Thursday, June 14, 2018

Review: Providence by Caroline Kepnes

Blurb from Goodreads:
From the acclaimed author of YOU comes a novel that is part love story, part detective story, and part supernatural thriller.

     Growing up as best friends in small-town New Hampshire, Jon and Chloe are the only ones who truly understand each other and their intense connection. But just when Jon is ready to confess the depth of his feelings, he's kidnapped by his substitute teacher, a discredited scientist who is obsessed with H.P. Lovecraft and has a plot to save humanity. 
     After four years in captivity, Jon finally escapes, only to discover that he now has an uncontrollable power that endangers anyone he has intense feelings for. He runs away to Providence to protect Chloe while he searches for answers. Across town from Jon, Detective Charles "Eggs" DeBenedictus is fascinated by a series of strange deaths--young, healthy people whose hearts just . . . stop. Convinced these deaths are a series of connected, vigilante killings, he jeopardizes his job and already strained marriage to uncover the truth. 
     With heart, insight, and a keen eye on human frailty, Kepnes whisks us on a journey through New England and crashes these characters' lives together in the most unexpected ways, exploring the complex relationship between the powerful and the powerless, love and identity, self-preservation and self-destruction, and how the lines are often blurred between the two. 
My Review:
Providence has always been one of my favorite words so I was certainly intrigued to read this one, not only because of the title but also the author.  And I can say that this book was . . . interesting.  I just ultimately felt that there were more questions than answers.  Don't get me wrong, I am not someone who needs every question answered or every thread sewn up in a book.  I prefer there to be openings and things not resolved but I felt like here, science was used to try and explain some major plot points but without actually getting into the science of it.  It felt a bit like betrayal.  That being said, I liked the characters and the language and the idea of this, even if I liked all of those things more than actually reading this book.

Providence comes out next week on June 19, 2018, and you can purchase HERE.  
Nobody can kick your ass for what you think in your mind, not even your mom.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Review: The Perfect Couple by Elin Hilderbrand

Blurb from Goodreads:
From New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand, comes a novel about the many ways family can fill our lives with love...if they don't kill us first.

It's wedding season on Nantucket. The beautiful island is overrun with summer people--an annual source of aggravation for year-round residents. And that's not the only tension brewing offshore. When one lavish wedding ends in disaster before it can even begin--with the bride-to-be discovered dead in Nantucket Harbor just hours before the ceremony--everyone in the wedding party is suddenly a suspect. As Chief of Police Ed Kapenash digs into the best man, the maid of honor, the groom's famous mystery novelist mother, and even a member of his own family, the chief discovers that every wedding is a minefield--and no couple is perfect. Featuring beloved characters from THE CASTAWAYS and A SUMMER AFFAIR, THE PERFECT COUPLE proves once again that Elin Hilderbrand is the queen of the summer beach read. 
My Review:
Elin Hilderbrand's books, which are typically released in early summer/late spring every year, are the official start of summer for me.  The Perfect Couple is no exception and I found myself immediately sinking into its world.  There are some repeat characters from one of Elin's other novels, The Castaways, which I loved revisiting.  But even without the familiar characters (which are only tangential in this book), I could not put this book down!  I had to know what happened.  This was slightly different from Elin's other books in that it was sort of a murder mystery but so much more complex than that.  I love Celeste and found myself turning every page with anticipation and delight.  I'm definitely in the mood for summer now!

The Perfect Couple comes out next week on June 19, 2018, you can purchase HERE!  This book is definitely another winner from Elin and the official start of summer!!
Miranda's eyes widen. The mother huffs and Celeste smiles indulgently as if to convey that she know how tedious trips to the zoo can be. The things parents do for their children! The fighting couple are expensively dressed, lots of suede and cashmere, a nice watch on the man, ballet flats on the woman, and she carries some kid of designer bag. (Merritt would be able to identify not only the designer abut also the year; she feels about bags the way that most men feel about Corvettes.) Genus: Manhattan, Celeste things. Species: Upper East Side. Their natural habitat includes doormen and cabs, private school and Bergdorf's.
It's a typical sighting here at the Bronx Zoo. 

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Review: Tell Me Lies by Carola Lovering

Blurb from Goodreads:
A thrilling, sexy coming-of-age story exploring toxic love, ruthless ambition, and shocking betrayal, Tell Me Lies is about that one person who still haunts you—the other one. The wrong one. The one you couldn’t let go of. The one you’ll never forget.

Lucy Albright is far from her Long Island upbringing when she arrives on the campus of her small California college, and happy to be hundreds of miles from her mother, whom she’s never forgiven for an act of betrayal in her early teen years. Quickly grasping at her fresh start, Lucy embraces college life and all it has to offer—new friends, wild parties, stimulating classes. And then she meets Stephen DeMarco. Charming. Attractive. Complicated. Devastating.

