Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier

Jamaica Inn
Author: Daphne du Maurier
Published: 1936
307 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

The coachman tried to warn her away from the ruined, forbidding place on the rainswept Cornish coast. But young Mary Yellan chose instead to honor her mother’s dying request that she join her frightened Aunt Patience and huge, hulking Uncle Joss Merlyn at Jamaica Inn. From her first glimpse on that raw November eve, she could sense the inn’s dark power. But never did Mary dream that she would become hopelessly ensnared in the vile, villainous schemes being hatched within its crumbling walls — or that a handsome, mysterious stranger would so incite her passions … tempting her to love a man whom she dares not trust.

Kim’s Review:

I first read this book back when I was in college. I was working on campus during the summer and I’d spend my lunches in the library reading and exploring … I know, I was a nerd. I had already read Rebecca in high school so I knew du Maurier was a great author.

Jamaica Inn is almost as good as I remember! It’s suspenseful, gothic, and kinda scary. I’ll admit that Mary felt a little overdramatic at times, which is why I gave it 4 stars, but when the problems were revealed, most of her reactions became justified. I also found it amusing that du Maurier was obsessed with gender in this book. Every other conversation was, “were I not a woman,” or “if you were a man”. Thankfully, it was mostly said in jest or “what if” scenarios, but it added an interesting perspective to a classic gothic tale. The plot also moved steadily and had a good twist, that I suspected, but was not obvious.

I’m pretty sure that Jem Merlyn was one of my first fictional crushes; he’s adorable! I enjoyed my rereading and I’d recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Jane Eyre-esque stories.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

The Escape Room
Author: Megan Goldin
Published: July 30, 2019
Audiobook

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: April 30- May 12, 2020
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

Vincent, Jules, Sylvie, and Sam are ruthlessly ambitious high-flyers working in the lucrative world of Wall Street finance where deception and intimidation thrive. Getting rich is all that matters, and they’ll do anything to reach the top.

When they are ordered to participate in a corporate team-building exercise that requires them to escape from a locked elevator, dark secrets of their team begin to be laid bare.

The biggest mystery to solve in this lethal game: What happened to Sara Hall? Once a young shining star—”now gone but not forgotten”.

This is no longer a game.
They’re fighting for their lives.

Jessica’s Review:

First, I have to say this: THERE IS NO ESCAPE ROOM in this novel! Our characters are trapped in a real elevator and they have to figure out answers to clues or die.  Needless to say I have issues with the title of this novel.  I was expecting something different, but other than this, I really enjoyed this novel.

We have two POVs and time periods for this novel: Sara Hall and the past, and present day with four investment bankers. Sara Hall is a recent graduate and trying to find a job in investment banking.  Eventually she lands a job at Stanhope and Sons, which is where our four investment bankers also work. As we learn about Sara and her life we see just how tough and hard-hitting that investment banking would be; I would not want to have a job like this. The author apparently does not like investment bankers! 

From the beginning of the novel, we know what is going to happen to the four in the elevator. It is not a surprise, but the mystery is seeing how past and present come together to give us our conclusion.

Though not a believable novel, it was a fun ride to go on. Once you finish reading, you might think twice before going in an elevator again, especially if you know the people going in it with you. Be careful who you go inside an elevator with! 

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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The Tower

The Tower
Author: Anne-Marie Ornsby
Published: January 10, 2020
135 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: March 30- April 2, 2020
Jessica’s Rating: 2 stars

Book Description:

Sometimes the dead come back. And sometimes all they want is to hurt you.

When residents on an east London housing estate start dying in gruesome ways, housing manager Ada begins to worry that her past is coming back to haunt her.

Once a powerful medium, able to talk to the dead with amazing ease, she became more comfortable with the afterlife than real life, and with that openness she attracted something dark from the other side. Terrified by the experience she swore she would never communicate with the dead again.

Ten years later at the scene of an apparent suicide, her long closed-down connection to the dead is reopened, and she begins to receive information she shouldn’t know about the victims’ final moments.

Stalked in her dreams and in waking life by an angry male presence, Ada begins to relive the dark days when something from the other side wanted her to end her life.

But as the bodies stack up and the visions intensify, Ada realises that in order to stop more people from dying she has to let the dead back in to find out the truth of what is driving her residents to violent acts – and face up to her own ghosts.

Jessica’s Review:

This is sadly another novel that did not work for me.  Yes, I enjoy the crime thrillers and this one had paranormal twists to it.  I was fine with that but the direction the novel went did not work for me. The final act/twist which explains everything did not work for me.  Unfortunately, I can’t go into it or I would give away spoilers.  This is the author’s second novel and I will give her another try and read her debut at some point.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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