Book Review, Books

The Stranger Game by Peter Gadol

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When Rebecca’s boyfriend Ezra goes missing, she knows something is not quite right. But when she reports it to the police, they don’t seem to really care. They suspect he’s been playing ”The Stranger Game”, a game that went viral, where people take social media behaviour on the streets and start following each other in real life.

The rules of the game are simple:

  • You must choose a random person.
  • You cannot make contact with other people (or tell them you’re playing the game)
  • You mustn’t follow the same person twice.

But as the game spreads, the rules start to change, and people start disappearing without a trace.

In hope that she she can find her man, Rebecca starts playing the game herself. But the more she gets involved, the bigger the risk is.

When I read the synopsis about ”The Stranger Game” by Peter Gadol, I knew I had to read the book. It is a plot that intrigues me and I am always up for reading more psychological thrillers.

But this book’s delivery was weak. I found the story very slow and unintriguing, with no exceptional plot twists and with a disappointing and rather predictable ending. 

Rebecca was a difficult character to begin with. The writing in the chapters felt different, even though it was the same character’s point of view. I was left very confused. I just wanted to get a better glance at ”The Stranger Game”. And I did, but the game scenario was so much different compared to the synopsis – which was only slightly annoying. But to top up the annoyance, there was a huge lack of mystery and suspense throughout the book. I just stopped caring whether Rebecca was going to find Ezra or not. I did not care whether her life was in danger. I was that unbothered. 

On a positive note,

I did enjoy the psychological theme and people’s behaviour. I always want to know more about how and why people behave in a certain way and this book definitely opened some interesting discussion points.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

If you like human psychology and behaviour, this is a good book to have on your stack. But will this be the next mystery and suspense hit? Probably not…

Thank you to team at HQ (Harper Collins Publishers), for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

”The Stranger Game” comes out on 5th September 2019. 

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Book Review, Books

The Other Mrs Miller by Allison Dickson

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★★★

The Other Mrs Miller is a great mystery to help you out on a boring day. But if you are looking for the dark and twisty masterpiece to blow your mind, I’m afraid this is not it…

Phoebe Miller is married to a man she doesn’t love. He is a psychotherapist and Phoebe feels he constantly analyses her. She doesn’t work because her father was rich. And when he died, women started to tell their stories of all the terrible things he did. All Phoebe wants to do is hide in her house. But she feels constantly watched and notices a car parked on her street almost every day. And then there are these new neighbours that are clearly hiding something. Should she be worried?

There were a lot of relationships in this book that I had an issue with:

  • the husband that treats his wife as a study subject
  • the wife that treats her husband as garbage
  • the new relationship between a man with the IQ of a three-year-old and a woman that has no clue of what she wants
  • the unknown sister who would rather threaten you or kill you, than come and tell you she is your sister
  • the overprotective mother who doesn’t let her child speak

A very different, and at times, confusing plot. Interesting beginning and introduction, followed by a boring section in the book. A bit of tiny action, and then a slow paced stage again. And finally, an epilogue with a lot of pressure, many characters and a lot of mystery. Very satisfying, until the very last chapter, where the author turns everything around with another small twist, and here I am, sitting on my sofa, with the Kindle in my hand, thinking: THIS IS NOT RIGHT. 

A final twist, without any buildup, or any hints, without making any sense or adding to the story in any way. I wish the author or their editor just deleted that last bit. Disappointing.

I did enjoy the whole book, but the very end left me with a bad after-taste and I can’t give it more than these three stars. Amazing mystery, but ahh, if I could just forget about that last chapter.

If you love mysteries, I am still recommending this. You might enjoy it more than I did.
Thank you to the team at Netgalley, for sending me an ARC copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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Book Review, Books

The Furies by Katie Lowe

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★★★★

A high-school mystery full of suspense. A murder, a questionable friendship and witchcraft. The Furies is a modern take of all witchcraft legends and curses!

When a teenage girl is found dead, sitting on a swing, with no clues of how the death occurred, we are set up to trust no one from the very beginning. The story begins with Violet, who start the story from the very beginning, until finally leading us to how and why this murder happened. She comes to the new school and she becomes friends with an elite group of girls and a secret advanced study group, that focuses on witchcraft and influential witches connected to the school.

From the fist to the last chapter, you can feel the suspense. The story is unique and it certainly kept me on my toes. I had trouble with who the narrator is, and in each chapter it’s Violet, but because it was written in first person and her tone changed, I kept looking for clues as to whether the narrator has changed or not. The names are also not mentioned often, which added a bit of agitation at times.

I loved every part of the book that included witchcraft. There were awful lot of scenes about this, so trust me, I was more than satisfied. From witchcraft history, to a secret society, to performing rituals, The Furies will teleport you in that world.

