The Housekeeper by Suellen Dainty

Expected Publication: February 28th, 2017

“I am the housekeeper, the hired help with a messy past who cleans up other people’s messy lives, the one who protects their messy little secrets.” When Anne Morgan’s successful boyfriend—who also happens to be her boss—leaves her for another woman, Anne finds herself in desperate need of a new job and a quiet place to recover. Meanwhile, her celebrity idol, Emma Helmsley (England’s answer to Martha Stewart), is in need of a housekeeper, an opportunity which seems too good to be true. Through her books, website, and blog, Emma Helmsley advises her devoted followers on how to live a balanced life in a hectic world. Her husband, Rob, is a high profile academic, and her children, Jake and Lily, are well-adjusted teenagers. On the surface, they are the perfect family. But Anne soon finds herself intimately ensconced in the Helmsley’s dirty laundry, both literally and figuratively. Underneath the dust, grime, and whimsical clutter, everyone has a secret to hide and Anne’s own disturbing past threatens to unhinge everything. For fans of Notes on a Scandal and The Woman Upstairs, The Housekeeper is a nuanced and nail-biting psychological thriller about the dark recesses of the human mind and the dangerous consequences of long-buried secrets.”

First, I would like to say thank you to NetGalley and Atria Books for sending me a copy of this book early!

I’m sorry to say but I barely could get through this book. I got stuck multiple times, especially before 50% completed. This book is described as a thriller. I don’t see where or why this could be a thriller. There are some parts in the beginning that were interesting, but going through I kept dragging and dragging. This book could’ve easily taken me a few days to read, maybe even less. It took me weeks to finish because I couldn’t find the motivation to complete this book with this story line. I didn’t like really any of the characters and it was hard to connect with any of them. I’m sure that if I didn’t have to complete a review of this book, I probably would’ve labeled it as did not finish.

About the Author:
“I worked as a journalist and television producer after leaving university. It never occurred to me to write fiction. Like many working single mothers, I was too busy and too tired to try for anything more. But my two children grew up. Finally I could ditch the day job. I moved from London to a small farm in Somerset, where I ran a B and B and learned how to be a short order cook and iron mountains of bedlinen very quickly. I also studied creative writing at the University of Oxford and at Bath Spa University.Then a fight against breast cancer gave me the impetus I needed. No time to lose! At the age of 62, my first novel, After Everything, was published by Simon and Schuster in the U.S. and by Picador in Australia. I’m currently writing my second, in between looking out the window at my sheep and my hens.”

Rating: ★

All The Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

Publication Date: June 28th, 2016
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Rating: ★★★★★

“Like the spellbinding psychological suspense in The Girl on the Train and Luckiest Girl Alive, Megan Miranda’s novel is a nail-biting, breathtaking story about the disappearances of two young women—a decade apart—told in reverse. It’s been ten years since Nicolette Farrell left her rural hometown after her best friend, Corinne, disappeared from Cooley Ridge without a trace. Back again to tie up loose ends and care for her ailing father, Nic is soon plunged into a shocking drama that reawakens Corinne’s case and breaks open old wounds long since stitched. The decade-old investigation focused on Nic, her brother Daniel, boyfriend Tyler, and Corinne’s boyfriend Jackson. Since then, only Nic has left Cooley Ridge. Daniel and his wife, Laura, are expecting a baby; Jackson works at the town bar; and Tyler is dating Annaleise Carter, Nic’s younger neighbor and the group’s alibi the night Corinne disappeared. Then, within days of Nic’s return, Annaleise goes missing. Told backwards—Day 15 to Day 1—from the time Annaleise goes missing, Nic works to unravel the truth about her younger neighbor’s disappearance, revealing shocking truths about her friends, her family, and what really happened to Corinne that night ten years ago. Like nothing you’ve ever read before, All the Missing Girls delivers in all the right ways. With twists and turns that lead down dark alleys and dead ends, you may think you’re walking a familiar path, but then Megan Miranda turns it all upside down and inside out and leaves us wondering just how far we would be willing to go to protect those we love.”

