Friday, October 2, 2015

A Line of Blood by Ben McPherson (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"For Alex Mercer, his wife Millicent and their eleven-year-old son Max are everything, his little tribe that makes him feel all’s right with the world. But when he and Max find their enigmatic next door neighbor dead in his apartment, their lives are suddenly and irrevocably changed. As the police conduct a methodical investigation, Alex becomes increasingly impatient for them to finish. After all, it so clearly was a suicide.

But as new information is uncovered, troubling questions arise. Why was the neighbor charging his home improvements to the Mercer’s address? How did a possession of Millicent’s end up in his apartment? And what has Max been listening to through the common wall they share with the neighbor? As the knot of suspicion grows tighter, this close-knit family begins to crack. Is Alex really the loving husband he professes to be? And where does Millicent disappear to on those long walks, stewing over something she can’t forget?

Each of them is suffering. Each has something to hide. And as they each question how well they really know one another, the Mercers will be forced to decide how far they’ll go to protect themselves—and their family—from investigators carefully watching their every move . . . waiting for one of them to make a mistake."

My Thoughts:

I am basically a sucker for a book just like this.  Lots of family secrets that come to light at different times?  Yes!  A slightly unreliable narrator?  Yep!  Twists and turns that leave you guessing and sometimes even confused as to what is even going on?  Heck yeah!  I found my instantly intrigued by this strange little family where everyone seemed to have something to hide.  This was also just one of those compelling books where you can't stop reading and you wouldn't want to even if you could.  I kept telling myself just one more page which turned into five or more chapters instead.  I was well and truly hooked on trying to figure out what was really going on.  Because the further I read the more questions that I had which led to even more suspense and tension.  Can you see why I couldn't stop reading this book yet?  Heck I was still thinking about this one even when I did set it down to work around the house or do whatever I needed to be doing.  

One of the things that made this book such a winner for me was Alex the narrator (otherwise known as the husband to Millicent and father of Max).  What I liked about him as the main character and narrator of the story is that I could never fully trust him.  It always seemed like he had his own secrets and reasons for doing the things he did....things that we as the reader never were fully told about.  It made him feel like an unreliable narrator which is something that I always enjoy.  I love when you cannot fully trust everything that is being told to you as it just adds layers to the story and gives thrillers like this so much more atmosphere.  I was constantly questioning his actions and trying to figure out if I could believe him or not.  In fact I cannot tell you how many times I would stop reading and just wonder what in the heck was really going on.  I loved every minute of it though!  The ending itself was done nicely although I admit to not being as surprised as I had hoped.  I had guessed the twist as some might call it so although it wrapped up quite nicely, I was left wanting a bit.  I can't complain though as the entire reading experience was one that I won't forget any time soon!

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and am adding this author to my must read list!  Because this is his first book and if it is was already this good, I can't wait to see what he comes up with next!  This is the perfect read for this time of year when the weather starts to get colder and you can curl up with a good thriller under a blanket.  Especially as I am always in the mood for more suspenseful reads and this one fit the bill perfectly.  Highly recommended!

Bottom Line:  A thriller that had me wrapped up in it until the very last page!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.


Monday, September 28, 2015

Accidents of Marriage by Randy Susan Meyers (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"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."

My Thoughts:

What an intense read!!  I've heard so many other readers praise this author and her books which put this book on my radar almost instantly.  I knew after reading the summary that this was going to be a read that might be difficult at times and I was completely right.  But it was also so completely worth it as I'm still sitting here thinking about it a week later.  It was a book that had me close to tears at times.  It was a book that I wanted to throw at others out of frustration at the characters.  It was a book that I just could not set down and ultimately it was a book that I won't be forgetting any time soon.  

