Book Review · Books

The Guilty Wife by Nina Manning [BOOK REVIEW]

The Guilty Wife by Nina Manning [BOOK REVIEW]

The Guilty Wife (also known as Her Darkest Fear) by Nina Manning was an interesting and mysterious read. I just feel that it didn’t do quite enough to really impress me.

The Guilty Wife by Nina Manning [BOOK REVIEW]

Pages: 334

Genre: Mystery, Thriller

Publisher: Boldwood Books

Format I read it in: Paperback

Rating: ★★★

My Thoughts:

Frankie Keegan lost her brother 20 years ago. And every year around that date, the memories start creeping into her life. Her life at home with her husband and kids is on the rocks and she’s trying to be successful in her new job. And as if that isn’t enough, it appears that someone else also remembers the date, and they will make sure to let Frankie know this…

Even though the Guilty Wife kept me intrigued whilst reading it, I never felt that heart-stopping, wow moment. It’s quite hard to choose between 3 and 4 stars, but I’m going with a 3-star rating for a couple of reasons. There were a lot of things that remained a mystery and never got revealed, unless I missed the reveal somehow. Nothing was said about the nanny’s weird behaviour. Also, there was a certain number being mentioned throughout the book that held some meaning, but we never understand the meaning. The last 20 pages were where the big reveal happened. And to me, these pages were an info dump of everything that happened in the past. As soon as I started reading it, I knew exactly what person was involved. But at the same time, I couldn’t have guessed it because not enough clues were revealed before the reveal. 

And finally, I couldn’t agree with Frankie’s decisions in the end. I personally didn’t enjoy the epilogue stages of the book.

Aside from the negatives, The Guilty Wife kept me intrigued from the very first page until the very end. I enjoyed the mystery and the constant change of potential culprits, until it got ruined by the reveal. I would still recommend this book if you want to go on a journey of grief, friendships, old loves lost and a sprinkle of mystery!

About The Author:

Nina Manning began her career in the catering industry. She has worked as a private chef cooking for royalty and TV personalities.

She has a degree in Psychology and has three books published with Boldwood: The Daughter In Law, The Guilty Wife and The House Mate.
Her fourth Psychological thriller is published in Spring 2021.

Nina is a voracious reader of many genres, is the founding member of a long standing book club and the founder and co-host of a book podcast called Sniffing The Pages.

She is a mother to three young children so when she is not writing or reading she can usually be found scaling a soft play tower or romping in the woods with the family and her chocolate Labrador.

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Book Review · Books

The Merciless Ones (Deathless #2) by Namina Forna [BOOK REVIEW]

The Merciless Ones (Deathless #2) by Namina Forna [BOOK REVIEW]

I am in love with the Deathless series! First, The Gilded Ones blew me away with the amazing story of Deka and her finding out more about herself, and then The Merciless Ones threw some twists and spins I never expected and savagely devoured!

About The Book:

The Merciless Ones (Deathless #2) by Namina Forna [BOOK REVIEW]

Pages: 480

Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Young Adult

Publisher: Usborne

Format I read it in: Paperback

Rating: ★★★★★

My Thoughts:

The Merciless Ones is a beautiful and inspiring continuation of the Deathless series and Deka’s adventures. As this book is the second book in the series, I strongly recommend reading The Gilded Ones first, to be able to enjoy the story to its full potential. 

After the newly acquired knowledge from the end of book one and the intense cliffhanger, Deka continues her journey. Saving the women that are imprisoned and avenging everyone that lost their lives. However, things are never that easy. When she starts unlocking some additional powers, but also starting to lose power as well, things start to take an interesting turn. Deka finds out something that makes her doubt everything she knows. All of a sudden, she needs to find answers again and travel further away from everything she trusts. 

I adored and devoured this book! There is intensity and adventure in every single chapter. The pace of the book gradually increases and the last few chapters are filled with anticipation and power.

