Hey there, fellow Bibliophiles! I know it’s been a while since I’ve populated this website with anything new, so I wanted to touch base with you.
Between general chaos at work, a much-needed vacation and a move from apartment to apartment, I haven’t had nearly as much time as I would like to read, let alone post to this blog about what I’ve been reading.
But I have a few moments to take a breath and to type out some thoughts on a few recent reads, so here goes nothing:
The Hot One by Carolyn Murnick
I had heard about this book through Goodreads and thought it was really interesting in concept. A woman whose best friend was brutally murdered begins following the case in an attempt to figure out who her friend really was.
I was compelled by this piece because I cover criminal cases a lot. Murnick sat through hearings, got to know witnesses and dug through public records to try and find out what happened to Ashley, who was now living on the opposite coast.
It was a really interesting book and I would be really interested in seeing a sequel as the case continues to progress through appeals etc.
The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter
As this book neared its publication date, I was waiting with bated breath. I have eagerly awaited another stand-alone book by Karin Slaughter since I finished Pretty Girls last year. (If you haven’t read Pretty Girls, you should.)
When I got the alert that this was ready for me at the library, I was so excited. And I tore through this book.
The story begins with Charlotte (Charlie) and Sam as young girls in their “new” home. Their previous home had burned to the ground, as the result of arson, a few days earlier. The girls’ father, Rusty, is the target.
As the girls and their mom, Gamma, work to get ready for dinner, two unexpected guests show up. Gamma ends up dead, Sam ends up shot and buried alive, left for dead, and Charlie runs away, only to be caught up with and assaulted before she finally escapes.
Flash forward a few decades and Charlie is a lawyer whose life is unraveling. She has a one night stand with a guy from a bar, cheating on her husband, and when she goes to swap phones back, she gets caught up in another tragedy.
And so, The Good Daughter begins.
The twists, as is characteristic with Slaughter, keep you guessing in this one until the very end.
What You Don’t Know by JoAnn Chaney
Keeping things in the thriller family, this debut novel by JoAnn Chaney really was stunning.
Told in alternating viewpoints, the plot follows two Denver detectives who investigated a serial case a few years earlier. With that monster behind bars, they’ve each moved on to new assignments. The reporter who followed the case is no longer in the news business and the wife of the killer is trying to move on with the uncertain gazes of many of her neighbors trailing behind her.
So when bodies connected to the original case begin surfacing with details only the killer would know being replicated, this cast of characters reunites — albeit reluctantly.
This book definitely had its creepy moments. There were a few chapters told from the perspective of a victim that really should not be read right before trying to sleep.
While I had my suspicions about who was responsible for the deaths, I had no idea about the motive. I was really wrong about that.
Another thing I enjoyed about Chaney’s debut was her breaking of the fourth wall at the conclusion of the book. In the epilogue, she talks with the reader as a reader, explaining why she was including what happened to each of the main characters as time went on post-plot.
This was a strong debut and I will be keeping an eye out for a second novel from Chaney.