ARC Review: Watching You by Lisa Jewell

38355282Melville Heights is one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Bristol, England; home to doctors and lawyers and old-money academics. It’s not the sort of place where people are brutally murdered in their own kitchens. But it is the sort of place where everyone has a secret. And everyone is watching you.
As the headmaster credited with turning around the local school, Tom Fitzwilliam is beloved by one and all—including Joey Mullen, his new neighbor, who quickly develops an

 intense infatuation with this thoroughly charming yet unavailable man. Joey thinks her crush is a secret, but Tom’s teenaged son Freddie—a prodigy with aspirations of becoming a spy for MI5—excels in observing people and has witnessed Joey behaving strangely around his father.
One of Tom’s students, Jenna Tripp, also lives on the same street, and she’s not convinced her teacher is as squeaky clean as he seems. For one thing, he has taken a particular liking to her best friend and fellow classmate, and Jenna’s mother—whose mental health has admittedly been deteriorating in recent years—is convinced that Mr. Fitzwilliam is stalking her.
Meanwhile, twenty years earlier, a schoolgirl writes in her diary, charting her doomed obsession with a handsome young English teacher named Mr. Fitzwilliam…

Goodreads |Amazon | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

review

As a big fan of psychological thrillers, I have to say I’m surprised that I hadn’t picked up a Lisa Jewell book until now. Now that I have, I can honestly say it won’t be my last Lisa Jewell read as I’m already itching to dive into both Then She Was Gone and I Found You.

First off, the title pinpoints it exactly. Watching You. Everyone seems to be watching everyone in this book. There’s a lot of secrets being hidden, spying being done and so much happening throughout the book.

The characters cast in Watching You is a quite large, differing bunch. Some teenagers, some middle-aged and some newlyweds. Told in different points of view, you need to pay attention to each character’s perspective in order to garner clues as to what’s going on. Some of those clues come in the form of interviewing statements between police detectives and characters, both main and secondary.

The plot is intriguing, the writing is of good quality and the book is well plotted out. The characters are all solid and as a reader you can picture each and every one of them. Dialogue was vivid and consistent throughout the entire book. While I had a good guess on who was murder and who committed the murder, I didn’t guess the entire laid out plot and once it was laid bare, it was a good one.

Full of twists and turns – many I didn’t see coming – Watching You is one of those books that is hard to put down once you’ve started reading. I had it read within hours because I needed to know what was going to happen next.

4

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Book Review: Forget Me Not by A.M. Taylor

41552686.jpgA gripping, heart-wrenching thriller full of emotion and twists.

An exciting debut psychological thriller perfect for fans of Clare Mackintosh, Liane Moriarty and Lisa Jewell.

WHAT HAPPENED TO NORA?

When Maddie met Nora, their friendship felt as easy as breathing. And when Nora disappeared, all the air went with her. Without her best friend, Maddie’s life became impossible.

Ten years later, Nora is still missing and Maddie is still searching. People have been questioned. People have even been accused. But no one has managed to find Nora.

Then, in the same spot where Nora went missing, the murdered body of Nora’s little sister is found. Convinced this is no coincidence, Maddie resolves to uncover the killer and find Nora – dead or alive.

But will she be able to cope, when we learn what really happened to Nora…?

Goodreads |Amazon

review

In 2008, seventeen year old Nora’s car was found abandoned, the gas tank empty, but nothing out of place. Vanished, no one knew where Nora had been headed that time of night. The only thing they knew was that Nora was never heard from or seen again. Ten years later, on the anniversary of Nora’s disappearance, her sister, Noelle, now seventeen herself, is found murdered. It can’t be a coincidence, can it?

Forget Me Not is a slow burn book full of emotion, mystery and psychological intensity. Taylor’s writing is well crafted, creating a spell-binding, utterly memorizing thriller that drew me in from the very first line. A case weaved between past and present, between two sisters and those who are left behind, Forget Me Not is a psychological thriller that stays with you long after the very last page.

With secrets from Nora’s past and flashbacks from her best friend, Maddie, clues begin unraveling in order to help Maddie find out what happened to Noelle – and essentially Nora. Through twists and turns, Taylor keeps readers on the edge of anticipation wondering what will happen next, are the two cases related and exactly who is behind it all.

Forget Me Not is a good suspenseful mystery with compelling writing. Not necessarily action-packed or fast-paced, what Forget Me Not has a first person perspective of someone left behind with more questions than answers, a guessing game as to whodunit and an engrossing plot.

For a first novel, Taylor breaks into the literary world with a strong debut.

4

#Blogoween: Trick or Treat Around the Block {Book Tag}

Originally created by The Bookish Porcupine, I thought this looked like a fun tag to do and share with you guys today!