What else to say without saying too much?  For me the saddest part of this book was how all of this affected the children.  Too often people fail to realize how much their actions effect their children in negative ways and this was all too apparent in this book.  When I was close to tears while reading this book it was because of the children and what they were going through.  Yes I struggled with both Ben and even Maddie at times.  Because they were missing the most important piece of the puzzle and that was how their relationship was effecting the children.  I could go on and on with this subject but for me this was the part of the book that made me the saddest.   This was a book that you couldn't help but relate to on some level even if you don't have the kind of relationship that Ben and Maddie had.  Every relationship has a struggle here and there and the idea that one stupid mistake could cause such tragedy is a terrifying thing to think about.  This book was also so completely readable.  I found myself unable to put it down....even when I wanted to at times.  It took such a serious subject and really made me think of how I would react.  It just made me feel and it was such a mix of emotions.  I really liked the ending of this book because it didn't give you any easy answers.  When something like this happens there aren't any and the author didn't try to wrap everything up with a bow.  We were left with hope for the future of these characters but no final answers.  It worked perfectly for me.

Overall, this was one of those books that left me thinking about it days after I finished.  It wasn't an easy read but it was a very good read.  I'm glad that I listened to all of the other readers/bloggers out there that have sung this author's praises.  I'm eager to read more of her books myself now!  If I can tell you anything about this book is don't let the subject matter throw you off from giving this one a try.  It is a book that will make you feel and connect with and really that is exactly what a good book should do in my opinion.  Easily recommended!

Bottom Line:  A book that made me feel all of the emotions and left me eager to discuss with otherS!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book courtesy of the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.  Thoughts are my own!


Friday, September 18, 2015

Dance of the Bones by J.A. Jance (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Years ago, Amos Warren, a prospector, was gunned down out in the desert and Sheriff Brandon Walker made the arrest in the case. Now, the retired Walker is called in when the alleged killer, John Lassiter, refuses to accept a plea deal that would release him from prison with time served. Lassiter wants Brandon and The Last Chance to find Amos’s “real” killer and clear his name.

Sixteen hundred miles to the north in Seattle, J.P. Beaumont is at loose ends after the Special Homicide Investigation Team, affectionately known as S.H.I.T., has been unexpectedly and completely disbanded. When Brandon discovers that there are links between Lassiter’s case and an unsolved case in Seattle, he comes to Beau for help.

Those two cases suddenly become hot when two young boys from the reservation, one of them with close ties to the Walker family, go missing. Can two seasoned cops, working together, decipher the missing pieces in time to keep them alive?"

My Thoughts:

A year or so ago I gave this author a try with one of her books in a different series (boy is she a prolific writer) and really enjoyed it!  As soon as I was offered the possibility of reading this one I was all over it despite the fact that I would be starting smack dab in the middle of a completely different series.  I'm glad I wanted to read this one though because I now have three different series by this author that I am planning on catching up on.  Ha ha, I really I need to get to reading!  I enjoyed this book for a variety of reasons but the main reason that really made this book stand out for me was the way the author interwove Native American culture and stories into the book.  Each chapter began with part of a Native American story and the pieces of that story continued on from chapter to chapter.  It was just as interesting to me as the actual story-line itself!

All of the Native American traditions and beliefs that were included in this novel really made this mystery stand out for me.  I felt like it added so much to this book as the setting where this mystery mainly took place came to life for me.  This is one of those books that you can take your time with and just enjoy.  I read this one at a leisurely pace and just soaked it all up.  My one and only complaint was that I did feel at times that I had missed out by not reading these in order.  Whose fault is that?  Only my own but it did leave me very excited to go back to both of these series and get my hands on book one.  Another thing that really made this book different from your typical mystery was that we know early on who the killer is.  Instead of the suspense being tied up in the whodunnit it was more focused on if the case would be solved in time before the killer was able to make their final escape.  It added to the suspense level for me as I really wanted to see the killer caught and punished.  The last hundred or so pages had me reading as quickly as I could just so I could see how it would all turn out.  The ending was nicely done and now I just want more!

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and am finding myself to be a big fan of this author's books.  Go figure that I now have three different series by her that I want to catch up on. (I am such a series addict!)  I think that all of the unique details really brought that this book to life for me in a way that other books have not.  I will definitely be recommending this book to other mystery fans (although I might suggest to them to start at the beginning)  Easily recommended!

Bottom Line:  A slow building mystery that I just couldn't get enough of!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.  Thoughts are my own!