Confident and cocksure, Stephen sees something in Lucy that no one else has, and she’s quickly seduced by this vision of herself, and the sense of possibility that his attention brings her. Meanwhile, Stephen is determined to forget an incident buried in his past that, if exposed, could ruin him, and his single-minded drive for success extends to winning, and keeping, Lucy’s heart.

Alternating between Lucy’s and Stephen’s voices, Tell Me Lies follows their connection through college and post-college life in New York City. Deep down, Lucy knows she has to acknowledge the truth about Stephen. But before she can free herself from this addicting entanglement, she must confront and heal her relationship with her mother—or risk losing herself in a delusion about what it truly means to love.

With the psychological insight and biting wit of Luckiest Girl Alive, and the yearning ambitions and desires of Sweetbitter, this keenly intelligent and staggeringly resonant novel chronicles the exhilaration and dilemmas of young adulthood, and the difficulty of letting go, even when you know you should.
My Review:
I really loved this one - it wasn't exactly what I expected but in the best possible way.  It reminded me a lot of Luckiest Girl Alive, especially all the best parts. I loved the interplay between past and present and the two POV.  I wasn't sure where it was going when it started and I quickly became engrossed.  This is definitely one of those books that's hard to put down and is seriously a great summer read!  I won't spoil you but I was deeply deeply satisfied by how this one turned out.  

Tell Me Lies comes out next week on June 12, 2018, you can purchase HERE! I really liked this one and I think you will, too! I definitely recommend this one, especially for fans of Luckiest Girl Alive.
The best feelings are unexpected like that. I wake up and they were there, like snow.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Review: The Girl in the Moss (Angie Pallorino #3) by Loreth Anne White

Blurb from Goodreads:
A shallow grave exposes deadly secrets as bestselling author Loreth Anne White brings her thrilling series of romantic suspense to its shocking conclusion…

Disgraced ex-cop Angie Pallorino is determined to make a new start for herself as a private investigator. But first, she and her lover, newly promoted homicide detective James Maddocks, attempt a quiet getaway to rekindle a romance struggling in the shadows of their careers. The peace doesn’t last long when human skeletal remains are found in a nearby mossy grove.

This decades-old mystery is just what Angie needs to establish her new career—even as it thrusts her and Maddocks back into the media spotlight, once again endangering their tenuous relationship.

Then, when Angie’s inquiry into the old crime intersects with a cold case from her own policing past—one that a detective on Maddocks’s new team is working—the investigation takes a startling twist. It puts more than Angie’s last shot at redemption and a future with Maddocks at risk. The mystery of the girl in the moss could kill her.
My Review:
This series is SO good.  Not only is Angie Pallorino a kick ass heroine but she evolves in these books - nothing feels stagnant or repetitive.  Also, each one of these books (so far) has been a total page turner for me and I haven't been able to figure them out.  The settings are so good, so atmospheric and I love how the author weaves in Angie's every day life with whatever case she's working.  So many good characters.  Can't wait for more!

The Girl in the Moss comes out next week on June 12, 2018, you can purchase HERE!  This series is quickly becoming an all time favorite for me - check it out!! You can read my review of book 1 in this series HERE, and book 2, HERE.
She gains momentum as the river sucks her toward its heart, where its currents muscle deep and strong toward the thundering boom of Plunge Falls, where mist boils thick above the tumbling water. She tried to kick, to swim, to angle back toward shore. But the Nahamish has other plans. It clutches at her with newfound glee, with impossible strength, tossing her about like a toy, drawing her down and into its churning bowels. 

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Review: The Ever After by Sarah Pekkanen

Blurb from Goodreads:
Josie and Frank Moore are happy…at least Josie thinks they are. As parents of two young girls in the Chicago suburbs, their days can be both busy and monotonous, and sometimes Josie wonders how she became a harried fortysomething mother rather than the driven career woman she once was. But Frank is a phenomenal father, he’s handsome and charismatic, and he still looks at his wife like she’s the beautiful woman he married more than a decade ago. Josie isn’t just happy—she’s lucky.

Until one Saturday morning when Josie borrows her husband’s phone to make a quick call—and sees nine words that shatter her world.

Now Josie feels as if she is standing at the edge of a sharp precipice. As she looks back at pivotal moments in the relationship she believed would last forever, she is also plunging ahead, surprising everyone (especially herself) with how far she will go to uncover the extent of her husband’s devastating secret.

With her “conversational writing style and a knack for making readers care about her characters” (The Washington Post) bestselling author Sarah Pekkanen paints a vivid, kaleidoscopic portrait of a marriage before and during a crisis—and of a woman who fears that the biggest secret of all may be the one she’s hiding from herself.
My Review:
Ok, this was pretty depressing.  I kind of thought it would be more juicy but instead it was just agonizing.  A woman deciding whether to stay with her husband after he cheated.  There was nothing unique about this, I feel like I've read this book over and over.  No twist, nothing new here . . . it was a deep dive but I didn't connect with these truths and these feelings.  I would probably pick up another book by this author, though, because the writing was fine if not good.  

