2018 Book Roundup

2018 Book Roundup

 

Soooo I meant to start this last spring and follow up with a post of the books I had read each season, but we all know how good I am at the whole blogging thing. Better late than never right?! Hopefully I will have my first book roundup of 2019 up by Next week, but I’m sure nobody is holding their breath!

I do most of my reading in the school pickup line, but now that school is out I try to sneak some time in the hammock in the afternoon or read before bed. I prefer to read actual books as opposed to reading on a tablet or other electronic device. I usually get my books from Target or Amazon, they have good prices without having to buy an annual book store membership to save money. Target will often offer Cartwheel offers on certain books too, so keep an eye out for those!

I read a lot of thrillers but there are some others mixed in here too! Please let me know if you have read any of these and what you thought of them!

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Every Last Lie- Mary Kubica

Clara’s world falls apart when her husband Nick is killed in a car accident. Clara was home with their newborn son and their four year old daughter was in the backseat but is unharmed. The story is told from Clara’s perspective, dealing with the accident and trying to find out what really happened and Nick’s leading up to the accident.

I’m a fan of this author and liked this book. You really feel for Clara and want her to get the answers and clarity she deserves.

The River At Night- Erica Ferencik

Four best friends decide to change up their annual girls trip by going on an adventurous white water rafting trip. Wini has just come out of a 15 year marriage and is probably the most reluctant to take the trip, and of course things go wrong. The women end up stranded and fighting to survive.

This book was a little odd, there were some unusual characters and situations in the book, but all in all I did enjoy it. It has a good mix of relationships (among the four friends) and adventure.

Hello Sunshine- Laura Dave 

Sunshine is an internet darling who has authored best selling cookbooks. She has the dream life until she is hacked and all of her secrets are exposed, causing her to lose her her husband, home and job. She is forced to move back to her childhood home and face the sister she hasn’t seen in years.

Hey, a non thriller! This one was not a fave though. I had read other books by this author so I was looking forward to this one, but I found it a little slow and predictable. Maybe because I do read so many thrillers and this one isn't gripping? I just thought the characters were a little too obvious and the story wasn't very exciting. It was a cute enough story though and I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it.

Odd Child Out- Gilly Macmillan

Two teen boys from very different backgrounds attend a private school together and have become best friends. Noah, a privileged boy, is found unconscious and Abdi, a Somalian refugee, refuses to talk to anyone. Fingers are pointed in his direction and he goes missing. Is Abdi guilty? What happened to Noah?

I wasn’t sure about this one, it is probably not a book I would have chosen had I not read other books by this author. It’s about 2 teenage boys and I usually avoid serious topics like race and political tension.  I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed it opened me up to reading different topics in the future.

The Good Widow- Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke

Jacks is shocked to find out that her husband has been killed in a car crash in Hawaii- when he should have been on a business trip in Kansas. What makes it worse is finding out that he was with another woman. A woman who’s fiancé shows up and encourages Jacks to take a trip to Hawaii to get the answers they both deserve.

This was one of the only books I have ever read on my phone through the Kindle app. This one falls somewhere in the middle for me. I liked it and recently found out the authors had another book come out last summer that I plan on reading.

My Husbands Wife- Jane Corry

A back and forth between Lily and Carla. The book starts when Lily is a young lawyer starting a life with her husband Ed. Carla is their young neighbor who starts spending lots of time with them at their apartment. The second part of the book takes place 12 years later with Carla coming back into Lily’s life.

I randomly grabbed this one at the book store because it was in their recommended section but have to be honest, I wish I hadn't. I didn't enjoy the story very much and just found it kind of odd.

The Wife Between Us- Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen

This story alternates between Nellie and Vanessa as Nellie marries Richard, Vanessa’s ex husband. Nellie is young and optimistic, Vanessa is the older ex who seems to have issues. But as you get further into the book you realize nothing is as it seems.

This was one of my favorites on the list.  I almost didn't get it because the name and story are sort of along the same line as the last book, but this one was so much better! It was a total page turner and had some really shocking twists. 

The Woman In The Window- A.J. Finn

Anna lives alone in New York City, paralyzed by a fear that prevents her from leaving her house. She spends most of her time watching old movies and spying on her neighbors from the window. When new neighbors move in she sees something unsettling. Did she really see what she things she saw or is she losing her mind?