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Starlight on Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"When caregiver Faith McCallum arrives at the enchanted, lakeside estate of Avalon's renowned Bellamy family, she's intent on rebuilding her shattered life and giving her two daughters a chance at a better future. But she faces a formidable challenge in the form of her stubborn and difficult new employer, Alice Bellamy. While Faith proves a worthy match for her sharp-tongued client, she often finds herself at a loss for words in the presence of Mason Bellamy—Alice's charismatic son, who clearly longs to escape the family mansion and return to his fast-paced, exciting life in Manhattan…and his beautiful, jet-setting fiancĂ©e.

The last place Mason wants to be is a remote town in the Catskills, far from his life in the city, and Faith McCallum is supposed to be the key to his escape. Hiring the gentle-hearted yet strong-willed caregiver as a live-in nurse gives his mother companionship and Mason the freedom to return to his no-attachments routine. For Faith, it means stability for her daughters and a much-needed new home. When Faith makes a chilling discovery about Alice's accident, Mason is forced to reconsider his desire to keep everyone, including his mother, at a distance. Now he finds himself wondering if the supercharged life he's created for himself is what he truly wants…and whether exploring his past might lead to a new life—and lasting love—on the tranquil shores of Willow Lake."

My Thoughts:

I really just adored this book from beginning to end!  Susan Wiggs is an author that I have had on my radar for some time now but I'm just now giving her a try.  What in the heck was I waiting for??  I really, really enjoyed this one and now cannot wait to read more by this author.  This wasn't a romance per se (although a romance did develop) but more of a women's fiction read and I loved every page of it!  The key to this book working so well for me was Faith as I found her to be such a great main character.  I loved everything about her!  She just felt so real to me.  A single mother of two girls struggling to make ends meet and just doing the best that she could.  There are so many women out there doing exactly that so how could I not want to root for her finding her own happiness??  

In this book, Faith is hired on to take care of Alice, a woman who has recently been in a serious accident and is now paralyzed.  Alice is struggling to deal with this new reality of hers where she is forced to rely on others to take care of her.  Faith is just trying to keep her head above water and provide for her daughters in the best way that she can.  What happens between these two women changes them both as they begin to develop a true friendship with one another.  Sigh!  I loved it and it was this relationship that really cemented my love of this book.  Yes, the attraction between Faith and Mason (Alice's son) helped but it was really seeing Alice and Faith both learn to lean on one another that made this book a winner for me.  I actually really enjoyed all of the characters in this book but especially Faith's two girls.  I lived and breathed this world that Wigg's created and was sad to see the book end.  Books like this make you feel like you really know these characters.  I want more from this world and these characters...I just wasn't ready for it all to end although to be fair it was a great ending.   I have high hopes that both Mason's brother and sister will get their own books and we will see a bit more of Faith, Mason and Alice.  

Overall, this book was one that I couldn't help but love from beginning to end.  I'm lucky that I have lots more of this author's books to read because I definitely need more!  I read this one at the perfect time when I was feeling a bit burnt out on all of the mysteries/thrillers that I had been reading.  This was a breath of fresh air and I enjoyed it all the more because of it.  Recommended and special thanks to Lisa (it was you right Lisa?) that put this author on my TBR list.  

Bottom Line:  A book that I was sad to see end.  I really enjoyed this one!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher as part of a TLC blog tour.  Thoughts are my own!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

R.I.P. X (And Other Fun Going Ons)

Okay folks this is officially my favorite time of the year.  While I enjoy all of the season, there is something about Fall that just holds a special place in my heart.  And R.I.P. is my absolute favorite challenge of all times!  Scary books and thrilling reads.....I am SO there!  I've already begun reading for this challenge even though I am a bit behind when it comes to signing up.  Really when am I ever not behind lately?  Actually don't answer that.  Ha!  I'm officially signing up for:

I've participated in this challenge for so many years now and each time I add a ton of books to my TBR list.  My favorite parts of the challenge are reading other readers' reviews and coming up with a ridiculous reading pool that I can choose from.  I'm signing up for Peril the First which is committing to reading four books that fit in for this challenge.  I'm basically hoping to read only books in the next two months that fit in this challenge but am committing to four for sure!

