#Bookreview The Traveling Bag and Other Ghostly Stories by Susan Hill #horror #weekendbloghop #amreading

Susan Hill undoubtedly knows how to write stories with a sinister undertone. The Traveling Bag and Other Ghostly Stories are no exception, however I found myself so engrossed in each story that I forgot I was reading an anthology as I sank into each dark tale. 

I’m not a huge fan of anthologies as I want a longer and more meaningful relationship with stories I read but I have to say I didn’t feel like I was reading an anthology, as each story had depth and left my imagination haunted in different ways. 

I’m glad I put aside the prejudices I have to pick up this book as I really did love it and recommend this read to horror readers everywhere. 

Links To Book: 

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#BookReview The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel #thriller #Fridayreads

​Lane went to live with her grandparents after her mother’s death but left their care whilst she was still a teenager, now she returns after getting a call that her cousin, Allegra, is missing. Lane tries to piece together what happened to Allegra in the dysfunction that is her family.

Not an easy read due to the themes of incest and grooming in this hard-hitting novel about a fundamentally flawed family. However, the mystery of what happened to Allegra kept me turning the pages and I read this book in one sitting. As bleak as the story was it did end on a note of hope and the complex characters made it a worthwhile read.

A definite recommendation from me.

Links To Book:

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#BookReview Stoner by John Williams #literaryfiction #Thursdayblogs

​William Stoner is the only child of a small impoverished farmer, who gets the opportunity to attend university to read agriculture, however, during the compulsory English literature modules of his course he finds himself awakened to a joy of literature which changes the course of his university career and life. 

This is quite a sad read that did ultimately move me, but also perplexed me. There was a huge amount of telling not showing in this novel. The conclusion of the book is pretty much spelled out early and the story is told after the reader is aware of Stoner’s legacy. 

Overall you do get hooked to reading about Stoner and rooting for things to take a more positive turn in his life, but the strength in this story is the melancholy that ultimately descends when you finish the book. Not an easy book to read particularly if you don’t have in-depth knowledge of early English literature but one that definitely impacts. 

Links To Book:

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#BookReview The Escape by C.L. Taylor #thriller #Tuesdaybookblog #Netgalley

​Jo is threatened by a woman outside her place of work over something to do with her husband’s investigative journalist job. However, he doesn’t believe her and uses her longstanding anxiety and agoraphobia against her. Soon the threat against Jo and her daughter escalates and Jo must take drastic action to keep them both safe.

A taut, fast paced mystery psychological thriller, which not only presents us with Jo’s current day issues but also finds her heading on a collision course with secrets hurried in her childhood. Not knowing who she can trust anymore Jo flees and eventually realises the threat isn’t coming from where she thought.

A gripping page turner from a seasoned psychological thriller writer.

Links To Book:

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1001 Blog Posts

Without even realising it I published my 1000th blog post yesterday. It certainly doesn’t feel like I have published so many posts nor does it feel like I’ve been blogging for very long as I’m still learning stuff about blogging. 

When I feel pessimistic one of the things I think about to rally my spirits is the wonderful community and support I encounter from blogging. This is the reason blogging is so much more than keeping a diary. If I just kept all these posts to myself it would be a huge loss to me personally as I would not have the wonderful feedback and comments from fellow bloggers. 

Thank you all for tuning in and reading my ramblings, I hope I have something interesting to say in my future posts. 

#Bookreview Charlie and Pearl by Tammy Robinson #romance #Fridayreads

Pearl decides to move into her grandmother’s beach house to get away from a long term relationship that has ended and other painful events that have recently occurred. Wanting to isolate herself in a small town, she meets Charlie, who is mesmerised by her and her resolve to keep him away gradually softens. 

This hugely sentimental romance came highly recommended to me. After an unassuming slow burn start the pace picked up as did my curiosity about Pearl’s history and what she was hiding from Charlie. 

Her obvious attraction to easy going, laid back and surprisingly uncomplicated Charlie was not something she was expecting to experience. But despite her reluctance their romance blooms in a humorous way. 

However, as lovely as this read is, beware and keep a box of tissues on hand as it gets very sad. 

Links To Book: 

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#BookReview Confess by Colleen Hoover #Romance #wwwblogs

​Looking for a job, fate brings Auburn to an exclusive art gallery, where the eccentric owner, Owen, offers her the job. However, the undeniable chemistry between them is overshadowed by secrets they are keeping and issues they face in their lives. Can the past hold the key to their future happiness.

I’m not a huge romance reader but found this sentimental romance a compelling read. The mystery behind the connection between Auburn and Owen kept me turning the pages rapidly and the premise of Owen’s artwork, painting based on anonymous confessions was also an irresistible hook in the story. 

I enjoyed this read very much and it ignited an interest in me to explore more titles in the romance genre, instead of trying to avoid it. I highly recommend Confess and with Spring in the air I hope to bring you a series of romance book reviews.

Links To Book: 

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#BookReview Sarah by Teri Polen #YA #horror #Tuesdaybookblog 

​Cain witnesses a number of creepy inexplicable occurrences in his bedroom and the attic storage space above it. When he finds out that his house was linked to the disappearance of a student from his school, he suspects his home might be haunted but doesn’t count on the vengeance that ensues.

This YA horror thriller did some things very well, such as, the atmospheric haunting of Cain’s room, depicting his relationship with Finn, his bestfriend, and his relationship with his younger sister, Maddie and his Mum. However, I found the pace variable throughout and the story a little repetitive, but the book ended on a cliffhanger and I am intrigued enough to pick up the next instalment if there is one in this series.

A haunting read.

Links To Book: 

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Flawed Characters: Real Life vs. Fiction #books #bookbloggers #Weekendbloghop

After reading and appreciating a string of flawed characters recently: Audra, Nora, Kate, Isabel and Crazy Amy to name just a few, I was thinking about how I would perceive such characters in real life and shamefully concluded that I probably wouldn’t find their individual flaws quite as charming in real life. The irony of this isn’t lost on me.

It seems to be much more palatable to read about characters with a dangerous edge than to accept those around us in real life live with flaws we find unforgivable. No doubt the self-preservation reflex to avoid unpredictability and danger is the root of how we react to aberrant characters in real life, but I really wish I was laid back enough to appreciate the beauty of not quite moral decisions people make in real life.

With the advent of social media it is much more prevalent to make damning judgments of our fellow man vociferously and vocally, but isn’t this just diversionary tactics to diminish and camouflage our own flaws? When we are criticising others we boost our own moral values and attain a superior position from which to look down on others. It mitigates our insecurity to highlight and emphasis our moral security. Is this why we like reading flawed characters in fiction? Are we all looking to be better than the next person?

What is behind our need to find villains and vilify them, when we find a flaws and all character in a book so gratifying to read? Today I ask more questions than I can satisfactorily answer, so please do share your thoughts on flawed literary characters and our aversion to real life flaws. I am genuinely intrigued. 

 

Advance #BookReview Here and Gone by Haylen Beck #thriller

​On a journey to get away from her husband, Audra is on her way to Arizona with her two children, Sean and Louise. She is stopped by a policeman and arrested, but once in the police holding cells she’s told she never had any children with her. Suspicion now runs to Audra being responsible for the disappearance of her own children, but will the more sinister truth come to light.

A taut suspense thriller of corrupt authorities and a shadowy underworld, Audra is the underdog in this thriller, vulnerable with a questionable past which makes her an easy target for the unscrupulous.

A tense read. This book will be published on 13th July 2017.

Links To Book:

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Amazon US

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