Well friends, another month has passed! I wrapped up January midway through "The Final Girls Support Group" by Grady Hendrix. My final report: I liked it! The horror genre got me interested in circling back to some psychological thrillers that I had picked up at my favorite local bookstore, Inkwood, in Haddonfield. While I love the convenience and instant gratification of a Kindle book, I love browsing the shelves at a bookstore even more.
Inkwood is next to my favorite place to write (Saxby's) and across the street from my favorite place to worship (Haddonfield Presbyterian). . I always find something to catch my eye from an author I've read before and something new from their staff recommendations! As a result, I have a growing stack on my bedside table and also on my bookshelves of these books that caught my eye. I usually save the real life books for reading in the summer, poolside, but broke my habit and dug into a couple this month.
Long story, short: go shop at Inkwood or your other local bookstore! It's the best sort of shopping adventure when you discover a great read!
Here's what I read in February:
1. Never Saw Me Coming by Vera Kurian
This is a book about psychopaths and it was so well written (even though no one is technically diagnosed as a psychopath anymore), that I began to think everyone around me was a psychopath and then also question my own sanity. All of that madness aside, the story is great, it kept me reading. There are plenty of parts that require you to suspend your disbelief, but Kurian does a masterful job of making you a willing participant in the fiction.
2. Someone Else's Shoes by JoJo Moyes
I am a big JoJo Moyes fan and I also love contemporary women's fiction with a dash of romance and humor. Moyes did not disappoint in this book. She explored and featured two middle aged women with teenagers as central characters--and she managed to make both women hot, but desirable and lovable messes. I found myself feeling seen in both of the main character's stories--even though I don't live a life like either one. Moyes always does a brilliant job of making the universal triumphs and travails of life, fun and well, a story to tell.
3. The Perfect Marriage by Jeneva Rose
This book was recommended over and over again in my Peloton Mom's Book group. It is a psychological thriller with a ridiculous premise: a man has a mistress and the mistress dies and his hot shot defense attorney wife defends him. If that is not enough, everything that happens in the book becomes more unbelievable. The writing was okay; sometimes I felt like I was reading a very early draft or an outline versus a fully developed novel. But, hey, this was free on Kindle Unlimited and I did stick it out to see how it ended, so not the worst thing I ever read. In the end it was just "eh"
4. The Housemaid by Freida McFadden
So, I loved this book! Another Kindle Unlimited book, The Housemaid delivers on suspense and mystery. Of course, there is plenty of unbelievable things in the book; but I loved it and read it in 24 hours. I love a suspense triller like that--one I can binge quickly and late into the night while under the covers. It reminds me of staying up late with my flashlight to read a Nancy Drew.
5. Never Lie by Freida McFadden
This was pretty good and another Kindle Unlimited selection. I picked it because I needed a quick read while I waited for sequel to The Housemaid to drop. It was okay. There were some plot technique similarities to The Housemaid (characters with violent, secret pasts). The strangest similarity was the characters eating a bologna sandwiches, which also happened in The Housemaid. It made me wonder if McFadden always places bologna in her books. . like a serial killer who leaves behind a playing card.
6. The Housemaid's Secret by Freida McFadden
Well, I was so excited to read this and see if there was a bologna sandwich featured (there was not, unfortunately). It was not as good as the original; but I love returning to characters that I previously met in another book. It's nice to think that the fictional people you spent so much alone time with go on to get into more suspenseful situations. The sequel was enjoyable; at times predictable and then suddenly, not. I wonder if there will be a third installment in the series? I think it would sell, even if the story seems already played out.
7. Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun by Elle Cosimano
This is the third installment in the Finlay Donovan story. The whole premise of the series is a bit silly--a young mother/author who is recently divorced and somehow accidentally involved in the Russian Mob/Murder for Hire Hitman Situation. Despite the silliness, it all somehow works. I am not sure if the third installment could ever stand alone, but it is a nice installment in Finlay's story. If you enjoy a series that isn't serious and is simply fun, check this out.
8. Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone by Benjamin Stevenson
I am about halfway through this book. At times, I love it. In the beginning, I was hooked. Now, I could go either way. The writing is lovely; the story is fine; the hints of Agatha Christie's "And Then There Were None" are appreciated, but sometimes I am not sure if the plot is there. Stevenson has made his narrator a professional narrator--it's a technique that is smart, but sometimes feels like it misses the mark a little. I do want to keep reading--so I'll let you know how I feel when I recap March!
Speaking of March: Tell me your favorites! I have a pile of books to pick from and loads of things on my Kindle, but I am always looking for more recommendations!