The Woman in the Window

The Woman in the Window by AJ Finn

4 stars! 

“You can hear someone’s secrets and their fears and their wants, but remember that these exist alongside other people’s secrets and fears, people living in the same room.” 


I have to be honest, I would have never picked this book up on my own. I work at the library that has like seven billion book clubs (just kidding it’s more like 5, but still) and this was selected for the mystery book club. Wanting to get more involved I read it…. and really enjoyed it!!

The Woman in the Window is about an agoraphobic doctor who watches her neighbors from her windows. One day she see’s something she shouldn’t have, and everything goes spiraling out of control. And that’s all I am gonna say about the plot, any more is too much.

“No family, happy or unhappy, is quite like any other. Tolstoy was chock-fullo’shit. Remember that.” 

This book was very much a modern day take on Rear Window and other old suspense films. So much so in fact the main character talks about them a lot (which made me glad my mother is obsessed with movies from the 30’s and 40’s because I actually understood a lot of the references). It was interesting to read a book from the perspective of an unreliable character, there are twists you see coming and others you don’t because of it.

I picked up this book apprehensive of the size, being almost 450 pages, but I found it read really fast and the other has a great writing style with the ability to suck you into the story. I would read 100+ pages in a sitting and would be shocked they flew by so fast and that I was so invested in the story.

I think this is a book a lot of people would really like. It’s not super original but it works because as I said, it’s more of a modern day Hitchcock story.

“The world is a beautiful place,” she insists, and she’s serious; her gaze is even, her voice level. Her eyes catch mine, hold them. “Don’t forget that.” She reclines, mashing her cigarette into the hollow of the bowl. “And don’t miss it.” 


Into the Water

Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

1 star

First things first, I want to point out how very rare it is for me to rate a book 1 star. In fact, in the last 5 years, I have read a total of 1,257 books, and only rated 20 of them with a 1 star. That’s 0.015%. So before all of you jump on me, or the trolls come running, know that I just hated this book that much.

I will give this book 1 thing, and 1 thing only: Paula Hawkins is an amazing writer. Her words flow across the page, and it’s why I continued to read this book. The writing basically deceived me into thinking this was better than it was.

I’m going to break down what didn’t work for me:

-the beginning is extremely confusing, multiple POVs and no context of the character. Made it hard to keep track of things.

-This book could have been MUCH shorter, needs a heavy dose of cuts/editing.

-about 170 pages in and there still WAS NO PLOT. I mean, how can you write 170 pages of a book, and not have a coherent plot in place?

-It was about 250 pages in that I began to get irrationally angry that I was reading this book. It wasn’t going anywhere, all the “twists” were obvious. It followed so many cliches.

Basically, to me other than the writing there were no redeeming qualities. I never read Girl on the Train, I only saw the movie, but I can guarantee I won’t be reading anything by this author in the future. She sent me into a rage (it’s rare, but it does happen).

He Will Be My Ruin

He Will Be My Ruin by KA Tucker

2.5 stars

***Unpopular opinion alert!!!***

Whelp it’s safe to say mystery/suspense really ain’t my genre. And in fact I remember being pissed I got denied on the arc for this book (which now I see as a blessing in disguise) because I actually do love KA Tucker. One of her book covers is on my phone! If that’s not author love I don’t know what is. But it looks like I love her contemporary romance books and not her mystery ones.

Anyways, He Will Be My Ruin is the story of Maggie, a wealthy girl who works for nonprofits. When she receives news that her best friend has died, she travels to NYC to go through her things and clear up the estate. While doing this, Maggie becomes more and more convinced her friend was murdered, and she begins investigating her friends final months.

So the first half of this book was a solid 4-5 star rating. But about midway through I had started to lose interest and really just wanted to smack both main characters, dead and alive. Plus every time Maggie went to the cops with her “clues” I imagined this:

Plus the more we found out about Celine’s secret life the more ridiculous it became. I had a hard time believing a lot of it.

