Tag: #bookreview

“Watch Me” by Jody Gehrman

“Watch Me” by Jody Gehrman

A really disturbing story that you won’t be able to put down! Jody Gehrman puts the reader right inside the head of a stalker and his victim. Kate Youngblood is an author and English professor at a Midwestern college. Sam Grist is the star student in her workshop. He’s talented and charming in a sea of ordinary college students. Kate is recently divorced and her best friend is about to have her first child. She’s lonely and facing writer’s block while her agent breaths down her neck. Sam is like a breath of fresh air but with her bid for tenure under consideration, she knows better than to do more than be a mentor. Sam on the other hand, has more in mind…much more!

I will admit that it took me a while to get into this story. I didn’t like anything about Sam and felt like a voyeur reading his thoughts. Kate, on the other hand, I could really relate to. Having been through one myself, I totally understood the anxieties and doubts caused by her mid-life type crisis, and how flattered she felt by the attentions of her student. The story seemed to start out a little slow but the intensity builds gradually to the point of no return. I admit that I thought I knew how it would end and was taken completely by surprise. If you like to get inside the brain of the perpetrator, then you will love this book. I highly recommend.

Alinefromabook’s rating: 4-5-star-rating  4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

Links:   Amazon US   |   Amazon UK   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Amazon CA

“The Memory Detective” by T.S. Nichols

“The Memory Detective” by T.S. Nichols

“The Memory Detective” follows a police detective who solves crimes by having the memories of the victim transferred into his brain. Cole is the detective that the other detectives try to avoid getting partnered with. The scientists say that a person should have no more than 2 memory transfers, but Cole has had more than a dozen. He has become expert at pulling the crucial clues out of the victim’s memories and bringing murderers to justice. But this skill comes at a cost to his personal relationships. When the memories of an unidentified female victim are transferred into Cole’s brain, neither he nor his colleagues are prepared for the Pandora’s box that he is about to open.

I found the idea of memories being transferred from one person to another to be fascinating and the author did a great job of exploring how that would feel and affect the individual receiving the transfer. The story also has some great twists in it to keep you alert while you’re reading. My only problem with this book is the characters. I didn’t feel like I really connected with any of the characters. The premise of the story is great, the settings felt real and came alive with the author’s descriptions, and the narrative moved smoothly with a quick pace. Unfortunately, I just couldn’t feel the characters.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  3-5-star-rating 3.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

Links:   Amazon US   |  Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble

“The Curious Affair of the Witch at Wayside Cross” by Lisa Tuttle

“The Curious Affair of the Witch at Wayside Cross” by Lisa Tuttle

This is book 2 from The Casebooks of Jesperson and Lane series. Jasper Jesperson and Miss Lane and partners in a newly formed detective agency. In this case, the victim, Charles Manning, literally dies at their feet and pounding on the door in the middle of the night. The coroner declares the cause of death to be a heart condition but Miss Lane saw the absolute terror on his face just before he died and our two detectives think that something other than natural causes is behind this man’s death. They set off to the community of Aylemorton where Manning was last known to have been living and find themselves dealing with a witch, a folklore enthusiast and the supernatural.

I liked the historical setting of this story and the plot line was well constructed. The story moves at a good pace and has some unexpected twists. Miss Lane is a very likable young woman. Jasper Jesperson was a little harder for me because I didn’t feel like I got to know him very well as a person. This might be because I have not read the first book in the series and I did feel like I was missing part of the story for that reason. I really enjoyed how the author incorporated the folklore into the story and the tension between the local minister and the witch was very well presented. All in all, this was an enjoyable read though I would recommend starting with the first book. This book would probably appeal the most to readers of cozy mysteries.

Alinefromabook’s rating: 3-5-star-rating  3.5 stars!

Happy Reading!

Amazon US   |   Amazon UK   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Amazon CA

“A False Report” by T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong

“A False Report” by T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong

This is a true and disturbing story. In August 2008, 18-year old Marie reports a man breaking in to her apartment and raping her for hours. In the initial days of the investigation, detectives begin to have doubts and Marie finds the tables have turned and she is now being charged with filing a false report. Two years later, women in Colorado start reporting that their homes were broken into and they were raped repeatedly. Each rape takes place in a different jurisdiction but word starts to get around and a task force is formed. While investigating their own cases the team finds evidence of the rape of a young lady in Washington. This young lady is Marie.

