The girl from Widow Hills

Book title: The girl from Widow Hills

Author: Megan Miranda

Pub Date: June 23, 2020

Genre: Mystery, Psychological Thriller

“I was the girl who survived. The girl who held on. The girl you prayed for, or at least pretended to pray for-thankful most of all that it wasn’t your own child lost down there, in the dark. And after: I was the miracle. The sensation. The story.”

The girl from Widow hills is a psychological thriller hold the thrill. For me, Arden’s story fell flat in so many ways that at several points during the book I had to almost talk myself into finishing it.
Arden was 6 years old when she was swept away by the flood waters while sleepwalking one night. They found her days later clinging to a storm drain, miraculously alive. Coming upon the 20 year reunion of her rescue she braces herself for the flood of media attention even though she has moved away and changed her name. As the 20 year reunion creeps closer she finds herself sleepwalking again, something that hasn’t happened since the incident all those years ago…Only this time when she is jarred awake by a ringing phone in the distance, she stumbles over a corpse. A mystery man….

I had high hopes for this book, but I felt that it was repetitive-how many times do you have to reiterate to the reader that she was sleepwalking and was swept away by the flood waters, how many times do we have to hear about the lone tiny shoe clinging to the storm drain, a clue that she must have been stuck in the drain system, how many times do we have to hear that her mother used the story of her survival for her own gain? I read these points more than several times throughout the book and was internally screaming each time I heard about them..AGAIN.
I did not connect to any of the characters in this book, they all felt void of personality to me, Arden was bland,kind of a shitty selfish friend, and the other characters in the book lacked back story and any kind of details that would emotionally connect the reader to them…none of them had any personality traits that stood out to me.
It’s been a few years since I have read a Megan Miranda book, which was why I was so excited to pick this one up. I enjoyed Miranda’s other books, and was hoping to enjoy this one just as much, but I didn’t.
HOWEVER, I will give it a solid 3 stars based on the fact that I did not predict the plot twist at the end AT ALL. I did not see that one coming. It happened so fast, within 4 pages the climax hit, missed, and was over.
If you are up for an atmospheric thriller with a good twist at the end, pick this one up, you wont see this twisty ending coming!

*Many thanks to Netgalley & publishers for my advanced copy of this book!*

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The Burning

🌟🌟🌟/5

Title: The Burning

Author: Laura Bates

Pub date: April 07, 2020

Genre: YA Fiction

“We are the granddaughters of the witches you could not burn. And we’re not putting up with it anymore.”

Anna and her mother make a new home in Scotland hundreds of miles and a new country away from the home she grew up in. Told from the perspective of Anna Clark as her and her mother navigate a new life together without her father, who has passed away, trying to put her past of online sexual harassment and abuse by her friends and school mates behind her. They hope by erasing all of Anna’s social media, and moving, the problem will go away on it’s own.

They move into an old cottage by the sea, which Anna finds once belonged to a woman accused of witchcraft, and their stories begin weaving together from there, with Anna having troubling, vivid flashbacks of the woman’s life.

While I am not the target audience for this book, as a woman, I connected to it in more than one way. The readers are taken down the paths of two women, while hundreds of years apart, find themselves in similar situations, discovering just how powerful, and detrimental a rumor can be. This book would be beneficial for any woman to read, with a powerful story that is relevant to our day and age, and deals with the many faces of abuses young women have to deal with, Online bullying & Harassment, Slut-shaming, rape, victim blaming, just to name a few. These topics are dealt with in the present day of Anna’s life, and the life of the accused witch that lived hundreds of years ago.

I found the way Bates weaved the women’s stories together quite lovely, and the “visions” not only fit within the book at perfect times, they fit the story so well that both of the narratives had my heart breaking for these girls at the same time.

This book is a slow burn, taking quite some time for the reader to discover just exactly what Anna was running from in her previous life, and while I enjoyed this book, I found it incredibly tedious waiting for the author to unravel the details. I was expecting more of a climax, an AH-HA moment that felt like it never came to fruition, and the story just fizzled out. All in all it was an ok debut that dealt with important subject matter relevant to girls in our day and age, however I felt that it fell flat for me in more ways than one.

**Thank you Netgalley and publishers for my advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**

The Burning will be available on April 07, 2020

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Wild at Heart

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

“I love seeing this.” I curl my gloved hand around his. “Thank you.” Is this what life with Jonah means? Will he whisk me away to remote places and show me awe-inspiring wonders? Things I had no idea about and things I may have heard about but but never realized how much I would appreciate? Because if that’s the case, I’ll never get enough of this new life with him.

