Sunday, January 20, 2019

Review: Date with Malice

Title: Date with Malice
Author: Julia Chapman
Publication Date: April 3, 2018
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Recommended If You Like: unique characters, colorful settings, clever endings to mysteries

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book or the review itself.

The Book:

Samson has returned to his home town, to the father he had stopped talking to and the place that still thinks of him as a black sheep. Now he's working-temporarily he thinks-as a detective, and has been hired to look into two mysteries-strange occurrences at an old age home, and the disappearance of a prize-winning ram.

Delilah has lived in this town all her life, and now that Samson is back, she's found herself drawn into helping Samson navigate the town and its mysteries.

What I Liked:

To start with, I loved the ending! I was worried that too much was being telegraphed too early on, but the solutions to the mysteries were clever and surprising.

I also really liked the characters, from Samson and Delilah to the supporting cast. Everyone is compelling and serves a real purpose

Anything I Didn't Like?

The book started out slow for me. It did eventually pick up, but it took a while. I almost gave up on it (though I'm glad I didn't).

I also felt like I was missing some things because I hadn't read the first book in the series. There were quite a few references that I didn't get.


There were definitely things I really liked about this book, and I could see myself someday reading another entry in the series. But there are other cozy mystery series that will take priority first.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Review: She Lies in Wait

Title: She Lies in Wait
Author: Gytha Lodge
Publication Date: January 8, 2019
Genre: Mystery/Suspense
Recommended If You Like: secrets from the past, one among them is a killer, police as characters

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book or my review itself.

The Book:

Thirty years ago, fourteen year old Aurora Jackson disappears on a camping trip with a group of fellow teenagers, When her body is discovered, it is evident that only that group could have known about the hiding spot, and the cop who is assigned the case knew the group back when Aurora was still alive. As people come together and fall apart, lies are revealed, memories are discovered, and a killer hides in plain sight.

What I Liked:

This book is really suspenseful right from the start. It hits the ground running and doesn't stop. There are so many twists and turns that when I thought I knew where the story was going, I would find out a few pages later I was completely wrong.

The characters were really compelling as well. Each was unique, and while they each seemed to fit a stereotype at first, as the book progressed each showed layer after layer. That was what made it seem like any of them could be the killer, and like none of them could be the killer. I also really liked seeing how the main group from the past (seen through flashbacks) was affected by the disappearance and eventual reveal of the murder.

Plus I automatically love the trope of a crime from the past being revealed in the present, and the killer having to be part of a specific group.

Anything I Didn't Like?

There were so many characters that sometimes it was hard to keep track of who was who in relation to everybody else. Even with how unique the characters were, the sheer number just made things tricky sometimes.


This is a really suspenseful mystery that kept me turning pages and kept me on my toes. I would definitely recommend this book.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Review: An Anonymous Girl

Title: An Anonymous Girl
Authors: Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen
Publication Date: January 8, 2019
Genre: Psychological Suspense/Thriller
Recommended If You Like: The Wife Between Us, psychological studies and experiments, secrets and lies

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book or the review itself.

The Book:

In need of money, Jessica Farris signs up to be a part of a study in psychology, specifically ethics and morals. The questions start out slow, but quickly build, and Jessica finds herself drawn in despite her earlier intentions. But what the initial study leads to is something Jessica could never have predicted, and she is forced to question everything she thought she knew about her life.

What I Liked:

This book is so suspenseful! I, like Jessica, constantly found myself guessing what was real, who could be trusted, and what was really going on. There were so many layers of secrets to peel back that I was constantly flipping pages, having to know more and more. There were some really creepy moments too, some psychological horror that left chills.

Anything I Didn't Like?

I'm still a tad unsure how I feel about the ending. I know I like it, I'm just not sure if I love it. Without giving anything away, I'm not sure if it feels like it fits with everything we had learned about the characters. The very last chapter I definitely loved though.


I would definitely recommend this book. While I didn't love it quite as much as I loved their previous book, The Wife Between Us, this was still a really good book. I can't wait to see what these authors come up with next!

Monday, December 31, 2018

2018 Reading Stats!


Number Of Books You Read: 143
Number of Re-Reads: 1
Genre You Read The Most From: Mystery/Psychological Thriller & Suspense/True Crime


1. Best Book You Read In 2018?

(If you have to cheat — you can break it down by genre if you want or 2018 release vs. backlist)

And an amazing book written by my cousin:

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?


 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  



 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

 5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018?



I don't seem to have read any series enders this year.

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018?

A.J. Finn and C.J. Tudor

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

 9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?


10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018?


11. Most memorable character of 2018?

Aza (Turtles All the Way Down)

Stevie (Truly Devious)

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018?


