…

Then, during an interview with top publisher Roland Winterbourne, she meets Jamie Davis.

It’s love at first sight and within hours she has agreed to marry him.

But Jamie insists on inviting no friends or family to the wedding and Suzannah’s millionaire father quickly suspects him of being a fortune hunter.

At first, the couple is blissfully happy.

Suzannah’s only worry is Jamie’s mysterious past, which he refuses to talk about.

However, when Suzannah suddenly inherits a flat off Portobello Road, everything changes.

Whilst she is eager to reconnect with her happy childhood roaming the market before her father made his money, Jamie loathes Notting Hill.

The move quickly triggers a change in their relationships and it’s not long before the arguments start.

Then one morning, after a particularly bad row, Jamie goes to work and doesn’t return.

Suzannah thinks he’s sulking, but when he still hasn’t returned after several days, she fears something’s happened to him.

His colleagues are unconcerned because his job as a sales rep often takes him off the radar, but Suzannah becomes increasingly frantic.

When she finds a scrap of paper in his jacket pocket with a name and address in North Devon, she is eager to investigate.

What she discovers when she goes there brings her world crashing down.

After a visit from a mysterious woman, who brings even more life-changing revelations, she realises that in order to move on she must find her missing husband and discover the truth about him once and for all.

If Jamie is not what he claims to be then neither is her beloved Notting Hill, beneath whose perfection beats a dark and rotting heart that is finally exposed over a horrific Carnival weekend.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Lost Ones by Vena Cork is a dark psychological thriller. The story left me guessing as well as hanging onto the edge of my seat. I didn’t know what to expect. I thought the main male character was just a con man…until he disappeared. Then, my curiosity got to me. I turned the pages in haste to figure it all out…then, Vena Cork pulled a surprise on me. Never would have guessed…maybe true love does exist. A love that drags people together and left them so emotionally wrapped up that when their loved one disappeared, it’s heartbreaking…thoughts like he lied and conned me felt like real answers to what happened. But when I saw one thing, it turned into a whole different and deadly situation. A former investigative journalist falls helplessly for a man. Not just any man but one with a dark hidden past and one whose looks can melt any woman, on the spot. Soon, their love develops to a boiling point and then cuts off…but real love doesn’t just end…it lasts even when they think it has ended…The Lost Ones by Vena Cork is highly engaging and sucked me straight into the book. The plot was fast-paced. Vena Cork’s writing is phenomenal. I was taken on a power yet emotional journey unlike any other. Overall, I highly recommend this novel to readers everywhere.

Review: The Girls by Emma Cline

 

Synopsis:

Northern California, during the violent end of the 1960’s. At the start of summer, a lonely and thoughtful teenager, Evie Boyd, sees a group of girls in the park, and is immediately caught by their freedom, their careless dress, their dangerous aura of abandon. Soon Evie, is in thrall to Suzanne, a mesmerizing older girl, and is drawn into the circle of a soon-to-be infamous cult and the man who is its charismatic leader. Hidden in the hills, their sprawling ranch is eerie and run down, but to Evie, it is exotic, thrilling, charged—a place where she feels desperate to be accepted. As she spends more time away from her mother and the rhythms of her daily life, and as her obsession with Suzanne intensifies, Evie does not realize she is coming closer and closer to unthinkable violence.

Emma Cline’s remarkable debut novel is gorgeously written and spellbinding, with razor-sharp precision and startling psychological insight. The Girls is a brilliant work of fiction.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Girls by Emma Cline…is indeed a sensational hit. From the first page readers like myself are hit with a strong intensity to know what’s to come of the girls. Including the one that is telling readers about them. Curiosity prickling my mind. The main character, Evie Boyd, makes the girls she sees like an exotic painting that to others can be too bold while other would stare at it with an awe. Evie Boyd is in held in awe of the girls. Something deep lured her straight to them. An imaginary magnet that constantly pulled her to them. So many real life issues were woven into this story. An average girl failing her parents. No raw talents. No exotic beauty. Plain, short, and simple. Parents divorced. Neither seems to notice their daughter and when they do, she’s only a disappointment to them. Sensing that doesn’t help a person achieve anything.  A father with a younger woman who came back wearing the lipstick that belonged to Evie’s mom. A mother going through changes so rapidly that her daughter hardly knew what her mom did when not around her. Then the group of girls that belonged to a cult…were like air that Evie so desperately needed. They caught her attention and dragged her into a world sadder than the one she already knew.