It’s fine. I’m fine. I just have the most head -pounding book hangover of all time….but I’ll be fine.

Wild at Heart was my most anticipated read of 2020, and when you get the ARC of your most anticipated book of the YEAR, you throw everything else away and read it!

Have you ever moved to a new place and felt so lost, amazed, alone, happy, confused, homesick, and every other emotion possible for your heart to feel? That is how I felt reading this book. KA Tucker has done it again. She has captured the pristine beauty of the Alaskan frontier with such poetic ease that it made my mouth water, and consumed my heart with wanderlust.

I was wondering as I started this book if any newly introduced characters could live up to Wren,(who I miss, by the way, because, YES, it IS possible to fall in love with a fictional man!) Agnes and Mabel, but I found myself falling in love, yet again, with them all. The Curmudgeon was my favorite, he captured my heart with his mean, stubborn personality, and found that he was easily my favorite character in the book.

Wild at Heart is a slow burn, with delicious morsels of love, adventure, and new family scattered throughout so perfectly, that it had me wanting more. I finished this book in ONE DAY, I could not put it down, and I have the WORST book hangover of all time, wondering if there will be a novella sequel soon, so we can catch up on Jonah and Calla’s new life they have built together.

It is rare that I find a book that elicits such feelings within my heart, and I found myself laughing, crying, and on edge more than once throughout this book, especially when it came to the BEARS! I love that Calla has found her own voice, strength and purpose within Alaska and her new home!

Wild at Heart is just as amazing as The Simple Wild with complex, fun, lovable characters, a beautiful setting, and a love story that will make your heart swell as you realize you have fallen in love with everyone in the book…..again!

I 100% recommend this book, It will leave a lasting impression on your heart that is not easily shaken.

Wild at Heart will be available on 2-18-20. I hope you pick up this book, and I hope you love it as much as I did! Let me know, I would love to talk about it with you….or ANYONE! Yes, it was that good.

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About The Author

The Simple Wild

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

The Simple Wild by K. A. Tucker was easily my FAVORITE and most anticipated read of 2018, and it did not disappoint! I had to share my love of this book with you all because THE SEQUEL, “Wild at Heart” is set to be released on Feb. 18, 2020, and you’re not going to want to miss it!

“Calla Fletcher wasn’t even two when her mother took her and fled the Alaskan wild, unable to handle the isolation of the extreme, rural lifestyle, leaving behind Calla’s father, Wren Fletcher, in the process. Calla never looked back, and at twenty-six, a busy life in Toronto is all she knows. But when Calla learns that Wren’s days may be numbered, she knows that it’s time to make the long trip back to the remote frontier town where she was born.

She braves the roaming wildlife, the odd daylight hours, the exorbitant prices, and even the occasional—dear God—outhouse, all for the chance to connect with her father: a man who, despite his many faults, she can’t help but care for. While she struggles to adjust to this rugged environment, Jonah—the unkempt, obnoxious, and proud Alaskan pilot who helps keep her father’s charter plane company operational—can’t imagine calling anywhere else home. And he’s clearly waiting with one hand on the throttle to fly this city girl back to where she belongs, convinced that she’s too pampered to handle the wild.

Jonah is probably right, but Calla is determined to prove him wrong. Soon, she finds herself forming an unexpected bond with the burly pilot. As his undercurrent of disapproval dwindles, it’s replaced by friendship—or perhaps something deeper? But Calla is not in Alaska to stay and Jonah will never leave. It would be foolish of her to kindle a romance, to take the same path her parents tried—and failed at—years ago. It’s a simple truth that turns out to be not so simple after all.”

The Simple Wild is a rare gem. It is a poignant, moving story about love, forgiveness, adventure, and family. As with all of Tucker’s books, the writing was beautiful, and she painted an unforgettable picture of the Alaskan frontier, and those who live and work there. Surprisingly, I found myself loving the adventure in the book most of all, and I’m ready to pack my bags for a trip to Alaska. YES, it was that fun to read!

I will have to admit I am not a huge romance lover, Give me a murder mystery ANY DAY……..But I found myself so moved by this book and the characters that I devoured every morsel happily! I related to each and every character on some level, and I loved them all! They were real, and raw, vulnerable, and so LOVABLE.

