What I Read: May 2021

Beth O’Leary: The Road Trip

Addie and her sister are about to embark on an epic road trip to a friend’s wedding in the north of Scotland.But, not long after setting off, a car slams into the back of theirs. The driver is none other than Addie’s ex, Dylan, who she’s avoided since their traumatic break-up two years earlier. Dylan and his best mate are heading to the wedding too, and they’ve totalled their car, so Addie has no choice but to offer them a ride. The car is soon jam-packed full of luggage and secrets, and with three hundred miles ahead of them, Dylan and Addie can’t avoid confronting the very messy history of their relationship…Will they make it to the wedding on time? And, more importantly… is this really the end of the road for Addie and Dylan?

This book is so much more than just a road trip and two exes discovering they are still in love with one other. It’s unlike the author’s previous two books. While The Flatshare and The Switch were warm, feel-good books, this one, even though still funny was very serious at times. The Road Trip is way more intense and complex than her previous books as the author is talking about sexual assault, depression, alcoholism…The story is told in a dual timeline. One is the present when they are on the road trip, and the other is in the past that starts with their first meeting leading up to the breakup. I have to admit, The Road Trip didn’t hook me from the beginning but as the story progressed it just kept getting better and better and I was intrigued to find out the reason of their break up. If you like Beth O’Leary’s books, you’ll surely love this one.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

B.P. Walter: The Dinner guest

Four people were at dinner that night.  Charlie and his husband, Matthew. Their son, Titus
And, their new acquaintance and newest book club member, Rachel.Charlie never wanted her to be invited. But, Matthew won’t survive and as Charlie stands over the body, while Titus sits in shock at the dinner table, Rachel with the bloody knife in her hand, dials 999.

This book started off so well, I was intrigued and was guessing who did what but, halfway through it started to become very slow and a bit boring. Information is fed to you in miniature pieces of bread crumbs. The crumbs were so small I felt I was starving to death. In alternating POVs from Charlie and Rachel, the story unfolds and we learn about everyone’s secrets/dark pasts. The one thing I really liked about it was that it is a portrait of an unconventional gay family. Not a bad read, I just sort of lost interest by the time the big reveal came about towards the end.

⭐️⭐️💫

alex Finlay: Every Last Fear

University student Matt Pine has just received devastating news. Nearly his entire family have been found dead while holidaying in Mexico. The local police claim it was an accident, but the FBI aren’t convinced – and they won’t tell Matt why.The tragedy thrusts his family into the media spotlight again. Seven years ago, Matt’s older brother, Danny, was sentenced to life in prison for murdering his teenage girlfriend. Danny has always sworn he was innocent, and last year, a true crime documentary that claimed he was wrongfully convicted went viral.Now his family’s murder is overlapping with Danny’s case, Matt is determined to uncover the truth behind the crime that sent his brother to prison. Even if it means putting his own life in danger, and confronting his every last fear.

Once in a while a book like this comes along, to remind me why I really love to read thrillers. The characters are very well developed, the plot kept going and intensified with every chapter. I just couldn’t stop reading it. This novel is told through multiple points of view. We are introduced first to Matt. He is a student at NYU and a FBI agent Sarah Keller who delivers the sad news to him. The other points of view include transcripts from the documentary which was made about Danny called “A Violent Nature” and family members, Evan, Maggie and Olivia “Before”, so we know their thoughts before their deaths in Mexico. It’s a complex read and you have to think all the way through it. There are mysteries within mysteries and lies within lies. There were a few things that I figured out, but not the main reveal. This book has EVERYTHING I require in a thriller and I highly recommend it.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Cara Hunter: The whole truth(Di Fawley #5)

When an Oxford student accuses one of the university’s professors of sexual assault, DI Adam Fawley’s team think they’ve heard it all before. But they couldn’t be more wrong.Because this time, the predator is a woman and the shining star of the department, and the student a six-foot male rugby player.Soon DI Fawley and his team are up against the clock to figure out the truth. What they don’t realise is that someone is watching.

I have now completed the whole series! At least until another one comes out. It’s not a secret I’m a big fan of Cara Hunter and that I rated every single book with 5 stars but unfortunately this one won’t be. The blurb threw me off completely as I felt like the sexual assault storyline was more of a sub-plot and that was the reason I had to take one star away. The story is actually more focused on DI Fawley and his partner Alex and it was very interesting, twisty and gripping. So when that storyline was introduced I didn’t really care about initial case of sexual assault and I found my self skim reading those parts. I feel the book would be even better if they only focused on DI Fawley but nonetheless this was still a great read! This book would be a bit harder to read if you haven’t read the previous ones so I highly recommend reading the whole series because it’s one of the best in the genre.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

b.a. Paris: The Therapist

When Alice and Leo move into a newly renovated house in The Circle, a gated community of exclusive houses, it is everything they’ve dreamed of. But appearances can be deceptive…As Alice is getting to know her neighbours, she discovers a devastating secret about her new home, and begins to feel a strong connection with Nina, the therapist who lived there before.Alice becomes obsessed with trying to piece together what happened two years before. But no one wants to talk about it. Her neighbors are keeping secrets and things are not as perfect as they seem…

So this book had so much potential, but I kept getting distracted by stupidity and naivety of the main character. Going around the gated community, investigating a murder that could’ve only been committed by someone in that community, staying alone in the house even though she’s upset and scared that she lives in this house…it just doesn’t make any sense! However, it’s a very easy read, the pages flip quickly and it’s ok if you don’t mind a protagonist. The last 30% was good, that’s where things started happening. And I didn’t guess who the murderer was so that’s a plus. Overall, an okay read.

⭐️⭐️⭐️

Lizzy dent: The summer job

Birdy has made a mistake. Everyone imagines running away from their life at some point. But Birdy has actually done it. And the life she’s run into is her best friend Heather’s. The only problem is, she hasn’t told Heather.The summer job at the highland Scottish hotel that her world class wine-expert friend ditched turns out to be a lot more than Birdy bargained for. Can she survive a summer pretending to be her best friend? And can Birdy stop herself from falling for the first man she’s ever actually liked, but who thinks she’s someone else?

I loved Birdy and her sense of humour, as well as the chemistry between her and James. It was very much an opposites attract storyline and their scenes together were my favorite.Even though it is classed as a rom com, truly this is a story of acceptance and a journey of finding yourself. I really enjoyed the setting, very laid back, and it made me want to visit Scotland. However, I did struggle with the pace and repetitiveness. Especially in the lighter, more comedic, parts of the book. I found myself constantly cringing at the way Birdy handled a lot of situations. This is marketed as the next The Flatshare — but I don’t think so. It isn’t as funny or lively but it does tell a good story. I also wish this was edited to a shorter length — which definitely would’ve made it a quicker read — because some scenes did not contribute to the plot or character development. Also, for someone who doesn’t drink wine and doesn’t know anything about it, it was a bit difficult to like parts of the book with lots of wine talk but that’s my own fault I guess, nothing to do with the book. Its a great book for when you want to decompress and chill out without thinking too much.

⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

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