Review: There was so much going on in this book. It grabbed me right from the beginning. What I liked most about this book is that it works backwards from what happened so it moved from the current day back to the first day that Nicolette arrives back in her hometown of Cooley Ridge. You won’t be able to put this book down. It’s truly a thriller that makes you think of all different possibilities.

The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney

Published: January 24th, 2017

Find this book here:

Rating: ★★★★★

A psychological thriller that spins one woman’s seemingly good fortune, and another woman’s mysterious fate, through a kaleidoscope of duplicity, death, and deception—and the hottest title at the 2015 Frankfurt Book Fair.

A damaged young woman gets the unique opportunity to rent a one-of-a-kind house. When she falls in love with the sexy, enigmatic architect who designed it, she has no idea she is following in the footsteps of the girl who came before: the house’s former tenant.

The eerie parallels in the two girls’ lives lay bare an enthralling story…and make this novel the must-read thriller of the season.”

Review:

Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. I can already tell this is going to be one of my favorite reads of the year. This was super twisty and I couldn’t put this one down.

1 Folgate Street scared me right from the beginning. The thought of living in such a house was freaky to me even though I know it would never happen. It gave me a little bit of anxiety wondering what was going to happen in that house. Most importantly, who was making these things happen? I had to keep reading to find out. JP Delaney did a magnificent job of catching the reader’s attention and creating this curiosity of what’s to come.

The characters. THE CHARACTERS. I was interested in them right from the beginning. Emma and Jane stole my heart. It was insane to read and see the differences and similarities between each character. I loved the fact that I could watch the rise and downfall of the characters and what happened to them in the end. Edward was just as gripping. I was super interested in finding his story and what he does for 1 Folgate Street. These characters really made this book for me.

The ending was absolutely insane. Leading up to the ending, I had an idea of what I thought it was going to be. I wasn’t even close. It definitely switched it up on me and I was thoroughly surprised. I had to find out what was going to happen. I read this book in a day. I was not disappointed in the slightest.

Overall, this book won me over from the first few sentences. J.P. Delaney did a phenomenal job with everything. I can’t wait to hear more from her because this one was a knockout.

 

The Corner Shop Of Whispers by Debbie Viggiano

Expected Publication: February 14th, 2017

Romantic Florrie, scatty Daisy and snobby Alison are neighbours, living their married lives in the tiny English village of Lower Amblegate where everyone knows everybody. Together the three friends share laughter, tears, and things they wouldn’t want anybody else knowing. But unbeknownst to them, a scandal is brewing. As rumours circulate, the gossips go into overdrive, rocking marriages and revealing the women have much more in common than just neighbourly bonds…”

First, I would like to thank NetGalley, Gingersnap Books, and Debbie Viggiano for providing me with a copy of this book early so I could provide an honest review.

If you like watching your favorite tv drama/comedy every week and don’t feel like waiting for the next episode, read. this. book. I remember growing up watching Desperate Housewives every Sunday at 9 P.M. and being glued to the TV until the credits rolled. This was like all of the seasons wrapped into one book. There were so many twists and turns in this book, I couldn’t put it down! I read this book in two days because there were so many things going on that I just wanted to know what was going to happen next! This book was the perfect mix between romance, suspense, and drama! It was a quick read and is perfect for Valentine’s Day!

Rating: ★★★★★

The Things We Wish Were True by Marybeth Mayhew Whalen

Published: September 1st, 2016

“From the outside, Sycamore Glen, North Carolina, might look like the perfect all-American neighborhood. But behind the white picket fences lies a web of secrets that reach from house to house. Up and down the streets, neighbors quietly bear the weight of their own pasts—until an accident at the community pool upsets the delicate equilibrium. And when tragic circumstances compel a woman to return to Sycamore Glen after years of self-imposed banishment, the tangle of the neighbors’ intertwined lives begins to unravel. During the course of a sweltering summer, long-buried secrets are revealed, and the neighbors learn that it’s impossible to really know those closest to us. But is it impossible to love and forgive them?”