The ending was extremely unsatisfying and disappointing. I feel the author could have done a lot better with tying every thing up as it felt very rushed after hundreds of pages of build up. But then again most mystery novels are like that and it’s probably why I don’t care for them.

Wilcard reader out!

All Fall Down

All Fall Down (Embassy Row #1) by Ally Carter

3.5 stars

All Fall Down is my first Ally Carter book and I must say, it’s an enjoyable read. The age level is a little lower than I usually read, I would classify this book as a middle grade for ages 12-16. It is the perfect type of book for transitioning young readers out of the chapter books and into the Young Adult/Teen genre.

Three years after witnessing her mother’s death Grace is sent to live with her ambassador grandfather in a country that borders Iran. Grace used to spend her summers at the embassy as a child and is already familiar with the area and the politics. While here, Grace discovers that the man she believes to have murdered her mother is here as well, and she sets about on a plan to bring him down.

This is one of the more interesting plots I’ve read in the young adult genre, lots of modern day politics and espionage are afoot. I’m not really used to reading a simpler type of book and that’s why this book received a 3.5 star review from me. Plus, I found the ending to be highly unbelievable.

I think many teens, girls and boys, could relate very well to Grace and her situation. No, not all teens are able to deal with inter-political plots between countries, but they will relate to Grace and her struggle for adults to take her seriously. The adults in this book did not believe Grace when she went to them for help, leaving her feeling useless and helpless, something many teens feel like a lot of the time. I liked that Grace did what most teens (and people) want to do, and she took matters into her own hands and tried to unravel the mystery of her mother’s death herself.

I would have liked more development between Grace and the character of Alexei. I still at this point cannot determine if he was a love interest or not. He just sort of popped in and then would disappear for various amounts of time. It felt really random. Hopefully that will be resolved in the next installment.

ARC kindly provided to me by my boss. Who received this from the publisher. So I guess the ARC was indeed provided by the publisher. It just wasn’t intended for me. Muahaha!

Purchase from Amazon

Never Never

Never Never by Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher

3 stars!

 photo noidea.png

First off I’d like to reiterate that just because I rate a book 3 stars doesn’t mean it wasn’t good. It just means I didn’t love it. I liked this book, I did. I just wish I had waited to read this until the 2nd book was released. Because this book ends on aCLIFFHANGER!!!!!!!!

I don’t want to give anything away, so in the tradition of the lovely Kat Stark , this is my (mini) unconventional review.

My thoughts while I was reading this book:

-“Hmm, Tarryn Fisher really has a thing for amnesia.”

-“Damn, this book reminds me a lot of Don’t Look Back by Jennifer Armentrout just with 2 people and not 1 person.”

-“OMG CoHo soooooooooooo wrote that part.”

-“Why are they so focused on kissing each other rather than figuring out what’s happening to them? Those are some damn strong horny hormones!”

-“Now I want a grilled cheese. Damn it, that was CoHo’s doing again!”

-“Eeek! A penis!”

I will say that despite there being a cliffy (which I expected) it was a DAMN GOOD cliffy.

So overall, I like the concept but I wish this book had been more than 140 pages. I will read book 2. Whenever it decides to come along.

Sparrow 59

sparrow 59 banner

Sparrow 59 (The Sleepers’ Coalition #1) by Devon Ashley

4 stars!!

sparrow 59 collage

Samantha and Drew are members of a specialized CIA team called Sparrow, a team dedicated to retrieving stolen medical research that is being sold on the black market. Samantha and Drew are posing as a married couple in order to maintain their cover, but in secret, the two are a couple in real life as well.

After a successful mission, Samantha finds herself the sole survivor of an attack on the entire Sparrow team. Except for Drew who has completely disappeared. The evidence suggesting Drew may be a traitor keeps piling up and Samantha must decide whether or not to believe in the man she’s in love with, or to label him a defected agent like everyone else already has. That’s when Drew activates a beacon that only she can see, and she must make the choice to go to him or not.