This book was so much more than I had anticipated in a romance novel, because it was not just a romance novel, it was the best NA book that I have read in YEARS. I am torn between keeping this short and sweet and writing a novel length review, but I don’t want to spoil this book for you, because it is a MUST-READ!

If you are looking for a book to make you laugh, cry, and everything in between, I suggest picking up this book, and don’t forget the tissues!

You have PLENTY of time to read The Simple Wild before Wild at Heart is out, so go grab it! I can guarantee you the sequel will make you fall in love all over again. It’s just as good!

Happy reading, friends!

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The Woman in The Window

🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Book title: The Woman in the Window

Author: A.J. Finn

Pub Date: October 12, 2017

Genre: Adult fiction, Psychological thriller

“Many of us-the most severely afflicted, the ones grappling with post-traumatic stress disorder-are housebound, Biden from the messy, massy world outside. Some dread the heaving crowds; others, the storm of traffic. For me, it’s the vast skies, the endless horizon, the sheer exposure, the crushing pressure of the outdoors. “Open spaces,” the DSM-5 calls it vaguely, anxious to get to its 186 foot-notes.
As a doctor, I say that the sufferer seeks an environment she can control. Such is the clinical take. As a sufferer (and that IS the word), I say that agoraphobia hasn’t ravaged my life so much as become it.”

I still can not wrap my mind around the fact that this is a debut novel!
I was hesitant to write a review in light of the authors questionable actions, but I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and HAD to review this one. The writing is beautiful, and I found myself immersed in Anna’s world, and loved every riveting chapter. The only reason I did not 5 star this book is because some plot twists were predictable to the point that I was expecting them chapters ahead of time…BUT that did not take away from the story for me at all!
I would definitely recommend this book, it is the most original story I have read in quite some time-it was refreshing, and I am ready for A.J. Finn’s next novel. It was slated to be released in January 2020, but has not been released as of yet, so if you loved The Woman in the Window, keep an eye out for his next book.
If you are a thrill seeker, film noir lover, or wine lover (ha!) this is a must-read!

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The Family Upstairs

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Book Title: The Family Upstairs

Author: Lisa Jewell

Pub date: August 6, 2019

Genre: Adult Fiction, Thriller

” I can look back on those years in the house on Cheyne Walk with the Thomsens and see exactly the tipping points, the pivots upon which fate twisted and turned, upon which the storyline warped so hideously.”
” I remember where it started, but I have no idea how we’d got from that night to the point nine months later when strangers had taken over every corner of our home and my parents had let them.” 

Lisa Jewell is a mastermind. She has so beautifully woven the characters stories together to create an epic gothic tale. The story is written from three points of view which are easy to follow, and come together so fantastically at the end that it leaves you wanting more.
I am not going to divulge too many details, because I don’t want to spoil a single thing.. The Family Upstairs is a disturbing, twisty tale that left me wanting more. I did not guess any twists in this book which is rare for me, usually if the cues are there, I can pick up on them pretty quick. That was NOT the case with this book, which made it all the more delicious for me to read, and I devoured it in two sittings.
I will 1000 times recommend this book. definitely one of the best Lisa Jewell books to date, its a super fast read, and If you’re into gothic, atmospheric, and straight up psychopathic stories…you will want to run out and grab this one.


Happy reading, friends!

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Cracked up to be

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Book title: Cracked up to be

Author: Courtney Summers

Pub Date: Feb 04, 2020

Genre: YA

*YAY- this is a re-issue of Cracked Up to be, with an added forward from the author**

Parker Fadley is a high school senior dealing with some pretty heavy stuff! Parker’s story starts at her boyfriends party, a night she will never forget, and never forgive herself for.

Parker was the captain of the cheerleading squad, the most popular girl in school, and a better than straight-A student before that night. The flashbacks she has weave into the storyline so effortlessly, and they continue building until the very end.

Parker is not a very likable protagonist, she is an asshole full of teenage angst….but I found myself heartbroken over and over agin while reading her story, and I completely fell in love with her.

The new forward from the author is beautiful and poignant; it is so raw, and fits this story so perfectly that I thought about it a lot during the course of the book. While this is a YA novel, it deals with heavy subject matter- rape, suicide, sex, and drug & alcohol abuse.

While the book builds and builds up to the climax, it came so suddenly, and poof it was over. I would have liked to have seen the story play out more in the end. I felt like the story was a long fuse building to this very short, abrupt end.