Here are just some of the possibilities that I am hoping to read in the upcoming months.  Sorry for the blurry quality but I was in a rush to get this post finished before the Bears opening season game begins (and yes that seems to be my finger in the corner. Sigh!). 

This isn't even counting all of the R.I.P. goodies that I have loaded on my kindle.  So much good reading ahead of me I can't even.  I am pumped!  Loving the banners as always which were created by Abigail Larson.  Here is to lots of spooky reading!!

This time of year also makes me think of read-a-thons so I couldn't resist signing up for the Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon which starts tomorrow and goes thru September 27th.  Sign up here if you are interested.

I'm not behind in my reading goals by any means but I could still really use some extra reading time.  I may or may not have signed up for too many blog tours and would really like to get ahead of the game.  Plus, you see the pile of books that I would like to read for R.I.P.  Extra reading time would be very good at this point.  Goals for this read-a-thon are to finish at least four books.  As this is an extra long read-a-thon I feel like this is achievable.  I'm currently reading Everything She Forgot which will be my first read for this read-a-thon.  After that not sure but most likely it will come from the above picture.

Since I have lots of great reading ahead of me I'm off to work on my laundry piles.  Then I can actually sit down with a book and read without feeling too guilty as my house is semi-clean.  I'm also hoping to go visit other participants of these two events just so I can add to my TBR a little bit more.  Ha!

Happy Sunday and Happy Spooky Reading!

Friday, August 28, 2015

A Necessary End by Holly Brown (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"How far would you go to get what you wanted? The author of Don't Try to Find Me returns with a taut, riveting novel of psychological suspense about a woman determined to be a mother despite a past full of secrets, a husband who's nowhere near ready for fatherhood, and a teenaged birth mother with a mysterious agenda of her own.

Thirty-nine-year-old Adrienne has tried before to adopt a child, but this time, nothing is going to get in her way.

Sure, her husband, Gabe, is ambivalent about fatherhood. But she knows that once he holds their baby, he'll come around. He's just feeling a little threatened, that's all. Because once upon a time, it was Gabe that Adrienne wanted more than anything; she was willing to do anything. . . . But that was half a lifetime ago. She's a different person now. There are lines she wouldn't cross, not without extreme provocation.

And sure, she was bitten by another birth mother—clear to the bone—and for most people, it's once bitten, twice shy. But Adrienne isn't exactly the retiring type.

Enter Leah. At nineteen, she bears a remarkable resemblance to the young woman Adrienne once was. Which is why Adrienne knows the baby Leah is carrying is meant to be hers. But Leah's got ideas of her own. If Gabe and Adrienne let her live with them for a year, they get the baby, free and clear. All Leah wants is a fresh start in California, and a soft landing. Or so she says.

It seems like a small price for Adrienne to pay to get their baby. And with Gabe suddenly on board, what could possibly go wrong?"

My Thoughts:

I've been putting off writing up my thoughts on this one as I just wasn't sure what to say.  Although this one was compulsively readable (is that even a term?), I found that I was left with many mixed emotions on it after finishing the last page.  I wanted to love it...I even expected to just from reading that description which sounds just as dark and twisted as I like.  A case of high expectations?  Maybe, but really for me I just didn't quite connect to this book like I had hoped.  If I could give half star ratings this would easily get 3.5 stars which for me is a good read but one that I had a few issues with.  

One of the main issues that I had with this book was the unlikeability of all of the main characters.  I mean really I didn't like a single one of them.  This has been the case for me with some other books (obviously Gone Girl is a great example) so I was able to keep reading.  But the fact that that they were so completely frustrating kept me from connecting to the story as easily as I had hoped that I would.  That being said their motivations (and especially's Adrienne's motivations) really kept me intrigued throughout my entire reading experience.  I could never quite figure her out and why she would act the way she did.  It was just one of the many reasons why I couldn't set this book down even when I wanted to kick her.  I just had to see what she was going to do next.  In fact, although this was quite a large book I ended up flying through the pages.  It was a train wreck waiting to happen but I just needed to see how that train wreck was going to play out.  Boy, did this author know how to knock me for a loop!  I didn't see the ending coming from a mile away and I really loved that I was left with closure while also having questions.  Does that even make sense?  We were given enough to wonder but without leaving the ending too ambiguous.  I loved it- not going to lie!  I'm sure other readers might not feel the same but for me it really was the perfect way to end this book!