If you are looking for a fantasy adventure with a lot of magic and fierce female characters, do not miss Deka’s story. It’s by far one of the most thrilling fantasy adventures I’ve ever read!

About The Author:

The Merciless Ones (Deathless #2) by Namina Forna [BOOK REVIEW]

Namina Forna is a young adult novelist based in Los Angeles, and the author of the New York Times bestselling epic fantasy YA novel The Gilded Ones. Originally from Sierra Leone, West Africa, she moved to the US when she was nine and has been traveling back and forth ever since. Namina loves telling stories with fierce female leads and works as a screenwriter in LA.

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Books · Monthly Tags

October TBR 2022 – The TBR Raffle Game

diary of difference october tbr list book books reading diaryofdifference bookshelf monthly read currently reading

Hello, my reader friends!

The spooky season is my favorite season of them all. Cozy blankets, pumpkin spice latte, candles and October TBR books with eerie atmosphere. What’s not to like about that?

You probably already know this, but just a reminder that I share my current reading updates on my Instagram posts and stories, and my Goodreads and Storygraph account, so don’t forget to follow my Instagram and other socials (all listed at the bottom of the blog) to see what I am reading at any given time during this month. Sometimes my TBR varies, as I add additional books during the month.

And with that being said, let the October TBR commence.

The October TBR Raffle

I am usually filming my TBRs on my Instagram Stories. Make sure to follow me on Instagram, and check my Raffle draw (usually posted as a highlight or a reel).

My TBR Raffle game is simple: I have a number of prompts that I put in small papers, into a jar. I draw a prompt, and I fit in a book that matches my prompt. Here is a list of the current prompts I have. Feel free to leave any prompt suggestions in the comments. Once the prompt is drawn, I put it back into the jar, so it has an equal chance to get drawn again. I draw a total of 6 prompts, which result in 6 books for the month. If I fail to read a book, it automatically goes into the next month.

My October TBR

1. TBR Vet

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

One of the oldest books on my TBR, and a classic horror novel, I couldn’t not add Frankenstein by Mary Shelley to my TBR this month. It feels like ti was meant to be. I have read so much about the book, I vaguely know the plot, but I have never read it, so quite excited for this one.


Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein when she was only eighteen. At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, Frankenstein tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering the cause of generation and life and bestowing animation upon lifeless matter, Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature’s hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creature turns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein. 

Frankenstein, an instant bestseller and an important ancestor of both the horror and science fiction genres, not only tells a terrifying story, but also raises profound, disturbing questions about the very nature of life and the place of humankind within the cosmos: What does it mean to be human? What responsibilities do we have to each other? How far can we go in tampering with Nature? In our age, filled with news of organ donation genetic engineering, and bio-terrorism, these questions are more relevant than ever.

2. Travel (Set in Destination)

The Twisted Tree by Rachel Burge

Set in the remote snows of contemporary Norway was enough for me to add The Twisted Tree by Rachel Burge on my list. The fact that it has a very spooky cover and synopsis that promises chills, that was just a huge bonus!


Part ghost story, part Nordic thriller – this is a twisty, tense and spooky YA debut, perfect for fans of Coraline and Michelle Paver.

Martha can tell things about a person just by touching their clothes, as if their emotions and memories have been absorbed into the material. It started the day she fell from the tree at her grandma’s cabin and became blind in one eye.

Determined to understand her strange ability, Martha sets off to visit her grandmother, Mormor – only to discover Mormor is dead, a peculiar boy is in her cabin and a terrifying creature is on the loose.

Then the spinning wheel starts creaking, books move around and terror creeps in . . .

✨ 3. Mystery

The Wych Elm by Tana French

I’ve had The Wych Elm by Tana French on my TBR list for quite some time. And after having mixed feeling about The Searcher, I decided to give Tana another chance. I’ve heard some good reviews about it, and the sysnopsis seems quite appealing to my taste.


For me it all goes back to that night, the dark corroded hinge between before and after, the slipped-in sheet of trick glass that tints everything on one side in its own murky colours and leaves everything on the other luminous and untouchable.

