Book Review: Best Intentions (Erika Raskin) @erikaraskin @StMartinsPress

Screen Shot 2017-08-20 at 8.33.29 AM.png

When I started reading Best Intentions, by Erika Raskin, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I hadn’t heard very much about this book. Now that I have finished, I must say, this one became the surprise hit of my summer. I cannot believe more people are not talking about this book!

The way Raskin chose to narrate the novel and roll out the plot was absolute literary brilliance.

The novel opens with Marti, our narrator, looking back on the events of the story. Something bad has happened. She is facing charges. Her world has been torn apart. And, at this point, the reader has no idea why. Needless to say, I was hooked.    Told through a back and forth type of narration, the reader is able to see how the events played out and the repercussions. At about the 60% point is where the reader is finally privy to the events that led Marti to her situation and I was actually shocked with how things played out; I had my suspicions and I had my theories but Raskin does a phenomenal job at leaving small breadcrumbs so the reader stays in the dark.
Continue reading “Book Review: Best Intentions (Erika Raskin) @erikaraskin @StMartinsPress”

Book Review: Killer Harvest (Paul Cleave) @PaulCleave @AtriaMysteryBus

Killer HarvestBelieve it or not, I have never read a Paul Cleave novel before! I know, I know, from what I hear, I am seriously missing out. I was pretty pumped when #cjsreads decided to pick up A Killer Harvest, the newest publication by Paul Cleave for one of our August reads.   Chelsea, my good friend from The Suspense Is Thrilling Me, had raved about this one to me months ago so I was going in with pretty high expectations. I am glad to report that this novel met (and surpassed!) all my expectations. I binge read this one over the course of a few hours and was left with a serious book hangover.

Sort of a mix between sci-fi, thriller, and mystery, Cleave weaves a seriously addicting novel from the first pages. A detective is killed in the line of duty and his murderer (a known serial killer) is also killed. Hours later, a blind teenager, Joshua, goes into surgery to receive a set of eyes to try and restore his vision; after a mishap, the teenager receives his sight after obtaining one eye from the detective and the other from the serial killer. As Joshua gains his sight, he begins to recognize people he shouldn’t recognize (after all he has never seen them before) and seeing memories from someone else’s life, leading him to realize that perhaps he is dealing with cellular memory.   As Joshua begins to discover what this means, and another murderer hell bent on avenging his partner’s death, Joshua finds himself in grave danger.

Crazy, right??

Continue reading “Book Review: Killer Harvest (Paul Cleave) @PaulCleave @AtriaMysteryBus”

Book Review: Our Little Secret (Roz Nay) @roznay1 @SimonSchusterCA

Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 10.02.39 AM.png

Our Little Secret by Roz Nay was not a hard book to completely become absorbed in.  The narrative style, the content, the pace and the general menacing tone had me completely captivated from the first pages.   I loved this novel. And, at 228 pages, it made the perfect binge read!

The novel opens with a woman, Angela, sitting in an interrogation room. She is the suspect in a disappearance. Her ex-boyfriend’s wife has gone missing and all signs point to Angela. As Angela is interrogated she begins to weave a story of a distorted love triangle and a tangled web of betrayals.

I found this one to be a nice breather from the typical flash forward/flashback type of narration that is so common in psychological thrillers lately.   We do move back and forth through time in Angela’s story telling but this character is so manipulative, calculating and so intent on wasting the police time, it does not come off as overdone. Instead, Nay brilliantly captures an unreliable narrator as she plays her game of cat and mouse; she gives a little, takes a little and leaves the reader wanting more.   The character development of Angela was my favourite part of the plot; the juxtaposition of scorned lover meets insecure woman made me unsure of who or what to believe. This one kept me guessing until the end.

In terms of psychological thrillers, this is one of the best that I have read lately.   If you like psychological thrillers, this is a must read. 5/5 stars.

Thanks to Simon and Schuster Canada and the author for the copy of this novel; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.

#cjsreads2017: Say Nothing (Brad Parks) @Brad_Parks @DuttonBooks

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-6-18-39-pmI am starting off this review with a Public Service Announcement.  You will need to buy this book.  You will need to add it to your TBR lists.