I was riveted by this story. These Pulitzer prize winning authors relate the events in this case in a very relatable way. I felt like the actions of those involved in the various investigations were presented fairly and objectively. In the end it is obvious where mistakes were made and I was pleased to see that those responsible not only admitted the errors but took steps to ensure they would not happen again. I think this book is timely, given current events, and points out the places in our society where more work needs to done in how we approach rape. This story is very moving and, quite frankly, I think everyone should read it.

Alinefromabook’s rating: 5-star-rating  5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

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“The Bookworm” by Mitch Silver

“The Bookworm” by Mitch Silver

A conspiracy between the American president and the Russian government? This story reads like it just came off the front pages. Dr. Larissa Klimt is a Russian historian who spends her time teaching and researching her new book. On an otherwise ordinary day, a bag full of old Dictaphone cartridges is given to her along with a mysterious message. Before she knows what’s happening, she finds herself trying to unravel a decades old mystery that has a tremendous impact on current events. Suddenly, her life is in danger and Larissa doesn’t know who to trust.

Hold on to your seats, readers, because this is a thrill ride of a story, made even more exciting because it’s all so current and feels very real. I really enjoyed the twists and turns in this one. I also really liked the character of Dr. Larissa Klimt. She’s not exactly the stereotypical history professor, but then again, she kinda is. In any case, she’s as complex as the story she is telling. And then there’s the ex-husband who I just loved to hate, but sometimes he is a bit charming, and he’s cute. I believe this is a stand-alone novel, but I wouldn’t be sad to see more books with these characters as they really grew on me by the end. Overall, I really enjoyed this one. It will definitely satisfy the appetite of the conspiracy theorists out there, and it’s a good mystery too.

This book is expected to publish on Feb. 6, 2018 in the US and Mar. 6, 2018 in the UK, and is now available for pre-order, see the links below.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-star-rating 4 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To order on Amazon US click here.

To order on Amazon UK click here.

To view on Goodreads click here.

A copy of this book was provided by NetGalley and Pegasus Books in exchange for an honest review.

 

“Darkness at the Edge of Town” by Jennifer Harlow

“Darkness at the Edge of Town” by Jennifer Harlow

Welcome to Book 2 in the Iris Ballard series! Iris is a forensic psychologist who previously worked for the FBI. Now she is an acclaimed author. While on a tour to promote her book, she is summoned back to her hometown in Pennsylvania because her brother has abandoned his life and joined a cult. Iris’s high-strung mother is fit to be tied and determined that Iris will get her brother back. To do this Iris must infiltrate the cult and try not to get killed in the process.

So, I have a little bit of an obsession with books about cults. I find the inner workings of these groups to be endlessly fascinating. This story is pure fiction, but takes the reader into the heart of the cult and exposes you to the tactics they use to gain followers. The main characters are a diverse group with some very complicated personalities. In particular, Iris’s family is highly dysfunctional and her mother can be scary at times. The story is about Iris trying to find and extricate her brother but at the same time she is working through some very intense personal emotions and relationships. The story itself moves at a quick pace and keeps the reader turning pages. My only issue with the book is the over use of the “F” word throughout and that’s why I’m giving it a lower rating. If that’s not a problem for you then you are in for a compelling psychological thriller.

Alinefromabook’s rating: 3 star rating  3 stars!

Happy Reading!

Amazon US   |   Amazon UK   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Amazon CA

Thank you to NetGalley and Alibi books for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review.

“Two Girls Down” by Louisa Luna

“Two Girls Down” by Louisa Luna

Alice Vega finds missing people. Max Caplan is a former cop turned private detective in a small Pennsylvania town. When two young girls go missing Vega gets a call from the family and quickly finds herself on the wrong side of the local police. She teams up with Caplan to track down the missing girls but the search is not without danger. What’s the connection between the girls, a local ballet studio, and the drug trade?

This is an edge-of-your-seat read. The deeper you get into the story, the closer you get to edge of your seat. The author has created a complex story that at first seems to make no sense but comes together beautifully in the end. Alice Vega is a hard-edged, bad-ass kind of female character but the more you get to know her the more apparent it becomes that she is much more complex that she at first appears. Max Caplan, when we first meet him, seems very defeated. It appears that his only reason for living is his precocious teenage daughter Nell. But maybe he just needs someone to reignite his spark. Both Caplan and Vega really grew on me as the story developed. Nell is a real treat in the story. She doesn’t play a huge part but when she does show up she adds an element of fun and liveliness to the otherwise rather dark story. Finally, I thought the interplay between the police and the PI’s was unique and added a level of tension to the story that enhanced the drama. Overall, I really enjoyed this story and I would highly recommend it, especially if you feeling the need for some thrills.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US, click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

