‘The Mother-in-Law’ by Sally Hepworth is filled with thoughtful insight into complicated relationships

mother in law

“The Mother-in-Law” by Sally Hepworth is a story that intrigues while also leaving the reader to reconsider what is important in life. The story is told from two points of view — Diana, married with two adult children, and Lucy, married to Ollie, Diana’s oldest son. At the very start of the story, Lucy and her family learn about Diana’s death.

Continue reading

‘The Better Sister’ by Alafair Burke is a gripping story of love, sisterhood, and the lengths we go to when protecting those we love

better sister.jpg

“The Better Sister” by Alafair Burke is the story of two sisters; one is — to all appearances — perfect. Chloe might be the younger sister, but she has achieved what few do, fame, wealth, a very important job, accolades, and even the perfect husband and son. In reality, the son is her nephew and her husband is her sister’s ex-husband.

Her sister, Nicky, is the screw-up. Nicky never went to college, partied too much, worked low paying jobs, lost low paying jobs, and eventually lost custody of her son. Years later, Chloe and Adam married, raising Ethan as their son. But lately, things in Chloe’s life are not going so perfectly.

Continue reading

‘They All Fall Down’ by Rachel Howzell Hall thrills readers to the end

all fall down

“They All Fall Down” by Rachel Howzell Hall keeps some secrets closely hidden, while others — like the title — are out there for everyone to see. And when Miriam Macy sails to the luxurious mansion on Mictlan, an isolated island in Mexico, she keeps her secrets hidden almost to the end. But what about the other six people on the island? And what about the fact that the pretense for luring her to the island was just that, a pretense?

Continue reading

‘The Girl from Berlin’ by Ronald H. Balson is another legal mystery/historical fiction fabulous novel

girl from berlin.jpg

“The Girl from Berlin” is another wonderful novel by Ronald H. Balson in which he continues with Catherine and Liam, his attorney/detective main character couple, who take cases in which the reader gets to travel back in time to see the background of those cases, as Catherine and Liam are learning about those events. The stories are especially riveting because of Balson’s ability to create the dual story, cutting off each story at a cliffhanger moment, making the reader continue reading to find out what happens next, until before the reader looks up, the day has gone by and the book is read.

Continue reading

‘Freefall’ by Jessica Barry is a thriller about the hidden strength in a mother and daughter

freefall.jpg

“Freefall” by Jessica Barry is an action-filled thriller that is about a daughter who has left home, lost her job, lost her compass, and in the process of becoming a hero is also in huge danger. While Ally is literally running for her life, her mother, halfway across the country, is mourning her daughter’s supposed death and also investigating who her estranged daughter had somehow become.

Between Ally and Maggie’s alternating first-person narratives, the reader learns the story of the past and what happened to estrange the mother and daughter, and the present. The present is that Ally is supposedly dead in a plane crash that killed her and her fiancé, but the reader knows Ally is really on the run after surviving the plane crash. Through Ally’s narrative, the reader learns about Ally’s inner strength and her determination to survive.

Continue reading

A student review of ‘Spy Toys: Out of Control’ by Mark Powers

spy toys

This review was written by a junior reviewer, Jamie L., who is a fourth grader who loves to read.

“Spy Toys Out of Control” by Mark Powers is a great sequel that includes action, humor, and a little bit of mystery. Powers hooks the reader into his writing, forming a picture in the reader’s head. Once a person starts reading, this book will not be put down.

Continue reading

‘Killer Thriller’ by Lee Goldberg is an entertaining maze of laughter and suspense

thrillerStory within a story, play within a play, movie within a movie. Authors, playwrights, and screenwriters — usually clever ones — do it often. But Lee Goldberg takes the concept several crazy steps beyond that relatively simple technique in his latest novel, “Killer Thriller.” Here, the stories wind around and through the main narrative like a long river running and twisting through a countryside. Novels inside novels, movies inside novels, movies inside movies — it’s downright dizzying — but incredibly entertaining.

Continue reading

‘Secret in Stone: The Unicorn Quest’ by Kamilla Benko is the second book in a wonderful middle grade fantasy adventure

secret in stone.jpeg

“Secret in Stone” is the second book in “The Unicorn Quest” series by Kamilla Benko, and it truly is a fantasy adventure. The sisters, Claire and Sophie, are in an alternate world accessed by a chimney in their great-aunt’s house which leads to a well in the land of Arden, where magic lives.

Continue reading

‘Watcher in the Wood: a Rockton Novel’ by Kelley Armstrong continues the mystery and excitement in the series

watcher

“Watcher in the Woods” by Kelley Armstrong continues her “Rockton” series set in the fictional “town” of Rockton, in the Northern Yukon in the middle of thousands of miles of wilderness. Mixed in with the wild, the tundra, the vicious animals, and the cold is the primitive town of Rockton, where fugitives from society live. Some are victims seeking to flee their abuser(s) while others are criminals seeking to escape justice.

Continue reading