Horror, Thriller

The Whisper Man by Alex North

The Whisper ManThe Whisper Man by Alex North

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Love. Love. Love.

I’m a thriller lover and unfortunately the genre is so saturated that it’s difficult to find something unique, surprising, unexpected, and creepy. The Whisper Man hit it out of the park on all accounts.

There were so many parts of this book where I found myself sincerely shocked by some of the twists which is generally not the case when I read thrillers. And the story itself was just disturbing enough to give you the heebie jeebies.

The characters were authentic and flawed in a way that felt so real. I felt their struggles.

I would love to see this book made into a movie. It would make a great film for the Halloween season.

If you like thrillers, go read this one now. You’ll thank me later.

-I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley, Alex North, and Celadon Books for the opportunity to review.-

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Audiobook Review, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

The Possession by Michael Rutger

The Possession (The Anomaly Files #2)The Possession by Michael Rutger

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

After falling in love with The Anomaly last year (it was definitely in my top 18 of 2018) I almost squealed when I found out author Michael Rutger was publishing a sequel.

Unfortunately, I didn’t feel the same connection with The Possession. It wasn’t bad. It just didn’t give me all the feels the way The Anomaly did. The great thing about The Anomaly is was how Michael Rutger incorporated elements of science and created a paranormal story line that in the realms of my imagination could have been true. The science all made sense and I thought the outcome was pretty genius. Unfortunately in The Possession I felt like he leaned more on the paranormal and less on the scientific which is where is kind of fell apart for me.

There were times in the middle where the story got a little convoluted, confusing, and muddled. I had a hard time picturing some of the paranormal elements in my head. I wasn’t sure what was going on at times.

And although it ended up wrapping up well, I didn’t feel that it was as strong as the first book in the series. But still worth checking out if you enjoyed The Anomaly.

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Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Lock Every Door by Riley Sager

Lock Every DoorLock Every Door by Riley Sager

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Out July 2nd! Pre-order from Amazon here!

Lord… I don’t even think I can do this book justice with a review. What can I write that will explain how I felt after finishing? I was just taken on an absolutely phenomenal ride by Riley Sager.

Let me first start by saying that I fell in love with Sager after reading his first two novels, Final Girls and The Last Time I Lied. I feel like sometimes authors who come out with a smash hit tend to let me down when I read their sophomore novels. Well The Last Time I Lied did anything but disappoint. And reading Sager’s junior novel, Lock Every Door, I’m officially bowing down to a master of thriller/mystery/horror.

I honestly did not think I would get my hands on this book as it’s one of the most sought after books of the summer. So huge thank you to Dutton for allowing me the opportunity to review.

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When I started reading this book, it slightly reminded me of The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney (another author I adore). Jules is dead broke. She gets fired from her job. She stumbles upon her live in boyfriend cheating on her (in the act) and finds herself couch surfing with a friend and with nowhere to live. Life’s not going very well. Until she finds an ad in the paper looking for an apartment sitter at a highly prestigious New York City apartment complex… getting paid $4,000 per month. She cannot believe her luck and good fortune. Until things start to get weird. Which is where I’ll stop this synopsis because you really need to experience it for yourself.

As the book went on, it reminded me of the Oscar-nominated movie Get Out. If you’ve ever seen the movie, you’ll understand what I mean when you read the book.

Things I’m Raving About:
1. The juxtaposition between poverty and wealth. Sager played with this concept in several different ways throughout the story and did it in a way that didn’t get preachy but highlighted the differences in the lives of those with money versus those who struggle financially. I felt Jules’s helplessness and hopelessness as she worked to get herself out of her current financial situation.
2. How everything tied together. There were so many little details placed strategically throughout the story that wouldn’t even strike you as being relevant. But Sager surprised me dozens of times by looping back to things that happened several hundred pages earlier and perfectly tying up all the loose ends.
3. The uniqueness of the story. I honestly had no idea where this story was headed. I kept trying to guess as I always do with thrillers. And let me make a pretty bold statement… I feel confident that you are NOT going to see the major twist coming. It threw me completely off my game in the best way.