Overall, this book left me wanting to discuss it with other readers!  I didn't love it but I liked it well enough that I would read more by this author easily.  It definitely was a page turning read even when I wanted to scream at the characters.  Really I just want to read other reader's thoughts and discuss!  So if you've read this one feel free to leave a comment or shoot me an email.  I want to hear what you thought!  I will be recommending this one but maybe with a few hesitations.

Bottom Line:  A good read that was very hard to put down but I just didn't love it like I had hoped.

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.  Unfortunately, life got in the way and I missed my tour date.  My apologies!  Thoughts are my own!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Thrill Me by Susan Mallery (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Maya Farlow learned the hard way to depend only on herself, so when she fell too deeply for the bad-boy charms of Del Mitchell, she did the only thing she could—she ran. Stunned, Del left Fool's Gold to make his name and fortune in extreme sports.

Now ten years later, Maya's been hired to promote her hometown's new slogan, The Destination for Romance. The celebrity spokesman is none other than Del, the man she dumped but never forgot. Awkward!

Although Del's not the type to hold a grudge, he's determined to avoid falling a second time for the woman who broke his heart. He's a daredevil, not an idiot. Trouble is, in all his adventures, he never found a rush as exhilarating as Maya's kiss. Maybe risking his heart will prove to be the biggest thrill of all…"

My Thoughts:

What a perfect read for the dog days of summer where I just needed something to sweep me away from everything!   Despite being in back to school prep mode for the kiddos, I easily finished this book in two days as I just could not set it down.  This isn't my first foray into this series.  Awhile back I read the first Fool's Gold book and really enjoyed it but then never continued on with the series like I had planned to.  Since there are eighteen books in this series so far, I read this one completely out of order but it didn't effect my reading experience one bit!  In actuality, this was the perfect change up to my reading as of late which has been very heavy on thrillers and mysteries.  This book was exactly what I needed as I just fell into the romance that was developing once again between Del and Maya.  And what a romance it was!

The chemistry between these two characters was instant from the very beginning of the book.  Of course this was to be expected a bit as they had a history with each other.  I really loved though that despite their shared history, this felt like something completely new and unsure of itself.  Neither character had forgotten what had happened to end their original relationship which helped to keep a distance between them for parts of the book.  Basically I was rooting for them from the very beginning which is what you want in a good romance, right?  There are some really great secondary characters in this book as well and I have to admit that I completely adore Eddie and Gladys.  They are two older ladies that host their own television show which includes some pretty funny scenes whenever they are present!  My only complaint with this book was that I found the conflict between Del and Maya a bit predictable.  Did it take away from my reading experience?  No.  It just wasn't a big surprise and really I'm not sure that it was meant to be.  The draw for me here was really the romance between these two and if they would be able to overcome everything to find love.  And I will just say that it was a perfect ending!

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and am eager to yet again get back to this series!  I have so many books to look forward to which leaves me very excited (and shaking my head at my series addiction).  This was a great summer read and left me craving more books just like this!  I won't be waiting this long again to visit Fool's Gold.  Recommended!

Bottom Line:  A romance that I couldn't help but adore!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.  Thoughts are my own!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Sunday Post #19 (Back to School Edition)

"The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted here @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. See rules here: Sunday Post Meme"

Well, the first week of school is in the bags for my littles and routines are starting up again.  I promise to try and share pictures later this week but it is official that I have a 7th grader, 2nd grader, and my baby is in kindergarten.  The time goes by just so fast anymore!  Football has already started up for my oldest and I'm getting excited to watch his games.  Soccer should be starting up next week for the younger two which is also lots of fun.  Busy times ahead but that is kind of the norm any more.

