Review: Lies by T.M. Logan

Image result for lies tm logan book coverLies by T.M. Logan

Goodreads rating: 3.97

Pages: 432

Genre: Adult, ThrillerMystery, Psychological Thriller

Date published: September 11th, 2018 (USA)

My rating: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

What if you have the perfect life, the perfect wife and the perfect child—then, in one shattering moment, you discover nothing is as it seems? Now you are in the sights of a ruthless killer determined to destroy everything you treasure.

It’s the evening drive home from work on a route Joe Lynch has taken a hundred times with his young son. But today, Joe sees his wife meet another man—an encounter that will rip two families apart. Raising the question: Can we ever really trust those closest to us?

Joe will do whatever it takes to protect his family, but as the deception unravels, so does his life. A life played out without any rules. And a cunning opponent who’s always one step ahead.

My review

Firstly, I’d like to thank St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

I must say I read through this 432-page baby in NO TIME!! I started it last night and finished it today. It was all I could think about, I had to know what would happen next 😍

I hadn’t read the synopsis (or at least I didn’t know anything about the story going into it), so I went in head first, completely oblivious to what was coming my way. I must say I was most definitely not disappointed 🙌🏼

In Lies, we follow Joe, an English teacher who is married to Melissa. They have a little boy, William, who is 4 years old. One day, as Joe drives home, William spots his mom’s car and they both decide to surprise her. So, they follow her as she drives to a hotel parking lot. Then, they spot her as she meets with a man, a very suspicious interaction that makes Joe start to question everything and causes everything around him to fall apart.

This story doesn’t go where you expect it to, not in the slightest. And that’s what I loved about it. I had never read a book with a plot line such as the one in Lies, it felt rather refreshing. It’s a domestic thriller, but through the eyes of a man, unlike what usually happens, and it goes places I never even dreamed it would.

As the title suggests, this whole book is based on lies and secrets, which makes for a read that keeps you on the edge of your seat as you try to figure out what happened and the author keeps throwing revelations at you. You’re constantly finding out new things – it’s absolutely addicting, I could not put this book down! 😋

Since this is built upon lies, I had a ton of theories throughout the book. I took notes and highlighted stuff every time someone said something that didn’t make sense or that seemed suspicious. I wasn’t even remotely right for the most part, and I love that. I love when books aren’t predictable and keep surprising me 👌🏼 I was playing detective the whole time, which is something I love 🕵🏻‍♀️

Although this is well over 400 pages long, it doesn’t feel slow at all – there’s just a LOT of things happening 😅 There isn’t a very extensive list of characters, which is great because you’re not confused all the time. What there is is a whole lot of unexpected twists and turns – as well as inevitable situations – that keep coming at you the whole time, making this a very rich book. The main plot twist really messed with my head. I did not see that coming whatsoever, I could not believe what I was reading! 😲 It reminded me of The Wife Between Us because, although the plot twist is not even similar, I also didn’t see this one coming and I had to go back and re-read it, to make sure I was seeing right 😅

I kept saying on Goodreads that I was stressed whilst reading this. You have no idea!! I literally had to pause my reading several times because I was getting so anxious and aggravated 😨 This book has a lot of injustice in it, and that’s something that really irks me, especially when there’s literally nothing you can do about it. God, this was so damn stressful 😩 – but so worth it!!

Overall, this is a fast-paced book with an intricate and well-constructed plot that makes for a great and engaging read – especially after a bombastic plot twist!

★★★★☆ 4.5/5 stars


Update (June 14, 2018): changing the rating to 5 stars because I realized that it deserves it!

★★★★★ 5/5 stars

Have you read Lies? What did you think about that plot twist? Let me know in the comments! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on Lies and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

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Review: The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blædel

The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blædel

Goodreads rating: 3.55

Pages: 312

Genre: Adult, Thriller, Crime, Mystery, Nordic Noir

Date published: February 3rd, 2015 (USA)

My rating: ★★★★★

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback

Synopsis

In a forest in Denmark, a ranger discovers the fresh corpse of an unidentified woman. A large scar on one side of her face should make the identification easy, but nobody has reported her missing. After four days, Louise Rick—the new commander of the Missing Persons Department—is still without answers. But when she releases a photo to the media, an older woman phones to say that she recognizes the woman as Lisemette, a child she once cared for in the state mental institution many years ago.

