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Book Review: Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

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Published in July 2010, Still Missing by Chevy Stevens is a novel about a 32-year old real estate agent named Annie O'Sullivan who is abducted from an open house and held captive in a remote mountain cabin. Her experiences of being held captive are told through sessions with her psychiatrist and alternate with her struggle to put her life back together after escaping. This was a novel that one of the book clubs I belonged to had selected to discuss in early 2011. For whatever reason, I only read approximately five pages of the book, never finished the book, and didn't attend the meeting. I finally decided to pick the book up and actually read it, and I was glad that I did.  The most interesting thing about this book is that it was published not too long before Emma Donoghue's Room , and their plots are somewhat similar. The biggest difference between the two is that Still Missing is told from an adult's perspective and Room is told from a child's perspective. Whi

Book Review: The Cuckoo's Calling (Comoran Strike, #1) by Robert Galbraith

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The Cuckoo's Calling (Comoran Strike, #1) by Robert Galbraith opens with Comoran Strike working as a private investigator in London, England. When John Bristow hires Comoran Strike to investigate the death of his sister Lula Landry, a famous supermodel, Strike is thrown into the world of celebrities as he investigates the case. I read this book for one of the book clubs I was in, and had I not been in the book club, I'm not sure if I would have picked up this novel or not. When it was released it became public knowledge relatively quick that Robert Galbraith was actually J.K. Rowling writing under a pseudonym. It didn't really surprise me that she used one as I'm sure she wanted the book to be reviewed more honestly and not compared to her Harry Potter book series for children. While I did enjoy The Cuckoo's Calling immensely, it did follow the typical formula for books in the mystery and thriller categories. I expected a lot more from J.K. Rowling, so I didn'

Book Review: The End of Her by Shari Lapena

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The End of Her by Shari Lapena is about a married couple, Stephanie and Patrick, and their colicky newborn twin girls. As the couple struggle with the pitfalls of being new parents, a woman from Patrick's past comes to town and leverages a horrific accusation towards him . . . that Patrick killed his first wife and unborn child. He swears he's innocent and that Erica is just trying to blackmail them. If there is ever a book that is similar to Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl , then Shari Lapena's The End of Her is the book of all books you can compare it to. When I finished The End of Her , I was extremely angry at the ending. This time, I didn't throw the book across the room like I did when I finished Gone Girl , but I was just as outraged. I won't say more than that as not to ruin it for those who haven't read The End of Her . With that being said, this novel was exceptionally well written, and it kept engaged throughout the story. I wasn't sure what would

Book Review: Valentine Murder (A Lucy Stone Mystery, #5) by Leslie Meier

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Valentine Murder (A Lucy Stone Mystery, #5) by Leslie Meier is the fifth book in the Lucy Stone Mystery book series. Lucy Stone attends her first board meeting for the renovated library in Tinker's Cove, Maine. She is in for a surprise when she finds Bitsy Howell in the basement . . . dead from a gunshot wound.  Not sure what to expect as this was my first time reading a novel by Leslie Meier, I was pleasantly surprised by this cozy mystery. It has everything I expect in this genre . . . good writing, an interesting storyline, characters that are both likable and unlikable, and some believability. And, of course, it doesn't hurt that the murder takes place in a library since it ties in books, and I love reading.  One of the things that was extremely believable was the dynamic of the board members and how they acted with each other and that there were cliques within the board members. I've definitely seen this happen in the work place. Another convincing part of the plot wa

Book Review: One by One by Ruth Ware

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One by One by Ruth Ware is about a corporate retreat for a social media app called Snoop, and the employees get snowed in at a ski resort due to an avalanche. When one of the owners turns up missing and an employee is murdered, everyone becomes a suspect. How many will survive? Reminiscent of Agatha Christie's And Then There Was None , Ruth Ware tells a story from two different characters perspectives, both who have deep, dark secrets. The one perspective is from Erin, who works at the French chalet and the other perspective is told from Liz, who is a former employee of Snoop. Relatively early, I thought that the killer had to be one of the two women since we only hear the story from their perspectives, but as the story progressed, I began to second guess myself as there are quite a few red herrings. After a while, I just decided against trying to deduce who the killer was and let the story take me on the ride of a lifetime. I loved the fact that Snoop, the company holding the cor

Book Review: The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth

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The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth opens with Lucy finding out that her mother-in-law, Diana, has died. Narrated from varying characters perspectives, the story alternates between the present and the past and weaves a twisted story between Lucy, Diana, and the rest of the family. I didn't know what to expect because I chose to read The Mother-in-Law based on all the rave reviews I heard about it, and I wasn't sure what was going to play out. But, wow . . . this book was AMAZING!    Twists and turns, oh my! There were so many that I was kept guessing throughout the entire book, and I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. And, I loved the fact that the author kept me guessing as to who the killer was because red herring after red herring kept materializing. The character development and backstories were spectacular. By the end of the book, we really got to see what made Diana tick and made her who she was. Once you know her backstory, Diana actually becomes a likable charac

Book Review: The St. Valentine's Day Cookie Massacre by Elisabeth Crabtree

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The St. Valentine's Day Cookie Massacre (Hatter's Cove Gazette Mystery, #1) by Elisabeth Crabtree opens with Kat Archer being assigned to cover the grand opening of Miss Dolly's Cookie Jar and Sweets Emporium  by the Hatter's Cove Gazette in Hatter's Cove, Florida. What is supposed to be an ordinary assignment, turns into a treacherous investigation when one of the employees at the 'Cookie Jar' is found dead. What's not to like about this first book in a series? I absolutely fell in love with The St. Valentine's Day Cookie Massacre , and I can't wait to read the rest of the books in the series. Although, it's considered a cozy mystery, it has a bit of everything in the story, including a bit of humor. It was such an enjoyable read and one that I could see turned into a television series. One can hope, right? For such a quick read, I was pleasantly surprised that the characters were as developed as they were. The writing was done in such a wa