Book Review: Emma in the Night (Wendy Walker) @StMartinsPress @Wendy_Walker

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I am always looking for a good buddy read so when Chelsea (from The Suspense Is Thrilling Me) and I discovered that we both had Emma in the Night, by Wendy Walker, on our TBR lists, we decided to dive in and tackle this upcoming thriller.   Instead of writing up our own individual reviews,  we thought it would be fun to craft a sort of joint review that reads discussion style to change things up a bit!  We took some general book discussion questions, answered them and we hope this format will give you an insight into what our discussions are like whenever we read a book together!

Before we get down to business, here is a synopsis of Emma in the Night.

 One night three years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn’t add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister’s return might just be the beginning of the crime.

Keep reading to see what Chelsea and I thought when we read Emma in the Night.

Continue reading “Book Review: Emma in the Night (Wendy Walker) @StMartinsPress @Wendy_Walker”

Book Review: Yesterday (Felicia Yap) @FeliciaMYap @Mulhollandbooks

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As soon as I read the tagline for Yesterday, by Felicia Yap, I was hooked.

How do you solve a murder when you can only remember yesterday?

This debut thriller has a few sci-fi elements combined with a fast paced plot that had me equally confused to what is going on and intrigued enough to let myself go and become lost within the world Yap has created.

The novel opens with the discovery of a body and Hans, the cop on the scene has about 13 hours to solve the murder before his brain, and every other duo, resets. The world is made up of monos (those who has memories for 24 hours) and duos (those who have memories for 48 hours); all of these members keep detailed diaries of their discussions and whereabouts for reference.   So when the victim’s diary is discovered and a writer, turned politician, is the prime suspect, the race is on to bring justice before time (and memories) have run out. After all, how can a confession be given when no one remembers the crime?  Continue reading “Book Review: Yesterday (Felicia Yap) @FeliciaMYap @Mulhollandbooks”

Book Review: See What I Have Done (Sarah Schmidt) @groveatlantic ‏

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I had heard of Lizzie Borden before but had never really given much thought to her actual trial until I began See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt. One of #cjsreads first August picks, I wasn’t 100% sure what to expect when I dove into this book. Generally speaking, I enjoy historical fiction but struggle when it has a mystery/thriller angle. I don’t know what it is about them, but they all feel a little “Sherlock Holmes” to me. However, with a cover quote by Paula Hawkins stating this book was “eerie and compelling” I was intrigued right away.   I would have to say that I agree with Hawkins on this one; See What I Have Done had an ominous vibe throughout.

Opening with Lizzie discovering her father dead in his study and going back and forth between the day of the murder and the days prior, the investigation into the murder begins and it doesn’t take long for Lizzie to be at the center when she begins to seem unreliable and struggles to remember events of the day. With her sister by her side and the police closing in, the novel is narrated through multiple character perspectives including a stranger and a housemaid.

The first thing that stood out for me while I was reading was how irritated I was with the multiple character perspectives. I didn’t care for the various POVs; I felt like I wanted to hear the story through the eyes of Lizzie and all the other characters felt a little bit irrelevant to me. I know they all played their role but I think I would have been completely consumed with the plot should it had been through Lizzie’s unreliable narration. I love me an unreliable narrator!

I was impressed with how Schmidt was able to take a real scenario and turn it into a fictionalized account without making it seem over-embellished or too far-fetched. I feel like it was kept realistic and took more of a rational approach. This was a smart decision on Schmidt’s part. I felt like I was truly reading more a “true crime” story instead of a work of fiction.

Overall, I felt like this was an entertaining read but, like some other historical mysteries, I found this one to be quite slow moving. If you are at all interested in Lizzie Bordon, this will obviously appeal to you and I also feel like fans of true crime will have a special interest in this tale. However, if you are looking for something incredibly fast paced, then I would skip this one!

Thanks to the publisher and the author for a copy of this book; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.

Want to know what Chandra and Jessica thought of this one?  Keep reading to see what the other members of #cjsreads had to say about See What I Have Done!

Continue reading “Book Review: See What I Have Done (Sarah Schmidt) @groveatlantic ‏”