Lisemette, like the other children in the institution, was abandoned by her family and branded a “forgotten girl.” But Louise soon discovers something more disturbing: Lisemette had a twin, and both girls were issued death certificates over 30 years ago.

As the investigation brings Louise closer to her childhood home, she uncovers more crimes that were committed—and hidden—in the forest, and finds a terrible link to her own past that has been carefully concealed.

My review

After a bit of a disappointing read (by a Portuguese author), The Forgotten Girls came to the rescue – a breath of fresh air! This is the seventh book in the Louise Rick series, which I have read completely out of order. I started with the ninth and latest book, The Lost Woman, which I really liked, and now I’ve gone back in time to read the previous books.

So the book begins with a rather stressful and intense prologue, in which a woman is running through the woods, escaping from someone. Then, she is found dead. As you can probably guess, I was hooked right from the beginning – which is why it only took me a couple of days to finish it. This could easily be read in one sitting though, it’s incredibly gripping!

The plot is amazing and very well thought-out. Blædel combines a creepy and cold atmosphere with asylum-related shenanigans. AND she also writes lovely characters that you end up caring for – what more could you want? I don’t know about you, but there’s something about asylums and institutions of the sort that just gives me chills, so they’re the perfect addition to a crime book.

In comparison to The Hypnotist, I enjoyed this one better. Why? Well, mainly because, as I mentioned in my review, The Hypnotist should be shorter than it is. The story drags on for too long and it’s a very descriptive book. However, I was pleased to see that The Forgotten Girls is not like that. In my opinion, a crime book should be short and sweet and straight to the point. Otherwise, you kind of distract the reader from the crime and whodunnit, don’t you? Is it just me who thinks so?

One thing I really enjoyed was how I did not predict how the case would unravel or how the story would end. The Portuguese edition is 300 pages long and I only had a suspition at about page 230. And it wasn’t even right!!! I love that, there’s nothing worse than a predictable book, am I right? Especially a crime book!

There were quite a few moments that made me laugh or chuckle – these characters are everything, I love them all! I also think Louise’s motherly worries are endearing, I liked seeing that part of her and not just the badass detective side. Also, she has such an awful but interesting and intriguing past, and I’m dying to find out more about it in the next books!!

Fun fact: Sara Blædel will be at a book signing here in Lisbon next week and I CANNOT tell you how excited I am to go there and meet her!!

Overall, this book is really freaking good. It’s disturbing. It’s gripping and addictive. It doesn’t drag on, it’s straightforward. It’s everything I want in a crime/thriller book and, for that, it deserves the highest rating!

★★★★★ 5/5 stars

Have you read this book? What about the other books in the series? Let me know in the comments! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Forgotten Girls and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

The Hypnotist | Lars Kepler

Image result for the hypnotist lars kepler coverThe Hypnotist by Lars Kepler

Goodreads rating: 3.65

Pages: 503

Genre: Adult, Thriller, Crime, Nordic Noir

Date published: June 21st, 2011 (USA)

My rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback

Synopsis

In the frigid clime of Tumba, Sweden, a gruesome triple homicide attracts the interest of Detective Inspector Joona Linna, who demands to investigate the murders. The killer is still at large, and there’s only one surviving witness—the boy whose family was killed before his eyes. Whoever committed the crimes wanted this boy to die: he’s suffered more than one hundred knife wounds and lapsed into a state of shock. Desperate for information, Linna sees only one option: hypnotism. He enlists Dr. Erik Maria Bark to mesmerize the boy, hoping to discover the killer through his eyes.

It’s the sort of work that Bark has sworn he would never do again—ethically dubious and psychically scarring. When he breaks his promise and hypnotizes the victim, a long and terrifying chain of events begins to unfurl.

My review

It took me a while to read this one because a) huge book, b) I started it at the worst possible time, when all of my tests were happening, and c) I was already reading a bunch of books simultaneously. So, it’s been like two weeks, but I finished it – I actually read the last half in the blink of an eye!

