A Serial Killer Kind of Week!

The Silent Girls: A gripping serial killer thriller (Detective Anna Gwynne Crime Series Book 1) by [Young, Dylan] ‘Ambulance and police. Something’s happened. I don’t know what. But my little girl.’ A sob choked off the sentence… ‘It’s my daughter.’

Perish (A Gardiner and Renner Novel) by [Black, Lisa] Bestselling author Lisa Black takes readers on a nail biting journey to the dark side of justice as forensic expert Maggie Gardiner discovers troubling new details about her colleague Jack Renner, a homicide detective with a brutal approach to law and order . . .
I'll Stay by [Day, Karen] In this compelling, emotionally complex novel, a college friendship sparks a life-changing sacrifice that connects two women forever–even as it shatters their closeness . . .

“Let her go. I’ll stay.”

The First Family: A Novel by [Palmer, Michael, Palmer, Daniel] The President’s teenaged son is threatened by a potentially fatal illness that is rooted in dark secrets from a long-buried past.

Night Moves: An Alex Delaware Novel by [Kellerman, Jonathan] The #1 New York Times bestselling author and master of the psychological thriller makes all the right moves in this new novel of spellbinding suspense.

What is everyone starting the year off reading? These are mine for this week. Looks nice and scary!

 

Advertisements

The Black Painting by Neil Olson

The Black Painting

A literary mystery about an old-money East Coast family facing the suspicious death of its patriarch, and the unsolved theft of a Goya painting rumored to be cursed.

There were four cousins in the Morse family: Kenny, the West Coast lawyer; James, the medical student; his seductive, hard-drinking sister Audrey; and Teresa, the youngest.

Summoned by their grandfather to his mansion, none of them had visited the family estate since a prized painting disappeared: a self-portrait by Goya, rumored to cause madness or death. Afterwards, the family split amidst accusations and suspicions.

Any hope that their grandfather planned to make amends evaporates when Teresa arrives finding him dead, his gaze upon the spot where the painting once hung. Teresa hopes to find the reasons behind her grandfather’s death and the painting’s loss, but to do so she must uncover ugly family secrets, and confront those who would keep them hidden.

Image result for the black paintings by goya

There is no doubt that Goya’s paintings are disturbing. And this mysterious and suspenseful book  was just as disturbing.

15 years after the theft of the supposedly cursed painting, the four cousins are summoned back to the house of their grandfather. When Teresa and Audrey arrive they find the man dead. His face a frozen mask of horror and fear.

Questions fly as they find out the boys had already met with the grandfather and now not only is the man dead, but his housekeeper is missing.

When the entire family descends on the manor we quickly see that they are a cursed bunch. Whether the painting actually was possessed by a demon or whether the fear was instilled deliberately these were some very messed up characters!

Teresa, who has some mysterious illness that we never found out exactly what it was, was probably the only innocent in the bunch however I felt the characters weren’t developed to the point that we knew or cared about any of them.

In the end it appeared greed was the motive for everyone’s actions and whether they were all stark raving mad to begin with or became that way later isn’t clear.

The tale is a fine idea, but the character development I felt was lacking.

Netgalley/Hanover    Release January 09, 2018

The Best of My 2017 Awards!

It’s true. Today is your last reading day of the year! Have you met your Goodreads Challenge? All caught up on your Netgalley Reviews? Happy to say yes, I am. And following are some but by no means all of the best in their genres.

Best Debut Fiction:   Jennifer Irwin for A Dress The Color of The Sky. A book about addictions and breaking cycles. Movie rights have already been grabbed by Reese Witherspoon! I admire Jennifer so much for her work ethic and her writing skills!

A Dress the Color of the Sky

Best Historical Fiction: Katherine Arden for the follow-up to her award-winning The Bear and The Nightingale, The Girl in the Tower which was just as brilliant as the first book!

The Girl in the Tower (Winternight Trilogy, #2)

Best Thriller: Karin Slaughter with The Good Daughter. Two girls are forced into the woods at gunpoint. One runs for her life. One is left behind.

The Good Daughter

Best Suspense Thriller: J.T.Ellison with Lie to Me. This was such a web of lies and deceit, you won’t unravel it until the spider is ready to jump!

Lie to Me

Best Crime Thriller:  Don Winslow with The Force. Another brilliant contribution by a favorite author! No one does crime like Winslow!

The Force

Best Horror Crime: J.D.Barker with The Fourth Monkey! Fans of the movie Se7en meets The Silence of the Lambs in this dark and twisting novel from the author Jeffery Deaver called, A talented writer with a delightfully devious mind.”

 

The Fourth Monkey (A 4MK Thriller, #1)

Best Cozy Mystery: A Cajun Christmas Killing by Ellen Byron

A Cajun Christmas Killing (Cajun Country Mystery #3)

Best Non-Fiction: Helene Cooper with Madame President.The harrowing, but triumphant story of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, leader of the Liberian women’s movement, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, and the first democratically elected female president in African history.

Madame President: The Extraordinary Journey of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Best Mystery: Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker

Emma in the Night

Best Cookbook:  The Beach House Cookbook by Mary Kay Andrews

The Beach House Cookbook

Best General Fiction: Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward who blew my mind with this book set in my Mississippi town.

