Tag Archive | mystery

Review: The Dead House

Title: The Dead House

Author: Dawn Kurtagich

Date of Publication: August 6th, 2015

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Goodreads Summary:

Twenty-five years ago, Elmbridge High burned down. Three people were killed and one pupil, Carly Johnson, disappeared. Now a diary has been found in the ruins of the school. The diary belongs to Kaitlyn Johnson, Carly’s identical twin sister. But Carly didn’t have a twin . . .

Re-opened police records, psychiatric reports, transcripts of video footage and fragments of diary reveal a web of deceit and intrigue, violence and murder, raising a whole lot more questions than it answers.

Who was Kaitlyn and why did she only appear at night? Did she really exist or was she a figment of a disturbed mind? What were the illicit rituals taking place at the school? And just what did happen at Elmbridge in the events leading up to ‘the Johnson Incident’?

My Review:

I seriously love Kurtagich’s writing! This is the third novel I’ve read from her and it was another addicting mystery that I was antsy to unravel!

Katilyn was an awesome lead character! She was pretty much in the gray-shaded area and those are always my favorite! I also liked the glimpses of the romance along with the weird and the strange!

My main complaint is when books are written in case-file format, it’s really hard for me to connect with the characters. Example, I liked the side characters but they didn’t feel as fully developed as they could have if the story had been written in the standard format. However, it was still a creative style! And I loved the ending but I still have questions! If you want a super fun book, check this bad boy out!

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What is your favorite horror or mystery read?

Review: Teeth in the Mist

Title: Teeth in the Mist

Author: Dawn Kurtagich

Date of Publication: June 11th, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Before the birth of time, a monk uncovers the Devil’s Tongue and dares to speak it. The repercussions will be felt for generations…

Sixteen-year-old photography enthusiast Zoey has been fascinated by the haunted, burnt-out ruins of Medwyn Mill House for as long as she can remember–so she and her best friend, Poulton, run away from home to explore them. But are they really alone in the house? And who will know if something goes wrong?

In 1851, seventeen-year-old Roan arrives at the Mill House as a ward–one of three, all with something to hide from their new guardian. When Roan learns that she is connected to an ancient secret, she must escape the house before she is trapped forever.

1583. Hermione, a new young bride, accompanies her husband to the wilds of North Wales where he plans to build the largest water mill and mansion in the area. But rumors of unholy rituals lead to a tragic occurrence and she will need all her strength to defeat it.

Three women, centuries apart, drawn together by one Unholy Pact. A pact made by a man who, more than a thousand years later, may still be watching…

My Review:

I really, really loved And the Trees Crept In, so I had to read this bad boy! It was another very atmospheric read but this time with past and present POVs!

Let me start with Roan! I seriously loved her POV, and that one was a five star read for me! Her story was addicting, and there was all kinds of weird crap going on, and the romance parts were on point! Rapley was so adorable and lovely! Just brilliant!

I didn’t connect with Zoey’s POV chapters as much, only because I’m kind of confused by them and I’m still confused about another character who showed up out of no where. Also, the romance in these chapters felt off for me, but I think it was just because it felt very insta love? I don’t even know! But the story there was still very interesting!

From the ending, I think there is supposed to be another book? Or I hope there will be one! I definitely recommend Teeth in the Mist because the writing is awesome, the story unique, and there were characters that I loved so much!

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What is your favorite horror book or movie?

Author Interview: Merry Jones

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The wife of a lawyer and mother of two girls, Nora Warren slides under everyone’s radar, never revealing what she truly is–a murderer. How far will she go to protect the life she has built for herself?
“Twisty and compelling…a powerfully told story in which nothing is as it seems.” Karen Dionne, #1 international bestselling author of The Marsh Kings Daughter.

Continue reading

Review: Holding Smoke

Title: Holding Smoke

Author: Elle Cosimano

Date of Publication: May 3rd, 2016

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Goodreads Summary:

John “Smoke” Conlan is serving time for two murders but he wasn’t the one who murdered his English teacher, and he never intended to kill the only other witness to the crime. A dangerous juvenile rehabilitation center in Denver, Colorado, known as the Y, is Smoke’s new home and the only one he believes he deserves.