Things I’m Not Raving About:
1. Nothing
2. Nothing
3. Nothing

There is so much more I want to say but for the sake of brevity I’ll just say that I’m confident Sager has another smash hit in Lock Every Door and I think readers will be raving across social media for months to come.

-I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley, Riley Sager, and Dutton for the opportunity to review-

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Audiobook Review, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

The Killing Lessons by Saul Black

The Killing Lessons (Valerie Hart, #1)The Killing Lessons by Saul Black

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Warning! Warning! Dark and disturbing material ahead!

One of my fellow book lovers posted about The Killing Lessons on Facebook and I quote, “I’m only an hour and half in and convinced the dude who wrote this is a serial killer (sure he’s a lovely man but no one writes like this without having done it himself.)”

Intriguing!

And what do I do? Immediately add it to my TBR.

So here I am a couple months later having just finished, and I have to say I agree! What a disturbing, psychotic, and horrifying story. It reminded me a lot of an episode of Criminal Minds on steroids.

This book is not a “whodunit” like most mystery novels. The “who” is divulged within the first few pages when a woman and her son are brutally murdered by a team of two sadistic men. And they aren’t their first victims. What follows is a game of cat and mouse as Detective Valerie Hart attempts to track down the serial-killing duo before another victim succumbs to their psychotic games.

I have to say, call me a weirdo. I liked it. The content was difficult to stomach at times, but the thought Saul Black put into the story was commendable. Despite multiple subplots, the story flowed extremely well and kept me engaged. And the narrator of the audiobook created the perfect amount of tension to keep me on the edge of my seat waiting for what happened next.

The one negative for me was the length. I feel like I say this a lot, but I don’t mind length if it is purposeful. In this case, I felt like a few parts dragged on and could have been slightly more succinct. But overall, that’s the only thing I can complain about.

If you have a strong stomach and don’t mind stories that live on the dark side…. or, if you’re a Criminal Minds fan, this is a book for you!

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Fantasy, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Someone Like Me by M.R. Carey

Someone Like MeSomeone Like Me by M.R. Carey

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Won this book in a Goodreads giveaway! Thank you to Orbit Books for the giveaway copy. If you don’t read and review books you win in giveaways, you should. Do the right thing. End rant.

I’m going to give this book 3.5 stars which I’ll round up to 4 stars on Goodreads because… well… no half stars allowed. Come on Goodreads… give a girl some options please!

Any who.. back to Someone Like Me. I really enjoyed the first half of this book. It sucked me in instantly with a concept that was really interesting. Action packed from the start, the book begins with Liz being attacked by her ex-husband when an unexplained force comes over her that allows her to fight back with a strength and anger unlike anything she’s ever experienced. Can you say split personality? Meanwhile, Liz’s son has befriended a girl from school named Fran who has a dark and disturbed past. Liz and Fran’s stories come colliding together in a suspenseful novel by M.R. Carey.

What did I like about this book? One of my favorite things about the book was how the chapters were “numbered” with illustrations that coincided with the character whose story was being told. I thought it was a very clever way to identify the character whose story line was being told via pictures rather than words. I also really enjoyed the characters and felt like they were well developed. And the relationships between the characters were fun to see unfold.

What didn’t I like?

1. It was a tad too long and could have benefited from some editing.
2. The dialogue at times felt a tad juvenile and unrealistic. I had a hard time imagining real life people actually saying the sentences that were presented as dialogue between characters.
3. It took a little bit of a paranormal turn that I didn’t expect. And while it was an interesting turn, I felt there were a lot of questions left unanswered. I think I would have enjoyed the book more if it stuck with a mental health angle rather than a paranormal angle.

Overall, a good book with some intriguing content. Definitely has some unexpected turns that are exciting but at the end of the day, not my favorite book in the world. I’ll put this in the “just okay” camp.

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