Sing, Unburied, Sing

There could be hundreds more of the over 200 I read this year, but all of these I have read more than once, so that says a lot when you have a TBR list as long as mine.

What were your Best Reads of the Year?

So 2017 all I can say to you is Good bye!

Scones and Scoundrels by Molly MacRae

Scones and Scoundrels (Highland Bookshop Mystery #2)

Book 2 in The Highland Bookshop Mystery Series

Inversgail, on the west coast of the Scottish Highlands, welcomes home native daughter and best-selling environmental writer Daphne Wood. Known as the icon of ecology, Daphne will spend three months as the author in residence for the Inversgail schools. Janet Marsh and her business partners at Yon Bonnie Books are looking forward to hosting a gala book signing for her. Daphne, who hasn’t set foot in Scotland in thirty years, is . . . eccentric. She lives in the Canadian wilderness, in a cabin she built herself, with only her dog for a companion, and her people skills have developed a few rough-hewn edges. She and the dog (which she insists on bringing with her) cause problems for the school, the library, and the bookshop even before they get to Inversgail. Then, on the misty night they arrive, a young man—an American who’d spent a night in the B above Yon Bonnie Books—is found dead outside a pub.

Daphne did her Inversgail homework and knows that Janet and her partners solved a previous murder. She tries to persuade them to join her in uncovering the killer and the truth. To prove she’s capable, she starts poking and prying. But investigating crimes can be murder, and Daphne ends up dead, poisoned by scones from the tearoom at Yon Bonnie Books. Now, to save the reputation of their business—not to mention the reputation of their scones—Janet and her partners must solve both murders. And Daphne’s dog might be able to help them, if only they can get it to stop howling. . . 

Janet and her daughter Tallie have moved to Scotland with a few friends and opened a tea and book shop. In the Highlands. I will admit to this being my dream job!

To get this out-of-the-way, I wasn’t impressed with the blurb. The Tearoom was never under suspicion, nor were the ladies. I would like to see that adjusted in the blurb.

This story had so many characters I almost couldn’t keep track of who was who.
Some of them were developed but most we didn’t really know much about. There were so many suspects and I have to admit I did not see the ending coming!

Daphne was an easy character to dislike and yet she had secrets that in the end made me feel sad for her.

I will probably read the next one too. This is a cozy mystery series that is intelligent, funny and heart warming. And the atmosphere is pretty spectacular in the descriptions of the area.

Well Done!   Netgalley/Pegasus Books   January 2, 2018

What Did You Read This Week?

A Little Bit of Grace by Phoebe Fox https://www.amazon.com/dp/1635112885/ref=cm_sw_r_pi_dp_x_ZS2dAb8W8R9TQ Need to Know by Karen Cleveland Historical Fiction 2018. The Girls in the Picture by Melanie Benjamin. Story of the friendship of the early Hollywood starlets Frances Marion and Mary Pickford. Two Girls Down A Wedding At Two Love Lane by [Kramer, Kieran] 

These got cleared from the TBR pile from Netgalley this week. It was a nice mix of genres and a new author.

Today I’m starting a new manuscript and I am really excited to get my hands on this one. A Political Thriller… although in today’s political climate, it could be true!

Enjoy your Saturday!

xx Patricia

The Curious Affair of the Witch at Wayside Cross ( From the Casebooks of Jesperson & Lane) by Lisa Tuttle

The Curious Affair of the Witch at Wayside Cross (The Curious Affair Of, #2)

The paranormal answer to Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, Jesperson and Lane are turning the Victorian era upside down in this bewitching series from John W. Campbell Award winner Lisa Tuttle.

“Witch!” cries the young man after stumbling unexpectedly into the London address of the consulting-detective partnership of Mr. Jasper Jesperson and Miss Lane. He makes the startling accusation while pointing toward Miss Lane . . . then he drops dead. Thus begins the strangest case yet to land—quite literally—on the doorstep of Jesperson and Lane.

According to the coroner, Charles Manning died of a heart attack—despite being in perfect health. Could he have been struck down by a witch’s spell? The late Mr. Manning’s address book leads Jesperson and Lane to the shrieking pits of Aylmerton, an ancient archaeological site reputed to be haunted by a vengeful ghost. There they sift through the local characters, each more suspicious than the last: Manning’s associate, Felix Ott, an English folklore enthusiast; Reverend Ringer, a fierce opponent of superstition; and the Bulstrode sisters, a trio of beauties with a reputation for witchcraft.

But when an innocent child goes missing, suddenly Jesperson and Lane aren’t merely trying to solve one murder—they’re racing to prevent another.

A Victorian Historical Mystery! Jesperson and Ms. Lane have just solved their first case as investigators and the second case literally falls in their doorway!

Off to find the truth about their mysterious visitor, they find themselves embroiled in not just one death but two. It seems another man has also died mysteriously and they set out to see if the two are connected.

This second book in the series had a little bit of everything. History, Religions, Superstitions, Fairies and Witches!

I quite enjoyed this second book as well as the first and hope the duo continues!

Ms. Tuttle has written many books and short stories within the fantasy field. Her first novel, Windhaven, was written in collaboration with George R.R. Martin.

Netgalley/Hydra/Random House   Release November 28, 2017