But, unlike his fellow inmates, Smoke is not in constant imprisonment. After a near death experience leaves him with the ability to shed his physical body at will, Smoke is able to travel freely outside the concrete walls of the Y, gathering information for himself and his fellow inmates while they’re asleep in their beds. Convinced his future is only as bright as the fluorescent lights in his cell, Smoke doesn’t care that the “threads” that bind his soul to his body are wearing thin-that one day he may not make it back in time. That is, until he meets Pink, a tough, resourceful girl who is sees him for who he truly is and wants to help him clear his name.

Now Smoke is on a journey to redemption he never thought possible. With Pink’s help, Smoke may be able to reveal the true killer, but the closer they get to the truth, the more deadly their search becomes. The web of lies, deceit, and corruption that put Smoke behind bars is more tangled than they could have ever imagined. With both of their lives on the line, Smoke will have to decide how much he’s willing to risk, and if he can envision a future worth fighting for.

My Review:

I’ve loved all the books I’ve read by Elle so far and this one was probably my favorite! The grayness aspect of it was so good. Characters that are neither black or white are my favorite.

And John! I was so happy to get a book told entirely from a guy’s perspective. Those seem rather rare in YA. I couldn’t help but feel for him because he’d been through so much in his life. Pink was awesome too. She was tough and sweet and reliable!

The paranormal aspect was super great. It was neat seeing John be able to leave his body and try to solve the mystery of the murder he was framed for. There was just so much coolness and emotion here and I highly recommend it!

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Where would you go if you could leave your body for the night and no one could see you?

Review: Nearly Found

Title: Nearly Found

Author: Elle Cosimano

Date of Publication: June 2nd, 2015

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Goodreads Summary:

AFTER HELPING TO CATCH A SERIAL KILLER last spring, Nearly Boswell isn’t looking for her internship in a crime lab to be anything more than an edge on her college applications. She’s determined to get out of Sunny View trailer park and prove to herself that she’s nothing like her con man father.

But on her first day, a girl from the trailer park turns up dead and an old ally of Nearly’s calls in a debt that could jeopardize her future. Then the corpse of a missing person is discovered, buried on a local golf course – and there’s a message for Nearly etched into its bones.

Could the corpse be her father, who went missing five years ago? Or is her father a murderer?

As a series of violent crimes with cryptic messages strike a little too close to home, her friends think she’s being paranoid. And Reece, her recklessly confident boyfriend, is preoccupied with a new girl as part of his informant work with the police.

Nearly’s going to have to risk her future in order to discover the truth about her past in time to stop a killer before he strikes again. And she might have to do it alone.

My Review:

I absolutely loved the first book and this one was just as addicting! It was good being in Nearly’s head, and it really felt familiar!

I will say for the first half of the story I was frustrated at the back and forth between Reece and Nearly because they are so perfect together! I wouldn’t have minded if he wasn’t there, just the trust issue were hard. But! They are teens so it’s understandable! When there chemistry was back, it was back!

The mystery in this one was also good too! I liked seeing Nearly trying to uncover things and find clues. Also, when the group got together to try and solve the crime, it sort of felt like The Breakfast Club, so I was like, heck yeah! Overall, another awesome read from Elle!

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What’s your favorite sequel?

 

Review: Nearly Gone

Title: Nearly Gone

Author: Elle Cosimano

Date of Publication: March 25th, 2014

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Goodreads Summary:

Keeping secrets is second nature to Nearly Boswell. Living in a trailer park outside Washington, DC, with a mom who works as an exotic dancer, she knows better than to share anything that would make her a target with her classmates. Only her best friends know about her obsession with the personal ads, and Nearly hasn’t told anyone about the emotions she can taste when she brushes against someone’s skin.

Then a serial killer goes on a murder spree and starts attacking students, leaving cryptic ads in the newspaper. Nearly might be the one person who can put all the clues together, and if she doesn’t figure it out soon – she’ll be next.

My Review:

I loved this one! It was mystery with a bit of paranormal and contemporary intertwined!

I really liked Nearly as a character. Even though she’s had a rough life, she’s still fighting to make it! Reece was also great and well developed with an interesting backstory.

People start dying around Nearly, and they all connect to her. So what is a girl to do? Find out why of course. The mystery here is quite intriguing and there is a lot of the unexpected which I really liked! I’m glad there is more because I want to know what’s in store for Nearly next!

