Are You Sleeping – Kathleen Barber

30753570  3 Stars

„Are You Sleeping“ is a predictable psycho thriller with quite annoying main characters. Besides that, it is an easy and entertaining read.

 

Lanie and Josie are twins who estranged from each other years ago. The reason was the killing of their father. Her mother lost it after that gruesome event. She soon left and joined a cult and leaving her girls behind. Her aunt Amelia took care of them. Lanie handled this development with rebellion. She did drugs and booze. Josie wanted to be the nice girl everybody loves. But then something happened between the twins and they estranged. Josie travelled the world, never staying long at a place. Until she met Caleb. Now she has a life with him in New York. But he doesn’t know the truth about her family.

 

One day Josie learns about a podcast which is about the murder of her father. The neighbor’s son was convicted to be the killer. Lanie saw him that night shooting her Dad. But the journalist who runs the podcast says that maybe the guy was innocent. Josie goes paranoid. Then she learns about the suicide of her mother. So she returns for the first time in a century to her hometown.

 

The story is interesting and gripping. There is a family tragedy. A man was shot and one of his daughter witnesses it. His wife could not cope and went away to join a cult. She abandoned her children. Both children struggle but they get along somehow. Then this podcast happens and the mother suddenly committed suicide.  What’s this all about? What really happened?

 

I personally struggled with the main character Josie. And Lanie as well. They are both such drama queens. They make a spectacle out of themselves all the time. I know horrible things happened to them. But as a reader I think they were just annoying. All this throwing up, the ill-feeling, the not-sleeping, the drama. Josie started asking herself some questions a decade too late. There was just too much drama about the girls feeling ill and insomnia and horrible and there was too less focus of everything else and the story. That annoyed me and it affected my enjoyment of reading this book in a negative way.

This book is an easy read. Interesting story but I so disliked the main characters. Just too much drama.

The Drowning Girls – Paula Treick DeBoard

27069952  3 Stars

I am not sure if I liked this book or if I didn’t.

 

What I liked: the author did a very good job in showing who Phil managed himself into so much trouble. He makes one major misjudgment which is followed by a trail of lies. He got tangled in his lies until he finds no way to tell his side of the story any more. It is too late and to messed up. The story is told mostly by Liz but also occasionally by Phil. So we are also close to him and see how this all could happen.

 

What I did not like: the story is really predictable. As soon as I figured out where the story was leading I was almost annoyed. This again. It is no surprise that not everything in The Palms is so picture perfect when you look closer. The people who live there were all very stereotype. I just could not remember who was who. Who was which ones daughter? Or wife? I mixed them all up the whole time. Kelsey, the girl who gets obsessed with Phil, is quite cunning, maybe a little bit too much for a 15 year old girl. She is definitely troubled, but why that is so is never discussed. And Liz. She is a high school counselor. But I doubt that this is the right job for her. F.e. she gave a 14 year old girl, who came to her office for advice concerning birth control, just a leaflet. Shortly after the girl was pregnant. Well done, Liz. I also did not like a lot of things she did when she suspected Liz to be of harm to her family.

 

But the real problem is the ending. I seriously thought that there was something wrong with my ebook. I thought at least one chapter was missing. But obviously this is really the ending. The book just ends. There are still a lot of questions. I don’t have a problem with books with open endings. But this is no open ending. This is an ending in the middle of a chapter. Just a rough cut.

 

It was an easy read but I was happy when it was over. The writing is good but there is a lack of depth to the characters and the story itself. And there is this ending.

Disappearance at Devil’s Rock – Paul Tremblay

27064358  2 Stars

Almost two years ago I read „A Head Full Of Ghosts“. The Story really disturbed me. It was a haunting read and the story stays with me until today. It is one of the rare books I still remember the whole story. I read so many books, I mostly forget details about the story, the ending or twists very soon. But not with AHFOG.  I liked it even better as time went by.

 

So my expectations for “Disappearing at Devil’s Rock” were very high. But unfortunately I could never really connect to the story. I was almost bored to death until 70% into it. There was no tension, no scary moments. The thing with the diary did not work for me at all. The last 30% were a little better. But here I also did not like how it was told. The alternate POVs from the boys were really confusing.

 

I am disappointed with myself that I did not like the book. Although there are a few things I will remember. There is something about the author and his ideas I like. But this time I did not like the story itself and how it was told. There is also a lot of lying going on. Everybody is lying all the time. Especially Kate, Tommy’s sister, has a serious problem with speaking the truth. She was just an awful kid.

 

Hopefully I will like Mr. Tremblay’s next book better.

The Fourth Monkey – J.D. Barker

31125554  5 Stars

What a twisted and creepy book. It is a fast pace thriller which is highly entertaining and scary.

