Bring Me Back
Well, after enjoying the other titles by B.A. Paris including Behind Closed Doors and The Breakdown I have to say that this one fell flat. It started strong but unraveled from there. The book begins by immediately throwing you into the storyline with little character development. I’m all for a moving plot, but at times this made me question some of the other details of the mystery since I didn’t feel like I had enough of the facts at the beginning of it all. It was too drawn out for what was actually needed to get to the point and some details were just a far cry from a gripping psychological thriller. Then at the end when all of the loose ends are tied up, the fact that you basically throw out common sense to do so to connect some far fetched details make it frustrating overall. Some things just don’t feel feasible. I thought I had this book figured out several times until the end when I realized I was wrong. Most reviews I’ve read have reflected the same ideas but I too was still curious enough to give it a read based on the past releases from his author.
Finn and Layla were in love, on vacation and on the cusp of getting engaged. On their drive home, they stop at a service station where Finn ran to the restroom and left Layla locked in the car. When he comes back out, she is gone — at least that’s what he told the police, but it’s not the entire story. Fast forward ten years and Finn is engaged to Layla’s sister, Ellen. The grief of mourning Layla’s disappearance brought them together and as much as his heart wants to fully love her he has a nagging sixth sense not to trust her. Then all of a sudden not too long before the wedding, Finn gets a phone call — someone from his past has seen Layla, or did they? Then other strange things begin to happen like Russian dolls that keep appearing around their house, anonymous emails and warnings. All of these things make you wonder, is Layla alive?
Now do you see why I was curious enough to give this one a read? It was entertaining in a ‘what in the world?! I need to keep reading to figure this out’ kind of way. The title and book cover are linked in case you want to give this one a read too.
Right Behind You
This book popped up as a recommendation after reading some of the others I’ve recently finished. Honestly, it was probably my least favorite of the bunch in this review. The story begins with you being thrown right into a murder investigation so I took that as a good sign that this plot would keep moving, because this isn’t a short book. Unfortunately the storyline slowed way down in the middle and didn’t pick back up until the end. It took me several weeks to finally finish this one because I just couldn’t convince myself to pick it back up. But I’m no quitter and always finish a book so I finally sucked it up and stuck it out. With so many books currently on my ‘want to read’ list, I haven’t yet decided if I would give another title by this author a try.
Eight years ago, Sharlah Nash was a young girl being taken care of by her older brother, Telly Nash, due to the fact that their father was a drunk and their mother was too weak to do anything about it. During one of their father’s drunken rages, Telly beats his father to death with a baseball bat to save them both. Now, Sharlah is 13 and is about to be adopted by FBI Profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie. All is well until a call comes in: a double murder at a local gas station and a suspect on the run. Evidence shows that Telly may be the guilty party in the shooting, so the hunt is on. The search team and investigators attempt to stay on his trail while at the same time trying to figure out why he is on a killing spree eight years after his initial incident. From past circumstances after going through child services, they wonder too what all of this means for Sharlah. Is he coming for her next? What will happen to her family if they learn the whole truth from long ago? Sharlah knows that sometimes the biggest danger of all is the one standing right behind you.
I’d say this is less psychological thriller like I’ve grown accustomed to love and more murder mystery with a slow climax. The further I got into the book and realized there was more to uncover, the more I wanted to finish but it did take some time to get there. Title and book cover linked if you want to check it out!
The Other Woman
This book was not at all what I expected. It wasn’t until fairly close to the end that I started putting it together. I should’ve seen it coming, but I was so distracted by the other events in the book that I couldn’t look too far head. I’m being 100% honest when I say that this book raised my blood pressure every time I opened it. Let me clue you in — the other woman isn’t a mistress, it’s the mother-in-law. I read the first third of the book waiting for a mistress to enter the scene until the lightbulb finally went off and I realized it was actually the mother-in-law aka monster-in-law who was ‘the other woman’. The story starts off the typical psychological thriller way: girl meets nearly too good to be true guy, a relationship begins, they have a whirlwind romance but things quickly turn dark and dramatic. Pammie has no plans of allowing her son, Adam to marry Emily and will do whatever it takes to stop them, literally and it’s both shocking and entertaining the lengths to which she goes.