Emma Cline’s writing is superb. It transferred me straight into the life of Evie Boyd. Everything that happened to her felt like I was her. The emotional toll is deep. A thought provoking novel that silently sends messages to its readers. What not to do and how time can go by faster than people thought. Realistic portrayals of life’s issues with the family and teens is strongly evident here.  Growing up…like Evie Boyd did…was like growing up alone. Isolation instantly felt and brought on by her parents. Her lack of abilities and plainness drew Evie into a world none of hope to find. The sighting of the girls brought her mind swirling with more questions than answers. The way the girls presented themselves drew Evie’s divine attention. But like the saying goes…curiosity kills the cat…so too, will Evie’s curiosity plunge her into a darker world. I loved reading every moment of this coming of age story. The Girls by Emma Cline overall, is a must read for all. Once readers read this book, there’s no turning back. I highly recommend it to all.

Review: The Alienation of Courtney Hoffman

 

Synopsis:

Fifteen-year-old Courtney Hoffman is determined not to go insane like her crazy grandfather did—right before he tried to drown her when she was seven. But something is happening to her. She’s being visited in her bedroom at night by aliens who claim to have shared an alliance with her now-dead grandfather. And Courtney knows that aliens aren’t real, which means she must be going crazy. And her mother and her new boyfriend have zero tolerance for craziness.

Then Courtney meets Agatha Kirlich, a mysterious older girl with sleuthing skills and alien-obsession issues of her own, and together—armed with ancient stories of a human-alien bloodline, a few photographs, and the creepy tattoo left on Courtney’s rib cage by her grandfather before he disappeared—the girls embark on a mission to uncover the truth about Courtney’s alien visitors. Ultimately, Courtney must put her fears aside, defy her mother, embrace her true identity, and risk everything in order to save herself—and the world.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Alienation of Courtney Hoffman by Bradley G. Stefani is an interesting read for all ages. Yes, it’s geared for teens but as an adult, I enjoyed reading it. The main character, a teenage girl, is growing through a difficult time period in her life. She just lost her grandpa whom many deem crazy. Yes, he was a bit crazy but this tale proves he was also a genius as well. A grandpa who gave his granddaughter a tattoo that she knows nothing about…and the talk of aliens. Who believes in aliens…and where’s the proof? As Courtney live each day she is taunted with the nightmares. Her mother and mother’s boyfriend treat her like a crazed lunatic. A mother who puts her daughter into an asylum, based on the trauma her daughter is going through and because her boyfriend is a Doctor.  A Doctor who is more than beats the eye. The mother is clueless and it’s up to her daughter to save the world and to prove the Doctor is evil…

The Alienation of Courtney Hoffman is addictive, well done, and highly suspenseful. I found myself turning the pages faster with every turn. Bradley G. Stefani writes a story that drags readers into the characters drama and sweeps them off their feet into the danger ahead. Absolutely loved reading this tale. Courtney feels alienated from her peers and family and once she lands into the world her grandpa was in, she finds a peace that makes her life normal. Funny, crazy, but well-developed. Overall, I highly recommend this YA novel to all.

 

Review: June (A Novel)

 

Synopsis:

Twenty-five-year-old Cassie Danvers is holed up in her family’s crumbling mansion in rural St. Jude, Ohio, mourning the loss of the woman who raised her—her grandmother, June. But a knock on the door forces her out of isolation. Cassie has been named the sole heir to legendary matinee idol Jack Montgomery’s vast fortune. How did Jack Montgomery know her name? Could he have crossed paths with her grandmother all those years ago? What other shocking secrets could June’s once-stately mansion hold?

Soon Jack’s famous daughters come knocking, determined to wrestle Cassie away from the inheritance they feel is their due. Together, they all come to discover the true reasons for June’s silence about that long-ago summer, when Hollywood came to town, and June and Jack’s lives were forever altered by murder, blackmail, and betrayal. As this page-turner shifts deftly between the past and present, Cassie and her guests will be forced to reexamine their legacies, their definition of family, and what it truly means to love someone, steadfastly, across the ages.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Review:

June by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore is an intriguing read for all. The novel itself fluctuates between events from the 1950’s to the present moment. Events from the past have an enormous effect on the characters and how their lives will play out in the end. Three women’s lives are brought together inside this juicy drama filled novel. Readers will be piqued as to how each character handles the new information they have been given and what will become of them. A grandmother has passed away and left an inheritance to one woman and then a grandfather that she never knew about left her an inheritance as well.  Hollywood star from the past brings all the secrets, lies, and betrayals to the women presented in the present moment within this title. It’s funny how one knows their life and then suddenly it all changes with a death of two people. Two people who have held secrets for a long time.