In this crime novel, we follow detective Joona Linna as he tries to solve the murder of the Ek family – and then a child’s disappearance. Erik, the hypnotist, is called in to help solve the case, as the only witness is in a coma, and his testimony is the only way to get any clue as to who murdered the family. There are, essentially, two storylines, hence the size of the book. Throughout the story, we try to figure out whether or not they’re connected. The book is told in several points of view, which gives us a more thorough understanding of what exactly happened – something I’ve come to appreciate in books!

I found one of the characters to be insufferable – Simone. My god, she pissed me off. As for the other central characters, I thought they were fine, well-built even. Joona is that tormented detective figure we often see in crime fiction – although we don’t really see much of his past in this book. Erik is someone whose bad decisions in the past have tormented him and altered the way he now lives his life.

Mortui vivis docent – the dead teach the living.”

The plot of the book is rather intriguing. It definitely didn’t go where I thought it would. There’s sort of a plot twist right at the beginning, which is probably what got me hooked. It was not at all what I expected from the synopsis, so I just wanted to keep on reading.

Although I read a translation, as probably will you, I felt as though the writing flowed nicely. The only complaint I have is that I felt as though the book dragged a bit. I think there’s unnecessary information, and the only thing it does is just make the book even bigger. Other than that, I thought the book was great, not predictable at all (which is the worst in crime/thriller books!), and well-thought-out.

★★★★☆ 4/5 stars


Have you read The Hypnotist? Did you like it as much as I did? Let me know in the comments! ♡

Overall, I thought this was a good crime book, although it could be even better if it were a tad bit shorter. Will definitely continue with the series – I actually bought the second book recently, and showed it in a book haul 😉

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Hypnotist and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

The Kind Worth Killing | Peter Swanson

1200x630bbThe Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson

Goodreads rating: 4.03

Pages: 415

Genre: Adult, Thriller, Crime

Date published: February 3rd, 2015 (USA)

My rating: ★★★★★

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

Delayed in London, Ted Severson meets a woman at the airport bar. Over cocktails they tell each other rather more than they should, and a dark plan is hatched – but are either of them being serious, could they actually go through with it and, if they did, what would be their chances of getting away with it?

Back in Boston, Ted’s wife Miranda is busy site managing the construction of their dream home, a beautiful house out on the Maine coastline. But what secrets is she carrying and to what lengths might she go to protect the vision she has of her deserved future?

My review

A few months ago I buddy-read Her Every Fear, also by Peter Swanson. Back then, I already knew people liked The Kind Worth Killing better, but I didn’t know it would be this good.

Going into it, I knew the basics of the story from reading and watching reviews but I had no idea this was where the story would go. I absolutely loved everything about this book, and I wish it was a bit longer so that we could get a glimpse at some of the characters’ lives in the future.

I thought about it constantly, turning the idea around in my mind like looking at a diamond from every possible perspective, looking for flaws or cracks, looking for guilt or second thoughts, and I found none. All I found was the renewed conviction that [character] was a monster that I needed to slay.

This book is quite the ride. The plot twists in it are absolutely delicious and unpredictable (with the exception of one of them, which I saw coming) – and when you think the author can’t surprise you anymore, here comes another surprise!

It is midterms time, but I absolutely devoured this book every chance that I got. It’s so addictive, all I wanted to do was find out what would happen next!

I was fascinated by her raw beauty while at the same time realizing that she would not age well. Her face, rounded and doll-like, would turn puffy, and her pinup body would sag. But she wouldn’t grow old, would she? I was going to kill her, wasn’t I?

It features a few of the things I most love about thrillers: fucked up and flawed characters, secrets, suspense, investigation and stalking. Combine these into one, and add a good plotline, and chances are I’m going to LOVE the book!

I loved how everyone in this book was hiding something. Secrets always make me 100 times more interested and invested in the story. I love learning about a character’s dark past, I feel like it adds a lot to the reading experience.

I’d watched her for an hour one night, as she sat in her red leather chair, her legs tucked up under her, reading a hardcover book. While she read she absentmindedly twirled a long strand of hair in a finger. A cup of tea next to her sent up a ribbon of steam.

The fact that the story is told from multiple points of view makes it a much more thorough read. Not only do you see everything that happens, instead of what one of the characters sees/experiences, but it also enhances how one story can originate such different versions, depending on the person.

