A review and rating of the last 5 books I read and a look into my TBR list

The Woman in the Window
Author: A.J. Finn
Publication Date: January 2018
Genre: mystery, thriller, fiction
Method: hardback, lent from a friend

Review: Rating books is hard. I was less than impressed during chapter 1-93 and would rate those chapters 3 of 5, but then we hit the plot twist in chapter 94 and my jaw dropped, literally, my jaw dropped. Chapters 94-99 get a 5 of 5 from me. So we compromise and give a 4, I guess? It’s not an exact science, a psychological thriller pseudoscience actually. I’ve seen this book compared quite a lot to The Girl on the Train and I’d be more inclined to recommend that thriller over this one. For me personally, TGOTT had a more compelling story, more addicting in that I couldn’t stop reading. TGOTT had me physically anxious, nervous, and scared at points (which I quite enjoy). Side note: 2 thumbs up for the reoccurring character Bina – world’s best physical therapist.

Lock Every Door
Author: Riley Sager
Publication Date: July 2019
Genre: thriller, mystery, suspense
Method: hardback, borrowed from TPL

Review: I had very high hopes for this book, given how much I loved Home Before Dark (Sager’s newest thriller), and was not disappointed. Sager has an incredible gift of breathing life and personality into buildings, almost as if they are the main character. There is so much to love about this book: the changing timeline, the flashbacks, the symbolism, the beautiful imagery. And the gargoyles (my favorite Disney movie is The Hunchback of Notre Dame, after all). Suffice to say I’m definitely planning to read the rest of Sager’s work – Finals Girls and The Last Time I Lied.

We Should All Be Feminists
Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Publication Date: July 2014
Genre: nonfiction, feminism, essay
Method: audiobook and digital copy via TPL

Review: “We say to girls: You can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful but not too successful, otherwise you will threaten the man. If you are the breadwinner in your relationship with a man, pretend that you are not, especially in public, otherwise you will emasculate him.”

“I have chosen to no longer be apologetic for my femininity. And I want to be respected in all my femaleness. Because I deserve to be.”

A well written and concise essay discussing feminism, discrimination, and marginalization of women around the world. If I’m blessed to have the opportunity to raise daughters one day, I’ll gladly have them listen to this essay to open dialogue regarding feminism.

The Perfect Stranger
Author: Megan Miranda
Publication Date: April 2017
Genre: mystery, thriller, suspense
Method: hardback, lent from a friend

Review: There was a lot going on in this story, good and bad. A few too many characters to keep straight for starters. Some that were introduced then had no impact on the plot (looking at you, Rebecca). There was also a lot of build up with the story line involving the main character’s prior job and the ending came and went without any real explanation or closure, just a longer list of questions for me to annoyingly ponder. On the plus side, this story held my attention from the very beginning – I felt like it was building and progressing right out the gate, which I’m learning I like and expect in thrillers and suspense novels. This book falls in line with how I feel about the other Megan Miranda books I’ve read – I liked them, they weren’t a waste of time by any means, but I didn’t love it, so I wouldn’t recommend.

The Whisper Man
Author: Alex North
Publication Date: August 2019
Genre: thriller, mystery, crime, suspense
Method: hardback, borrowed from TPL

Review: In July, I read author Alex North’s 2nd novel, The Shadows (TS), and absolutely loved it! I had read reviews that said it was very similar to The Whisper Man, his first book, and I’d have to agree. To some extent that should be expected as there are similar settings and shared characters between the two books. Even so, I was still shocked with each twist and turn. At one point I thought I had figured out the ending, assuming it would be similar to TS, but that was not the case. Similar to TS, I loved when a chapter would end on a suspenseful or cliff hanger moment, the next chapter would switch perspectives, forcing me to read another 2-3 chapters – what an evil genius move. There were moments while reading this story that my heart started to race and I could feel anxiety and fear building inside. In my mind, that tells me I’m emotionally invested in a story, enough that has the power to cause a physiological reaction – much appreciated.

What’s Up Next

Until tomorrow, Meryn



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