The Ever After comes out next week on June 5, 2018, and you can purchase HERE.
"Was it really an affair, though?" Josie asked. "I mean, I know it wasn't right, but you barely did anything." 
Karin nodded firmly. "I have to take responsibility for this. I can't ever minimize what I did. It became an affair the moment I answered his text. The moment we created a secret."

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Review: When Life Gives You Lululemons (The Devil Wears Prada #3) by Lauren Weisberger

Blurb from Goodreads:
New York Times bestselling author Lauren Weisberger returns with a novel starring one of her favorite characters from The Devil Wears Prada—Emily Charlton, first assistant to Miranda Priestly, now a highly successful image consultant who’s just landed the client of a lifetime.

Welcome to Greenwich, CT, where the lawns and the women are perfectly manicured, the Tito’s and sodas are extra strong, and everyone has something to say about the infamous new neighbor.

Let’s be clear: Emily Charlton, Miranda Priestly’s ex-assistant, does not do the suburbs. She’s working in Hollywood as an image consultant to the stars, but recently, Emily’s lost a few clients. She’s hopeless with social media. The new guard is nipping at her heels. She needs a big opportunity, and she needs it now.

Karolina Hartwell is as A-list as they come. She’s the former face of L’Oreal. A mega-supermodel recognized the world over. And now, the gorgeous wife of the newly elected senator from New York, Graham, who also has his eye on the presidency. It’s all very Kennedy-esque, right down to the public philandering and Karolina’s arrest for a DUI—with a Suburban full of other people’s children.

Miriam is the link between them. Until recently she was a partner at one of Manhattan’s most prestigious law firms. But when Miriam moves to Greenwich and takes time off to spend with her children, she never could have predicted that being stay-at-home mom in an uber-wealthy town could have more pitfalls than a stressful legal career. 

Emily, Karolina, and Miriam make an unlikely trio, but they desperately need each other. Together, they’ll navigate the social landmines of life in America’s favorite suburb on steroids, revealing the truths—and the lies—that simmer just below the glittering surface. With her signature biting style, Lauren Weisberger offers a dazzling look into another sexy, over-the-top world, where nothing is as it appears.
My Review:
This is a good beach read - no more, no less.  If you like this series, this will be a fun, fast read. It was funny but not hilarious.  It was definitely about first world problems but you can't expect more from this series, really, can you?  I do love Emily forever and ever as a character and glad to have a fast read with this one! ❤

When Life Gives You Lululemons comes out soon on June 5, 2018, and you can purchase HERE.  
"You don't want kids?"
"Of course not. You do?"  
Miles squinted and, incidentally, looked very cute doing so. "Yeah, I do." 
"Mmm, maybe," Emily had said, but only so he didn't think she was a heartless bitch of devoid of all maternal instincts when they'd just met. And she wasn't! 

Monday, May 21, 2018

Review: Hot Asset (21 Wall Street #1) by Lauren Layne

Blurb from Goodreads:
A sexy agent hounds Wall Street’s hottest new wolf in an exhilarating novel from New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne.

Ian Bradley is the definition of a Wall Street hotshot: seven-figure salary, designer suits, and a corner office. His drive off the floor is just as potent. Every woman who knows him has felt the rush. But now he’s met his match in Lara McKenzie—a woman with the power to bring Ian to his knees.

An ambitious, whip-smart daughter of FBI agents, Lara is a rising star in fighting white-collar crime. Her latest case—the investigation of Ian Bradley for insider trading—could make her career. She knows a scoundrel when she sees one. Ian fits the bill: a cocky, ridiculously handsome bad boy with a slick swagger.

She’ll do anything to prove he’s guilty. He’ll do anything to prove he’s not. But it’s only a matter of time before their fierce battle of wits gets oh so hot and personal. Now, taking down Ian has become more than business for Lara. It’s become a pleasure—and there’s more at risk than she ever dreamed.
My Review:
I have to tell you that every Lauren Layne book I read lately is starting to fee the same.  It's the same push/pull between a forthright heroine and womanizing hero who's never had a relationship.  I liked the sound of the premise of this book but it pretty much just went through the motions.  The ending was cute but most romance endings are cute.  I don't know, I remember recently reading in LL's newsletter that she is taking a bit of break and I think that may be a good thing.

Hot Asset comes out soon on May 22, 2018, and you can purchase HERE.  
My love life's not exactly what you'd call thriving. My longest relationship was last year, lasted five months, and ended with about as much excitement as it started, which isn't saying much. 
Let's just say life as an SEC agent doesn't seem to spark much chemistry on the romantic front. Even when I do manage to put work out of my mind, I think guys smell the workaholic on me. 
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