Category: Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Mary Kubica

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Courtesy of Mary Kubica

Mary Kubica has written three novels. Her novels are of the thriller/suspense genre. I have read two of her three novels and will review the two I have read in this Author Spotlight. I have not read her newest, but hope to read it relatively soon and review it on this blog.

Mary’s Writings:
The Good Girl
Pretty Baby
Don’t You Cry


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352 Pages in Kindle

Published: July 29, 2014
Dates Read: January 3-10, 2016

My Rating: 3 Stars

 

Book Summary from Amazon:

“I’ve been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don’t know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she’s scared. But I will.”

One night, Mia Dennett enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn’t show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. At first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia’s life.

When Colin decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota instead of delivering her to his employers, Mia’s mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them. But no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family’s world to shatter.

An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a propulsive debut that reveals how even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems.

 

My review:

This is the first novel by Mary Kubica and I enjoyed this book! I read it in 8 days which I usually average 2-3 weeks to read a book. It was hard to put down. I wanted to know what was going to happen next, but… The thing is, I knew there was a twist and I figured out what that twist was going to be. If I had not figured it out, I know I would have been blown away by the book, especially with the last line! I enjoy thinking I know what a twist will be and NOT being right.

I recommend the book and will be reading more books by Mary Kubica.


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400 Pages in Kindle

Published: July 28, 2015
Dates Read: January 12-25, 2016

My Rating: 3 Stars

 

Book Summary from Amazon:

She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can’t get the girl out of her head…

Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family’s objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.

Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow’s past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she’s willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.

 

My review:

This is Mary Kubica’s second novel. I thought the premise of the book was very interesting! I enjoyed the different perspectives in this as in The Good Girl.

It was a little too slow paced for me. Some parts of the book you can see coming. The last 6 chapters really picked up for me. My mouth dropped a few times with what happened towards the end.

Not as good at The Good Girl to me, I still recommend it and look forward to reading Mary’s third novel.


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320 Pages in Hardback

Published: May 17, 2016

 

Book Summary from Amazon:

In downtown Chicago, a young woman named Esther Vaughan disappears from her apartment without a trace. A haunting letter addressed to My Dearest is found among her possessions, leaving her friend and roommate Quinn Collins to wonder where Esther is and whether or not she’s the person Quinn thought she knew.

Meanwhile, in a small Michigan harbor town an hour outside Chicago, a mysterious woman appears in the quiet coffee shop where eighteen-year-old Alex Gallo works as a dishwasher. He is immediately drawn to her charm and beauty, but what starts as an innocent crush quickly spirals into something far more dark and sinister than he ever expected.

As Quinn searches for answers about Esther, and Alex is drawn further under the stranger’s spell, master of suspense Mary Kubica takes readers on a taut and twisted thrill ride that builds to a stunning conclusion and shows that no matter how fastand far we run, the past always catches up with us in the end.

 

 

This is Mary Kubica’s third novel. I have not read this, so I can not review it. I do hope to read it soon and give it a proper review on this site. I always enjoy thrillers, so I am sure I will enjoy it. It looks like we get multiple points of view in this book, which I always enjoy!!!

 

Author Spotlight: Suzanne Redfearn

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Courtesy of Suzanne Redfearn

Suzanne Redfearn has written two novels. I have read both and enjoyed them both. I look forward to future novels written by her. Both novels will be featured in this post today.

Suzanne’s Writings:
Hush Little Baby
No Ordinary Life


 

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Hush Little Baby
368 Pages in Paperback

Published: October 8, 2013
Dates Read: Feb 22, 2014- March 6, 2014

My Rating: 5 Stars

Book Summary from Amazon:

If I stay, he will kill me. If I leave, he’ll destroy Addie and Drew.

Jillian Kane appears to have it all – a successful career, a gorgeous home, a loving husband, and two wonderful children. The reality behind closed doors is something else entirely. For nine years, she has hid the bruises and the truth of her abusive marriage in order to protect Addie and Drew, knowing, if she left, Gordon would destroy her-destroy them.

When, in an act of desperation, she flees, her worst nightmare is realized, and she finds herself on the run with her two young children, no money, and no plan. With Gordon in hot pursuit, there is only one inescapable certainty: No matter where she goes, he will find her. Kill her. And take her children.

A riveting page-turner, HUSH LITTLE BABY exposes the shame and terror of domestic violence as well as the disturbing role manipulation and sabotage can play in the high-stakes game of child custody. Suspenseful and unforgettably moving, it’s a novel about the unbreakable bonds of family and the astounding, terrifying devotion of a mother’s love.

 

My review in 2014:
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed this book! Hush Little Baby had me pulled in from the beginning. It was intense the whole time! I did not know how it was going to end or what direction the story was going to go. Hush Little Baby shows what it can be like to be in a domestic abuse relationship, and makes me thankful I am not in one. Jillian’s thoughts show what a woman dealing with domestic abuse thinks and how having children can complicate what she may or may not do. The ending did get a little less realistic to me compared to the rest of the book, but I still enjoyed it and would recommend others to read it.

I also highly enjoyed that the chapters were short- the longest chapters were 6-8 pages. When there are short chapters I feel I can read a book quicker. I am not the quickest reader, but finished it an a little over a week.

