This book ticks all my boxes. A whiff of the supernatural, a whodunit, a teenage protagonist who has had to grow up before her time, and some eye candy.
The story is about Alyssa, who comes from a family of Wicca practitioners, but who doesn't believe because she thinks her mother's belief in the supernatural has made her an unbalanced alcoholic. After her ex-boyfriend suicides she moves in with her aunt to New York, determined to wipe the slate clean on her past, but starts getting creepy gifts. Either someone is trying to make her seem crazy or her she is being haunted by her ex-boyfriend.
Nicola Marsh has written a young adult thriller that is a page turner. There is a host of possible suspects, red herrings, romance, and family conflict. There had better be a sequel in the offing because I want more.
Lisa Jackson is a favourite and I really enjoyed this story about Ava Gardener, a woman driven to the brink of madness by the loss of her toddler. After a stint in a psychiatric facility she is home to recover, but when she sees visions of her son she begins to doubt her sanity. Is she recovering lost memories or is there something more sinister at play?
The cover sucked me into this book and it perfectly captured the spooky mood and suspense. It featured a cast of cooky family members who provided lots of red herrings and I was kept guessing until the end as to the mystery. My only quibble is that the book seemed a big long winded and could have been pared down, but I kept reading to the end and was glad that I did.
This book hooked me because of the cover and the blurb. Caroline Wallace is a hostage negotiate and Reed Ware is a former police officer. They meet again when Reed takes some high profile VIPs hostage. But what made this police officer turn crazy renegade, and will Caroline be able to save Reed from himself?
This is the first time that I have read anything by Karen Robards and she'll be going to my must read list. She did a great job in combining the thriller and romance combo and satisfying me for both.
I love the way she created the sensual tension between Reed and Caroline and I was completely riveted as I waited to see how it would carry out. I also loved the brikmanship as the dynamic between captor and hostage played out, and the backstory to their previous relationship was hysterical. There were high stakes and great conflict, but most importantly a great romance that I really got hooked into.
This was a great read and one I recommend highly. Just looked at Robards' website and see she has quite a few books out, so I'll be doing a lot of reading in the near future.
It's that time of year when reading is a daily activity and I'm really enjoying my small pocket of quiet before I begin work at the end of the month.
One of my all time favourite movies is Practical Magic. I love the tale of two sisters, a family of witches, a curse, the small town feel, and of course, love. Love gone wrong, loving the wrong man, loving the right man. Every time this movie is on television I absolutely must watch it.
Recently I was watching it and I noticed that it was based on the book by Alice Hoffman and that she was credited with writing the screenplay. I realised that I'd never read the book and I always love comparing the book with the movie. I especially love it when the author who wrote the book also writes the screenplay. It gives me a chance to think about the writing process and the decisions that were made as a writer to bring it to the screen.
Firstly the differences between the book and the movie:
So which do I prefer:
However, I'm really happy to have discovered Alice Hoffman and to see her impressive backlist. I'll be reading more of her books!
Beverley is a friend and this book has been on my to read list since I saw it was released. It was an absolute gem to read.
The Reluctant Bride is a historical regency romance set in the aftermath of the French Revolution which provides much of the backstory and intrigue.
The story is about Emily, a young naive woman who thinks she has found the love of her life in her fiancé Jack. When Jack dies she feels all her dreams of romance are dashed. Her marriage to Major Angus McCartney is one of convenience and the disappointment of her life fills her with bitterness.
Angus fell in love with Emily during her season outing, but she only had eyes for the dashing Jack. Now that he has the chance to marry the woman of his dreams, he is hampered by a well intentioned lie he told Emily.
I really enjoyed this romance and the twists and turns that kept the two apart. There were some nice surprises that made this a page turner and really added another level of emotional engagement and depth. If you're looking for a great read, The Reluctant Bride will not disappoint.
What I've been reading
This book caught my intention instantly because of the cover and the title. Ghosts, haunted houses, gothic fiction-I was in. This book did not disappoint.
Set in 1867 Eliza Caine arrives in Norfolk to take up her position as governess at Gaudlin Hall and finds that things are not as they seem. She is haunted by things she can't understand and secrets abound.
This book has it all. A great voice, a plucky heroine, a spooky house and more twists and turns than you can poke a stick at. While reading I was transported to another world and it was amazing. When I finished the book I felt bereft. I wanted to be in the world again. I wanted to experience the chill of the paranormal and feel the spooky menace of the haunting. Cannot recommend this highly enough.
After reading This House is Haunted I needed more ghosts and chills. It took a few weeks, but then I came across Thornwood House.
Audrey Kepler inherits an abandoned homestead in rural Queensland and moves from Melbourne for a new start. She is haunted by the previous owner, a World War II veteran accused of murder. Her curiosity leads her to dig deeper and danger abounds.
This was such a great read. It's a thick book, but I read it in one sitting. I couldn't put it down. While it had the typical arc of a thriller, an amateur sleuth whose curiosity leads them into danger, what made this so unique is that I couldn't predict any of it. I was just desperately turning pages to see what the next twist was. It was such a satisfying read with a lovely romantic thread. Loved it.
What I'm reading
This book hooked me because of the blurb:
Keisha Ceylon is a psychic. At least, that’s what she tells people. She watches the news for stories of missing people, then waits a few days and goes to see the family. She tells them she’s had a vision and that she may know where their missing loved one is—for a price, of course.
It's not often that you read a book about someone who is not the typical hero.
This book was refreshing. Usually this genre is a 'who done it' with the protagonist getting into more and more ridiculous situations in order to uncover the mystery. Whereas Never Saw it Coming was more of a 'who gets away with it.' It had such original twists and turns that I didn't see where it was going and was riveted. I also really liked reading about characters who are on the fringes of society. Who aren't good or bad, but are kind of grey and that I could relate to.
I highly recommend this book to fans of the mystery genre who are looking for something different. And Linwood Barclay is going on my 'authors I must read' list.
Author of Return to Me, Hollywood Dreams and Vintage Dreams. Short story is published in the anthology Little Raven Two by Little Raven Publishing. Pen name for Amra Pajalic.
Mae Archer's books on Goodreads
Return to Me
ratings: 13 (avg rating 3.46)
ratings: 2 (avg rating 5.00)
Little Raven Two: An Erotic Collection
ratings: 2 (avg rating 4.00)