I was white-knuckle driving the whole time I was listening to MR. MERCEDES. Stephen King really ratchets up the tension in this book, with chapters alI was white-knuckle driving the whole time I was listening to MR. MERCEDES. Stephen King really ratchets up the tension in this book, with chapters alternating between the good guys' and the villains' perspectives. Will Patton is my new favorite audiobook narrator; he changed the tone of his voice to perfectly capture the chapters narrated in the alternating perspectives. Goodreads is indicating this is the first in the trilogy, which is exciting because I really loved the detective team of Hodges, Holly & Jerome. I also think this story would make an amazing TV show!...more
Want a quick, scary thrill ride that can be read in one sitting? Your should pick up BIRD BOX this summer! This post-apocalyptic adventure follows MalWant a quick, scary thrill ride that can be read in one sitting? Your should pick up BIRD BOX this summer! This post-apocalyptic adventure follows Malorie, a single mother of two children, interweaving her present and her past. It has been four years since a mysterious plague of "creatures" decimated America's population - beings that seem to make people go insane and kill themselves and others upon sight. The survivors have blocked out their windows and only go outside when blindfolded. In the months immediately following the disaster, Malorie bands together with a group of survivors. In the present day, she's undertaking a dangerous journey with the children, all while they are blindfolded. I don't want to say too much more about the book because it's so much fun to discover on your own. If you like shows like THE WALKING DEAD you will love BIRD BOX....more
I received a complimentary eBook copy of this title for review from NetGalley. Grace is a couples therapist in New York City, and the book opens as shI received a complimentary eBook copy of this title for review from NetGalley. Grace is a couples therapist in New York City, and the book opens as she's being interviewed about her hot new book, "You Should Have Known," a wake-up call for women who ignored the warning signs of problems in their relationships. As Grace is juggling her busy life of PR for the book, her patients, and a fancy fundraiser for the expensive private school her son Henry attends, she begins to realize something is going terribly wrong...Grace learns that a murder has been committed: a fellow mom from the private school is dead. Then, she can't seem to reach her husband, Johnathan, a busy pediatric oncologist. She thought he was flying out to a conference in Cleveland, but now he seems to have disappeared completely. This addictive read follows Grace as she must deal with one shocking, sudden realization after another, and is finally able to move on to the next stage of her life. YOU SHOULD HAVE KNOWN is a great read for anyone who loves suspense, books about marriage, or books set in New York City....more
I've been a fan of Greg Iles' pulse-pounding thrillers for a while, but the author really takes it to the next level in NATCHEZ BURNING, the first inI've been a fan of Greg Iles' pulse-pounding thrillers for a while, but the author really takes it to the next level in NATCHEZ BURNING, the first in a new trilogy. Even if you haven't read Iles' other books featuring former prosecutor, novelist and Natchez Mayor Penn Cage, you can get to know him and his family in this book.
Iles' book perfectly echoes many of the divisions among people in America today, and is a horrifying illustration of how far our nation - especially the south - still has to go in healing the terrible wounds of racism.
Mayor Cage, his fiancee Caitlin, his father Tom, and newspaper reporter Henry Sexton represent one side of an old race war that rears its ugly head in the 21st century - progressive leaders and sympathetic pillars of a community that's aching for change. Throughout the course of the novel, they find themselves increasingly in conflict with another group. The lower-class white Knox family represents the remnants of a super-secret Ku Klux Klan offshoot, the Double Eagles. One member of the family even claims to have assassinated Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. The Royal family - a super-wealthy businessman, his sociopathic son in law, and his drugged-up daughter - represent those among the super-rich who covertly support the continued oppression of minorities.
What sets all this off is the downfall of Tom Cage, an elderly physician who's respected by all in Natchez, black and white alike. He's accused of the murder of his former nurse, Viola. The mystery of who actually killed Viola remains unsolved as Penn races against the clock to clear his father's name. As he investigates Tom's past, he learns of all the heinous hate crimes committed by the Double Eagle group in the 1960s. Penn is soon joined in his quest by crusading newspaper reporter Henry Sexton, who's made it his life's work to bring these civil rights murders into the public eye.
As Penn and Henry continue their investigation, they attract unwanted attention and life-threatening danger from the remaining Double Eagle members and Brody Royal. Soon they are fighting to survive and bring the truth to light amongst death and destruction in their hometowns.
I was worried that this book would conclude on a cliffhanger and not answer any questions, but it very neatly wraps up one thread in this twisted story. I can't wait to read the next installment. The story is terrible and tragic, and sadly I have no doubts that some parts of NATCHEZ BURNING are rooted in truth....more
"Odd Thomas" was going to be a three-star book for me; four-star at the most, until I got to the last few chapters. Then the ending COMPLETELY blew me"Odd Thomas" was going to be a three-star book for me; four-star at the most, until I got to the last few chapters. Then the ending COMPLETELY blew me away.
At first I was turned off because the narrative tone of the book mixed a lot of random, goofy observations with disturbing images of horror & crime. I haven't read that many Dean Koontz books before so I thought maybe that was just his writing style.
