Tag: 5 stars

Release Day Review: Never Let You Go

Author: Chevy Stevens
406 pages in hard back

Published: March 14, 2017
Dates Read: February 26 – March 11, 2017

My Rating: 5 Stars

Book Summary from Amazon:

Eleven years ago, Lindsey Nash escaped into the night with her young daughter and left an abusive relationship. Her ex-husband, Andrew, was sent to jail and Lindsey started over with a new life.

Now, Lindsey is older and wiser, with her own business and a teenage daughter who needs her more than ever. When Andrew is finally released from prison, Lindsey believes she has cut all ties and left the past behind her. But she gets the sense that someone is watching her, tracking her every move. Her new boyfriend is threatened. Her home is invaded, and her daughter is shadowed. Lindsey is convinced it’s her ex-husband, even though he claims he’s a different person. But has he really changed? Is the one who wants her dead closer to home than she thought?

With Never Let You Go, Chevy Stevens delivers a chilling, twisting thriller that crackles with suspense as it explores the darkest heart of love and obsession.

My Review:

Still Missing is Chevy Stevens’ first novel and is my favorite of hers. You feel every emotion Annie has and Chevy’s writing is compelling! With Never Let You Go, Chevy really does showcase that she is a master at what she does.

Never Let You Go is about Lindsey and her daughter Sophie. Lindsey is in an abusive marriage and wants to get out but isn’t sure how. Eventually she leaves with Sophie and her husband Andrew goes to jail. Eleven years later, Andrew is released from prison and Lindsey begins to feel that she is being constantly watched. She believes it is Andrew even though he says he has changed.

Never Let You Go is narrated by Lindsey and her daughter Sophie. In addition to both narrators the novel also takes place in the past when Lindsey was in her marriage and present day. Both transitions of the points of view between Lindsey and Sophie and past and present are seamless. They merge together well and there is no confusion when each chapter occurs or who the narrator is.

As with all thriller/suspense novels there are twists that you may or may not see coming. My suspicions were narrowed down to two characters as to whom I thought was stalking Lindsey. I just was not sure why they might have been doing it. I was excited to see that one of my suspicions was right! I normally do not like it when I guess who the guilty party is, but I think because I was not sure of the motive, that was why I still had my mind blown. When I read who was stalking Lindsey and why I had two reactions: “I knew it! and OMG!” The OMG thought was the motive that I did not see coming.

Chevy Stevens does a great job with you having empathy for Lindsey. At the beginning you really want her to get away from Andrew. Chevy pulls you in and takes you for quite a ride with Lindsey and Sophie. You want Lindsey and Sophie to come out fine at the end.

This is a very intense book that I never wanted to put down!

I must give a couple of warnings to readers:

  1. If you have issues with domestic violence you may want to stay away from this book. Some scenes are very intense.
  2. If you are an animal lover there are a couple of scenes that may bother you. I had a hard time reading those scenes, but a lot of the feeling was fear as to what was going to happen next.

With Never Let You Go Chevy Stevens shows how superior she is with her writing in the suspense/thriller genres. With this book, she is becoming a favorite of mine!

Never Let You Go is very highly recommended! If you have not read her novels and interested in reading them, then start with Still Missing and then move onto Never Let You Go!

**Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for my e-arc via NetGalley and my print arc copy!

Short Story Review: Invisible

Author: Billy McLaughlin
7,000 words; 31 pages

Published: March 24, 2016
Date Read: February 1, 2017

My Rating: 5 stars

Short Story Summary from Amazon:

Louise Bradshaw harbours a secret. One that she refuses to share. Her distant and unfriendly behaviour has made her a social outcast. Suddenly she is pulled out of her slump when she is befriended by Joe, a maverick colleague who attempts to help her engage. However, things take a dangerous turn in this debut novelette when Joe gets too close….

My Review:

Louise is an outcast and even her coworkers ignore her. Joe notices this and befriends her. They become close and talk constantly. Bruises start showing up on Louise and she begins missing work and Joe becomes concerned for her. Then the direction of the short story goes somewhere you don’t expect. Despite its short length of 31 pages, I could not put this story down. Billy McLaughlin does a great job pulling you in and making you want to know what is going to happen next! There are even short ‘chapters’ in this short story which seemed to help me read it even quicker!

I look forward to reading more by Billy McLaughlin in the near future! Use your lunch break to read Invisible!

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The Caretaker

The Caretaker
Author: Dan Klefstad

Published:  February 1, 2017  in issue 209 of Crack the Spine Literary Magazine
Date Read: January 9, 2017

My Rating: 5 Stars

Short Story Summary:

Daniel is about to retire after decades of working for a vampire. He’s writing a letter to the applicant who wishes to succeed him; a letter that’s part memoir and part advice. We never hear regret in Daniel’s words, but we get a sense of the sacrifices he made to be able to spend his remaining years in peace and luxury.

My Review:

The Caretaker is a short story and is written as a letter from Daniel to the applicant chosen to replace him, as a message and warning about the job. We are the applicant in this instance and we are warned if we continue reading the letter and don’t take the job it could prove very dangerous. Dan Klefstad pulls you in to this short story from the beginning. You can’t help but read on, despite Daniel’s warning… Do we read on fellow applicant? Yes, we do!

Daniel gives lots of advice on what to do and not to do with our new employer with great care otherwise we will meet disastrous results. Then he goes into part of his story as a caretaker giving us an idea what we are in for by taking this job. It is not an easy job or life that Daniel had working as a caretaker. He earned his money. But at what cost? We must continue reading The Caretaker to know everything…

I highly enjoyed The Caretaker. It is a short story that Dan Klefstad is working to expand into a full length novel. I find myself anticipating that future novel. Do yourself a favor and get this issue of Crack the Spine and read Dan Klefstad’s short story!

The Caretaker is recommend.  Issue 209 of Crack the Spine will be out TOMORROW!

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