1. A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE by Shari Lapena
This is hands down the best book I’ve read in a couple of months. I actually finished it in one day (on the plane on the way to Banff!) because I couldn’t put it down! The premise is: Karen and Tom Krupp are happily married and still in the blissful newlywed stage, until one day when Tom gets home from work to find his house unlocked with Karen nowhere to be found. Her purse, ID and cell phone are still at home and his gut immediately tells him something is wrong. The police soon arrive at his door to inform him that his wife has been in a car accident in the worst part of town and has been taken to a local hospital. Karen survives, but has no memory of the entire night – however, when a murder is reported not far from Karen’s accident, the police begin to question whether or not she was involved. Karen realizes that she quickly needs to recover her memory and prove that she’s innocent – especially when she suspects someone has been in her house, moving her things around. For me, I really enjoyed reading about the relationships in this book, plus it has a few spine tingling plot twists… and I NEVER suspected the ending! I would rate this book five out of five stars.
2. NOT A SOUND by Heather Gudenkauf
This next one was actually discovered by my mom and she passed the book on to me – it’s another five star book! This book took me a little longer to get through because it’s a little heavier – there’s a lot going on and the characters are very dynamic and well-developed, so I took my time reading it and cherished every minute. After Amelia Winn loses her hearing in a tragic accident, she spirals into depression, ultimately losing her job, her husband and stepdaughter. Now, two years later and with the help of her hearing dog, Stitch, she is finally getting back on her feet. That is, until she stumbles upon the dead body of a former coworker while she is kayaking, and she is plunged into a disturbing murder investigation that threatens to take over her life. Amelia proves to be a very compelling heroine – I love how strong, quirky and independent she is (even if she does make some bad decisions in the book!) and I absolutely LOVED her dog, Stitch! There’s also a bit of romance in this book, too, and I always love when authors can deliver the romantic component while also delivering a true psychological thriller. It turns out that the author also has hearing loss, which inspired her to write the novel with a deaf heroine – this article on the author is really interesting and explains a little more!
3. LOCAL GIRL MISSING by Claire Douglas
This book was recommended by a reader (thank you to whoever suggested it!) and I really enjoyed it. I usually love to read at night, but I did have trouble reading this one at night because it made me so anxious and paranoid that someone was going to break in – haha! Francesca (Frankie) and Sophie were best friends for most of their lives, until Sophie disappears one night, and only her tennis shoe is found on the pier. Frankie has moved away and tried to move on with her life, until Sophie’s brother Daniel calls her to inform her that human remains have washed up on shore and that he needs her to come back home to help find closure. Frankie ends up renting an apartment for the week as she and Daniel start bringing up the past and asking questions around her hometown. A lot of really creepy things start happening – and Frankie begins to think she’s being haunted by Sophie’s ghost. There are a lot of plot twists along the way that I wasn’t expecting. Although it wasn’t quite as believable or as fast-paced as the other two, I would still recommend it. The plot twist at the end is definitely worth it!
4. THE LYING GAME by Ruth Ware
Words can’t describe how excited I was to read this new book by Ruth Ware, since she has authored some of my very favorite thrillers to date. However, this one was a letdown for me! I actually have incredibly mixed feelings about it… I really wanted to like it, but I just couldn’t. And although this book is penned as a “thriller,” I don’t really think that’s a good description for it – it didn’t have me on my toes at all. The book is a really slow-reading story of four best friends who attended boarding school together and were once inseparable. Now in their thirties, the discovery of human remains threatens to reveal a deep, dark secret that the girls have kept for 17 years. The plot ambles along toward the reveal of the mystery at the novel’s core, introducing us to a cast of uninteresting nobodies in a small, dreary coastal town that gave me the creeps (but not in a good, spine-tingling way). The “dark secret” that Ware alludes to throughout the book turns out to be incredibly underwhelming, particularly as it’s built up to be something utterly shocking. In the end, this book just didn’t work for me. I would steer clear of this one, but definitely check out her other two novels (which I loved!) The Woman in Cabin 10 and In a Dark, Dark Wood.
If you’ve read a really good book lately, let us all know in the comments please! 🙂
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