Well, duh... Odd, the main character, tells readers RIGHT at the beginning that he is writing this story as a memoir and his mentor has told him to "keep it light." It's only until the last chapter that the reader really grasps the true extent of everything has happened to Odd and his fiancee, Stormy. The goofy observations are there because that's Odd's nature, he's kind of a goofball - who can also see the dead and feels compelled to help them as his life mission. Because of his unique talent, he has to keep his life simple, so he's fascinated by all the random little details of his life and he never leaves his mid-size hometown of Pico Mundo. I went from finding this character quite annoying to deciding he was sweet and compelling at the conclusion of the book.
I still felt that there was an excessive amount of description of EVERY scene and situation, but maybe it's because I listened to Odd Thomas on audiobook; if I had read it in print I would have skimmed over those details more. I'll definitely be checking out the next book in the series though.
On a topical note (and possible spoiler alert) the plot of this book deals with a horrific mass shooting. It was especially chilling to listen to this in the month following the tragedy in Newtown. ...more
I listened to the audiobook version of "Doctor Sleep" which was expertly narrated by Will Patton. He adds just the right touch to each character's uniI listened to the audiobook version of "Doctor Sleep" which was expertly narrated by Will Patton. He adds just the right touch to each character's unique voice. This "sequel" to THE SHINING is nowhere near as scary as the original; I enjoyed it for the character growth of Dan Torrance as he recovers from his alcoholism, and his sweet relationship with his mentee, Abra. The "steam"-eating vampires of the True Knot were skin-crawlingly creepy, and I'll probably never look at RV's the same way again, but for me this was more of a winding journey with the characters than a thrill ride of a book....more
Wow! I didn't start this book with any expectations and I ended up LOVING it. I was hesitant to read it because I had the impression that it would beWow! I didn't start this book with any expectations and I ended up LOVING it. I was hesitant to read it because I had the impression that it would be pretentious, literary New York-y fiction, which I have very little patience with (at this stage of my life). It wasn't! Yes, New York was one of the settings in the book, but there were two other darkly beautiful, compelling locations featured in NIGHT FILM. The main character, Scott McGrath, is a journalist who's traveled to some of the most war-torn regions on earth but the scoop he wants more than anything is to learn the truth about genius horror filmmaker, Stanislas Cordova. Cordova has a huge cult following with obsessive fans all over the world and there are all kinds of insane rumors about him.
When the story breaks that Cordova's daughter, Ashley, has committed suicide, McGrath begins a quest to research the last days of Ashley's life. His research draws him into a mystical, twisting, turning series of events and he meets up with Nora and Hopper, two twentysomethings that also have an interest in finding out what happened to Ashley before she died. I don't want to say anything else about the plot in my review, because it will be SO much more fun for you to read it without knowing about anything that happens in advance!
This book is also a lot of fun from a graphic-design perspective because it is peppered with "screen shots" from websites, "articles" from the New York Times and Rolling Stone, and more graphic snippets that give clues to the life of the fictional Cordova. This book was a great adventure, perfect to read in the weeks before Halloween when the skies are gray and the leaves are falling.
Thanks to NetGalley for providing the advance reader copy of NIGHT FILM, which I read on my Kindle!...more
After hearing the author read the prologue of this book on the Diane Rehm Show, I had to check it out. This is one of the best books I've listened toAfter hearing the author read the prologue of this book on the Diane Rehm Show, I had to check it out. This is one of the best books I've listened to on audio for a long time. The main character, Rob Ryan, experienced a traumatic event in his childhood: two of his best friends vanished while they were playing in the woods near their neighborhood. Later, Rob becomes a detective with the Dublin Murder Squad and returns to his childhood neighborhood, and the woods, when he is assigned to investigate the murder of a young girl.
While the mystery around the teenager's murder case comes to a suspenseful and chilling conclusion, the truly enthralling part of this book is Rob's description of the downward spiral of his relationship with his partner on the squad, Cassie. There is a lot of foreshadowing so the reader knows that something terrible is going to happen to their closer-than-siblings bond, and the implosion of their relationship is even more depressing than anything you could have expected. The author is remarkable at bringing the emotions of the characters alive through her descriptions, and the expert narration by Steven Crossley made me feel like I was face to face with Rob, Cassie, Sam and all the other characters in the novel. Although I'm sad that Crossley doesn't narrate the rest of the books in the series, I'll definitely be listening to all of them. ...more
This fascinating and multi-layered look at five childhood friends who grow up keeping a secret together will keep readers hooked until the final revelThis fascinating and multi-layered look at five childhood friends who grow up keeping a secret together will keep readers hooked until the final revelations at the end of the book. This book reminds me of a darker version of the movie "Now and Then" with the atmosphere of "The Ice Storm," another great film about 20th century coming of age. The five friends' experiences are described from their childhood points of view in the late 1970s, and as adults in the present day. Relationships between the main characters' parents are also described, with alternating points of view in the past and presesnt. No character is a cardboard cutout in this book, all have deep and disturbing histories. This book is more literary and less straightforward suspense than Laura Lippman's other books - you'll want to keep reading to find out what happens to the relationships between the characters, not necessarily because the "mystery" is so compelling. I've read several of her stand-alone books, have not gotten to the Tess Monaghan series yet, but so far I love everything Laura Lippman does. ...more
Readers who enjoy psychological thrillers and stories of women overcoming adversity will LOVE "Before I Go To Sleep." Christine Lucas is a London housReaders who enjoy psychological thrillers and stories of women overcoming adversity will LOVE "Before I Go To Sleep." Christine Lucas is a London housewife who is afflicted with a rare form of amnesia: Every night when she goes to sleep, the last couple decades' worth of her memory is erased. Each morning when she wakes, she thinks she is a twentysomething college student, only to find that she is middle-aged, married, and living with her husband and caregiver, Ben. She can retain memories of what she learns each day, but every night these short-term memories are erased.
