Review: The Chestnut Man

The Chestnut Man by Søren Sveistrup

Publication: Harper Collins

Publication Date: 9/3/19

Disclaimer: I received a free finished copy of this book from Harper Collins in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

GoodReads Synopsis:The heart-pounding debut from the creator of the hit Scandinavian television show The Killing.

If you find one, he’s already found you.

A psychopath is terrorizing Copenhagen.

His calling card is a “chestnut man”—a handmade doll made of matchsticks and two chestnuts—which he leaves at each bloody crime scene.

Examining the dolls, forensics makes a shocking discovery—a fingerprint belonging to a young girl, a government minister’s daughter who had been kidnapped and murdered a year ago.

A tragic coincidence—or something more twisted?

To save innocent lives, a pair of detectives must put aside their differences to piece together the Chestnut Man’s gruesome clues.

Because it’s clear that the madman is on a mission that is far from over.

And no one is safe. 

Review: The premise of the book is quite intriguing and captures your attention from page 1. I found the multiple characters at the beginning to be quite confusing, but at the end it all makes sense. I wasn’t a huge fan of the writing style as I felt like it jumped around a bit. I found that I needed to be in a certain mood to read this book and really pay attention to every little detail. Overall, it was a decent book, but wasn’t really my taste in thrillers though. If you like crime books with gore, I’d recommend picking this one up.

Rating: 4/5

Review: Imaginary Friend

Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

Publication: Grand Central Publishing

Publication Date: 10/1/19

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Grand Central Publishing in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

NetGalley Synopsis: Christopher is seven years old. Christopher is the new kid in town. Christopher has an imaginary friend. 

We can swallow our fear or let our fear swallow us. Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with her child. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It’s as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.

At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six awful days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a tree house in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.

Review: Imaginary Friend is Stephen Chbosky’s long awaited second novel. If his name sound familiar to you, it’s because he wrote The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Imaginary Friend was definitely a book that was out of my typical reading genre, but I’m glad that I gave it a chance. This horror book gave me Stranger Things vibes all the way and I loved how unique and intriguing the storyline was. I was immediately captured with the story and its characters from page 1. However, there were some instances in the story that lowered my overall rating of the book. First and foremost, the book felt like it was way too long (over 700 pages) and I thought it could have been culled down to under 500 or so. I wasn’t a big fan of religion talk or the descriptions of the dark fantasy in the book. There were also too many characters to keep track of and I lost interest in a few of the characters towards 60% of the book. Overall, if you like thriller or horror books, I would recommend picking this one up. 

Rating: 3/5

Review: The Arrangement

The Arrangement by Robyn Harding

Publication: Gallery / Scout Press

Publication Date: 7/30/19

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Gallery / Scout Press in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

GoodReads Synopsis: Natalie, a young art student in New York City, is struggling to pay her bills when a friend makes a suggestion: Why not go online and find a sugar daddy—a wealthy, older man who will pay her for dates, and even give her a monthly allowance? Lots of girls do it, Nat learns. All that’s required is to look pretty and hang on his every word. Sexual favours are optional.

Though more than thirty years her senior, Gabe, a handsome corporate finance attorney, seems like the perfect candidate, and within a month, they are madly in love. At least, Nat is…Gabe already has a family, whom he has no intention of leaving.

So when he abruptly ends things, Nat can’t let go. She begins drinking heavily and stalking him: watching him at work, spying on his wife, even befriending his daughter, who is not much younger than she is. But Gabe’s not about to let his sugar baby destroy his perfect life. What was supposed to be a mutually beneficial arrangement devolves into a nightmare of deception, obsession, and, when a body is found near Gabe’s posh Upper East Side apartment, murder.

Review: This was the first book I’ve read from Robyn Harding. The whole concept of sugar daddy / sugar baby relationships in this book was truly fascinating to read. Robyn’s writing style intrigues you from page one and you can’t put it down. However, half way through, the book did feel a bit predictable to me. I liked how we were able to see the perspectives of Natalie (sugar baby) and Gabe (sugar daddy), but I was craving more of the first person alternative narrations in this novel. I was also curious to learn more of Celeste (Gabe’s wife) perspective more in the book instead. If you like domestic thrillers, then you should check this one out.

Rating: 3/5

Review: Lies

Lies by T.M. Logan

Publication: St. Martin’s Press

Publication Date: 1/17/17

Disclaimer: I received a free finished book from St. Martin’s Press in exchange for my honest in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review or rating.