I don’t even know where to start. This book surpassed any expectations I had. By that I mean I didn’t really know what to expect from this book and I immensely enjoyed what I read. This was a thrilling story that sucked me in right away and didn’t let me go. I read the first half of the book in one sitting and ended up only getting 4 hours of sleep because I had stayed up reading!

Sparrow 59 is not strictly a romance novel nor is it strictly a spy novel, there was a bit of both mixed in to make it the perfect combination. I’m not normally a spy or thriller novel kind of girl, but I really enjoyed the plot in this book. As readers we get a fast paced plot with the added bonus of a great romance! The romance is a bit cleaner than most New Adult books, but it was a sweet one that had me rooting for the characters from Chapter 1.

“You call that a catch? They need to send you back to knight-in-shining-armor school.”

“And they need to send you back to charm school. A thank you would have sufficed.”

Devon Ashley’s greatest strength as a writer is in her characters. Despite not knowing a lot about Samantha or Drew I was able to connect with them right off the bat even though I really have zero zip zilch in common with them. Even the side characters (who shall remain nameless so as not to ruin the plot) had me growing attachments to them very easily.

I can’t really go into my favorite parts of the book without giving away any spoilers, but I will say that there is a twist that Devon Ashley threw in the book that pulled at my heartstrings for the majority of the story. You just have to read it yourself to know what I am talking about.

I will give you one big warning though, this book ends on a semi-cliffhanger! I know people are strict about that so I felt a warning was necessary, but I still urge you to read the book if you don’t like cliffhanger’s anyway and make up your own mind.




I leaned over and kissed his lips, and as far gone as he already was, his lips still kissed me back.

“Thank you for not letting me fall.”

His mouth lifted slightly to the left. Softly, he replied, “I’d never let anyone hurt you. Not even your clumsy ass.”

“I’m not clumsy,” I replied defiantly, “my dress just happened to outmaneuver me, is all.”

His smile was pressed tight, and his chuckle stayed put in his throat. “Always the fault of something else,” he jested. “Just admit you’re a klutz and I’ll consider letting you have your way with me.”

“Oh, lucky day!” I sassed in dramatic fashion. “Admit a fault and win a night in a nasty bed with a guy who’s currently broken.” With a strong southern accent, I added, “How will I ever refuse such a desirable offer?”

“Smart-ass.” I didn’t even have time to laugh before he wrapped me up and flipped us, reversing our positions. But instead of finding my lips, his head collapsed over my shoulder, the rest of his body locking up. His mumble sounded downright painful. “You might be right about the broken part.” He hissed through his teeth, groaning as he carefully rolled back off.

Now will you take a pain killer?”

“God yes,” he said on a heavy exhalation, his face still cringing.

I went to grab two from the stash in the medicine cabinet and he swallowed them dry. “Maybe tomorrow.”

As if. He was going to be broken for days. I ran my fingernails through his short brown hair. “Tomorrow we’re having dinner with Jeanine and her new boyfriend.”

He winced and moaned, but this time it wasn’t because of the pain.

I knew he was going to have that reaction, but I hardly ever asked him to do this kind of thing. Jeanine was the only person I had a friendship with outside the CIA, and I only became friendly in the first place because she lived behind us. I could only turn her down for dinner so many times, you know? “You promised!”

“Do you have this so-called promise in writing? Because I think this’ll be one of those times I require proof beforehand.”

My hands went directly to my hips. “Then I guess you should’ve paid more attention to those wedding vows you agreed to. Sorry love, but you’ve agreed to pimp yourself out on a permanent basis, and you have no one to blame but yourself.”

He lazily rolled his head back and forth on the pillow. “I don’t suppose there’s a way to barter myself out of this? Cleaning duty? All day unlimited shopping spree?” He smile was completely devious when he suggested, “Full body massage by yours truly?”

I bit back the smile fighting to take over. “So not going to happen.” Though the massage was definitely tempting.

“Damn it,” he muttered. Childishly, he added, “I won’t go.”