I liked how the friendships were developed, but I didn’t cheer for them. I could perfectly understand how all girls felt and why they all made certain choices, and that is due to the excellent writing skills Katie has. Furthermore, I felt different emotions for them all, loved them, hated them and pitied them.

It’s worthy to mention that I couldn’t help but be annoyed with Violet, for never saying no, for settling, for being so naive and so needy to be accepted. It couldn’t be helped that I was angry at her for knowing things and choosing to do nothing about it. I felt so angry at the girls, for all the drama caused and for discouraging people around them. I can’t help but feel conflicted with Violet though, because despite everything, she belonged in that group, and with those friends. As wrong as it may sound, she did fit. But with time, she did change and she did find her true self. And her development was the gem that made me really fall in love with this book.

And then it struck me…

After all, I wasn’t mad at Violet. I was mad at all of us that have been in such position and chose the wrong things. I felt upset at all of us, who have changed themselves to fit in a group and forgot who they really are. To all of us, who were too afraid to say no to the popular girls in high-school.

I highly recommend it to all girls in high-school, to all mums and to everyone that loves witchcraft and mystery. You will definitely love this book!

Thank you to Katie Lowe, and the publisher, HarperCollins, for sending me a free hardcover copy in exchange for my honest review.

I had the amazing opportunity to do an Exclusive Interview with Katie – you can check it out HERE.Book Author Interview – Katie Lowe

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Blog Tour, Book Review, Books

BLOG TOUR – I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeney

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I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeney is a book that stays with you after you read it. Dark, twisted and unpredictable until the very last chapter.

In the very beginning, we are met with the unknown. Aimee Sinclair is an actress and when she comes home, she realises her husband is missing. The police suspect she is hiding something. They are right, she does have a secret…

The book switches between two timelines; the first being Aimee today and the second being Aimee’s childhood. We get to enjoy these parallel stories and understand how Aimee’s childhood directly influences her decisions as a grown up.

‘’Sometimes it only takes one person to believe in you, to change your life forever. Sometimes it only takes one person not believing in you to destroy it. Humans are a highly sensitive species.’’

Alice’s writing is brilliant, and when reading the two timelines, you feel the child and you feel the adult. A skill not many writers can perfect.

Aimee’s whole life has been about being a different person. That is why she choose to become an actress. She can change into different people as she wants, and keep her true self hidden somewhere safe. But she didn’t learn this all by herself.

The book will leave things unpredictable until the very end. I had my theories and they kept changing all the time. The moment you feel you are close to the truth, something happens and you are back at the start. I loved it!

I wasn’t disappointed with the ending, but I did feel grossed out and disgusted by a certain someone. At times, some scenes felt like too much, but they were crucial to the story.

If you love dark and twisted psychological thrillers, you will most probably enjoy reading I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeney.

Trigger warnings for abuse in all shapes and forms, animal cruelty and childhood trauma.

Thank you to the team at HQ, for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, and for sending me a paperback copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Book Review, Books

Nemesis (Tom Wilde #3) by Rory Clements

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★★★★★

Nemesis is the third book from the Tom Wilde series by Rory Clements. I haven’t read the previous two books, and I also haven’t read any books from Rory Clements before. I received this book through ReadersFirst, and I will be honest, I was quite reluctant to read it. You already know my opinion on reading sequels before reading the previous books – but I went in blind in this book.

The blue cover is simply gorgeous and I knew it was a thriller and a mystery, so I decided this was enough to get me going. If this book review ever captures your attention, I advise you to also go in blind. I think going blind made me enjoy this book even more.

The fact that this is a third book in a series doesn’t mean anything. The only similarity with the other books is the main character. Almost the same basis as Dan Brown’s series and his professor Robert Langdon. The books are entirely standalones.

It is very hard to reveal what the plot is about without spoiling the fun. Tom Wilde is a university professor and one of his very talented students, Marcus, has left to join the International Brigades in Spain. Now, two years after, he is in trouble, and Tom helps him come home.

Meanwhile, numerous things happen, involving World War 2 Politics and propaganda, and in these times, no one knows who to trust. And when Tom Wilde finds himself in great danger, who will help him? And who does he needs to be afraid from? Has maybe helping Marcus been his greatest mistake?

Nemesis is full of suspense from the very first chapter, and the thing I loved the most about it was that the chapters are quite short, and always leave you hanging, hungry to find out more. Every word that Rory Clements types had a meaning and a purpose in this book, and that was the bit I admired the most.

The time setting revolves around the Second World War – a subject I don’t often read about. I can’t judge about the historical fiction element. However I do know that while I am a person that doesn’t enjoy war books, this one struck me in a nice way. The war setting was very well written, and you could even feel the atmosphere around it. The ending was pleasantly surprising and it involved a mystery I could simply not resist.

I will definitely read more books by Rory Clements, as I really enjoy the writing. If you enjoy thrillers and if you are a fan of Dan Brown, you will probably enjoy Nemesis a lot!

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