My Week In Reviews: 23rd January 2022

Happy Sunday and welcome to another weekly update where I share a little about what’s happened to me this week and the books I’ve reviewed.

Review wise, there wasn’t a lot – just one book, which I didn’t enjoy too much (Open House by Katie Sise). It wasn’t that there was anything wrong with it as such. It just fell flat for me. I also posted about other reviews that are popular on my blog, though I wasn’t sure why because they were 5+ years old.

Life wise, things were much busier than the blog. Last Sunday, we did a 7K walk along our local beach before stopping at a small Brazilian cafe with wonderful ‘home-cooked food’ and cakes to die for (no photo because we ate them too quickly, but here are a few of the beach, where the sun came out on the way back).

We’re trying to get into our habit of walking every weekend during lockdown (especially as we seem to be having some sunny days right now). Today we’re off to try and find the Waintstones, which is supposed to have some of the best views in the area.

I’m also trying to make full use of my Friday’s off now I’m no longer having to work them to catch up with everything that isn’t getting done during my standard work days. This week, I painted the stairs. I did an ombre effect going up, which has worked better than I’d hope. Next Friday, I’ll finish them off with some varnish and share a photo if it all works.

And that’s it for this week. How has your week – reading and otherwise?

Emma x

Joining in with the Sunday Post and Kimberly, the Caffeinated Book Reviewer

Open House by Katie Sise #BookReview

A decade ago in upstate New York, art student Emma McCullough walked into the woods and was never seen again. It’s a mystery that still haunts her bucolic university town and her broken family, especially her sister, Haley, whose need for closure has become an obsession. But now, finally, the first piece of evidence in the vanishing has been found: Emma’s bracelet, lodged in a frozen piece of earth at the bottom of a gorge. For Emma’s three best college friends, for a beloved former teacher, and for Haley, the chilling trinket is more than a clue in a resurrected cold case. It’s a trigger.

Then a woman is attacked during an open house, and the connections between the two crimes, ten winters apart, begin to surface. So do the secrets that run as deep and dark as the currents in this quiet river town.

My thoughts on Open House…

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My Week In Reviews: 16th January 2022

Happy Sunday and welcome to another weekly update where I share a little about what’s happened to me this week and the books I’ve reviewed.

First off, I want to apologies to anyone who has visited my blog and who I haven’t visited in return. I use my iPad and iPhone for most things online and neither will let me comment on Blogger blogs. I’m not sure if this is something other people have a problem with and if there is a workaround? If so, please let me know.

Other than these technical problems, it’s been a good week. Work is finally calming down and I’m starting to see that work-life balance I lost last year. We had friends over on Friday for drinks (planned for Christmas but then cancelled because of the omicron surge), which was a lot of fun, and my daughter had her first (almost) post-pandemic sleepover, which was another step back into whatever ‘new normal’ we will find ourselves in this year. I also (finally) got to see the new Spiderman movie, which I really enjoyed.

Book wise, I haven’t done much reading (what with my busy social life) but I did manage to get three reviews posted, a bit of a record for me, and share some of the books that have recently made it one my shelves…

This Week on the Blog

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My Week In Reviews: 9th January 2022

Happy Sunday! I hope everyone’s had a good first week to the New Year. I’m back blogging after a much needed break from day-to-day life. I had time off work, slept late, read more, and ate way too much chocolate. It was hard getting back into the swing of things this week, though I have sort-of managed (it helps it was a three-day week for me).

And, while I’m not much of a one for new years resolutions, I am going to try and find a better balance between work and life in 2022 – I don’t think I realised how much I had been working until I stopped but my brain didn’t for at least the first few days after my holidays started.

This Week on the Blog

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Every Missing Thing by Martyn Ford #bookreview

One family. Two missing children. A lifetime of secrets.

Ten-year-old Ethan Clarke’s disappearance gripped the nation. Just as his parents are starting to piece together a life ‘after Ethan’, their world is ripped apart once more when their daughter, Robin, disappears in almost identical circumstances. They’ve lost two children within a decade…and now doubts about their innocence are setting in.

Detective Sam Maguire’s obsession with the first case cost him his own family, but he has unfinished business with the Clarkes. He is convinced that discovering what happened to Ethan holds the key to finding Robin. But what if the Clarkes know more than they’re letting on?