GoodReads Synopsis: WHAT IF YOUR WHOLE LIFE WAS BASED ON LIES?

When Joe Lynch stumbles across his wife driving into a hotel car park while she’s supposed to be at work, he’s intrigued enough to follow her in.

And when he witnesses her in an angry altercation with family friend Ben, he knows he ought to intervene.

But just as the confrontation between the two men turns violent, and Ben is knocked unconscious, Joe’s young son has an asthma attack – and Joe must flee in order to help him.

When he returns, desperate to make sure Ben is OK, Joe is horrified to find that Ben has disappeared.

And that’s when Joe receives the first message…

Review: This is the first book I’ve read from T.M. Logan. Overall, this was a decent domestic thriller. The book had a great premise and the beginning pulled me in by being fast-paced. I didn’t see the twists coming and I liked the ending. However, I did feel that the middle part of the story did drag on for a bit. There were a few cheesy parts in the book I didn’t care for and there were times I didn’t like the main character, but that didn’t hinder me to continue reading as it was fast-paced. If you like domestic thrillers, then I’d recommend checking this one out.

Rating: 3/5

Review: Lock Every Door

Lock Every Door by Riley Sager

Publication Date: 7/2/19

Publisher: Dutton

Rating: 5/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Dutton in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

Review: I was super stoked to receive Riley Sanger’s third and latest novel novel, Lock Every Door. This thriller follows Jules, who is broke and unemployed, accepts an offer to be an apartment sitter for a high profile and mysterious building in NYC. Jules befriends another apartment sitter, Ingrid, who suddenly disappears the next day. In the wake of Ingrid’s disappearance, Jules uncovers the building’s dark history. Are the secrets of the building’s glamorous facade still hold true today or is it in the past? This was definitely a 5 star read for me! I swear Riley’s writing style gets better and better by each book. He has quickly become one of my favorite thriller writers! The premise of the novel is not only intriguing, but actually kept me on my toes throughout the story as I didn’t see the twists and turns coming. I found each of the characters to be distinct. This thriller kind of reminded me of the Disney movie, Tower of Terror, a little bit. Overall, if you loved Riley Sager’s previous books, you’ll love this one and it won’t disappoint!

Review: Recursion

Recursion by Blake Crouch

Publishing Date: 6/11/19
Publisher: Crown Publishing
Rating: 5/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced reader copy of this book from Crown Publishing in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review or rating.

Review: Blake Crouch’s newest novel, Recursion, is the second novel I’ve read from him. This sci-fi thriller follows NYC Detective Barry Sutton who is investigating a mysterious disease called False memory Syndrome which drives victims to insanity with memories of a life that they never lived. As Barry learns more about the mysterious disease, he ultimately faces Helena Smith, a neuroscientist who invented the device which changed the world. I don’t typically read sci-fi books, but I loved Dark Matter so I had to get my hands on this one. Blake Crouch blew it out of the water with Recursion. Not only is the premise intriguing, but you are kept on the edge of seat throughout the story. I loved the alternating perspectives of Barry Sutton and Helena Smith. Blake Crouch did an amazing job shifting through the times without making it too confusing, but also crafting it in a way which made sense and kept the reader wondering what would happen next. Themes of memories, happiness, difficult choices, and society can be found in this sci-fi thriller. I really found the perspectives of the power of memory to be quite fascinating in this novel. This is definitely one of those books where after you’re done reading, you’ll think about the subject matter for a while. I highly recommend reading this novel if you loved Dark Matter and/or if you love thrillers. You won’t regret it!

Review: Just One Bite

Just One Bite by Jack Heath

Publication Date: 6/4/19

Publisher: Hanover Square Press (Harlequin)

Rating: 4/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Hanover Square Press in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review or rating.

Review: Just One More Bite is the follow up to Hangman. This crime thriller follows Timothy Blake who is at a crossroads of working as a consultant for the FBI and also taking on a job as body disposal for local crime lord. Will he able to keep his two worlds separate or will they come crashing down together?

Wow…Jack Heath does it again! The plot in this book was insane and I liked it as much as I liked Hangman. I loved the author’s fast-paced, dark, and funny at times writing style. I liked how in this book we see how Timothy Blake’s character changes a bit and that we are introduced to new characters as well. I didn’t see any of the twists coming and loved how complex the crime they were solving was. However, I still couldn’t stomach in some of gory scenes which I wouldn’t be able to handle in any book. If you love crime thrillers, this series is definitely for you.