Miranda Beverly-Whittemore’s writing is well-written. The characters will become living beings that pop off the pages as the events that haunted the past come bubbling up to the present. Nothing like family drama to stir things up…as a reader I didn’t really click with any one character. The characters had news they were not expecting and dealt with it on a day to day basis. I didn’t feel sympathy for the women…but I could relate to their issues. June is an intimate yet suspenseful tale that will lure readers into its plot. Each woman has her own struggles as well as the ones they all share. This gives the story depth and a realistic feeling to it. I was curious with each page as to how the ending would turn out…and I have to say the tension builds into an explosively stunning piece. Overall, I recommend this novel to readers everywhere.

Review: I Am No One

 

Synopsis:

A mesmerizing novel about memory, privacy, fear, and what happens when our past catches up with us.

After a decade living in England, Jeremy O’Keefe returns to New York, where he has been hired as a professor of German history at New York University. Though comfortable in his new life, and happy to be near his daughter once again, Jeremy continues to feel the quiet pangs of loneliness. Walking through the city at night, it’s as though he could disappear and no one would even notice.

But soon, Jeremy’s life begins taking strange turns: boxes containing records of his online activity are delivered to his apartment, a young man seems to be following him, and his elderly mother receives anonymous phone calls slandering her son. Why, he wonders, would anyone want to watch him so closely, and, even more upsetting, why would they alert him to the fact that he was being watched?

As Jeremy takes stock of the entanglements that marked his years abroad, he wonders if he has unwittingly committed a crime so serious that he might soon be faced with his own denaturalization. Moving towards a shattering reassessment of what it means to be free in a time of ever more intrusive surveillance, Jeremy is forced to ask himself whether he is ‘no one’, as he believes, or a traitor not just to his country but to everyone around him.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

I Am No One by Patrick Flanery  reminds me so much of the Person of Interest shows that I love. Similar to that show, I Am No One, will leave readers in a nail-biting, and the edge of your seat suspense. Readers don’t know the why’s, when, or the how’s but the most important question that keeps readers going is the who. Who would go out to great lengths to make the main character feel hunted down for a reason? The reason is left unknown and the plot comes with enough action to keep readers reading all night long. The main character is a man of mystery within himself. I love a good book that keeps a reader guessing and interested even after they finish the book.

Inside this popular read, I Am No One, takes readers into one particular man’s life and shows that someone is out to get him.  What is puzzling is that even the main character has no idea why, nor who is behind it all. It leaves for a deep thought provoking storm on the main character’s part and will entice readers further into the juicy plot. Someone is following Jeremy O’Keefe, sending anonymous calls to his mother, and leaves him with records…Patrick Flanery has mastered in creating a mystery within a mystery and leaves his readers begging for more. Readers will feel the paranoia and fear kick in as they make their way through this first person point of view read. The danger isn’t far behind…I enjoyed reading this psychological  and political thriller. Overall, I recommend I Am No One to readers everywhere.

Review: Behave

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Synopsis:

“The mother begins to destroy the child the moment it’s born,” wrote the founder of behaviorist psychology, John B. Watson, whose 1928 parenting guide was revered as the child-rearing bible. For their dangerous and “mawkish” impulses to kiss and hug their child, “most mothers should be indicted for psychological murder.”

Behave is the story of Rosalie Rayner, Watson’s ambitious young wife and the mother of two of his children.

In 1920, when she graduated from Vassar College, Rayner was ready to make her mark on the world. Intelligent, beautiful, and unflappable, she won a coveted research position at Johns Hopkins assisting the charismatic celebrity psychologist John B. Watson. Together, Watson and Rayner conducted controversial experiments on hundreds of babies to prove behaviorist principles. They also embarked on a scandalous affair that cost them both their jobs—and recast the sparkling young Rosalie Rayner, scientist, and thinker, as Mrs. John Watson, wife and conflicted, maligned mother, just another “woman behind a great man.”