Thank you to NetGalley and Doubleday Books for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins

Now I know why this book got so much attention. I was nearly at the end before I even began to suspect the person who turned out to be the killer. The beginning reminded me of “4:50 From Paddington” by Agatha Christie in that the first character we meet is Rachel who is watching a particular couple in their house next to the railroad tracks as she passes by every day. Then one day the wife disappears and Rachel thinks she has knowledge that may be critical to the investigation. But Rachel is a drunk and an “unreliable witness”, so she goes directly to the husband. What Rachel doesn’t know is that she is directly involved in the disappearance. Rachel’s life is already spiraling out of control because of her drinking, but will this investigation tip her over the edge? Or will she even survive?

I loved the way this book was structured in that it moves back and forth from Rachel telling the story, to Megan, the victim, detailing the days and weeks before her disappearance. I think this kind of structure heightens the suspense in a thriller and allows the reader to see the events from more than one angle, and there is always more than one angle in a mystery. That being said I didn’t really like either of them, at least at first. Rachel comes off as pathetic and whiny at the beginning, but her persistence in the matter gave her more depth as the story moves along and I appreciated the attempts she was making, in the midst of all the drama, to pull her life back together. Megan on the other hand seemed to be spinning out of control, bored with her life and her marriage. The twists and turns in this story will keep you guessing till the end. If, like me, you didn’t read this one when it first came out, you should definitely pick it up now.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

Amazon US  |   Amazon UK   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Amazon Canada

“Private” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro – Audiobook

“Private” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro – Audiobook

Narrated by Peter Hermann

Jack Morgan is a former military helicopter pilot, the son of a convict, the brother of an evil twin, and head of Private Investigations. Private is a top-notch investigative agency, catering to the rich and famous. Jack has a world-class support team which includes Del Rio, Justine, Sci, and others. Jack is hired to find out who killed the wife of his long-time friend, this death hits him hard because he had introduced them. At the same time, his uncle hires him to investigate possible game-fixing within the NFL. As if these two investigations aren’t enough, Justine is hot on the trail of what appears to be a team of serial killers who are stalking high school girls. This is the first book in the “Private” series.

Jack is a man who is haunted by his past but nevertheless I found that I liked him a lot. He’s terrible with relationships but he keeps trying and seems to learn from his mistakes. Justine is great as the strong, female character and her not so friendly relationship with Nora, the cop, is fun to watch. Tracking three separate storylines in one book can be challenging but in this case I found that it all flowed together nicely, with smooth transitions from one investigation to the next. Since I listened to the audiobook version of this story the narration quality was very important. I think the narrator did a good job but I did find my mind wandering a little bit at times. Overall, this is another good thriller from James Patterson. I enjoyed the story and characters.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  3-5-star-rating  3.5 stars!

Happy Reading!

To order from Amazon US, click here.

To order from Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James

“The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James

This book totally creeped me out! But in a delightful, beguiling way. The Amazon description of this story mentions that the school involved is rumored to be haunted; that is an understatement. Idlewild Hall is a school for girls that no one wants, and in 1950 one of them mysteriously disappears. In 1994 a young woman, daughter of a local celebrity, is found murdered on the playing field of the now abandoned school. In 2014, Fiona, that young woman’s sister, is now a journalist and after hearing that the school is to be restored, she can’t help but start her own investigation into the circumstances of her sister’s murder. As the restoration begins, a body is found in an old well on the property and Fiona now finds herself investigating two deaths. Fiona soon finds herself deep in the mystery of Idlewild Hall, but will she come out of it alive?

If you like paranormal or thrillers, you must read this book. I was so drawn into this story that I completely tuned out everything else. I love a book that can do that. The storyline is complex and twisty but it all flows really well and comes together brilliantly at the end. Fiona is a great character who’s a bit lost at the beginning but finds her way while working through her sister’s death. Her hunky boyfriend adds some romance and angst to the story, and has issues of his own to work through, but I enjoyed the relationship and the way he treated Fiona. There are a host of strong female characters woven into the story. The author has constructed the story so that it shifts back and forth between events in 1950 and the investigation in 2014 which in this case adds to the mystery. It seemed like every time Fiona was about to discover something the story would shift to 1950 and vice versa, so there is a constant sense of anticipation. Simone St. James is definitely going on my “I-want-more-from-this-author” list. You may live to regret it if you pass this one up!

Alinefromabook’s rating:  5-star-rating 5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To order from Amazon US, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.