 


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No Ordinary Life
400 Pages in Paperback

Published: February 2, 2016
Dates Read: May 20-June 11, 2016

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Book Summary from Amazon:

Faye Martin never expected her husband to abandon her and her three children . . . or that she’d have to struggle every day to make ends meet. So when her four-year-old daughter is discovered through a YouTube video and offered a starring role on a television series, it seems like her prayers have been answered. But when the reality of their new life settles in, Faye realizes that fame and fortune don’t come without a price. And in a world where everyone is an actor and every move is scrutinized by millions, it’s impossible to know who to trust, and Faye finds herself utterly alone in her struggle to save her family.

Emotionally riveting and insightful, No Ordinary Life is an unforgettable novel about the preciousness of childhood and the difficult choices a mother needs to make in order to protect this fragile time in her children’s lives.

 

My review:

With this novel, Suzanne Redfearn has become a Target Emerging Author Selection. That is awesome for a newer author! Congrats Suzanne!

This review will have some spoilers, so beware before you read this review.

I enjoyed Suzanne Redfearn’s first book, Hush Little Baby, so I was excited and anxiously awaited her second book to be released.  Last year(2015) there was also a contest where her readers could give input into the cover and title of the book. I participated.

I enjoyed that the chapters were short. That makes me feel I am reading the book quicker. It also makes it harder to put the book down when you see the next chapter is 1-4 pages!

I loved the premise of the book.

I was pulled into the book from the beginning and found it hard to put down. However, I had to suspend my belief while reading the book. Faye, the mother, was not very likeable for me. She came into the whole experience with such naivete. I mean, not even have a lawyer look at the contract when you know nothing of Hollywood?

Parts of the book seemed to be extreme in the situations that happened. Yes, you have one child discovered, but then your middle child can also act? I found that hard to believe as well. And, your boyfriend who works behind the camera ends up being a former child star?!?!

Despite the issues I had with certain parts of the book I did enjoy it and would recommend it. It was hard to put down. Unlike some reviewers, I did not have an issue with Molly’s lisp and the way it was put on paper. I LOVED Molly and could see how America fell in love with her in this book.

**I will continue to read Suzanne Redfearn’s books and look forward to her next one being released!!

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Author Spotlight: Shandy L. Kurth

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Courtesy of Shandy L Kurth

I have read all but one of Shandy Kurth’s books. I have enjoyed them all. They all have a sense of “realness” and grittiness to them. Her books are Young Adult (The main characters are young adults, but the writing may not be suited for Young Adults. There are adult themes and language in her writings.) My favorite is her Built on Fear series: Devastation and Isolation.  I read those two books long before I was reviewing books in any way. I will need to read them again so I can review them on this site.

Shandy’s Writings:
Devastation (Built on Fear #1)
Isolation (Built on Fear #2)
Slipping (a short story)
It Can Always Get Worse
On the Right Side of the Line

I am going showcase her short story Slipping and her novel On the Right Side of the Line in this Author Spotlight. Now, I wrote these reviews long before I ever planned on having a website, so they do not do Shandy or her work justice. Please give Shandy a change and check out what her work is about!:


 

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Slipping
59 Pages in Kindle
Published: November 27, 2012
Dates Read: October 23, 2015

My Rating: 4 Stars

Short Story Summary from Amazon:

A Young Adult Short Story

I think I’m losing my mind. The alternative would be that I’m seeing ghosts. If I’m going crazy, I should check myself into a nuthouse as soon as possible. But if I’m not… if she’s really a ghost, listening to her could mean the difference between life and death.

My review in 2015:

I enjoyed this short story. We are thrown into Miles life and we don’t know if he is going crazy or not. His mother and sister died in a car accident and he starts seeing his sister. I couldn’t put it down. I would have liked the story to be longer.

**Slipping is FREE on Amazon for Kindle and also Barnes and Noble for Nook


 

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On the Right Side of the Line
176 Pages in Kindle
Published: July 30, 2013
Dates Read: July 15-19, 2015

My Rating: 4 Stars

Book Summary from Amazon:

**Contains adult language

I thought I knew where I was going. I had my life all planned out. It had been mapped for me since I was ten. When I turned fourteen, I became a Raven, just like my big brother. It was a lifer thing, not something you could walk away from. I moved up the ranks quickly, just like everyone thought I would. Now at eighteen, I was close to the top. I could break thumbs with the best of ’em and and bust heads with the best. I was a force to be reckoned with. Yeah. I had it all together before that one event tore my life apart, and that one girl got me all confused.

 

My review in 2015:

This is the third book I have read by Shandy L. Kurth and my first book I have read dealing with gangs. After the first few chapters it was hard to put down!

Valen is a great character! He is conflicted, but wanting to do what’s right. Most of the books I read are read are from the female perspective, so this was a refreshing change for me.

The book felt realistic and was gritty. Towards the end I had no idea what was going to happen. I had a few thoughts, but they were wrong. It seemed like Shandy may have had experience with gangs or did her research on them.

I will be reading more books by Shandy L Kurth!

 

************Please give Shandy L Kurth a chance and look into her writings!

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