I am even going out on a limb here and stating that this one has been my favourite of all our #cjsreads picks we have read to date; I loved Say Nothing by Brad Parks. Keep reading for our reviews and a synopsis of the book.

Continue reading “#cjsreads2017: Say Nothing (Brad Parks) @Brad_Parks @DuttonBooks”

Book Review: Method 15/33 (Shannon Kirk) @ShannonCKirk @oceanviewpub

Screen Shot 2017-02-27 at 8.05.14 PM.png

Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk came highly recommended by my good friend Janel at Keeper of Pages. She kept insisting that this fast-paced, intense thriller would be the book to kick me out of the book slump I had been experiencing. She was right!

I read Method 15/33 easily within a couple of hours; at 226 pages, it was the perfect book to curl up with for an afternoon and become completely sucked in.

Continue reading “Book Review: Method 15/33 (Shannon Kirk) @ShannonCKirk @oceanviewpub”

Book Review: Silent Child (Sarah A. Denzil) @sarahdenzil

Screen Shot 2017-02-20 at 8.38.25 PM.png

Emma, a young mother, is devastated when her son drowns during a terrible flood. His body is never recovered and Emma is consumed with grief. Ten years later, Emma has adjusted to a new life; she is married, pregnant and feels at peace. Until, suddenly, Aidan returns.   He cannot speak, he cannot tell anyone where he has been for the past ten years; his body tells a story of abuse. Emma, her life turned upside down, begins to try and reconnect with her teenage son and uncover the truth surrounding his disappearance.

I started this novel in the midst of a book slump. Turns out the cure for such a slump is this book!

Continue reading “Book Review: Silent Child (Sarah A. Denzil) @sarahdenzil”

#cjsreads2017: Bad Little Girl (Frances Vick) @franvicksays @bookouture

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-6-18-39-pm

I don’t know about you, but whenever Bookouture announces a new thriller I find myself mentally throwing all of my books off my shelf to make room for whatever they are publishing.  Bad Little Girl, a title releasing TODAY, by Frances Vick was a pick for #cjsreads.

Keep reading for a synopsis and to find out what we all thought of this book!

Continue reading “#cjsreads2017: Bad Little Girl (Frances Vick) @franvicksays @bookouture”

#cjsreads2017: I See You (Clare Mackintosh) @claremackint0sh @BerkleyPub

Screen Shot 2017-02-20 at 6.18.39 PM.png#cjsreads has been busy with all our February titles; coming at you today with a 5 star read (and a new logo!).

Keep reading below for a synopsis of the book, I See You by Claire Mackintosh and our thoughts.

Continue reading “#cjsreads2017: I See You (Clare Mackintosh) @claremackint0sh @BerkleyPub”

Book Review: Blink (K.L Slater) @bookouture @KimLSlater

screen-shot-2017-02-11-at-5-51-02-pm

I don’t even know where to start with this book.

I want to take it and scream from the rooftops. I want to make everyone I know read a copy. I want to knock on doors and leave this book in mailboxes.

If you can’t tell, I LOVED Blink by K.L Slater.

Enthralling, fast-paced and dark, Blink provided all the elements I need to be sucked completely into a book. I read this one into the night, I left the book open on my bed so I could try and absorb more as I slept.

The novels I end up loving the most have alternating narrators whose plots blend together effortlessly: Blink does exactly that.   The novel opens with a woman narrating in a coma. She is unable to move but can hear and process everything. People are discussing turning her ventilator off. She cannot tell them she is there. All she can do is relive, over and over, when Evie went missing.  Flash back three years; Toni is raising her daughter Evie alone after her husband died in active duty in Afghanistan. Coping with pills, Toni is doing the best she can to piece her life back together. A teacher’s aide, Harriet, narrates sections as she manipulates little Evie. All of these seemingly unrelated tales collide with a bang, and when they do, hold on to your seats!

Nothing is what it seems in Blink; if you want a hair-raising thriller, then look no further. Blink is a must read. 5/5 stars.  This one comes out on February 16th.  (and was a #cjsreads2017 pick! So be sure to stay tuned for our group review post!).

Thanks to the author (K.L Slater), Bookoture and Netgalley for the digital copy of this book; it was my pleasure to write an honest review.