With the world watching eagerly, the clock is ticking for Sam as he embarks on an investigation that forces him to confront his own demons. To uncover the truth, he must follow a trail of devastating deception—but the truth always comes at a cost…

My thoughts on Every Missing Thing…

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The Lingering by SJI Holliday

Married couple Jack and Ali Gardiner move to a self-sufficient commune in the English Fens, desperate for fresh start. The local village is known for the witches who once resided there and Rosalind House, where the commune has been established, is a former psychiatric home, with a disturbing history.

When Jack and Ali arrive, a chain of unexpected and unexplained events is set off, and it becomes clear that they are not all that they seem. As the residents become twitchy, and the villagers suspicious, events from the past come back to haunt them, and someone is seeking retribution…

At once an unnerving mystery, a chilling thriller and a dark and superbly wrought ghost story, The Lingering is an exceptionally plotted, terrifying and tantalisingly twisted novel by one of the most exciting authors in the genre.

My thoughts on The Lingering…

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My Week In Reviews: 12th December, 2021

Happy Sunday! I hope everyone’s had a good week. Work wise, mine was much better than the week before – for the most part. I got my tender submitted Wednesday and promptly crashed, a mix of physical and mental exhaustion. I shut down my computer and expected to catch up on sleep. I was too wired though I think and ended up lying down but binge watching Maid instead, which was excellent, if a bit grim in places (and a reminder, once again, about how lucky I have been in life).

Because I had a better work/life balance this week, I managed to get two reviews up, though no other posts. Unfortunately, neither book were what I hoped. I struggled with the characters (didn’t ‘bond’ with any of them), and the plots (not enough complexity).

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A Familiar Sight by Brianna Labuskes #BookReview

Psychologist and criminologist Dr. Gretchen White is a specialist in antisocial personality disorders and violent crimes. She’s helped solve enough prominent cases for detective Patrick Shaughnessy that her own history is often overlooked: Gretchen is an admitted sociopath once suspected of killing her aunt. Shaughnessy still thinks Gretchen got away with murder. It’s not going to happen again.

When a high-profile new case lands on Shaughnessy’s desk, it seems open and shut. Remorseless teenager Viola Kent is accused of killing her mother. Amid stories of childhood horrors and Viola’s cruel manipulations, the bad seed has already been found guilty by a rapt public. But Gretchen might be seeing something in Viola no one else does: herself.

If Viola is a scapegoat, then who really did it? And what are they hiding? To find the truth, Gretchen must enter a void that is not only dark and cold-blooded, but also frighteningly familiar.

My thoughts on A Familiar Sight

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These Toxic Things by Rachel Howzell Hall #BookReview

A dead woman’s cherished trinkets become pieces to a terrifying puzzle.

Mickie Lambert creates “digital scrapbooks” for clients, ensuring that precious souvenirs aren’t forgotten or lost. When her latest client, Nadia Denham, a curio shop owner, dies from an apparent suicide, Mickie honors the old woman’s last wish and begins curating her peculiar objets d’art. A music box, a hair clip, a key chain—twelve mementos in all that must have meant so much to Nadia, who collected them on her flea market scavenges across the country.

But these tokens mean a lot to someone else, too. Mickie has been receiving threatening messages to leave Nadia’s past alone.

It’s becoming a mystery Mickie is driven to solve. Who once owned these odd treasures? How did Nadia really come to possess them? Discovering the truth means crossing paths with a long-dormant serial killer and navigating the secrets of a sinister past. One that might, Mickie fears, be inescapably entwined with her own.

My thoughts on These Toxic Things

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One Small Mistake by Dandy Smith #BookReview

One small mistake. One deadly consequence.

Elodie Fray wants to be more like her perfect sister, Ada, the one her parents are actually proud of. When she decided to quit her job and pursue her dream of becoming an author, she thought it would be her time to shine, but a year on nothing has happened. And she’s getting desperate.

When Elodie makes one small mistake on a drunken night with a friend, things quickly spiral and suddenly everyone believes she has a book deal. Unable to find a way back from her little lie, her perfect dream becomes a perfect nightmare – and desperate times call for desperate measures.

Meanwhile, everything is not as it seems in Ada Archer’s perfect life. When her sister suddenly disappears, she questions everything – from her marriage, to the man who’s been charged with Elodie’s abduction. The papers say it’s him, but the more she digs into her sister’s life the less convinced she is. Ada will do anything to discover the truth, even if it kills her.

No one knows what happened to Elodie Fray, and now her only chance of survival is her sister.

My thoughts on One Small Mistake…

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