Book Review: The Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood

26196106you can find the book at:

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Amazon
Barnes & Noble (unavailable)
Author website

my review:

Rating: ★★★☆☆

~ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review~

Sean Jackson’s three year old twin daughter, Coco, has gone missing leaving only Ruby and no one has a clue what happened. The media blames their mother, but what really happened to the little girl? The Darkest Secret plays over two weekends, set twelve years apart. The first is in 2004 where various friends and family are attending Sean’s 5oth birthday weekend while the second is set twelve years later during the weekend of Sean’s funeral.

This book was an intense read with engaging characters and drama that focuses on a terrible group of rich people. (for some reason, I can imagine this being a BBC program??) They were horrible- to themselves and to each other. I’ve never read a more self absorbed group of people like these, which makes it even more fascinating to read as you read on trying to figure out what happened and hopefully learn the truth behind the disappearance of Coco.

Marwood has written an relentless novel that creates a group of egoistic characters, and throughout the narrative there is a sense of complete horror as they reveal how far they will go. Overall, a thrilling novel which I felt had a slow start but once the story kicks in, it’s really compelling.

Format: ARC Kindle Edition
Expected publication: January 1st 2016 by Sphere
ASIN: B010RALUP6

 

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BOOK REVIEW: Where Death is a Hunter by Christopher Stookey

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Author Website (unavailable)

GoodReads summary:

Hannah Fâtier is a thirty-two-year-old physician fresh out of residency training. She’s just started her first job as an anesthesiologist at Deaconess Hospital in San Francisco, she’s bought a new home, and she’s engaged to be married.

In short, life is good for Hannah–until, one day, tragedy strikes. A patient under her care dies unexpectedly during a routine operation. An investigation into the case reveals the cause of death to be a basic medical error committed by Hannah. […] She begins to suspect someone has framed her for a fatal medical mistake she didn’t make. But who would do such a thing and why? And, more importantly, why did her patient really die that day on the operating table?

Where Death Is a Hunter is a medical mystery dealing with hospital death, a dark enigma, one doctor’s self-doubt, and the search for redemption.

my review:

Rating: ★★★★★

~E-copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review~

Hannah Fâtier is a anesthesiologist with a brand new job at Deaconess Hospital in San Francisco. Her life seems ordinary until a patient under her care dies before the routine operation had properly begun. Hannah is blamed due to a basic medical error, yet Hannah knows she isn’t to blame. Research into the paitent Hannah discovers many inconsistencies. And learns that someone has framed her for a fatal medical mistake she knows she didn’t make.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

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goodreads summary:

When sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick is sent to live with her older sister, Ivy, she has no idea that the infamous Ivy Kendrick is Washington D.C.’s #1 “fixer,” known for making politicians’ scandals go away for a price. No sooner does Tess enroll at Hardwicke Academy than she unwittingly follows in her sister’s footsteps and becomes D.C.’s premier high school fixer, solving problems for elite teens.

Secrets pile up as each sister lives a double life. . . . until their worlds come crashing together and Tess finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy with one of her classmates and a client of Ivy’s. Suddenly, there is much more on the line than good grades, money, or politics, and the price for this fix might be more than Tess is willing to pay.

my review:

Rating:
★★★★★

A review describes it as a cross between Veronica Mars and Scandal and it is being completely accurate. I have watched both shows (well, a couple of episodes of Scandal), and I can definitely see the inspiration. The high school life of VM and the Scandal theme, though aimed for a younger crowd.

Tess Kendrick is a very independent individual. She never intended to become her high school’s Fixer, in fact she tries to escape. The more she tries to escape it the more she gets trapped in the political lives of DC’s most important people and their children. Reading about her solving issues and thinking through puzzling problems gives you quite the ride of a read. I am looking forward to seeing Tess’ sister’s character get more developed, the big plot twist towards the end gives us new insight in her character that I certainly wasn’t expecting. I loved Tess’ little gang. Asher is sweet and  I loved him from the very first time he appeared on page, who then ends up becoming Tess’ main confidant and partner in crime. Vivvie started off as this very cute, bubbly character who stuck by Tess’ side because she didn’t have anyone else to hang out with, but soon enough the bonds of trust build and they become fast friends. I think she might be my favourite character out of the gang,  Henry on the other hand, he ended up that character the was way too mysterious, and became too bland for me to be interested. However, I did feel sympathetic towards him due to the circumstances.

There is no romance in this title as it mostly focuses on the political issues, but I’m glad it didn’t for the first because romance in these situation tend to be over the top and too much. The Fixer is one of my favorite reads so far this year, it keeps you engaged whether it be through problem solving, kick ass main character who takes matters into her own hands, or through the decent dialogue. Some of the secrets of the book are maybe a little easy to decipher if you pay attention to the right things, but that doesn’t detract from the overall enjoyment.

BOOK REVIEW: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

you can find the book at:

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my review:

Rating:
★★★★★


“There’s a difference between really loving someone and loving the idea of her.” 

Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl opens a new perspective in thriller novels by creating Nick and Amy as the main characters. The Novel opens as Nick – “I used to be a writer…back when people read things on paper, back when anyone cared about what I thought” – finds that at their fifth wedding anniversary his wife Amy has gone missing, front door is open, the coffee table shattered, books scattered. Amy, a trust fund baby New Yorker who has disastrous life since Nick put her to his Missouri home in order to care for his dying mother, is now gone.

Nick calls the police, obviously, but his reaction is strange. He keeps referring to Amy in the past tense, and then holding himself back. He is not quite worried enough about her disappearance. “I wasn’t sure what to say now. I raked my memory for the lines. What does the husband say at this point in the movie? Depends on whether he’s guilty or innocent.”

The book switches between Nick’s narrative, as a person who is desperately looking for his wife which Amy consumes the attention of America’s media, and Amy’s diary, as she writes about the early days of their relationship. “Tra and la! I am smiling a big adopted-orphan smile as I write this …I met a boy!” She says. And then later: “He promised to take care of me, and yet I feel afraid.”

Slowly, the two stories  begin to converge, the media and police begin to swing the blame towards Nick’s way. He lies to the police: little lies that don’t really matter, but why is he doing it? And there’s something strange about Amy’s diary too; her vision of the events of their past is different from Nick’s, it demolishes their perfect image. We begin to see the cracks of the darkness in this seemingly perfect marriage: where is Amy, and who is telling the truth?

Flynn, an extraordinary good writer, plays her readers with twists in throughout the story. She plays with her unreliable narrators to stunning effect, disturbing and delighting in turn. Gone Girl, her third novel, is an absolute must read.

I spent most of the book deciding between fearing Amy Dunne and wanting to be best friends with Amy Dunne. The woman is brilliant, witty and completely on-point about so many things (the “Cool Girl” speech; “bleed and clean,”). Her brilliance is terrifying. Even when it looks like her plans are going to unravel and she’s going to be caught, she finds a new way to win. Amy is always about winning.

I didn’t like Nick at the beginning but now looking back, you’re not supposed to like him then. He’s a bitter loser who drifts through the investigation, shrugging his shoulders at every new clue suggesting he might have a part in his wife’s disappearance. It’s only when he starts to fight back and become more like Amy, crafting his own lies and using the media to his advantage, that you begin to like him. It has a scary twist on the traditional happy romantic ending, and I loved it.

In short, this book hits all the marks and I will definitely be reading more from Gillian Flynn in the future.