One perfect lie – Lisa Scottoline

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I love these kind of books – obviously. The mystery and intrigue keep me turning page after page until my eyes can’t see anymore. I usually finish them in a few days, neglecting  import things, like dishes.

In this book Chris Brennan is working as a high school teacher and coach. On paper, he looks like the perfect guy. However, Chris isn’t who he says he is. The story focuses around three kids, a loner, a rich kid, and a troubled teen all with their own secrets. There is a plot in place to cause some sort of destruction on the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing and Chris is at the center of it. Is he trying to help one of the kids do it? Is he trying to enlist one of them to help him? Or is he trying to prevent it? The reader is left wondering while lies and secrets come pouring in from all the families.

This novel, as I said, leaves you turning pages and wanting more. It is a fast paced, heart thumping novel and is a fine example of how wonderfully Lisa Scottoline weaves a story.

I would recommend to lovers of: Lisa Scottoline, Stephen King, Lisa Jackson…, mystery and fiction lovers as well thriller and suspense lovers.

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The Girl who was taken – Charlie Donlea

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This was one of those stories that had you second guessing every single character right to the very end. I was so sure the antagonist was five different people at any one time. The author would expertly feed the reader clues and false trails so that by the end…well you will just have to read the book.

This is a story of two missing girls. Both go missing the same night, both go to the same school and are the same age. One makes it home and the other doesn’t. As the story unfolds you get insight from the one of the missing girls sister, Livia and insight from one of the missing girls, Megan. As Livia searches and searches for answers to help find her missing sister, she ends up going down a dark road that brings up more questions that it answers. The man she thought responsible is dead, and the trail for any other suspect is cold. Until she recruits some unlikely helpers and starts to piece things together. The answers she finds may not be the ones that she is ready to hear.

This story takes a few twists and turns, it grips you and stays with you when you are unable to read it, and it has a lot of great medical detail that I always enjoy. I would recommend to anyone who enjoys fiction, mystery and suspense.

 

Do not become alarmed – Maile Meloy

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I read this book in one day. Okay one day and a few hours. I could not put it down. I absolutely love books that suck you in and don’t let go and also end well. Often times I feel that when a book as such a gripping beginning and middle, the end seems to come up abruptly. You are left turning pages wondering what happened. This book delivered a gripping beginning, a thrilling and nonstop middle with a satisfying conclusion.

In this story, two families set off for a holiday cruise. They meet another family on the trip and the parents hit off as do the kids. The cruise line is supposed to be very safe, where the adults can do what they want and the kids have fun in the Kid Zone. However, it is made clear early on that, while security may seem like a number one priority, it isn’t always so. Kids easily go missing in the Kid zone for example. When they decide to participate in one of the land excursions, the families split up to make the most of the day. Some going zip lining while others go golfing. It is on this excursion that the parents experience every parent’s nightmare. What follows is fast paced account of what the children and parents are going through during the time. The story is actually narrated through multiple points of view, to give the reader a look into each person’s mind as they struggle with situation they have been thrown into. It is page after page of build-up, anxiety, relief and then repeat. It is chilling account of just how easy your life can go from snapshots of having fun to those same snap shots becoming final memories. I would say anyone who is a fan of mystery, family drama, horror, fiction, reading books about what could happen, or just love a fast paced book should read this one. I think I found another favorite author.

As a side note – have your trusty Spanish-English translator near by.

Life Expectancy – Dean Koontz

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I enjoyed this book pretty much from the first page. The main character is a pastry chef and I love baking and watching baking shows. He also describes himself pretty much how I feel about myself, so it was nice having a main character you could really believe in. All that mixed with the characters dry and dark sense of humor and I was pretty much reading what my family would sound like…if we were pastry chefs with crazy clowns in our lives.

I think one of the greatest things, actually, was how Dean Koontz wove generations into the story, and made the whole thing seem completely plausible. In this book, Jimmy Tock is born on the same night his grandfather died. His grandfathers dying words were predictions of five terrible days for Jimmy that would happen throughout the course of his life. Each time one came true, there was no doubt that the rest would come to pass as well.