This book is the debut novel for author, Sandie Jones. I was so stressed out reading this book wondering why all of the characters were putting up with what was happening I almost couldn’t take it, but this was a recommended read after finishing B.A. Paris’ Bring Me Back so I pushed through. I would be curious to check out future books by this author, just know that this is not a relaxing read.
Then She Was Gone
This was a well written book. It gives you the right amount of character development and the story moves right along. I also enjoy how the writing switches to the point of view of several characters so you’re able to pick up on new details and clues from each of these perspectives. Early on you can tell that these characters are all linked together somehow but can’t quite put your finger on it yet. Though some details made me cringe, I enjoyed the book and finished it fairly quickly. I also look forward to reading other titles by this author. If this one interests you too, the title and book cover are linked.
At 15, Ellie had her whole life ahead of her and was easily her mother’s favorite child. She was preparing for some big tests and began working with a tutor that came as a recommendation from friends’ parents. Things were going well until the arrangement felt awkward and Ellie told her mom, Laurel, she no longer wanted the tutoring sessions. Then one day, in the blink of an eye, Ellie was gone. For the next ten years, Laurel never gave up hope of finding Ellie. The grief had been too much for her, driving apart her marriage and putting a wedge in the relationships with her other two children. Then one day, she met a man in a local coffee shop who said all the right things and swept her off of her feet. But nothing takes her breath away quite like the sight of meeting his young daughter. This draws back out the obsession of figuring out what happened to Ellie, especially since a body had yet to be found. What really happened to her and who has secrets to hide?
This book had all the things that make a thriller great. Like I mentioned before, aside from a few cringeworthy moments, I really enjoyed this one. Title and book cover are linked for your reading pleasure!
One Day in December
I’m currently reading this one now and LOVE it. I literally don’t want to put it down and have fallen asleep the last two nights with my kindle in hand only to be awoken shortly after when it falls to the floor. As a romance novel, it’s a nice break from the thriller track I’ve been on. This will be a book I’ll be sad to finish because I call already tell I’m going to want more. This is the debut title for this author with her second book releasing late January 2020. I’ll definitely be reading that one too! The title and book cover are linked in case you want to go ahead and read this one as we approach the holiday season.
The Understudy, written by B.A. Paris and three other authors, just released on October 3 and The Dilemma will be available on December 30, 2019.
November’s Morning Basket
Up to this point, I’ve shared several morning baskets; however, there was a lot of buzz around my October basket and you had LOTS of questions! So here are the answers to those questions:
What is a morning basket?
It’s simply a basket filled with books, crafts and activities for my toddler that we dedicate 1 hour to every day. Laney decides what she wants to do whether it’s a little bit of everything, only reading the books, only doing a craft or playing a game and reading a book. It’s up to her how we spend that hour. Depending on our schedules, some days it may be our Afternoon Activity Basket or our Evening Entertainment Basket because sometimes we don’t get to it in the mornings.
How do you put together a morning basket?
You probably already have everything you need around your house! Start with a medium sized basket. The basket I use was the home to a stack of magazines in our bathroom that were just collecting dust. Then at the start of each month, I do a lap around our house and collect various items. Sometimes I go with a theme, like focusing on colors or shapes and get items to reflect that i.e. flash cards, books, sorting games, etc. It gives new life to toys or books that may have been getting neglected or altogether forgotten. The last couple of months have revolved around a holiday. October included Halloween books and crafts and this month is all about Thanksgiving.
How often do you change out the contents?
I strive to have the basket refreshed as close to the beginning of each new month as possible. New month, new content!
Now let me show you what I have in our morning basket for November:
(all are linked in case you want to add one of these things too — thanks!)
If you create your own Morning Basket, be sure to tag me on Instagram @multiplyingmichie. I’d love to see it!