As always, Swanson’s writing read very nicely, and his books are quick reads, which I definitely appreciate during exams season 😋

As always, I was amazed by how the author was able to connect everything and bring back tiny details to wrap it all up. It is truly fascinating!

★★★★★ 5/5 stars


Have you read The Kind Worth Killing? Did you like it as much as I did? Let me know in the comments! ♡

Overall I highly recommend that you pick up Swanson’s books – especially The Kind Worth Killing. So far, I haven’t been disappointed by his work, and I am DYING to get my hands on his new book that just came out!😄 Great writing, a solid plot and genius plot twists are some things that perfectly describe this book.

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Kind Worth Killing and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

Review: Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land

9781250087652Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land

Goodreads rating: 3.97

Pages: 338

Genre: Adult, Thriller, Crime, Psychological Thriller

Date published: January 12th, 2017 (USA)

My rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

How far does the apple really fall from the tree?

Milly’s mother is a serial killer. Though Milly loves her mother, the only way to make her stop is to turn her in to the police. Milly is given a fresh start: a new identity, a home with an affluent foster family, and a spot at an exclusive private school.

But Milly has secrets, and life at her new home becomes complicated. As her mother’s trial looms, with Milly as the star witness, Milly starts to wonder how much of her is nature, how much of her is nurture, and whether she is doomed to turn out like her mother after all.

When tensions rise and Milly feels trapped by her shiny new life, she has to decide: Will she be good? Or is she bad? She is, after all, her mother’s daughter.

My review

Yet another amazing thriller – this year has been great in terms of reading!

Good Me, Bad Me is a psychological thriller in which we follow Annie/Milly, a girl who has had to change her identity. Why? Well, because her mother is a serial killer, and she has to testify against her. In the meantime, she is brought into a foster family and has to start a new life under a new identity.

Throughout the story, we see the repercussions of her mother’s actions on Annie – she is beyond traumatized, not only from being forced to watch the murders, but also from the mental and physical abuse her mother inflicts on her. She is in constant internal conflict, not sure whether she will turn out to be good or bad, like her mother.

There were quite a few times when I started laughing because of the dialogue. Some of these characters are really funny, especially the angsty teenagers. On another note, since there are tons of adolescent characters, the book deals with lots of important topics, including mental health and bullying, which I really appreciated.

The writing is hard to assess, since I read a translation, but my experience was very good. It flowed nicely and was easy to read. There are some gory descriptions, so beware of that when you go into it.

The plot is very strong, in my opinion. I had never heard of a similar plot until now – well, at least not that I can remember – and I was very invested it it. It’s a dark, gripping story that I didn’t want to put down.

The ending was great – it’s one of those endings that surprises you, but at the same time you kind of saw it coming. It makes total sense though, which is something that, unfortunately, doesn’t always happen.

★★★★☆ 4.5/5 stars


Have you read Good Me, Bad Me? What did you think about that ending? Let me know in the comments! ♡

Overall, I do recommend Good Me, Bad Me, especially if you’re into thriller/suspense and fucked up characters. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I’m certain you will too 😄

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on Good Me, Bad Me and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

Review: Strange Medicine by Mike Russell

strangemedicine-coverforwebsiteStrange Medicine by Mike Russell

Goodreads rating: 4.03

Pages: 146

Genre: Adult, Fiction, Mystery, Anthology

Date published: May 5th, 2016 (UK)

My rating: ★★★☆☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback

Synopsis

We recommend the following prescription: Strange Medicine – weird and wonderful stories for all that ails you. Strange Medicine is a fantastic collection of extraordinary tales of transformation by UK weird-fiction author Mike Russell. If you love the strange, surreal and unusual or if you are just looking for something different, Strange Medicine is for you.

My review

Firstly, I’d like to thank the author, Mike Russell, for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.

Strange Medicine is an anthology that contains eight strange short stories. When they say this book is strange, they are not kidding. Reading it, I felt like I was in one of my weird dreams that I sometimes have, in which nothing makes much sense – which I’m sure was exactly what the author intended.

The stories in this anthology are very short – one of them is 5 pages long – so this is a VERY quick read. I read the whole thing in a couple of hours, so if you’re looking for something like that, definitely give this a go.

