Month: February 2023

Audiobook Review: Where the Forest Meets the Stars by Glendy Vanderah

Where the Forest Meets the Stars
Author: Glendy Vanderah

Narrator: Lauren Ezzo
Published: March 1, 2019
Audiobook: 9 hours 57 minutes

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: January 31- February 4, 2023
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description:

After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot and covered in bruises.

The girl calls herself Ursa, and she claims to have been sent from the stars to witness five miracles. With concerns about the child’s home situation, Jo reluctantly agrees to let her stay—just until she learns more about Ursa’s past.

Jo enlists the help of her reclusive neighbor, Gabriel Nash, to solve the mystery of the charming child. But the more time they spend together, the more questions they have. How does a young girl not only read but understand Shakespeare? Why do good things keep happening in her presence? And why aren’t Jo and Gabe checking the missing children’s website anymore?

Though the three have formed an incredible bond, they know difficult choices must be made. As the summer nears an end and Ursa gets closer to her fifth miracle, her dangerous past closes in. When it finally catches up to them, all of their painful secrets will be forced into the open, and their fates will be left to the stars.

Jessica’s Review:

Where the Forest Meets the Stars was another book club read and one I had not heard of before, but I am glad I have read…well listened to it! It is a very strong debut novel that deals with many issues that these three characters are all dealing with: cancer, depression, childhood abuse/trauma and dysfunctional families.

It was a quick and easy read for me. It is a well written and powerful novel with characters that really grow on you.  Jo, Gabe, and Ursa are all broken and damaged and together they all heal.  Is Ursa really an alien from another planet? You see that Jo should do the right thing by reporting Ursa, but also see her conflicting emotions. As Ursa gets closer to her fifth miracle the novel really speeds up to head in a direction that you know what is coming, but not really. Everything comes together and I really enjoyed this one! Vanderah has written more novels and the covers are all so similar and gorgeous! This is one you just can’t say much about without giving things away!

The narrator Lauren Ezzo did such a great job, especially with her narration of Ursa. Her narration helped to improve on an already superb novel!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


Audiobook Review: The Doctor’s Wife by Daniel Hurst

The Doctor’s Wife
Author: Daniel Hurst

Sarah Durham
David Wayman
Published:  January 31, 2023
Audiobook: 7 hours 20 minutes

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: January 26-30, 2023
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

He thinks his secret is safe. But she knows the truth…

My husband is a doctor. He’s smart and charming and everybody trusts him. Except me.

On the surface, it looks like I have it all – the perfect marriage, the perfect husband, the perfect life. But it’s far from the truth.

Doctor Drew Devlin is not the respectable figure he makes out to be. The reason we moved to this beautiful, old property with a gorgeous view of the sea was because we needed to put our past behind us. It should’ve been a fresh start for us both.

Except I’ve discovered my husband has been lying to me again. He’s using the power he has in his job to mess with people’s lives, and to get exactly what he wants – no matter who it hurts.

But he’s underestimated me. I’ve had plenty of time, in this big, isolated house, to think about all of his mistakes.

And my husband has no idea what’s about to happen next…

Jessica’s Review:

The Doctor’s Wife is my first novel by Daniel Hurst and I think I will return to his novels in the future!

The prologue starts differently from most thrillers: You know from the beginning that there is a murder and who the found body is, so here we go!   But, when I realized what the trope was that The Doctor’s Wife consisted of, I wasn’t sure of my choice to listen to this novel. It’s a trope I am not a huge fan of, but the audiobook is so short that I decided to listen to some more. Then I was surprised: I got fully invested into the story and didn’t want to stop listening to it!

Both Fern and Drew are unlikeable for more than one reason and have many issues, but I became #TeamFern all the way! This one has pov’s from both Fern and Drew and also takes place in the past and present.

It has twists that keep coming, some I predicted, some I didn’t. I really did enjoy this one!  Both narrators did a great job portraying Fern and Drew.

**Many thanks to the publisher Bookouture Audio for granting me an audio copy to listen to and review!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK 


Short Story Sunday: Dalma Does Not Die at the End

Dalma Does Not Die at the End
Author: Adam Silvera

Published: October 4, 2022
40 pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Date Read:  January 22, 2023
Jessica’s Rating: 4.5 stars

Jessica’s Review:

Dalma Does Not Die at the End is a short story taking place directly after The First to Die at the End. If you have read They Both Die then you know that Dalma created The Last Friend app where Rufus and Mateo met. Dalma is a main character in First and we see the up and down journey that she goes on to create The Last Friend app over a several years’ time period. 

This short story just did not have as much magic as the two full length novels, I think maybe because no one was going to die? But I enjoyed it to see the app come to creation knowing what she wants to become and actually seeing it in full bloom in First.

This short story comes in the Barnes and Noble exclusive edition of The First to Die at the End.  I wanted this version for the short story, and I just love the cover! Anything Silvera writes in this world I plan on reading!

Purchase Link:
Barnes and Noble Exclusive Edition