Jimmy and his family would face each terrible day as ready as they could; armed with love, common sense, sarcasm, pepper spray and a little creme brulee.

This book spans Jimmy’s life time and each chapter is leads you wanting the next one.

I would recommend this to anyone who loves mystery, Dean Koontz, and suspense. I would probably say if you are afraid of clowns…well this book won’t help your fears.

Winter Moon -Dean Koontz

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This book originally came out in 1993 and focuses on a cop and his family after a tragedy occurs, forcing them out of L.A. and into a smaller rural town in Montana. The issues that the family deal with are ones that cops still deal with today. It was interesting to read a story that took place over 20 years ago and realize one sad thing that had nothing to do with the story line…we haven’t learned from our mistakes at all. We still murder without abandon, we deal drugs to children, we blame everyone and anyone for our shortcomings, and innocent lives are the ones that ultimately suffer when the adults decide to fight. It is honestly that hard truth more than the actual story that I will probably take away from this. And wonder, will we ever learn?

Dean Koontz is a master at weaving mystery and suspense into horrifying nightmares beyond imagination. He develops rich characters and beautiful landscapes that allow you to immerse yourself fully into his works. Winter Moon is no different.

After deciding to leave the hard streets of L.A. to what they hope will be a new start for them, the family barely gets unpacked when strange things start happening. They soon discover that maybe people are less scary than they thought, especially when the universe is full of even more mystifying and terrifying things than they had ever dreamed.

Fans of Dean Koontz, Stephen King, mystery, horror, suspense, or science fiction will enjoy this book for sure.

Moment of Truth – Lisa Scottoline

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I suck at Clue, or any of those murder mystery movies, novels, plays…I am always shocked at the end when it was really the butler with rope in the conservatory. So, it was with some disappointment that I was right the whole time while I was reading this book. It definitely wasn’t Ms. Scottoline’s best. I loved some of her other books, Look Again, Keep Quiet, Accused  – to name a few…this one just fell off its mark somehow.

The main character, Mary Di Nunzio, is a rookie lawyer who gets thrown her first murder case where the alleged murderer has already confessed to the police. Jack Newlin, another attorney, confesses to killing his wife, but Mary and one of the detectives on the case don’t buy his story.

The whole book revolves around Mary uncovering layer after layer of lies only to finally uncover the truth that the reader knew  from the beginning of the book. Which in a way, I guess is kind of nice. As I said, I usually have a hard time guessing who done it so the whole time I am thinking it was the person who did, but convincing myself that it couldn’t be them. So I maintained a little mystery after all.

This is a good book for anyone who wants a quick mystery or court room drama read. A good rebound book after a series one. It requires no thought and it won’t keep you up at night.

You will know me – Megan Abbott

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This book sucks you in an doesn’t let you go until you turn the last page. Even then, it is one of those books that you keep thinking about it.

How far would you go if your child was destined for greatness? How far would your family go? Your community?  Most of us would never have to answer that question. Most of us have children with ordinary talents who will maybe get a scholarship. The rare few that actually make it to the Olympics – how did they get there? What did they sacrifice? This book takes you into that world where everything is riding on one person, the hopes and dreams of a coach, the inspiration for younger gymnast, the pride and joy of the families, the jealously and bitterness of the parents with ordinary children. It also brings with it a secret, a horrid and life changing secret, that threatens the entire community.

If the book was just about the life of a gymnast it would have a been a good book, but it also weaves a tale of a mystery, a who done it and why. When the whole story unravels, you find yourself asking: would I do the same for my child?

The only complaint I have about his book is that the conversations were choppy. I am sure it lead to the mystery and intrigue of the story, but I found it hard to read at some points. No one asks a questions to their husband only to have them turn away without answering…at least not without a fight. There was a lot of conversations that never went anywhere, and again, I am sure that it helped with the mysteriousness of the story, but as I said, it was hard to digest a few times.

Over all – I really enjoyed this book, and look forward to picking up her other books.