13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2018?


 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read? 


 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018?

“You're both the fire and the water that extinguishes it. You're the narrator, the protagonist, and the sidekick. You're the storyteller and the story told. You are somebody's something, but you are also your you.” -Turtles All the Way Down, John Green

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018?

Shortest: Binti, 96 pages
Longest: The Name of the Rose, 536 pages

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

Simon/Blue, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

The Naturals, The Naturals series

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018?

Dean and Michael, The Naturals 

23. Best 2018 debut you read?

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018?

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?


1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2018?

There have been so many beautiful Bookstagram accounts I've started following this year, I've been so impressed by people who manage to frame these gorgeous photos with these accessories and color choices that all blend together so well. It's very inspiring.

2. Favorite post you wrote in 2018?

Why Turtles All The Way Down Means So Much to Me:

3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2018:

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)? 

Dewey's 24 Hour Readathons

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2018? 

All the amazing books I got to read

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

Health problems meant for a while I wasn't able to focus on reading or blogging like I usually do

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

Why Turtles All The Way Down Means So Much to Me:

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

I always wish my posts would get more comments, I love interacting with people about books.

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)? 

How easy it is to get library books on my Kindle

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

I completed the Popsugar Reading Challenge.


1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019?

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)?

3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019?

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019?

Be able to read and blog more!

The Unread Shelf Project 2019

As of December 31st, 2018, I'm starting with 351 books on my TBR bookcases. I'm going to try to read predominantly from those shelves this year and get that number down!

1) The Running Man by Stephen King
2) Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson
3) The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The Angel of the Opera by Sam Siciliano
4) Date with Malice by Julia Chapman
5) The Grave's a Fine and Private Place by Alan Bradley

Cruising Through the Cozies Challenge; Netgalley and Edelweiss Challenge

Cruising Through the Cozies:
1) Date with Malice by Julia Chapman

Netgalley and Edelweiss:
1) An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen
2) She Lies in Wait by Gytha Lodge

2019 Popsugar Challenge!

1. A book becoming a movie in 2019: The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
2. A book that makes you nostalgic: The Mystery of Three Quarters by Sophie Hannah
3. A book written by a musician (fiction or nonfiction): Dolores Claiborne by Stephen King
4. A book you think should be turned into a movie: Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
5. A book with at least one million ratings on Goodreads: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
6. A book with a plant in the title or on the cover: The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
7. A reread of a favorite book: Popular Crime by Bill James
8. A book about a hobby: Needled to Death by Maggie Sefton
9. A book you meant to read in 2018: The Grave's a Fine and Private Place by Alan Bradley
10. A book with POP, SUGAR, or CHALLENGE in the title: Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson
11. A book with an item of clothing or accessory on the cover: Raiders of the Lost Corset by Elle Byerrum
12. A book inspired by myth/legend/folklore: The Seduction of Water by Carol Goodman
13. A book published posthumously: Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf
14. A book you see someone reading on TV or in a movie: Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
15. A retelling of a classic: Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood
16. A book with a question in the title: Did She Kill Him? by Kate Coloquhoun
17. A book set on college or university campus: If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio
18. A book about someone with a superpower: The Dire King by William Ritter
19. A book told from multiple POVs: Wonder by R.J. Palacio
20. A book set in space: Red Shirts by John Scalzi
21. A book by two female authors: An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen
22. A book with SALTY, SWEET, BITTER, or SPICY in the title: Sweet Little Lies by Caz Frear
23. A book set in Scandinavia: Room No. 10 by Ake Edwardson
24. A book that takes place in a single day: The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
25. A debut novel: The Girl Before by Rena Olsen
26. A book that's published in 2019: The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson
27. A book featuring an extinct or imaginary creature: The Devil and Winnie Jones by Micol Ostow
28. A book recommended by a celebrity you admire: Wild by Cheryl Strayed
29. A book with LOVE in the title: Love and Death in the Sunshine State by Cutter Wood
30. A book featuring an amateur detective: Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage
31. A book about a family: We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates
32. A book author from Asia, Africa, or South America: The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes
33. A book with a zodiac sign or astrology term in title: Zodiac Station by Tom Harper
34. A book that includes a wedding: The Bride Wore Size 12 by Meg Cabot
35. A book by an author whose first and last names start with the same letter: The Rottweiler by Ruth Rendell
36. A ghost story: Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger
37. A book with a two-word title: Ruin Falls by Jenny Milchman
38. A novel based on a true story: The Abominable by Dan Simmons
39. A book revolving around a puzzle or game: The Running Man by Stephen King
40. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading challenge: The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club by Dorothy L. Sayers