When Chris begins seeing a new doctor, he encourages her to begin keeping a journal to record each day's events, to try and strengthen her memory. As she writes each day in the journal, she struggles to learn more about her own history, her past career, and her loved ones. Soon she discovers that Ben is concealing information from her and lying to her. As Christine moves closer and closer to learning more about the traumatic event that caused her amnesia problems, she discovers she can't trust anyone: who is telling the truth and who wants to hurt her? Ben, Dr. Nash, her best friend from college, Claire? Further complicating her situation is an amnesiac tendency to "confabulate," or make up memories to fill in missing spaces from her life. Readers will find themselves rushing toward the climactic scenes of this novel desperate to learn what is true in Christine's life, and what is a malicious lie.
Even though I guessed the main plot twist well before the end of the book, there were a lot of other facts Christine learned that completely took me by surprise! I listened to the audio version of this book, expertly narrated by Orlagh Cassidy, who manages to make all the characters seem either comforting or sinister, as the plot demands....more
I can't wait to read more of McKenzie's books after sampling this exciting psychological thriller. Geniver is still grieving after the loss of her stiI can't wait to read more of McKenzie's books after sampling this exciting psychological thriller. Geniver is still grieving after the loss of her stillborn baby daughter after eight years. Her husband, Art, wants them to keep trying to get pregnant again but she's not so fond of the idea.
Geniver's life is turned upside down one day when a woman shows up on her doorstep to tell her that her child actually lived, and was taken from her at the hospital. And even worse, that her husband knew about the plan to take the infant. Geniver and her husband quickly begin to grow apart as she can't give up her investigation to discover whether her daughter might still be alive. The plot of this book is loaded with twists and turns, and there is a great monster twist at the conclusion. I couldn't put it down, and I'd love to read a sequel to this expertly plotted tale. ...more
A thriller that will keep you turning pages, with a most unusual serial "killer" and his work at its heart. Annabel, a mousy police analyst, is the prA thriller that will keep you turning pages, with a most unusual serial "killer" and his work at its heart. Annabel, a mousy police analyst, is the primary narrator of HUMAN REMAINS, but chapters written from her perspective are interspersed with those in the voice of Colin, who's an office drudge by day and a total freak by night.
After Annabel finds her neighbor's long-dead body, she begins digging into the data at work and finds that an alarming number of shut-ins have died in her town in the past year. As she struggles to get her work noticed by the higher-ups in the police department, Annabel is forced to deal with personal trauma when her mother suffers a life-threatening stroke.
Readers learn that Colin, who has mastered a special type of hypnosis, can convince depressed people to lock themselves away and commit slow suicide. When Annabel, bereaved over her mother, stumbles into Colin's path, he targets her as his next victim. Will she succumb to his creepy methods and lock herself away, or will she be able to help bring him to justice?
This was a fascinating and suspenseful book that takes the idea of a serial killer to a very strange place. Colin is a skin-crawlingly awful villain and some of the descriptions of the "human remains" were stomach-turning, but these factors only added to the suspense of the plot. Five stars for this quick and scary read!...more
An exciting and unique thriller debut featuring an unconventional main character, Becky Masterman's "Rage Against the Dying" will captivate anyone whoAn exciting and unique thriller debut featuring an unconventional main character, Becky Masterman's "Rage Against the Dying" will captivate anyone who loves creepy thrillers featuring a strong woman tracking a terrifying serial killer. Ex-FBI Agent Brigid Quinn is committed to settling down and living the peaceful life of a retiree with her new husband, Carlo, in Arizona. She's succeeding fairly well until a killer attempts to capture her one morning while she's out rock hunting.
She learns that the attacker may be connected to one of her biggest cases, the Route 66 killer. Her beloved protege was one of this killer's victims, and the unsolved case has always haunted her. When a truck driver comes forward to confess to the Route 66 killings, she must work with a much younger FBI agent, Laura Coleman, to find out if he's really guilty.
Brigid is a truly unique character in thriller-world as she is a Baby Boomer age retiree dealing with creating a life outside the career that previously consumed all her time, and she doesn't want to expose her husband to all the horrors she has seen. She's gritty and realistic and will stay with you long after you put down the book. I love Arizona, so the desert setting was also an enjoyable feature of the book for me. I hope we get to read more books about her adventures!...more