Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Best Day Ever by Kaira Rouda

This is dark thriller that takes place over the course of twenty-four hours.

Paul and Mia seem to have the perfect marriage and all the goodies that come with society's perception of perfect. The big homes, well paying job, money, children, etc but inside all of that beauty lies darkness.

Paul is an unreliable narrator and a narcissist (I would also suspect he is also a sociopath).  Paul is arrogant, a liar, a womanizer and puts on an Alpha male mentality. He plans the "best day" ever for him and his wife but as the day unravels hour by hour and Mia takes a stand for herself (which narc's hate!) he starts to lose his "power" and "control". His best day ever is falling apart and when a narc loses control and can no longer dominate he starts to fall apart. This is Paul's unraveling.

This is an excellent physiological thriller but dear reader it takes some time to really get into the grit of things. I had to read quite a ways in before I found myself invested in the characters but once I got involved, I was difficult to put down. I encourage you to push through and get to the good stuff.

Rounda captures the personality of someone who has to be in control perfectly. The arrogance and dominating personality fly off the pages, as does the manipulation and charisma. You will be drawn into Paul and Mia's world and left wondering, "Who the hell does this guy think he is?" He is an unlikable character yet intriguing.

This story stays with you longer after you've put it away. If you have ever been a victim of  emotional abuse from a partner you will find yourself nodding along and maybe even shedding a few tears.
I had to put the book down a few times to collect myself emotionally before continuing on, that is how strong of a writer, Rouda is. She makes you feel strong emotions. I will be picking up more of her books along the way.

This is one thriller you will want to read or make part of you book club to discuss.

Friday, November 17, 2017

The Stolen Marriage by Diane Chamberlain

Tess DeMello is only 23 years old when she finds herself pregnant. The year is 1944 and she feels that she has no choice but to end her engagement, move away from home and reach out to the father of her child for assistance. 

Henry Kraft of Hickory, North Carolina quickly proposes marriage and Tess finds herself living with her husband, mother-in-law and sister in-law. The town isn't to pleased with this outsider as they have all believed that Henry would one day marry, Violet. Henry doesn't make things any easier on, Tess. He isn't cruel by any means and provides her with the necessities but he is not affectionate, stays out all night and is secretive.  

A polio epidemic strikes the quaint little city of, Hickory and the townspeople work together to build a small little makeshift hospital in which to treat and care for those who are struck with, polio (This really did happen! Check it out Here). Tess is finally able to shine, as she is a nurse and starts working on the hospital. She is thriving and then her past pops complication her life further. This complication along with Henry's secretive make Tess rethink her life and marriage in Hickory. 

Truths are revealed and tragedies strike. Read, The Stolen Marriage to find out more.

The story is told in, Tess's voice and covers are variety of topics such as racism, religion, morals, beliefs and human strength. Overall, I enjoyed the story but I did see some things coming and felt the ending was a little to pretty and perfect for me but can see how someone else would enjoy it. 

The Accidental Beauty Queen by Teri Wilson

Charlotte Gorman is a librarian, a "nerd" and enjoys being casual and comfy. Her twin sister, Ginny is an famous instagram conte...