One night changes everything for Toby. A brutal attack leaves him traumatised, unsure even of the person he used to be. He seeks refuge at the family’s ancestral home, the Ivy House, filled with cherished memories of wild-strawberry summers and teenage parties with his cousins.

But not long after Toby’s arrival, a discovery is made. A skull, tucked neatly inside the old wych elm in the garden.

As detectives begin to close in, Toby is forced to examine everything he thought he knew about his family, his past, and himself.

A spellbinding standalone from a literary writer who turns the crime genre inside out, The Wych Elm asks what we become, and what we’re capable of, if we no longer know who we are.

✨ 4. 5 Star Prediction

Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky, for some reason, has become I book I keep meaning to read and never get to it. There are a few books I’ve had this experience with, and they have all ended up being my favourites. I hope this book will follow their trail and saying that, I hope I will finally get to it.


Christopher is seven years old.
Christopher is the new kid in town.
And Christopher has an imaginary friend.

We can swallow our fear or let our fear swallow us.

Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with her child. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It’s as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.

At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six long days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a treehouse in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.

Twenty years ago, Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower made readers everywhere feel infinite. Now, Chbosky has returned with an epic work of literary horror, years in the making, whose grand scale and rich emotion redefine the genre. Read it with the lights on.

5. Instagram Scroll

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

I actually enjoyed scrolling through my Instagram feed to find The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson. There was an abundance of spooky books that I didn’t own and had to pass. My TBR list just got way bigger for next year!


Four seekers have arrived at the rambling old pile known as Hill House: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of psychic phenomena; Theodora, his lovely and lighthearted assistant; Luke, the adventurous future inheritor of the estate; and Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman with a dark past. As they begin to cope with chilling, even horrifying occurrences beyond their control or understanding, they cannot possibly know what lies ahead. For Hill House is gathering its powers – and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

6. My Pick

Bindle Punk Bruja by Desideria Mesa

I love it when I get the “My Pick” prompt. It gives me the freedom to choose any book I want, and I sometimes leave this empty until I pick on the spot in the middle of the month. But this time, I instantly added Bindle Punk Bruja by Desideria Mesa to my October TBR. It’s a book I had my eye on for a few months since I’ve been gifted a proof reader copy, and it’s perfect for the spooky season, filled with witches!


A part-time reporter and club owner takes on crooked city councilmen, mysterious and deadly mobsters, and society’s deeply rooted sexism and racism, all while keeping her true identity and magical abilities hidden –inspired by an ancient Mexican folktale.

Yo soy quien soy. I am who I am.

Luna–or depending on who’s asking, Rose–is the white-passing daughter of an immigrant mother who has seen what happens to people from her culture. This world is prejudicial, and she must hide her identity in pursuit of owning an illegal jazz club. Using her cunning powers, Rose negotiates with dangerous criminals as she climbs up Kansas City’s bootlegging ladder. Luna, however, runs the risk of losing everything if the crooked city councilmen and ruthless mobsters discover her ties to an immigrant boxcar community that secretly houses witches. Last thing she wants is to put her entire family in danger.

But this bruja with ever-growing magical abilities can never resist a good fight. With her new identity, Rose, an unabashed flapper, defies societal expectations all the while struggling to keep her true self and witchcraft in check. However, the harder she tries to avoid scrutiny, the more her efforts eventually capture unwanted attention. Soon, she finds herself surrounded by greed and every brand of bigotry–from local gangsters who want a piece of the action and businessmen who hate her diverse staff to the Ku Klux Klan and Al Capone. Will her earth magic be enough to save her friends and family? As much as she hates to admit it, she may need to learn to have faith in others–and learning to trust may prove to be her biggest ambition yet.

And that’s my October TBR. Have you read any of the above books? What is on your October TBR list? Let me know in the comments!

Make sure to follow me on Instagram, so you can stay up to date with my current updates during the month.

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