I've managed to blog slightly more consistently these past two weeks which is a good start.  And by consistently I mean a post each week....ha!  It is a start though and maybe I will be able to work myself up to two posts a week soon :)  Reading is going very well as I have finished four books since my last Sunday post (two weeks ago).  Two books a week for me is pretty darn good so I am very happy.  Writing all of the reviews that I am behind on though is something I really need to focus on.  I am ridiculously behind at this point with my spotty posting!  Goal for today is write at least two reviews up just so I can feel like I am making some progress.  Anyways, here are the books that I have finished in the last two weeks:

A Pattern of Lies by Charles Todd - I've actually already written up my thoughts on this one and you can read my review here.

Thrill Me by Susan Mallery - I read this one as part of a TLC book tour and my thoughts will be posted later this week.  (I am impressed with myself here as I really already have this review written- woohoo!)

Hot Blooded by Amanda Carlson - This counts as my only new #COYER read but it was just so good!  Just as fast paced and intense as I have come to expect....I'm loving this series!  I am so glad that I have the next book ready to go as well.

All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell - Wow!  I am officially hooked on this series (I've already put the next book on hold at the library).  This book was so good and I stayed up way too late Friday night reading it!  Very, very good and I will be writing up my thoughts on it hopefully soon.

I'm now currently reading the following books:

Starlight on Willow Lake is my current print read and another book that I just cannot seem to set down.  I'm already over 100 pages in and hoping to find some more quality reading time later today.  Hidden is my current kindle read and I was intrigued by this one from the very first page!  Definitely going to be another great reading week with these two!

Newest Additions:

The top two are for upcoming blog tours that I will be participating in.  The Drafter was a complete surprise but it is Kim Harrison.  Of course I'm going to read it!!!  A very good week in bookish acquisitions if I do say so myself!

Plans for today are laundry, laundry, and more laundry.  Two reviews to be written (ideally) and a workout of some sort.  Watching the season premiere of Fear the Walking Dead...I am so completely pumped for this show!  Some reading and blog visiting.  It is going to be a busy day and I need to go get started.  Hope you all have a great week filled with good books.

Happy Sunday and Happy Reading!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

A Pattern of Lies by Charles Todd (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"A horrific explosion at a gunpowder mill sends Bess Crawford to war-torn France to keep a deadly pattern of lies from leading to more deaths, in this compelling and atmospheric mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of A Question of Honor and An Unwilling Accomplice

An explosion and fire at the Ashton Gunpowder Mill in Kent has killed over a hundred men. It’s called an appalling tragedy—until suspicion and rumor raise the specter of murder. While visiting the Ashton family, Bess Crawford finds herself caught up in a venomous show of hostility that doesn’t stop with Philip Ashton’s arrest. Indeed, someone is out for blood, and the household is all but under siege.

The only known witness to the tragedy is now at the Front in France. Bess is asked to find him. When she does, he refuses to tell her anything that will help the Ashtons. Realizing that he believes the tissue of lies that has nearly destroyed a family, Bess must convince him to tell her what really happened that terrible Sunday morning. But now someone else is also searching for this man.

To end the vicious persecution of the Ashtons, Bess must risk her own life to protect her reluctant witness from a clever killer intent on preventing either of them from ever reaching England."

My Thoughts:

I am well and truly hooked on this series now after finishing this book!  If I can be honest I even enjoyed this one more than An Unwilling Accomplice and I was basically singing that book's praises my entire review.  But I'm getting off track a bit.  One of the things that I enjoy most about these books is that the authors actually base their storylines on actual events that have happened.  There was an actual fire that took place at a gunpowder works factory that the authors used to base this story off of.  Obviously this is fiction so they made everything work how they wanted to but I loved the author's note at the end of the book that gave those details and shared how they came up with story.  This book was also a bit more fast paced for me as Philip Ashton's life and well being were on the line.  I was worried about how everything was going to end and this made me read this book that much faster.