*I originally gave this book 4 stars, but after some thought I am giving it a solid 5 stars. I gave it 4 stars because of the abrupt end, but I keep thinking about this book, and how I’m only sad about the ending because I wanted more!*

This book is a fantastic read, I enjoyed it so much that I devoured it in two sittings, and I’m already looking forward to reading the authors other books as this was my first!

I hope you all love Parker Fadley as much as I did! Happy reading, friends!

*Many thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for my advanced copy of this book!

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3168175903

Ninth House

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Book title: Ninth House

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Pub date: Oct 8, 2019

Genre: Adult fantasy

CONGRATULATIONS to the Goodreads 2019 readers choice- adult fantasy winner!

“This is why he had done it, not because of guilt or pride but because this was the moment he’d been waiting for: the chance to show someone else wonder, to watch them realize that they had not been lied to, that the world they’d been promised as children was not something that had to be abandoned, that there really was something lurking in the wood, beneath the stairs, between the stars, that everything was full of mystery.”

I could not put this book down. Shower? food? sleep? who needs those silly things! Not me, not while reading this book! To be fair, this book will not be for everyone, there are a fair amount of trigger warnings in this book. Rape, drug use/overdose, possession, sexual assault of a minor. HOWEVER, if you like extremely dark, gory fantasy novels with a dash of occult magic here, and a dusting of murder and conspiracy….you have found your book.

The thing that I loved about this book is that Alex Stern’s world is no different than our own, until she discovers Yale’s secret societies, and their hidden worlds of magic and intrigue. All of the societies in the book are based on real secret societies at Yale, which I found to be not only super awesome, but incredibly interesting. The spin Bardugo puts on these societies is FANTASTIC, and on a basic level, what I have honestly always thought happens in any secret club. MAGIC!!!!

While this book will not be everyone’s cup of tea, I think for Bardugo’s first adult fantasy novel, she smashed it! I loved every twist, and believe me, they keep coming until the very last sentence. If you want a dark, atmospheric, magical fantasy with a strong heroine….TADA, this is it!

I am ready for the sequel, the movie, the hype. I’m ready for it all. Let’s talk about this book!

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Amazon- https://www.amazon.com/Ninth-House-Leigh-Bardugo-ebook/dp/B07LF64DZ2/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=ninth+house&qid=1580681006&sr=8-1

Barnes & Noble-https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/ninth-house-leigh-bardugo/1130016082?ean=9781250266453#/

Hold Your Breath

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Book title: Hold Your Breath

Author: B P Walter

Pub date: April 2, 2020

Genres: mystery, fiction

goodreads 5 stars

She holds my gaze for a couple of seconds, then presses on. ‘What you say in this interview will be recorded. We will take into account what you tell us today when we decide whether to pursue formal arrest and any potential criminal charges. You have not brought any legal representation with you, and I believe you declined the offer of a solicitor to be appointed for you?”

I nod again. “yes.”

She produces a folder from her bag under the desk. ‘I trust you have an idea as to why you’re here?’ It’s said like a question, and she raises her eyebrows at me.

‘I do. i’m here because…’ I take a deep breath, trying to stop my speech becoming shaky, ‘because of what happened in the woods, All those years ago.”

“Hold Your Breath” by BP Walter was my first 5 star book of 2020! I devoured every twisted, scary, heartbreaking morsel of this book in two days!

I absolutely loved this book for so many reasons. This book is written from the perspective of a 10 year old girl, named Kitty. The story starts with a string of emails to now grown Kitty from detectives investigating a horrible accident that happened many years ago when her father took her and her mother to a ‘rustic’ cabin in the woods for a short holiday. I was immersed in Kitty’s world. It was herd to read such a deeply heartbreaking story from the perspective of such a young girl, but I was hooked on the first chapter.’

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and just when I thought everything had fallen into place, there was a another little twist. It was fantastic!

If you love twisty mystery thrillers, you will love this book!

About the author:

B P Walter was born and raised in Essex, England. After spending his childhood and teenage years reading compulsively, he worked in bookshops then went to the University of Southampton to study Film and English followed by an MA in Film & Cultural Management. He is an alumni of the Faber Academy and currently works in social media coordination for the book retailer Waterstones in London.

Amazon link-https://www.amazon.com/B-P-Walter/e/B07GNFLBMD%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

Goodreads link- https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18366746.B_P_Walter?from_search=true