For five years the 4MK keeps the Chicago Police busy now. He punishes people who did something bad by taking someone they love. First he cuts of one ear, then he takes the eyes and at least the tongue. The sends the body parts in a white box with a black ribbon. The police is still without a clue who he is. Then one day a man is killed in an accident. Obviously he jumped in front of a bus. He carried a white box with a black ribbon. Inside is an ear. So there must be another victim suffering somewhere. But the killer is dead now. But that does not keep him from playing games with the police.

There was a kind of diary found with the body. In this book the 4MK describes his unbelievable bizarre childhood. At first you think it is a normal family but soon it turns out that this is a family of a very different kind.

The story is told alternating between 4MK’s diary and the police work. This book is not for readers who are very sensitive. It is quite drastic and there is a lot of blood. If you have no problems with that you will find a highly entertaining and very unique thriller. There is a little bit of humor, despite all this gruesome things happening all around. The book is very well written. The diary and this horrible family is almost too much, like a parody. It’s unbelievable that there would be a family like that. At least I hope there is not.

All together this was a very entertaining book. It’s full of surprises and twist and it has a unique ending. This book is really different to other thrillers. I enjoyed it very much.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Emily Carpenter – The Weight Of Lies

32195204  2 Stars

There are so many raving reviews about this book. I wonder if I read a different book. I really struggled finishing it because I found it so horrible.

There is enough said about the plot in other reviews. I just keep it short. The book begins strong. Although I disliked whiny Megan immediately I enjoyed reading it for the first chapters. But as soon Megan arrives on Bonny Island the story goes south. I got the feeling I was reading a YA book. The story was so unpretentious. Megan got to the Island to learn more about her mother and the story behind the real Kitten. She meets Dorothy, the role model for Kitten. But instead of talking they do nothing. Strolling around the island and eyeballing Koa, the handsome native guy who is working for Dorothy, that’s all she is doing. She is running in circles from each person to the next Dorothy doesn’t want to talk, Koa got his secrets, her mother Frances is not very talkative. But they all keep telling they have to talk. So just please do it! But no, not really. And Megan changes her opinion multiple times a day. The plot became extremely chaotic.

I also disliked the obvious love story. This was so YA book-like. Just awful.

The alternating chapters from the real Kitten book were way too short. I did not know what to make of them. I did not think they were necessary.

I must admit I somehow did not get this book. Knowing the end I just can’t see why Frances acted as a mother as she did. But then I did not bother to think about it all properly. I was just glad I finished it and I don’t have to deal anymore with the whiny and spoilt Megan, who acted defiant as a teenager and not as the 24 year old woman she was supposed to be.

I am disappointed by this book. I have no idea where all those good reviews come from. For me it was a totally chaotic story, very simple in its writing and more like a YA book than one for adults. I could go on for a while ranting about this book and chew on details I did not like. But I leave it at that. I am just sorry for the wasted time reading it.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

The Roses Of May – Dot Hutchison

30109999  2 Stars

 

I really had a hard time reading this book.

A lot of reviewers were disappointed that this book was so different to “The Butterfly Garden”. I must admit that I read it exactly because of that. I was not a huge fan of the Butterfly book. It was a very creepy read with a lot of weird characters and a very unrealistic story. But at least it was entertaining. This one here was such a slow burner. I thought about quitting multiple times. It was just so boring. Nothing really happens. It is all repetition. Flower deliveries. Agents traveling back and forth. All the same over and over. And you can easily figure out who the killer is. The characters are also again very weird. I disliked them all and none of them felt actually natural. I never felt “the force of nature” Prya’s mum allegedly should be. I also disliked Prya herself. And I could have done without the “butterflies”.

It a very slowly developing book with a boring story. The characters were all too edgy and creepy. I am very sorry because NetGalley and the publisher provided me with a copy but I must honestly admit that I did not enjoy it. I think I will not read another book from this author. Her idea a good story is not my cup of tea.

One Of Us Is Lying – Karen McManus

41P+Ljo-zJL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_ 5 Stars

 

Wow, this was a surprise. I did not expect that I would enjoy this book so much.

 

I am not a fan of YA books. Usually I am not interested in kid’s problems and teenage stuff. When I found this book on NetGalley I was intrigued by the blurb and hit the Request button. I just did not think about the fact that students having detention means they would be quite young. Stupid me. But I am glad now that I requested it because I really enjoyed it. I was into the story from page one. The mystery about the sudden death of one of their friends is a classical whodunit. It is hard to guess what happened and the revelation at the end was a surprise for me.

 

It is really funny that I liked this book so much. It has a lot of high school stereotypes and the typical teenage love mess. But somehow it worked. I liked the characters and how they changed during the investigation. The story is only told through the 4 students who were in detention when Simon died. There is no insight into the police work. But the whole thing stays a mystery until the end. I could see some things coming but I did not guess the end. It is an easy read and a very likable book. I enjoyed reading it and because I am so surprised that I liked it so much I give it 5 stars.

I would llke to thank NetGalley and the publisher for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review