#1 CREEPY HOUSE ON THE CORNER OF THE STREET

BOOK WITH A CREEPY COVER

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#2 LIGHTS OUT (PARTY POOPERS)

A BOOK YOU WANT TO READ WHEN YOU WANT TO ESCAPE

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#3 THE HOUSE THAT GIVES OUT THE CHEAP CANDY

GUILTY PLEASURE BOOK

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#4 THE HOUSE WITH THE BEST DECORATIONS ON THE BLOCK

BEST HAUNTING/HALLOWEEN THEMED COVER

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#5 THE HOUSE THAT GIVES OUT THE BEST CANDY

#1 HALLOWEEN RECOMMENDATION

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SPEED ROUND

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#1 CORN MAZE OR HAUNTED HOUSE?

I’m a big baby so I’d probably cry or have a panic attack in a haunted house, so it’s corn mazes for me!

#2 CLASSIC OR UNIQUE COSTUME?

UNIQUE!

#3 SEXY OR SCARY COSTUME?

Eh, sexy. Although I’m like 25% sexy and 115% awkward so not sure I pull it off, lol.

#4 COMEDY OR HORROR HALLOWEEN FILM?

Probably comedy since I love Hocus Pocus and Halloweentown

#5 CHOCOLATE OR SOUR CANDY?

CHOCOLATE!!

 


If you’re reading this and want to do this tag, I TAG YOU! 

 

 

Introducing…Literary Lovers ♡

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For months now I have been working hard on a project that I am so excited about with a fantastic group of women by my side. And today I want to share more about it with you!

Literary Lovers Magazine is a monthly digital publication that will be available to authors, bloggers and readers. Filled with author tips, articles, book reviews and more, we have something for everyone.

Over the last few months I’ve brought together an amazing team of incredible women – authors and bloggers alike. We even have a librarian on our team! These women will be bringing you incredible content in the form of reviews, interviews and articles. Our team is comprised of: Author Lisa Arrington, Author Cleo Scornavacca, Cleo’s daughter, Nikki Scornavacca, Author Heidi Hopkins, Author & Food Blogger Mickey Reed, Author Cecily Wolfe, Carlene from Carlene Inspired, Lisa Ward from Dirty Blonde Books, Jess Ramirez from The Lovely Books, Jeanne McAvoy of Fireflies and Freekicks and Kathy West from Books With Kathy

We’re also looking to add more book reviewers and columnists to our team so if you have any interest you can reach out to us at literaryloversmag@gmail.com to find out more information on being a reviewer or columnist. We also are accepting contributing articles. Don’t want to commit to being a columnist, but are passionate about something that you’d like others to know about? Send us your article for submission!

If you’re an author interested in being interviewed or having an exclusive excerpt ran in Literary Lovers Magazine, don’t hesitate to reach out. If you design literary gifts, book boxes or lifestyle products that you’d like us to review, reach out. We have so many opportunities available for authors, book bloggers and business owners because we believe in you and your dreams and we want to help shine a little on your books, your blogs and your products.

Launching on November 1st, we’re so excited about this journey we’re taking and we hope that you’ll join us – either by being a part of our team or by subscribing to receive our magazine in your inbox each month.

♡ FIND US AT ♡

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ARC Review: The Warning by Kathryn Croft

40853996.jpgMy little boy’s room was empty, his bed neatly made. Alarm bells should have rung immediately. Then the knock on the door came. All I remember is a thick fog wrapping itself tightly around me. This couldn’t be happening to us.

Three years ago, nurse Zoe’s son Ethan was found drowned in a muddy river by their home, along with his best friend Josh. With no witnesses, their deaths were ruled a tragic accident.

Heartbroken, Zoe and her family, move away from her home. They’re just beginning to get back to some kind of normality, when, out of the blue, Zoe receives an anonymous email:

You need to find out the truth about what happened to your son. Don’t let this rest. Don’t believe the lie.

Shaken, Zoe starts an obsessive hunt for the truth. But why is her husband so reluctant to help?
And why is Josh’s mother so determined not to believe her?

An absolutely unputdownable psychological thriller about a mother’s desperate search for the truth. Fans of The Girl on the Train, and Gone Girl will be hooked from the very first page.

Goodreads |Amazon | KoboBarnes & Noble

review

“You need to find out the truth about what happened to your son. Don’t let this rest. Don’t believe the lie.”

Croft is a new to me author so The Warning was my first book by her. I went into it blindly and got sucked in to her words, the plot and the suspense. From the start of the book until the very end, I was on the edge of my seat unable to put the book down because I wanted, no, I needed to know what really happened to Ethan, Zoe’s son who had drowned three years earlier.

With so many twists and turns, I didn’t know what would happen next which made The Warning all the more thrilling. Told in different points of view, including that of an anonymous stalker, Croft doesn’t disappoint at all. The story is altogether riveting and just when I thought I knew where things would be headed, I would be blindsided once more.

The tension throughout The Warning is palpable. There’s so many shocking secrets being kept and so many lies going hand in hand with those secrets. I absolutely loved the story line and I was quite surprised there at the end once everything unraveled and the truth came out.

Twisted, dark, sad but amazing, The Warning is definitely a MUST READ!