The writing is easy to read, although in the first story, called Flock, there is a constant repetition of the main character’s full name, which kind of threw me off. But that doesn’t happen in any of the other stories, so it’s not a big deal.

On another note, the cover of this book (and Russell’s other book) is amazing, and so is the merch for StrangeBooks. If you’d like to check out the merch, click here.

Here is a very short synopsis for each of the stories:

Flock – man still goes to work every day after business closed down 12 years prior. One day, he meets someone on the train and everything changes.

Seventy-Two Bricks – man sees the same bridge in different places wherever he goes

Telephone – six weird phone calls between a man, a woman and a telephone

Mime – a story that features mime suicides and mime school; what’s real, and what isn’t?

Mr. Dennis and the Universe – man walks around with mysterious metal box; quite the morbid story 😅

Spy – hospice resident is being watched and followed

Brain – the story of a man and his stone

Shish – a story about a fish named Shish

Favorite quote

Sometimes the suffering of one individual is so great that it renders unjustifiable any purpose that the universe could possibly have.

Overall, I enjoyed the book, but I will say it’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea 😅 These stories are all original and unusual, but since they’re strange, people might not enjoy reading them.

★★★☆☆ 3/5 stars


Have you read Strange Medicine? What are your thoughts on it? Let me know in the comments! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on Strange Medicine and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

Review: The Dinner by Herman Koch

e1a11bc317c2459690bab95630fff168-the-dinner-kochThe Dinner by Herman Koch

Goodreads rating: 3.89

Pages: 310

Genre: Adult, ThrillerMystery

Date published: November 5th, 2013 (UK)

My rating: ★★★☆☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback

Synopsis

A summer’s evening in Amsterdam and two couples meet at a fashionable restaurant. Between mouthfuls of food and over the delicate scraping of cutlery, the conversation remains a gentle hum of politeness – the banality of work, the triviality of holidays.

But the empty words hide a terrible conflict and, with every forced smile and every new course, the knives are being sharpened… Each couple has a fifteen-year-old son. Together, the boys have committed a horrifying act, caught on camera, and their grainy images have been beamed into living rooms across the nation; despite a police manhunt, the boys remain unidentified – by everyone except their parents.

As the dinner reaches its culinary climax, the conversation finally touches on their children and, as civility and friendship disintegrate, each couple shows just how far they are prepared to go to protect those they love.

My review

The Dinner is, unfortunately, my first disappointment of the year. Don’t get me wrong: it’s not a bad book, it just didn’t meet my expectations 😔

I read Abby’s review of this book, and she absolutely loved it. It’s one of her biggest recommendations, so I was very excited to read it. However, it wasn’t as good as I thought it would be.

Firstly, although it wasn’t genius, the plot had some potential. A family’s secrets and conflicts that are revealed to us as they eat dinner in a fancy restaurant. Sure, sounds intriguing. But it didn’t keep me interested at all. The revelations weren’t as bombastic as I expected them to be, so they fell a bit flat, in my opinion.

Koch writes in a way that reminded me of Ian McEwan – it has a literary fiction tone to it. There is one part where the author reveals something to us, but he doesn’t actually tell us what it is exactly, he just hints at it. I hate it when authors do that 😅 He also goes on about things that aren’t directly related to the plot, like social issues and the way people in higher social classes act. It bored me, to be honest, I just wanted to get to the juicy stuff.

Usually, when I start a thriller/mystery novel, I can’t put it down. In the reviews I read for The Dinner, people said they could not put this book down. However, I took several weeks to finish this book. I can’t put my finger on why exactly I didn’t even feel like reading it – it just didn’t grasp me, I guess.

One thing I really liked, however, was the element of the ‘unreliable narrator’. It adds something to the story because you can’t trust them, which is a nice touch. If you have any recommendations of books with unreliable narrators, definitely leave them in the comments, as I seem to enjoy them.

Overall, I enjoyed the book, but it definitely isn’t a book that I loved, which is a bummer. I really wanted to like it 😅

★★★☆☆ 3/5 stars


Have you read The Dinner? Did you like it? Let me know in the comments! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Dinner and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