The Other Mrs. by Mary Kubica Review

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Synopsis

She tried to run, but she can’t escape the other Mrs.

Sadie and Will Foust have only just moved their family from bustling Chicago to small-town Maine when their neighbor Morgan Baines is found dead in her home. The murder rocks their tiny coastal island, but no one is more shaken than Sadie.

But it’s not just Morgan’s death that has Sadie on edge. And as the eyes of suspicion turn toward the new family in town, Sadie is drawn deeper into the mystery of what really happened that dark and deadly night. But Sadie must be careful, for the more she discovers about Mrs. Baines, the more she begins to realize just how much she has to lose if the truth ever comes to light.

My Thoughts

Wow! This was a ride! This story is best to read with knowing as little as possible about the synopsis because there are many surprises along the way. It’s full of twists and turns…some that I was able to figure out and others that I didn’t see coming. There were a few outlandish concepts that require a bit of suspension of disbelief but they were minor and didn’t interfere with my enjoyment of the story. Overall, this was a homerun that I recommend to fans of domestic thrillers.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and Park Row to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

My Rating

4 stars

The Holdout by Graham Moore Review

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Synopsis

In this twisty tale from Moore (The Sherlockian), the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of The Imitation Game, young juror Maya Seale is convinced that African American high school teacher Bobby Nock is innocent of killing the wealthy white female student with whom he appears to have been involved and persuades her fellow jurors likewise. Ten years later, a true-crime docuseries reassembles the jurors, and Maya, now a defense attorney, must prove her own innocence when one of them is found dead in Maya’s room.

My Thoughts

I remember watching the Jodi Arias trial religiously…I didn’t want to miss even one day of testimony and when the verdict came in, I rushed home from work and got there just in time to see the jury render her guilty of first degree murder. The jury then went to work on the sentencing phase and could not decide for or against the death penalty so they were dismissed and a new trial commenced for sentencing. In this trial, the jury was hung as well, but with 11 jurors in favor of the death penalty and only 1 against it. This one “holdout” juror was seen as a vile, horrible human being on the forums that I frequently read. The other jurors were quoted as saying that she refused to deliberate and the rumors were swirling that she could possibly have been a plant to keep Jodi Arias from receiving the death penalty. It was a media circus and very eye opening. Seeing this made me rethink my opinions on being a juror…before this experience, I had assumed that a juror could keep their anonymity if they desired but after seeing the press visit and record images of this woman’s home, I realized that this is not true.

The Holdout by Graham Moore presents a similar scenario…12 jurors find a man not guilty of murder when the evidence seems to point to his guilt. This decision is made because of 1 holdout who convinces each of the 11 other jurors to vote not guilty. I found the story to be very interesting as it delves into the jury selection process, being sequestered, and deliberations. There are also multiple mysteries in the story and plenty of twists and turns.

There were a few moments when the story began to lose some steam and the story became a bit convoluted but overall, it was a very unique and interesting thriller that I really enjoyed. Highly recommended.

I received an arc of this book to read and review from Random House and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

My Rating

4 stars

Dead to Her by Sarah Pinborough Review

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Synopsis

Being the second wife can be murder . . .

“Once a cheat, always a cheat,” they say. Marcie Maddox has worked hard to get where she is after the illicit affair that started her new life a few years ago. But her world of country clubs, yachts and sumptuous houses in Savannah, Georgia, isn’t easy to maintain, no matter how hard she tries. Nor is keeping her husband, Jason, truly interested.

So, when Jason’s boss brings home a hot new wife from his trip to London, the young Mrs William Radford IV isn’t quite the souvenir everyone expected. Sexy, drop-dead gorgeous and black—Keisha quickly usurps Marcie’s place as the beautiful second wife. But when Marcie sees the extra spark in the room when Keisha and Jason are together and their obvious, magnetic attraction, the gloves come off.

Revenge is best served cold, but in the steamy Savannah heat, blood runs so hot that this summer it might just boil over into murder.

My Thoughts

I had to DNF this book. It started out fairly promising. The plot was interesting and the characters seemed pretty awful (which I tend to like) but the story veered into a territory that I don’t read about…voodoo. I stay away from books that have witchcraft, voodoo, black magic, and similar things so this was a no for me.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and William Morrow to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

God Hears Her by Our Daily Bread Review and Giveaway

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About the Book

Book:  God Hears Her

Author: Our Daily Bread

Genre: Non-fiction / Christian / Devotional

Release Date: September, 2017

Tour Dates: February 1 – 14

God Hears HerWhen you’re having one of those days, you just want to know that someone is on your side. You have more than just someone  . . . you have your Heavenly Father! He is with you. He is for you. He hears your heart’s cry. And He will reassure you of this through the beautifully designed, hardcover devotional collection, God Hears Her. The personal stories, Scripture passages, and inspirational quotes pulled from Our Daily Bread devotionals will lift you up and remind you that God is bigger than the trials you face.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Thoughts

Our Daily Bread was always a staple in my home when I was growing up…there was always one on my parents’ night stand (I believe that there still is) and also usually somewhere else in the house as well. I began reading them when I was about 12 years old because I liked the shortness of them and the vivid stories that were provided in each devotion.

This book, produced by Our Daily Bread is a bit different from the standard devotions because it is written for women by women. The devotions focus on God’s nearness and the fact that He knows us intimately and always hears us.

