Baby, I’m back! That’s right. Tanya read last month. Yes, she did. I mean, I didn’t go cray, cray and read a 100 books or anything. But unlike last month, I didn’t whine and pout and wait until the eve before my favorite link-up to finally crack open a new-to-me book. Nope. I waited until the week or two before … errr … just kidding … sort of.
Honestly, I still spent the first part of November rereading favorites. And I am not ashamed. Favorite books are guilt-free comfort food in my home. 😀 But eventually, the siren call of new books tempted me. Or several books I had on hold came in from the library. Either way, I opened some books. And I liked them!
The Books I Loved, Like and Loathed in November
Aka the good, the bad and the ugly.
The Books I Loved
The books that reminded me why I love to read.
Next of Kin by James Tucker
Book Description: 10 year-old Ben Brook is the lone survivor of a savage attack on his family and the killer aims to silence not only Ben but the remaining members of his extended family.
Book Review: I ripped through this book in one afternoon. It’s a fast-paced, engaging read with characters that I like and am eager to revisit again (this is the beginning of a new series). Buddy and Ward remind me a bit of Myron and Win from the Myron Bolitar series, although Ward’s role is relatively small (He, like Win, is rich and fights dirty in his Savile suits). Also, in case you’re not picking up what I’m putting down: this is mass market mystery/thriller fare, which is not an insult. The more high-bred thrillers are below and didn’t earn as high of ranking. 😀 It’s not revolutionary but a great read when you want something that will hold your attention without leaving you depressed and needing snuggle time with an indifferent cat afterwards.
P.S. to Max: Santa Kitty Klaus gives lots of clothes to cats with attitude.
To Read or Not to Read: You bet. The killer is pretty diabolical and creative, although Tucker doesn’t overly linger on the carnage in a graphic manner that might upset people.
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Next of Kin is now available.
The Books I Liked
These are the books I liked from most liked to liked.
Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land
Book Description: After turning in her serial killer mother to the police, Annie/Millie is given a fresh start, but her own secrets and struggles with her foster family make her wonder how much of her mother’s daughter she really is.
Book Review: I love the set-up of this book because the push-and-pull of nature versus nurture always interests me. For some weird reason, I also thought this was a book with lots of twists, which it’s not. It’s a straightforward read. Annie/Millie is a fascinating, complex character and the only character who could likely match her wits was the woman who birthed and raised her. Unfortunately, we never saw much interaction between mother and daughter (a huge missed opportunity). Instead Milly mostly battled her Queen B foster sister who is no match for a child of a serial killer when it comes to putting on a false face. I wanted a Godzilla versus Mothra fight instead of mean girl fights.
To Read or Not to Read: Yup. The high school drama got a bit old (i.e. predictable) at times but still a worthwhile read. Also, to be clear, this is not YA.
The Whispering Room by Dean Koontz
Book Description: Jane continues to hunt members of a secret cabal who want to control America for their own monstrous ends.
Book Review: Like many second books in a trilogy, it served to mostly set-up the finale. Jane finds another conspiracy player and eliminates them, rinse and repeat, which gets a bit old without new revelations. Well, nothing as jaw-dropping as what Jane discovers in book 1. This book just confirms what she uncovered and how massive the conspiracy is. On the plus side, there are more players to cheer and boo, and I am still eager to see how Koontz wraps everything up. I expect the last book to be a real doozy.
To Read or Not to Read: Sure. If you love a good conspiracy theory book that might alternate between scaring (not spooky scare) and angering you because the conspiracy seems so plausible. I won’t tell you what the conspiracy is, but I can think of many, many, many people who probably wish it was real.
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. The Whispering Room is now available.
The Books I Loathed
The book I DNFed because who has time for boring books?
The Blind by A.F. Brady
Book Description: A new patient plays mind games with psychologist Sam James that force her to confront her own twisted life.
Book Review: Thrillers or more specifically psychological suspense is my favorite genre. I like characters that play head games; those who distract me from seeing what’s really happening. I thought this was that kind of book. But Lord love a duck, it dragged. According to my Kindle, I made it to 30% when feeling bored, like maybe I ought to clean my toilet or do something productive, I finally gave up.
To Read or Not to Read: More people seemed to enjoy it than I did, so as always, dealer’s choice. It wasn’t my jam but you may love it.
Note: I received an arc from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. The Blind is now available.
TL;DR – My Recommendations for You
For those who love thrillers and mysteries, I definitely recommend Next of Kin by James Tucker, especially if you’re looking for something fast-paced and enjoy series from Lee Child, Harlan Coben, J.D Robb or shows like Chicago P.D. or Law and Order. Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land is a solid choice for those who are intrigued with the battle between nature versus nurture. Also note much of the book revolves around Millie’s relationship with her foster sister so there is a lot of typical high school drama. I found that a tad disappointing but had I known that beforehand, it may not have bothered me so much. Those who enjoy a good conspiracy theory type novel should definitely add Whispering Room by Dean Koontz to their TBR, although start at the beginning with The Silent Corner. Skip The Blind by A.F. Brady. I expect a psychological thriller to thrill and mess me long before we hit the 30% mark in the book.
To More Great Books
In between long airplane rides and even longer layovers, I anticipate much reading while traveling over Christmas. Of course, I expected that to happen last year and it did not. 😀 Every month I also promise to cut back on my NetGalley requests and need to read five books before the January link-up. Yikes! Why do I do this to myself? Because I’m an addict, my fellow book nerds. My name is Tanya and I love books. #SorryNotSorry
What good books did you read last month?