This was another really good one that left my mouth hanging open in shock at one point. There was a twist in this one that I never even saw coming! It had a lot of old movie references that I kind of glazed over but this one is a definite must read!

Still Me- Jojo Moyes

Moyes third book following the life of Louisa, this time on her journey to New York City to start a new job with a wealthy family. Louisa is trying to navigate a new job in a new country while keeping her long distance relationship going.

Another non thriller and I really liked this one. If you read Me Before You, you know it was an emotional tearjerker and this one was not! I would recommend reading the first two books in Louisa’s story before reading this one, but you would be able to easily follow it if you hadn’t. Super cute story!

Surprise Me- Sophie Kinsella 

Sylvie and Dan decide to add a little excitement to their 10 year marriage with random surprises after a doctor casually mentions that they could have 68 years of life and marriage left. Of course things go wrong and this surprise plan falls apart.

I have read all of Kinsella’s books and must admit this one wasn’t my favorite. She always has the quirkiest characters but sometimes they are so flawed it’s a little much. I actually preferred her last book, My Not So Perfect Life, much more than this one.

The Good Daughter- Karin Slaughter 

A small town tragedy brings two sisters back together 28 years after their own tragedy. This book tells the stories of Charlie and Samantha now as well as 28 years ago when they lost their mother in a horrific attack that greatly affected both sisters.

I liked this story, but I also had a hard time reading some of it. As much as I love thrillers, I really struggle with gory and violent details.

 The Favorite Sister- Jessica Knoll

A pair of competitive sisters are running a business and filming a  reality tv series when one of them ends up dead. This story focuses on Brett and Kelly as well as their castmates and Kelly’s daughter. How did Brett die and who is responsible?

I did not like this book at all. I thought it was boring and annoying and really struggled to get through it. I had read the author’s first book and didn’t like it but thought maybe it was just because I found the topic (a school shooting) upsetting. Unfortunately I didn’t like this one any better.

All We Ever Wanted- Emily Giffin

Nina and Tom live different worlds in the same town until a horrible situation involving both of their teens brings them together. Tom is a single dad working hard to support his daughter, while Nina is a wealthy woman raising a son with her husband who is never around.

Definitely my favorite non thriller on the list. I love Emily’s books and this one did not disappoint. It touches on teen drinking and the negative ramifications of social media. Told from the alternating perspectives of Nina, Tom and Lyla (Tom’s daughter), you get to hear the story from the adults point of view and the teen’s.

Bring Me Back- B.A. Paris

Ten years ago Finn’s girlfriend Layla disappeared. Finn is now engaged to Layla’s sister Ellen but signs of Layla suddenly start appearing. Is Layla alive, does someone know what happened to her and want to mess with Finn’s head and his relationship with Ellen?

I thought I had this one figured out fairly early on but I was wrong. A great thriller!

When Life Gives You Lululemons - Lauren Weisberger

Sort of a follow up to The Devil Wears Prada, but this one centers around Emily and two of her friends living in the ‘burbs. Miranda and Andy are both mentioned in the book but it is not their story. This one revolves around Emily, Miriam, and Karolina-three very different women who band together to help Karolina out of a crisis.

I liked this book ok, didn’t love it or hate it. It was a good story of girlfriends sticking together to help each other out.

An Unwanted Guest- Shari Lapena

This story follows guests who find themselves snowed in to a mountain lodge for the weekend. Not only are the trapped with no electricity, but the first morning there a body is found and it won’t be the only one. Is one of the guests a murderer?

This one was an easy read, I somehow had the murderer narrowed down to a couple of suspects pretty early on. I didn’t find any of the characters particularly likable and they all have pasts that could make them suspects.

The Death of Mrs. Westaway - Ruth Ware

Hal receives a letter notifying her of a large inheritance that can’t possibly be meant for her as her grandparents had passed before she was born. She is alone and struggling since her mother’s death though so she is intrigued enough to visit this mansion and attend the funeral of her supposed grandmother.

I liked this book a lot. I didn’t find anything super shocking in it, I didn't expect some of the details but some of them I had figured out pretty early on in the book. I really enjoyed the story though and would definitely recommend it.

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To the man in the Trump hat at the gas station...

To the man in the Trump hat at the gas station...