One of the other things that I really enjoy in these books is just reading about Bess's everyday life as a nurse on the war front.  I found all of these details so completely fascinating and they made my reading experience that much more satisfying.  I'm also completely intrigued by Simon who plays a part in both of these books.  I feel like there is the potential for Simon and Bess to develop a romantic relationship with each other.  Hopefully he continues to play a prominent role in this series and we get to see more of him!  The mystery itself was nicely done and kept me intrigued throughout the book.  I especially liked how the authors played with the idea of a mob mentality when it came to the idea of Philip Ashton being guilty.  It added to the suspense quite nicely!  The ending caught me by surprise and had me flying through the pages to see how everything would play out.  I loved it and was left ready for the next book in this series as soon as I turned the last page. 

Overall, I am officially hooked on this series!  I would be bummed that I don't have the next book in my hands except I have the earlier books in this series to look forward to still.  I'm going to be on the search for more historical mysteries to check out after loving these books so much!  If you enjoy quiet mysteries that focus on the characters and details, then this is a series not to be missed.  For me I've enjoyed both of my forays into this series and will be adding these authors to my must read list.  Highly recommended!

Bottom Line:  A mystery that kept me engrossed until the very end!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book from the publisher as part of a TLC book tour.  Thoughts are my own!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Flesh and Blood by Patricia Cornwell (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Dr. Kay Scarpetta is about to head to Miami for a vacation when she notices seven pennies on a wall behind their home. Is this a kids' game? If so, why are all of the coins dated 1981 and so shiny they could be newly minted? Then she learns there's been a homicide five minutes away. A high school teacher was shot with uncanny precision as he unloaded groceries from his car. Yet no one heard or saw a thing.

Soon more victims surface. The shots seem impossible to achieve, yet they are so perfect they cause death in an instant. There is no pattern to indicate where the killer will strike next. First it was New Jersey, then Massachusetts, and then the murky depths off the coast. There she comes face to face with shocking news that implicates her niece, Lucy—Scarpetta's own flesh and blood."

My Thoughts:

This was a thrilling read that I won't be forgetting about any time soon!  From page one of this book I was utterly hooked and that didn't end until the very last page.  And that last page!!!  But I am getting ahead of myself.  I was originally trying to listen to this series on audio.  As we all know I have no self control and jumped at the opportunity to read this book.  I am so glad that I did because just wow!  This book was suspenseful, it was dark, it was fast-paced....basically this was everything that I look for in a thriller!  I just couldn't read this one fast enough!  It took some getting used to as I am reading this one completely out of order (I believe there are 22 books in this series so far) so things have changed some since the second book.  Okay, actually things have changed a lot but that didn't detract from my reading experience at all.  Instead I know now that I have many more good reads to look forward to that will show me more of how the characters have gotten to the places that they are at in their lives.  I can't wait!

In this book though, Scarpetta finds herself caught up in the midst of multiple cases that seem to have a few disturbing similarities.  From the moment that she finds the seven pennies on the wall outside of her house I just knew it was going to be personal.  It was a feeling that I had and because of this there was an extra level of tension for me while reading as I tried to figure it all out.  I wasn't sure who she could trust and there were just so many questions that I didn't have answers to.  Even those who are closest to her seemed to have secrets that they weren't sharing.  I cannot emphasize enough just how intense this book was for me while I was reading it!  I was completely sucked in!  For the majority of the book I was just trying to keep up with everything that was going on while also trying to figure it out for myself.  The last section of the book was spent reading as fast as I possibly could trying to see how everything would end.  I cannot tell you how many times I had to stop myself from peeking at the last few pages just because I didn't want to wait any longer.  I needed to know everything was going to be okay!  I resisted (barely) and it was well worth the wait!  Although that last page left me completely at a loss for words.  I NEED the next book right NOW!!!  

Overall, I really enjoyed this book from beginning to end.  It could easily make my top reads list for this year based off the intensity factor alone!  This book was a page turner and those are my favorites!  I am left wishing that I had book twenty-three in my hands but until then I think I will work on catching up with all of the other books I have missed.  Maybe that will satisfy me and make the wait seem less awful?  A girl can hope!   Highly recommended but be warned you aren't going to want to put it down!!

Bottom Line:  A thrilling read that had me flying through the pages!  

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book courtesy of the publisher as part of a Partners in Crime Book Tour.  Thoughts are my own!