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What’s your favorite mystery?

Masks Anthology Release Day!

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Masks is such a fun anthology with wonderful stories told by wonderful authors! Mine is titled The Celebration Game, and I hope you check out this Mardi Gras themed anthology!

Purchase: Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Kobo

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Masks is a collection of 11 short stories by authors from various writing backgrounds. Each story takes a unique look at the celebration of Mardi Gras, from the bright and beautiful party culture to the dark and dangerous mysteries behind the fun. The collection includes stories in the historical fiction, romance, supernatural, and horror genres, all focused on the celebration of life, death, and all that happens in between.

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Did you order a copy of as Masks?

Review: Mexican Gothic

Title: Mexican Gothic

Author: Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Date of Publication: June 30th, 2020

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Goodreads Summary:

He is trying to poison me. You must come for me, Noemí. You have to save me.

After receiving a frantic letter from her newly-wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside. She’s not sure what she will find — her cousin’s husband, a handsome Englishman, is a stranger, and Noemí knows little about the region.

Noemí is also an unlikely rescuer: She’s a glamorous debutante, and her chic gowns and perfect red lipstick are more suited for cocktail parties than amateur sleuthing. But she’s also tough, smart, and has an indomitable will, and she is not afraid: Not of her cousin’s new husband, who is both menacing and alluring; not of his father, the ancient patriarch who seems to be fascinated by Noemí; and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemi’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.

Her only ally in this inhospitable abode is the family’s youngest son. Shy and gentle, he seems to want to help Noemí, but might also be hiding dark knowledge of his family’s past. For there are many secrets behind the walls of High Place. The family’s once colossal wealth and faded mining empire kept them from prying eyes, but as Noemí digs deeper she unearths stories of violence and madness.

And Noemí, mesmerized by the terrifying yet seductive world of High Place, may soon find it impossible to ever leave this enigmatic house behind.

My review:

I always love Moreno-Garcia’s fabulous writing! The Beautiful Ones is still my favorite book by her but this was pretty dang close! I also the loved the 1950s setting!

Noemí was an awesome character, strong, inquisitive, and caring. And Francis!!! He was such an adorable human being!

My favorite thing about this book was the weirdness! Such lovely and beautiful strangeness with a unique atmosphere! There was some delicious creepy things that reminded me of Crimson Peak, which I love so much! This author is def an auto-buy for me!

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What’s your favorite decade?

Review: Frozen Stiff Drink

Title: Frozen Stiff Drink

Author: James J. Cudney

Date of Publication: March 18th, 2020

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Goodreads Summary:

A winter blizzard barrels toward Wharton County with a vengeance. Madam Zenya predicted the raging storm would change the course of Kellan’s life, but the famed seer never could’ve prepared him for all the collateral damage. Nana D disappears after visiting a patient at Willow Trees, leaving behind a trail of confusion. When the patient turns up dead, and second body is discovered beneath the snowbanks, Kellan must face his worst fears. What tragedy has befallen his beloved grandmother?

Kellan’s brother Hampton learns essential life lessons the hard way after his father-in-law accuses him of embezzlement. While trying to prove his innocence, Hampton digs himself a deeper hole that might lead to prison. Sheriff Montague wants to save him, but she receives the shock of her life as the past hurtles forward and complicates her future.

Between locating Nana D and solving the scandalous murder of another prominent Braxton citizen, Kellan and April’s worlds explode with more turmoil than they can handle. Too bad neither one of them knows what to do about the psychic’s latest premonition. The suspicious deaths happening around town aren’t ending anytime soon.

My Review:

This series has been so much fun! Each book gets better and more entertaining! I love Cudney’s writing and the way he can put the unexpected into his stories!

I’ve loved seeing the character growth in all the characters in each book! Kellan is such a likable character and being in his head is the best! And nothing can come easy for my boy! I also seriously love the sweet moments between Kellan and April, even though they have a lot of chaotic things going on!

There was a certain scene of bickering between Nana D and Kellan that had me laughing out loud too! I’m serious when I say this needs to be a Netflix series already! Cudney also knows how to write cliffhangers dang good, leaving me yearning for the next book!

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What’s your favorite mystery book or movie?