I still love the quick reading time of each devotion. They take me about 1-2 minutes to read but still give me something to ponder throughout the day. They are short but still go deep. I also appreciate that each devotion begins with a verse of scripture, as well as the reference that can be delved into further, if the reader wishes to do so.

The compact size of the book is great, it’s the perfect size to slip into a purse or the glove box of your car so that you can grab it whenever you need some “Jesus time”. There are 365 devotions that are dated so it’s easy to keep track of your journey. The cover is beautiful and there is a satin ribbon bookmark attached to keep your place.

This is an excellent devotional book. I always feel that you can’t go wrong with anything by Our Daily Bread. I highly recommend it!

I received this book from Celebrate Lit to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

About the Author

Our Daily Bread Publishing – Our Daily Bread Publishing is a division of Our Daily Bread Ministries. Founded in 1938, the ministry has grown from a small group of dedicated radio listeners to millions of people around the world who use our Bible-based resources, including the beloved Our Daily Bread devotional. Our Daily Bread Ministries is a non-denominational, non-profit organization with staff and volunteers in over 37 offices working together to distribute more than 60 million resources in 150 countries. Regardless of whether it’s a radio or television broadcast, DVD, podcast, book, mobile app, or website, we provide materials to help people grow in their relationship with God.

 

More from Our Daily Bread

‘Feels Like Home’ Winter Recipes

As the weather turns colder, it becomes the time to pull out those tried and true winter-time recipes. You know, the ones that make us (or even keep us) warm on the inside. This is the time for the food that just feels like home.

Kirsten Holmberg and Elisa Morgan from the God Hears Her blog have shared some of their families personal recipes. These are the ones that are good for everyone. Feel free to try them yourself, bookmark them for later, or share them with a friend.

Kirsten Holmberg

In the winter, I’m partial to any slow-cooker soup or stew because I love coming home to it in the evening. My favorite is a Vegetarian Chili with some Italian influences:

2 bell peppers, diced

2 stalks of celery, sliced

2 lb zucchini halved and sliced

1 lb fresh mushrooms, halved

1 large onion, diced

3 cans diced tomatoes (fire roasted or herbed for the most flavor)

1 can tomato sauce

1 small can black olives, sliced (or fresh in any amount desired)

1 can cannellini beans

2.5 teaspoon Italian seasoning

2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced

½ cup water

Toss it all in a slow cooker for a few hours on high, or all day on low. Or, put it on the stove instead and simmer until the veggies are cooked through and the flavors blended (about 45 minutes). Parmesan cheese on top for an extra zing.

Elisa Morgan

A Cranberry Nut Bread recipe handed down by my mom, Paige Lee

2 cup flour

½ tsp salt

1 ¼ tsp baking powder

½ scant tsp baking soda

1 cup sugar

Sift above ingredients together twice. To the juice and grated rind of 1 large orange, add 2 tbs of melted shortening and enough boiling water to make ¾ cup. Mix with dry ingredients and add…

1 beaten egg

1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup halved fresh cranberries

Bake in greased loaf pan for 75 minutes at 350 degrees.

If you double the recipe, bake a little less time and use 3 loaf pans. It also makes good muffins and can be frozen.

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, February 1

deb’s Book Review, February 1

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, February 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 2

Texas Book-aholic, February 3

Mary Hake, February 3

God is Love, February 4

Emily Yager, February 4

Genesis 5020, February 5

A Diva’s Heart, February 5

Girls in White Dresses, February 5

Lighthouse Academy, February 6

amandainpa, February 6

For Him and My Family, February 7

For The Love of Books, February 7

Inklings and notions, February 8

Andrea Christenson, February 8

Blossoms and Blessings, February 9

CarpeDiem, February 9

Older & Smarter?, February 10

She Lives to Read, February 10

For the Love of Literature, February 11

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 12

Godly Book Reviews, February 12

Artistic Nobody, February 13

Back Porch Reads, February 13

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, February 14

Kat’s Corner Books, February 14

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, Our Daily Bread is giving away the grand prize package of  a God Hears Her hardcover, God Hears Her leather-like, God Hears Her journal, God Hears Her CD, God Hears Her pen, and God Hears Her Scripture & Encouragement cards!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/f540/god-hears-her-celebration-tour-giveaway

Perfect Little Children by Sophie Hannah Review

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Plot

All Beth has to do is drive her son to his Under-14s away match, watch him play, and bring him home.

Just because she knows her ex-best friend lives near the football ground, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try to catch a glimpse of her. Why would Beth do that, and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora for twelve years. She doesn’t want to see her today, or ever again.

But she can’t resist. She parks outside the open gates of Newnham House, watches from across the road as Flora and her children Thomas and Emily step out of the car. Except… There’s something terribly wrong. Flora looks the same, only older. As Beth would have expected. It’s the children. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then.

They are still five and three. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt – Hilary hears Flora call them by their names – but they haven’t changed at all.

They are no taller, no older… Why haven’t they grown?

My Thoughts

The description of this book was very intriguing…a woman sees her friend and children after 12 years but notices that the children have not aged at all. I was completely stumped by what was truly happening in the story and enjoyed the unique plot but there was a lot of telling, not showing. A large portion of the book was the main character, Beth, thinking through what was going on and it became a bit boring and monotonous to me. Overall, a subpar story. I liked it but didn’t love it.
I received a digital copy of this book to review from Netgalley and Harper Collins Publishers to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

My Rating

2.5 stars