This book was very emotionally charged. It kind of reminded me of a TV Drama like Desperate Housewives. There were a lot of different things going on with a lot of different characters. The amount of characters actually confused me a little in the beginning. I couldn’t tell which character belonged to which family, who that character was married to, etc. I think that the confusion turned me off a little towards this book. It took me a few days to read it because I had to keep closing it, coming back to it, and trying again to figure out who was who. Once I got past the initial confusion, the book really did seem to pick up. It all started when “Cailey’s” brother nearly drowned in the neighborhood pool and had to be taken to the hospital unsure if he would survive or not. After this moment, there were many loaded things that occurred. Like a crazy amount of things for this little town of Sycamore Glen, North Carolina. I would recommend this book to others, just make sure to pay close attention to who is who because if you don’t, nothing will make sense at the end.

About The Author:
Marybeth Mayhew Whalen is the author of The Things We Wish Were True and five previous novels. She speaks to women’s groups around the US. She is the co-founder of the popular women’s fiction site, She Reads www.shereads.org. Marybeth and her husband Curt have been married for 24 years and are the parents of six children, ranging from young adult to elementary age. The family lives in North Carolina. Marybeth spends most of her time in the grocery store but occasionally escapes long enough to scribble some words. She is always at work on her next novel. You can find her at http://www.marybethwhalen.com.

Rating: ★★★★

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Published: February 26th, 2013

Two misfits. One extraordinary love. Eleanor… Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough…Eleanor. Park… He knows she’ll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There’s a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises…Park. Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.”

This book is extremely important for a young reader to have. I’m kind of sad it came out when I was graduating high school. If there’s one lesson I learned in life, kids can be mean. All through middle school, kids will gang up on you for the simplest yet stupidest thing in the world. For Eleanor, it was hair. Big, curly, fiery red hair. I feel Eleanor’s pain in this book because the thing in middle school kids made fun of me for was…my hair. Too frizzy, too curly, too thick. Eleanor took it much better than I did. She came to a new school while returning home with her mom, stepfather, and four siblings after being kicked out by her stepfather a year ago. She wasn’t the best looking girl, and she got made fun of on her first day. That’s when she met Park. She rode next to him on the bus to and from school. It started when Park noticed that Eleanor was reading the same comics as him, and it blossomed into this beautiful relationship. However, Eleanor wasn’t just living a rough life at school, it was a rough life at home too. Richie, her stepfather, was abusive physically to Eleanor’s mom, but also emotionally and verbally to Eleanor. He’s a real scumbag. I really, really hated him. Park and his parents come to the rescue many times when Eleanor just needs somewhere to be for a few hours…until it becomes to be too much for her. Park helps her out of Omaha and takes her somewhere safe. Thank God for Park.

I would like to say to all young-adult readers: This book will change the outlook on a lot of things. It is written beautifully and really could help a child that is getting bullied that isn’t sure of what to do. I would recommend this book to any parent that is struggling with a child getting bullied. Help them. They need it.

Rating: ★★★★★

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Published: January 6th, 2015

“Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him. Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death. When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. This is an intense, gripping novel perfect for fans of Jay Asher, Rainbow Rowell, John Green, Gayle Forman, and Jenny Downham from a talented new voice in YA, Jennifer Niven.”

All I can say is wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. I did not expect this book to be the way it was. I thought it was going to be a funny, young-adult quick read that I would easily forget about. Jennifer Niven makes it so that the reader will never forget this book. It is so serious, yet comical and romantic. It was truly beautiful. It’s gripping and intense right from the beginning, and you will not be able to put it down. Violet is an ex-cheerleader/popular girl that survives a car crash that kills her sister. Theodore Finch is a kid that doesn’t have the best home life but tries to make the best out of every situation. Violet is scared to drive and bikes/walks everywhere. Finch is unstable to say the least. They meet on a bell tower where Violet doesn’t know where she is, and Finch wonders what it would be like to jump. Finch ends up saving Violet’s life, but as word spreads around school, it seems that people think it’s the other way around. Theodore Finch is also known as ‘Freak’, so Violet knows that they both have baggage. They find love, and find the power over fear. This book grabbed my attention from the start, and I would recommend this book to a young-adult that is looking for a quick read with a fascinating story.

Rating: ★★★★★