Book Review: The Night Bird (Brian Freeman) @bfreemanbooks

Last year, The Night Bird by Brian Freeman, was a book that I saw often. Several bloggers had posted about the book, it came up constantly when scrolling through my suggested reads on Amazon and, finally, in the Goodreads Choice Awards. I figured this was a sign that I needed to add this book to my TBR pile.

While picking my books for the Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge, I was sure to fit this into my rotation (prompt 26: a book with an animal in the title) and picked it up on January 1; now that I have finished this book, I feel like a fool. I should never have waited to read this book!! The Night Bird had everything that I look for in a compelling read: an intriguing protagonist, a creepy killer and a hypnotizing plot. I could not put this book down.

The novel opens with the introduction of a homicide detective, Frost Easton. He is a jack-of-all-trades type of cop who has committed fully to the police force after the murder of his sister. When two, unrelated young women die, in what seems to be some sort of psychotic break, Easton leads the investigation and discovers something far more sinister. Both women have one thing in common: they both when through hypnosis to relieve themselves of crippling fear and they both were patients of the same doctor. Francesca Stein’s therapy is controversial but effective; she stands by her methods until she starts to receive threatening messages from someone named The Night Bird and realizes that the deaths of her patients were not coincidental. As time begins to run out, this gifted doctor and the devoted police officer must come together to try and stop the cunning killer before he claims another victim.

Now, I am not one for lengthy plot descriptions in my reviews but I cannot get over how DIFFERENT this novel was. I loved the concept of the hypnosis, memory changes and the mind control. The psychology of this fascinates me and I felt like Freeman did an excellent job with his portrayal. I have read other books with the memory/mind control type of spin and, in the end, it usually ends up feeling a little bit like sci-fi. I never felt that way during my reading.

As for characterization, Frost Easton reminded me of the detectives I have been loving recently: Sam Porter from the 4MK series by J.D Barker and William Fawkes from the Ragdoll series by Daniel Cole. Young, a bit jaded and seriously smart, Easton was extremely likeable and I found myself rooting for him entirely. I also loved Francesca “Frankie” Stein. I am all about a strong, female character giving the big, bad detectives a run for their money!

Overall, I LOVED this book and cannot wait for the second book in the series, The Voice Inside, to be released later this month. You better bet that I will be moving that to the top of my TBR pile!

Still Raving About: Into the Drowning Deep (Mira Grant) @orbitbooks

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You know, every so often, when you read a book that you seriously cannot stop thinking about?  It sort of drifts in and out of your mind and you find yourself recommending it to random people on the street?

That is how I am STILL feeling about Into the Drowning Deep, one of the knockout books of the year for me, by Mira Grant that featured killer mermaids.

That’s right people. Killer. Mermaids.

Who knew?!

I read this one back in December and forced several people around me to buy this book immediately- including my fellow #cjsreads members, Jessica and Chandra!  In case you missed it, you can check out my full review HERE.

Keep reading to find out if Jessica and Chandra enjoyed this one as much as I did!

Has anyone given this book a chance?  I am dying to discuss this book with pretty EVERYONE!

Continue reading “Still Raving About: Into the Drowning Deep (Mira Grant) @orbitbooks”

Throwback Thursday: A Faint Cold Fear (Karin Slaughter) #tbt

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Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme created by book blogger extraordinaire, Renee at It’s Book Talk. She started this weekly feature as a way to highlight old favourites and read books that have already been published.

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As you may know, I have been making my way (slowly but surely) through the Grant County series by Karin Slaughter.  I finished off 2017 with A Faint Cold Fear, the third novel in the series, bringing me back to Grant County and alongside Sara Linton, Lena Adams and Jeffery Tolliver – my good ol’ Grant County pals.   Although I was excited to return to the familiar landscape, I must admit, this one left me feeling a little bit disappointed.

I have come to know the novels of Karin Slaughter for their non-stop action, gripping plot and vivid imagery; however, in this novel I found these aspects lacking. The plot was very character focused, which I liked, but it was just completely different from what I was expecting.

The general plot focuses with a series of suspicious suicides that are plaguing Grant County and the novel opens with a bang (which I will leave a mystery since it truly is a doozey!) but then I found the novel to be a slow, steady ride from there. There were no real twists or turns, nothing that shocked me or threw me for a tailspin. I understand that this beginning twist had a major effect on the characters but I felt myself feeling it was a little redundant.

I also was shocked to how different I felt about Lena in this novel. The past two novels in the Grant County series (Blindsighted and Kisscut), I actually really liked her and her struggle. However, come this book, I wanted to skip over chapters with her narration (which would have been hard since a majority of the novel is narrated through her perspective). I really struggled to maintain any sympathy for her.

I guess we will see what happens with book four!

Has anyone else read this series?  Did you feel the same about the third instalment?



POPSUGAR Reading Challenge 2018

In my bookish goals post yesterday, I promised that I would be sharing a full post about my POPSUGAR Reading Challenge.   Chelsea and I decided we would be committing to the challenge when we were discussing what we want to do in 2018 with our online book club.  This challenge felt like a perfect fit; it can work with any genre, is filled with diversity and is easy to manipulate to fit any reader!  After copious hours (and some help from Chelsea) I finally have my picks to fit the prompts and squeeze in books that were already on my TBR.  YAY!

Like Chelsea, I’ve included the 40 prompts for the regular challenge and following that my 10 choices for the advanced reading list (because I am an over-achiever like that).  Keeping in mind that I wanted to add some classics to my reading selections, read some books on my shelf and fit in some of the books that I want to read that will be published in 2018, I think I have found a good balance with my choices!

Do you see any books you have loved in past years or ones you’d like to read as well? Let me know if you’re participating in the challenge too!

 If you need a group to join in discussing your POPSUGAR challenge for 2018, feel free to join us on Goodreads HERE

Also, if you want to see what Chelsea is reading, she listed her choices for the challenge HERE

Continue reading “POPSUGAR Reading Challenge 2018”

Bookish Resolutions: 2018

Screen Shot 2017-01-04 at 5.43.21 PMThere is nothing I enjoy more than the beginning of a new year!  I am a person who thrives on lists and agendas so, I love the idea of a fresh start and the opportunity to make some lists and to set up and achieve some goals…especially when they are the bookish kind!

I’ve thought a lot about what types of bookish goals I want to accomplish this year.  Some are general and some are incredibly specific.  So, without further ado, let’s see what my reading goals for 2018 are:

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Book Review: The Wolves of Winter (Tyrell Johnson) @tjohnso14 @SimonSchusterCA

Wolves of Winter.pngI am such a sucker for any sort of dystopian novel or any novel with a dystopian landscape. Usually, anything that has a Hunger Games vibe gets me; I just love it. So, when I stumbled upon The Wolves of Winter by Tyrell Johnson.

The novel sort of has a young adult vibe with the perfect blend of a young, coming of age vibe and dark, disturbing plotlines. I find this so rare when an author can accomplish this balance (especially since I struggle with any novel that feels too YA). The story opens with a society that has collapsed after facing nuclear war and spread of disease. Lynn McBride and her family are some of the only ones left. Living in the Canadian Yukon, she has learned how to hunt and trap to survive this landscape of ice and snow. However, when a stranger stumbles upon their camp setting in motion a chain of events that leads Lynn away from the life she has come to know and into great danger, she must face challenges she has never dreamed of and fulfil a destiny she never imagined.

So let’s break this book down.

Continue reading “Book Review: The Wolves of Winter (Tyrell Johnson) @tjohnso14 @SimonSchusterCA”