With Behave, Andromeda Romano-Lax offers a provocative fictional biography of Rosalie Rayner Watson, a woman whose work influenced generations of Americans, and whose legacy has been lost in the shadow of her husband’s. In turns moving and horrifying, Behave is a richly nuanced and disturbing novel about science, progress, love, marriage, motherhood, and what all those things cost a passionate, promising young woman.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Behave by Andromeda Romano-Lax is definitely a must read for all women. This fictional biography piece is a fascinating historical tale that will drag readers down one promising young woman’s life as one life  moment spins her whole life downward…

Andromeda Romano-Lax’s stunning novel portrays a woman’s ambition, work, and motherhood. Behave explores the psychological, emotional, and ethical ways of a smart, attractive, and independent woman. A well-known scientist soon falls into motherhood by accident…and now she’s living, behind a man as nothing more than a shadow. As a student studying sociology, communications, and education this novel….was beyond amazing. It informs, educates, and shows readers…what life was like for women like Rosalie Rayner. Readers will be spellbound by this magnificent story. A most compelling and well-written novel. Overall, I highly recommend Behave to readers everywhere.

Review: All That is Lost Between Us

Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Georgia has a secret – one that is isolating her from everyone she loves. She is desperate to tell her best friend, but Sophia is ignoring her, and she doesn’t know why. And before she can find out, Sophia is left fighting for her life after a hit and run, with Georgia a traumatised witness.

As a school psychologist, Georgia’s mother Anya should be used to dealing with scared adolescents. However, it’s very different when the girl who needs help is your own child. Meanwhile, Georgia’s father is wracked with a guilt he can’t share; and when Zac, Georgia’s younger brother, stumbles on an unlikely truth, the family relationships really begin to unravel.

Georgia’s secret is about to go viral. And yet, it will be the stranger heading for the family home who will leave her running through the countryside into terrible danger. Can the Turner family rise above the lies they have told to betray or protect one another, in order to fight for what matters most of all?

Set against the stark, rugged beauty of England’s Lake District, All That is Lost Between Us is a timeless thriller with a modern twist.

My Rating: 5 stars

My Review: 

All That is Lost Between Us is the most intriguing novel of all. Readers are left with so much suspsense that it’s hard to let go of the book, until every last page has been read. Sara Foster has careated a very realistic, terrorfying and most dangerous story I have seen. The characters are wrapped tighly within their own secrets from one another that it’s now comsuming them. Walls that they thought they have built up, to protect those they love, are now being torn apart. Once the secrets are let loose, will the danger stop? Or will it consume them whole? The fear and intensity of this stunning plot will keep luring readers deep into the heart of it all. I loved reading this pyschological thriller. Sara Foster’s words come to life and will continue to leave readers on the edge of their chairs. I highly recommend All That is Lost Between Us to readers everywhere.

 

Book Review: Barking Madness by Ryan Hill

Barking Madness

Barking Madness is indeed one incredible YA paranormal thriller that readers everywhere won’t forget. Ryan Hill is a young and talented writer whose words come popping off the pages bringing his scenes and characters to life. A world so much like our own turned upside down and inside out temporarily for a young teenage girl. The same girl whose past comes biting her present life and disturbing the new life she has come to know in a short period of time. Soon images of her haunted past play tricks on her mind along with the danger and deaths that keep occurring when she’s around. One attack leads to another. An unknown beast comes forth destroying all the she holds dear. Will she be able to finally grasp onto reality and realize what’s really happening before it consumes her completely? Or will something much deeper more disturbing catch and take hold of her and her life?

This is one brilliantly well written novels I have seen in a long time for this genre. Ryan incorporates a lot of elements throughout his story. These elements bring his readers closer and much deeper into his enticing plot. Tons of suspense to keep readers intrigued from the beginning and to the very end. By the end readers will still be left wondering what really happened and what comes next. Imaginative, luring, an addictive to read, Barking Madness is the one story that will forever hook and captivate readers beyond their wildest senses. A must read novel that is compelling beyond belief. Characters that will shake everything you have come to know. Definitely an addictive story for all. I highly recommend this thrilling adventurous novel and rate it a five out of five stars. I look forward to more of Ryan Hill’s amazing work in the future.

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