“It’s cute that you think you have a choice,” I replied, playfully tapping him twice on the cheek.

Closing his eyes, he slowly whined, “Fuck me,” finally conceding defeat.

“I tried, remember? You’re broken.”


***ARC kindly provided by the author in exchange for an honest review***

Gone Girl

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

2 stars

“There’s a difference between really loving someone and loving the idea of her.”

Well, that was a colossal waste of my time. This book is a perfect example of why I hardly ever delve into the mystery genre.

“Friends see most of each other’s flaws. Spouses see every awful last bit.”

Gone Girl is the story of Nick and Amy. Nick and Amy are a married couple who moved from New York to Missouri after losing both of their jobs.

 photo gonegirltown.png

Nick comes home one day and discovers the front door wide open and signs of a struggle inside.

 photo gonegirlcrimescene.png

Upon investigation, Nick tells lies and acts strangely and suspiciously. As the days continue to pass without any sign of Amy, the police begin to turn their focus on Nick…

 photo gonegirlsmile.png

***I will say, I think that the movie casting is perfect. So no collage casting in this review. David Fincher did well….

I truly believe that if you intend to read the book, you need to go in completely oblivious. So please, if you are planning to read this at all, DO NOT READ ANYTHING IN MY SPOILER SECTION BELOW. Thank you.

“Can you imagine, finally showing your true self to your spouse, your soul mate, and having him not like you?”

Many people have told me that I only guessed the surprise because I knew it was there. I find that incredibly insulting to my intelligence, because I guessed it fairly early on in the book (about 50 pages in) and the only reason I kept reading instead of quitting was to see if I was correct or if it was a different twist. I wanted to see what was so damn special about this book. Personally, I felt it was fairly obvious but I also went through a giant mystery book genre binge when I was in high school. It’s not an original plot people. Just watch CSI, Law and Order SVU, and more. The plot of this book was very similar to the beginning of the movie Double Jeopardy in which Ashley Judd is convicted for the murder of her husband only to find out later he faked his death. Sound familiar???

“There’s something disturbing about recalling a warm memory and feeling utterly cold.”

This book also perfectly explains why I stay away from the mystery genre, because 90% of the time, it’s fairly obvious to me “who done it”. I have a hard time watching crime shows anymore because there’s a formula to it, and it’s pretty darn easy to pinpoint who committed the crime based on the information given. And based on the information given in this book, there were only so many directions in which this book could have gone.

I mean, it practically says it all in the title. The title is not “Dead Wife” it’s “Gone Girl”, which implies that she is gone and not dead. So going into the book knowing there was a twist did not help me figure it out. I will say however, the enormous amount of hype surrounding this book made me feel incredibly underwhelmed. And by this I mean, my expectations when starting this book had me thinking I’d be riveted from the beginning until the end. Instead, I had to push myself to keep reading. I knew the beginning was slow, but in fact, the entire damn book was slow. I found myself skimming toward the end just to see what happened and so that I could finally be done with it.

I also don’t understand why Amy was all insulted that her husband didn’t love the true her, when she always pretended to be someone else? What was she expecting? He would fall in love with one woman and then be happy to be married to a stranger? I mean obviously she was a ginormous sociopath, but it seems weird to me that someone that brilliant could lack the common sense to know that if you change yourself from the ideal into reality, lots of people may not be down with this!

And WTF was that ending? It seems like the author didn’t know how to end a story like this. It’ll be interesting to see how the movie ends, because she was the screenwriter and supposedly she rewrote the ending. So at least readers of the book will be surprised.

I will say though, bravo to the author on the character building and development of Amy. That bitch is fucking crazy! I mean, she literally made me feel sick to my stomach for the entire final ¼ of the book. *shudders*.

So if you don’t read much mystery, I think you might enjoy this book.

1 star because it was interesting, another star because it was written well = 2 stars total

“Love makes you want to be a better man. But maybe love, real love, also gives you permission to just be the man you are.”