5

 

 

Local Supernatural

LOCAL

I fell a few days behind on 31 Days of Blogoween due to some hard mama moments but today I’m back talking about one of my favorite topics: local legends. I love reading about hauntings from different towns and places and I live in a town where we have our own local lore and real ghost stories that are told every Halloween without fail.

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Behind our American Red Cross is a cemetery where a weary, distraught widow of a Civil War officer threw herself into the river. Her apparition is seen every year during the winter months, either wearing a beautiful white gown or a blood-drenched white gown.

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In City Hall where the Perkins family once resided in the 1800s, it is said that it is haunted by the ghost of a woman responsible for her nephew’s death. She roams the grounds looking for him, calling out his name. The building was once the Perkins family mansion. A year after graduating from Yale, the son of the family commited suicide by hanging himself from a tree on the property. When the father found his son’s body, he hung himself in the office of their home in City Hall.

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Mahoning River was once used as part of the Underground Railroad. A tunnel was built below the river and during use it collapsed once, trapping the escaping slaves for days. Their moans and screams could be heard until they eventually died. On cool autumn nights, it’s said that one can still hear their screams.

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The Old Inn Shrine is an abandoned house in the countryside where once an inn stood during the 1800s. An unknown traveler died there when he became ill. The innkeeper denied the man’s request for a priest to deliver last rites and he died unblessed. Soon after his death, mysterious things began to occur, tormenting the innkeeper. Dishes would break, strange lights were seen and the sound of a galloping ghostly horse was heard. The innkeeper’s nearby barn caught fire and his cattle died from an unknown illness. Driven to near sanity, the innkeeper donated his land and home to the church and built a small shrine. A priest is said to still visit the shrine once a year to conduct Mass.

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And one street away from me is a house where a young Indian woman is seen walking around. When a room was added to the house in the 1900’s, the bones of an Indian woman was found buried beneath the ground.

There are the stories of my town. There are our ghost haunting and our legends. These are the tales I’ve grown up hearing.

What about you? Do you have a hometown ghost story? 

 

 

ARC Review: Our Little Lies by Sue Watson

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41040396.jpg How far would you go to protect your perfect life?

Marianne has a life others dream of. A beautiful townhouse on the best street in the neighbourhood. Three bright children who are her pride and joy.

Sometimes her past still hurts: losing her mother early, growing up in foster care. But her husband, Simon, is always there. A successful surgeon, he’s the envy of every woman they’ve ever met. Flowers, gifts, trips to France: nothing is too good for his family.

Then Simon says another woman’s name. The way he lingers on it, Caroline , gives Marianne a shudder of suspicion, but she knows it’s nothing – she can’t entertain this flash of paranoia.

In the old days, she’d have distracted herself by excelling at work, but Marianne left her glamorous career when she married. She’d speak to a friend, but she’s too busy with her children and besides, Simon doesn’t approve of the few she has left.

It’s almost by accident that Marianne starts to learn more about Caroline. But once started, she can’t stop, because what she finds makes her wonder: is the question she should be asking not ‘should she be jealous’, but… ‘should she be scared?’

Fans of The Girl on the Train and I Let You Go, who are looking for a dark, gripping psychological thriller with a final twist to put their jaw on the floor, will love Our Little Lies.

Goodreads |Amazon | KoboBarnes & Noble

review

From an outsider’s point of view it would seem that Marianne had the perfect life. Wife of a doctor, Marianne lived in the big beautiful house, had twin sons and a step-daughter she adored and a husband that all the women in town swooned over, but perfection is a fantasy and sometimes not everything is what it seems. In Our Little Lies, Watson delves into how darkness can lie beneath the seemingly perfect marriage.

Early on in the book we see that while things may seem perfect, there’s something off about the marriage between Simon and Marianne. Simon is narcissistic, demanding and flawed. Marianne is timid and survives on medication that she takes for the thoughts that run through her head. Oftentimes Simon is callous with his words and the way that he treats Marianne and their children pick up on this.

When Simon mentions another woman’s name it sets off a chain of events that no one could have imagined and Marianne’s obsession with Caroline kicks in.

Every time I thought I knew where the book was going, how it would end.. I wasn’t even close. While my dislike for Simon grew heavily with each page, I couldn’t put this book down for the life of me because I was hooked on wanting to know what would happen next, where was Watson going with the story line and would Simon finally get what he deserved? The tension is built up in a way that you need to keep reading.

A page turning psychological thriller, Our Little Lies had me on edge. Well written and detailed, I was intrigued from start to finish. I hope to see more in the thriller genre from Watson!

4

author

567988.jpg Sue Watson was a journalist then TV Producer at the BBC until she wrote her first book and was hooked.

She’s now written thirteen novels – many involving cake – and her books have been translated into Italian, German and Portuguese. Originally from Manchester, Sue now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in Worcestershire where much of her day is spent procrastinating while eating cake (for research purposes), and watching ‘My 600lb Life,’ on the sofa.

Sue explored the darker side of life for her latest book ‘Our Little Lies,’ a dark, psychological thriller completely devoid of cake. She’s hoping this change in direction will be reflected on the weighing scales.

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