JP Delaney – The Girl Before


“There’s a kind of purity to a relationship unencumbered by convention, a sense of simplicity and freedom.”

Book Details:

  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • Published On: January 24 2017
  • Pages: 320

Synopsis: Please make a list of every possession you consider essential to your life.

The request seems odd, even intrusive—and for the two women who answer, the consequences are devastating.

Emma
Reeling from a traumatic break-in, Emma wants a new place to live. But none of the apartments she sees are affordable or feel safe. Until One Folgate Street. The house is an architectural masterpiece: a minimalist design of pale stone, plate glass, and soaring ceilings. But there are rules. The enigmatic architect who designed the house retains full control: no books, no throw pillows, no photos or clutter or personal effects of any kind. The space is intended to transform its occupant—and it does.

Jane
After a personal tragedy, Jane needs a fresh start. When she finds One Folgate Street she is instantly drawn to the space—and to its aloof but seductive creator. Moving in, Jane soon learns about the untimely death of the home’s previous tenant, a woman similar to Jane in age and appearance. As Jane tries to untangle truth from lies, she unwittingly follows the same patterns, makes the same choices, crosses paths with the same people, and experiences the same terror, as the girl before.

Review: Read the book on @Crimebythebook ‘s recommendation. The idea of a home with such strict regulations & such a minimalist appeal is what really made me want to read the book. I’m so glad I picked it up, I liked the book, it definitely had me into it from the start. The chapters switch between the POVs of Emma & Jane. Emma is the girl before & Jane’s the after. The twists in the book were really good & the way everything unfolded was “oh shit” 😄. I really do recommend reading the book & would love to know what you think of it!

Would you go for a house like this (obviously without the whole drama & murder surrounding it)? I think I would 🤔. 

Rating: 💎💎💎💎

Laura Miller – The Life We Almost Had

“Sometimes, our greatest dreams are born under the stars – when they are all we have to light our path.”

Book Details:

  • Expected Publication: September 19 2017
  • Pages: 290

Synopsis: Back before everyone left the little town of Sweet Home to the ghosts, she was the girl next door. And he was the boy, who could never get on her father’s good side. But none of that mattered. The only thing that mattered was that her heart had picked him.

But that was years ago. And now, Berlin’s sister is praying for someone to show up to take her brother’s mind off the girl from his past. And surely enough, that someone does. But will this girl be able to cut the chains of his first love or will she just make him fall harder for that little girl he left behind in Sweet Home, Missouri? 

One week is all they have.

Review: Thank you so much Laura for sending me the book for an honest review! The book is definitely one that feeds my want of the perfect romance, it’s so cheesy but so romantic too. I would suggest having a few tissues with you 😂. It’s a super cute, heart breaking but at the same time a heart melting story because of how romantic the dialogues can be. It totally gave me Colleen Hoover & a bit of Nicholas Sparks vibes! I’m so happy that I also won a giveaway that Laura hosted, giving away a signed copy of her book & I’m so excited to receive it! Definitely recommend giving the book a read! 

Rating: 💎💎💎💎💎

Nuala Ellwood – My Sister’s Bones

My Sister's Bones

“People think we’re fearless because we go towards the battle rather than run away, but I could never call myself brave. For me, being a journalist is about giving a voice to those who have been silenced; to tell their stories and show the world the true human cost of war.”

Book Details: 

  • Publisher: Penguin UK
  • Published On: March 28 2017
  • Pages: 400

Synopsis: Are You Brave Enough To Go Back?

Kate Rafter is a successful war reporter. She’s the strong one. The one who escaped Herne Bay and the memories it holds. Her sister Sally didn’t. Instead, she drinks. But when their mother dies, Kate is forced to return to the old family home. And on her first night she is woken by a terrifying scream.

What secret has Kate stumbled upon?


And is she strong enough to uncover the truth . . . and make it out alive? 

Review: The book is divided into 3 parts: The first part is in Kate’s POV, the second part is in Sally’s POV & the last part switches back to Kate’s POV. There were clear distinctions so it was all confusion free. The book covers a range of topics that are important:

  • The war in Syria: Kate’s parts in the book mainly revolve around her time in & out of Syria where there is currently a war going on. The war started, if I’m not wrong, in 2011 & it is still going on. The book brings this war to the awareness of all it’s readers which I really appreciated. Many people have left their homes to go to different countries, one country being the USA. There are many people living in countries as refugees which must be extremely hard considering they’ve left everything behind, their old life, the amount of deaths they may have seen, the loss of loved ones & the trauma.
  • PTSD: Post-traumatic stress disorder is a very common psychological after effect of facing a lot of trauma & it may be very common in all the people affected by war. Kate went to Syria as a journalist & when you see the life that the people are living, the terror around them, the not knowing of whether they’ll be alive at the end of the day & everything else takes a toll on every single person. Kate suffered with reliving the trauma that she witnessed in Syria again & again in her sleep & flashbacks during the day. 
  • Abusive relationships: Apart from the trauma Kate witnessed in Syria, her childhood living in an abusive household may have been added stress because she did think her neighbour was being abused because of some signs that she recognised from the times her mother was being abused. 

The book was definitely one that I would recommend, it was shocking & had me flipping the pages waiting to see what was going on. I think it was the last part or the last few chapters that had me decide: “Girl, you are not putting this book down until you are done.” which is exactly what I did & wow. 

*SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER*

I hated Paul, at first I thought he was being a nice, caring brother in law & then him constantly showing up at Kate’s door & then going out of his way to take care of her told me he was interested & that’s exactly what happened but then, the twists, OH BOY. That was…. I don’t even know how to put it in any other words except jaw-dropping.

Sally was one hell of an annoying woman (in terms of doing nothing but drinking herself to a slow death & hating everyone around her) & I just hoped she would die with her bitterness but at the end though, woah. 

When Kate kept seeing the little boy in her mother’s garden & then she going & checking but there was no one really made me think: “oh great, she’s losing her mind too!!” but hey, she didn’t!

*SPOILERS END*

Rating: 💎💎💎💎💎

 

B.A. Paris – Behind Closed Doors

Behind Closed Doors

“I couldn’t shake the feeling that I was making the biggest mistake of my life.”

Synopsis: Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace: he has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You’d like to get to know Grace better. But it’s difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are never apart. Some might call this true love.

Picture this: a dinner party at their perfect home, the conversation and wine flowing. They appear to be in their element while entertaining. And Grace’s friends are eager to reciprocate with lunch the following week. Grace wants to go, but knows she never will. Her friends call—so why doesn’t Grace ever answer the phone? And how can she cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim?

And why are there bars on one of the bedroom windows?

The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

Review: The book is really well written & is one of those nothing-is-what-it-seems plots & I love psychological thrillers like these. I really enjoyed the book, the way Jack completely switches up his behaviour. It was a good book to read but I wish that we got to see some blood, some gore or really evil parts involving Jack & Millie or even Grace but that didn’t happen which was kind of disappointing. The book switches from Past & Present point in times in the story which I felt was helpful but kind of redundant towards the end of the book. But oh wow, the plan Grace carried out to get rid of Jack, that was pretty well done.

And ohmygod, the amount of times I wanted to just kill Jack:

idk i wasnt counting the meme

Rating: 💎💎💎.5

Sarah Dessen – Once And For All

Once And For All

“So much of life is not being sure of anything. How I wished, later, I’d been able to savor them, those few steps and moments when for once, I just knew.”

Synopsis: As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen’s thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

Review: The book was a good read & it made me respect wedding planners more, it was like behind the scenes of wedding planning showing how much work really goes into all of it. It was so heartbreaking that Louna lost the guy she loved in a school shooting. It’s so sad that school shootings are becoming more & more common & the thought of losing someone close to you is terrible. I felt that Ambrose having feelings for Louna was kind of sudden, like I didn’t think he was interested in her at all, I knew they were going to end up together but I was interested in the how they end up together. The whole thing happened in the very last chapters which was kind of disappointing.

Rating: 💎💎💎

Fiona Barton – The Child

The Child

“I’ve been trying to think about what happened. Trying to make sense of it,” she said. “I thought I’d come back to where it began. With the baby…”

Synopsis: As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it’s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?

As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier: A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found. Her heartbroken parents were left devastated by the loss.

But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn—house by house—into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. And she soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women—and torn between what she can and cannot tell…

Review: I really enjoyed the book, it was fast paced & I was really into the book from the beginning. The book switches between the POVs of Emma, Jude, Kate & Angela (also, towards the end, chapters do have Will’s POV). The book really portrayed the extremes some people can go to for love & the twists had me floored. Imagining Angela going through the trauma & years of agony upon discovering that her baby had gone missing, broke my heart & it terrified me. The way the story unfolded was wow.

“Did you know if you test the mitochondria, our DNA can be matched with our ancestors? Well, through the maternal line to our great-grandmothers. And if you do Y-STR profiling, you can do the male line. All our closest relatives – parents, uncles, brothers, sisters, cousins, grandparents – will match. They share the same DNA markers.”

*SPOILERS BELOW SPOILERS BELOW SPOILERS BELOW*

The story unfolds to a core surrounding rape with the victim drugged & involving photographic evidence, that’s not an enormous spoiler but it’s part of what happens so thought I would put that out. Also, Will is such a bastard. NOBODY ASKS TO BE RAPED! The amount of times I wanted to kill him:

idk i wasnt counting the meme

Rating: 💎💎💎💎

Clare Mackintosh – I Let You Go

I Let You Go“Such a small impact on the world, yet the very centre of my own.”

Book Details:

  • Publisher: Sphere
  • Published On: November 9th 2014
  • Pages: 371

Synopsis: In a split second, Jenna Gray’s world descends into a nightmare. Her only hope of moving on is to walk away from everything she knows to start afresh. Desperate to escape, Jenna moves to a remote cottage on the Welsh coast, but she is haunted by her fears, her grief and her memories of a cruel November night that changed her life forever.

Slowly, Jenna begins to glimpse the potential for happiness in her future. But her past is about to catch up with her, and the consequences will be devastating . . . 

Review: Read on the recommendation of @africaanah! Amazing book, incredibly written. Had me wanting to spend hours reading it but I really wanted to take my time with it. The twists really had me on the edge of my bed. I totally recommend the book to everyone, it’s amazing. The book talks about two important topics: domestic abuse & drunk-driving. The amount of psychological trauma going on in Jennifer’s mind was terrifying for me, had me crying & wanting to kill Ian many many many times. He definitely got what he deserved although I would’ve loved him getting shot in the head but oh well, that’s just me.

Rating: 💎💎💎💎💎