What I’ve Been Reading Lately 📚 #DarkCorners #HushCollection

“By all these lovely tokens, September days are here, with summer’s best of weather, and autumn’s best of cheer.” — Helen Hunt Jackson

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📙 THE SLEEP TIGHT MOTEL by Lisa Unger (★★★★★) | A Dark Corners short story from Amazon. Lots of creepy goodness packed into less than 50 pages! A woman running from an abusive ex and the police takes refuge in a roadside motel on a isolated stretch of highway. Even though Eve is the only guest, she keeps hearing weird and disturbing noises at night coming from the room next door. Is she brave enough to find out what’s happening on the other side of the wall? Highly recommended to fans of spooky motel stories.

📘 SLOW BURNER by Laura Lippman (★★★★★) | A Hush Collection short story from Amazon. An intriguing dose of domestic suspense! I loved this one. Phil was caught cheating once, and has promised not to do it again. Liz believed him, until she finds his secret burner phone that suggests otherwise. Instead of confronting him, she quietly reads his back and forth flirty texts with another woman. Realizing that he will never change, what will she do? Great twisty ending.

📙 HANNAH-BEAST by Jennifer McMahon (★★★★) | A Dark Corners short story from Amazon. Yikes. This was a horrifying and gruesome Halloween tidbit. Find out what a group of mean girls from 1982 and 30+ years of guilt will do! Enjoyable, yet disturbing, psychological suspense.

📘 I KILLED ZOE SPANOS by Kit Frick (★★★★) | Very good! This novel is a young adult psychological suspense with a Rebecca-like atmosphere and a modern twist — a teen-hosted true crime podcast. Recommend if you enjoy Gothic mystery/suspense. Read for the B&N YA Book Club.

📙 THE SEARCH PARTY by Simon Lelic (★★) | Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to review THE SEARCH PARTY. Unfortunately this book wasn’t my cup of tea. I was intrigued by the premise, and the intro sure grabbed me — until the teenagers started their monologues. Their chapters were just ramblings, and honestly I could barely differentiate between the speakers. I did enjoy Detective Fleet’s character, and it was a relief to return to his POV. The twisty ending was exciting, but overall I didn’t enjoy THE SEARCH PARTY like I did his previous thrillers.

— 𝓓𝓲𝓪𝓷𝓪

What I’ve Been Reading Lately 📚

“One benefit of summer was that each day we had more light to read by.” — Jeanette Walls

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📗 HOME BEFORE DARK by Riley Sager (★★★★½) | Very creepy!! I had to leave a light on to sleep for a few nights. This would be a perfect October horror thriller.

📘 SNOWFLAKES by Ruth Ware (★★★★) | The title caught my attention. I wondered if this quick 26-page short story was somehow connected to her upcoming book ONE BY ONE, but it definitely is not. It’s really not like anything I’ve read of hers before, but heck, I really liked it. Honestly while reading it, the tone gave me a Shirley Jackson vibe. Ruth Ware packed a lot into just a few pages. The subject matter is sad and distressing, yet a couple of lines put a smirky smile on my face.

🎧 TOO MUCH AND NEVER ENOUGH (★★★★★) | Many of my why and how questions were answered from an insider’s and psychologist’s perspective. Listened on audiobook & enjoyed the author’s narration of her memoir.

— 𝓓𝓲𝓪𝓷𝓪

What I’ve Been Reading Lately 📚

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” — Audrey Hepburn

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THE VANISHING HALF
by Britt Bennett
★★★★★
(sisters fiction, family drama, historical fiction, coming of age)

This was the B&N Book Club’s June selection. THE VANISHING HALF is a truly spellbinding novel. I was completely immersed in the characters’ lives, relationships, secrets, and struggles. I did not want the book to end! ♥ {Purchased}


THE WIFE STALKER
by Liv Constantine
★★★★
(domestic suspense, psychological thriller)

Alright, Liv Constantine, you got me with that twist. This was a fun, fast-paced psychological thriller with two dueling unreliable narrators. {Library}


STAMPED: RACISM, ANTIRACISM, AND YOU
by Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi
★★★★★
(non-fiction, young adult, civil and human rights, politics and government)

STAMPED is an eye-opening and informative book about the origins of racism and how it has been ingrained in our society for hundreds of years, and the people who have fought against it. This should be required reading for middle/high school students. I listened to this on audiobook — fantastic narration by the author Jason Reynolds. {Purchased}


THE NANNY
by Gilly Macmillan
★★★★
(gothic suspense, mystery, family drama)

What really happened to the nanny at Lake Hall all those many years ago? Enjoyable slow-burn mystery with Gothic undertones! Listened to on audiobook via Chirp. {Purchased}


THE SWEENEY SISTERS
by Lian Dolan
★★★
(sisters fiction, family drama, contemporary fiction)

This book may have my favorite cover art this year. 🙂 I enjoyed the premise and beginning of this book, where the three Sweeney sisters discover they have a 4th sister via a DNA testing database just after their father’s death. Overall though, the plot wasn’t very strong and lacked the emotional punch you’d expect. It was an ok read, just didn’t grab me completely. {Library}


 

What I’ve Been Reading Lately 📚

Hello! First of all, I hope everyone is doing well in this uncertain time. It’s coming up on two months since my family and I have been sheltering in place. I’m a special education teacher’s aide, and with our schools closed, we’ve mainly been hanging out at home.

I haven’t been very active in the book blogging community lately, but I have been doing a lot of reading anyway. I’m not as inspired to review everything I read these days. Sometimes I just want to appreciate reading the book, admire the lovely cover, log it on Goodreads, and just move on to the next.

I’m trying to get a variety of reading material from a variety of places, like indie bookstores for paper books, the library for digital downloads, and Barnes & Noble for my Nook books. Of course, I still have many review books from NetGalley and Edelweiss, which I am so grateful for! I’ve just started reading Ruth Ware’s upcoming September release, ONE BY ONE, from Edelweiss. (I’ve also pre-ordered the signed hardcover from B&N, because I love Ruth Ware!!!)

For now, I will (probably) only be writing reviews for books I get from NetGalley, Edelweiss, or publishers. The rest I will include in a reading wrap-up post like this one, though I will only highlight books I gave 3 stars or higher.

So…here’s a look at what I’ve been reading lately (and didn’t review)! ♥ Take care.


CONJURE WOMEN
by Afia Atakora
★★★★★
(historical fiction, magical realism, american civil war)

This was the B&N Book Club’s April selection! I absolutely loved it. You can view the book club discussion with Afia Atakora on B&N’s Instagram HERE, though you should read the book first to avoid any spoilers. ♥


THE OTHER MRS.
by Mary Kubica
★★★★
(domestic suspense, psychological thriller, mystery)

This one was very close to being as good as THE GOOD GIRL (my favorite of Mary Kubica’s books). When I figured out the twist toward the end, I was a little nervous as to how it would be handled, but it was all good.


MURDER AT THE TAFFY SHOP
by Maddie Day
★★★★
(cozy mystery)

Belle (the parrot) is my all-time favorite cozy mystery pet. She’s hilarious! ♥


THE WOMAN IN THE MIRROR
by Rebecca James
★★★★
(gothic suspense, historical fiction, dual time periods)


HILL WOMEN
by Cassie Chambers
★★★¾
(nonfiction, southern women, appalachia)