The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Witches and an evil curse? Sign. Me. Up.

I was so excited to finally get the chance to read this book, and I was not disappointed at all! I found it easy to be an easy, quick read because I couldn’t stop reading!

Penny lives on an island off the shore of Sparrow, a town cursed by three sister witches for over 200 years. Each summer the sisters take possession of three girls and spend the summer drowning boys in the water surrounding the town. As society tends to do, people get weirdly obsessed with this tragic event that takes place every summer. One of the new visitors is Bo, a teenager who randomly ended up in the town because it was the end of the bus line. He and Penny meet at the annual drinking-on-the-beach-waiting-for-the-witches-to-arrive party. Penny ends up bringing Bo back to her island to give him a place to sleep. So begins Penny’s summer of trying to protect this boy she’s falling for from being carried out to sea by a witch.

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The Forger and the Thief by Kirsten McKenzie

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Wow! This book was so interesting! There were so many things that twisted random pieces into a well-placed story!

“FIVE STRANGERS IN FLORENCE, EACH WITH A DANGEROUS SECRET. AND AN APOCALYPTIC FLOOD THREATENING TO REVEAL EVERYTHING.”

And reveal everything it did! The five strangers each have a point of view in the story, but there is one more POV that I found so intriguing! The River. It got to speak to the reader about what it was doing, what it wanted.

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The Ancestor by Lee Matthew Goldberg

Copy of Science Fiction with pink background and oversized moon with reflection in water

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book was a bit like a time travel story for me. A man from the 1800’s wakes up in present-day Alaska, having been frozen for almost 200 years. I liked how the story takes the reader through the initial confusion of Wyatt, our frozen-in-time character. He is unsure of where he is and who he is. I thought that Lee Matthew Goldberg did an excellent job of bringing the reader into the story right from the beginning with this opening scene.

As the story progresses, we find Wyatt spiraling into this obsessive character. When I chose this book, I didn’t realize it would have this thriller aspect, so I was surprised when Wyatt finds who he believes is his great-great grandson, and becomes overly-attached to him, and his family. This obsessive behavior really turned this into an interesting read for me!

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Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I really enjoyed this book! What a dark, spooky premise with a crazy plot! This is a perfect Halloween read, so go grab it this October!!

Noemí Taboada arrives in her high-fashion dress with a cigarette in hand to save her cousin after receiving a desperate letter from her. The secluded mansion in 1950’s Mexico that she comes to is everything you want in a spooky setting. It’s dark and mysterious with creepy household members that hold so many secrets. The first dinner Noemí sits down to, the family explains that they eat in complete silence. It is one of the many odd quirks about this story that had me guessing from start to finish just what was happening!

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One by One by Ruth Ware

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Well, Ruth Ware has done it again! One by One was a thrilling story of murder, secrets, and seclusion. I found myself immediately drawn in and seriously could not put it down! I will say that it wasn’t quite as good as The Turn of the Key, but that was by far my favorite by her. This one takes us back to her stories that put a group of people together and then start killing them off. It was very reminiscent of in a dark, dark wood, but I really enjoyed it!

A company trip to a secluded ski resort starts off tense with characters that are segregated into smaller groups of friends and enemies. As the story unfolds, we begin to understand that there is an opportunity for a buy out of the company Snoop, but not every shareholder wants this. What was supposed to be a week-long retreat to decide on what to do, turns into a heart racing trip to stay alive.

I loved the characters in this story. The cast has two employees for the ski chalet, and 10 guests. It’s told from the POV of Erin, one of the workers in the chalet, and then Liz, a guest and minority shareholder for Snoop. I liked this story-telling choice, as we got insight into some of the Snoop backstory, as well as the chalet worker’s thoughts as things begin to happen.

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Doors Of Gold And Rust by A.N. Willis

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I LOVE a second book in a series that stands up to the first! Doors Of Gold And Rust was just as wonderful as the first book! I liked that this story still had the same characters we already know, and involved the same house, but there are a whole lot of NEW mysteries to uncover. It was exciting, and I enjoyed it!

The story picks up just four months after the resolution of the last story, and we find Evelyn has befriended Jake, and Alex is a bit estranged as he’s living with his mom out of town. Evelyn receives a letter that sparks the return of Alex and the eventual discovery of a long-hidden murder on the Byrne House grounds.

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All Eyes on Her by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn

Rating: 4 out of 5.

All Eyes on Her is a young adult thriller that puts the reader in an investigative position, which I thought was fun and original! We start the story with Tabby telling us why she’s not guilty of killing her boyfriend, Mark. It then moves to other character’s perspectives of what they knew about the situation. I liked reading each character’s version of events. It gave me the opportunity to see the situation from so many different points of view.

The story is told through the multiple perspectives, but also provides chat messages, sections of diary entries, as well as newspaper articles. It really played up the social thriller genre with these entries and it was so easy to get into!

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The Night Swim by Megan Goldin

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Wow! This book just blew me away! I was just expecting something different, I’m not sure what. Maybe more of an always running from the killer kind of story, but this was something totally different, and I loved it!

The main character runs an extremely popular podcast series where she covers crimes and has solved one for her past two seasons. This year, she decides she’s going to cover a live trial of a rape case and update her followers daily so they can feel like they are a part of the jury. Just before arriving in town, she receives a mysterious letter on her windshield that leads her down a path to 25 year old death that she can’t let go. She finds herself balancing the current case with this old case that no one seems to want to talk about.

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The Shadows by Alex North

Rating: 4 out of 5.

What I Loved:

I loved the creepy characters in this story. Alex North does a great job of describing his characters and really allowing the reader to imagine each person. He makes them feel real, like they are coming right off the pages and being brought to life!

How I Felt:

The Shadows takes the reader into a story that starts 25 years ago when two teens were part of a murder. While one boy was captured, Charlie Crabtree escaped, disappearing without a trace. Now, Paul Adams, who was linked to the original crime, must return to his hometown to help care for his elderly mother. His mother keeps saying things about the murders…she seems to know more than Paul thought. When a copycat killer starts bringing up the past, Paul must face his past and question everything, and everyone.

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Devolution by Max Brooks

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What I Loved:

I loved the choices the author made to tell this story! It’s written like an actual journalistic investigation into an incident. The audio version was amazing because a cast of narrators was used to differentiate between the characters, and it was wonderful!

How I Felt:

Devolution is “A Firsthand Account of the Rainier Sasquatch Massacre”. A small group of people that have chosen to live secluded from society become trapped when Mount Rainier erupts leaving their escape paths covered in lava. I thought this was going to more about their need to run from the eruption, but that isn’t it at all. They are pretty much safe in their homes with the lava flows going down the other side of the mountain. The real danger lurks in the forest around them!

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Home Before Dark by Riley Sager

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What I Loved:

The twists and turns that this book took me on were insane! I had absolutely NO idea what was going on, no guesses as to what the truth was. It was an amazing ride, and I loved it!!

My Synopsis:

Maggie’s father wrote a book that has haunted her every day of her life. As a young girl, her family bought Baneberry Hall, a secluded estate with a tragic history. Maggie doesn’t remember anything about their less-than-a-month stay in the home. All of her memories are from the non-fiction book, House of Horrors, written by her father. Maggie knows that everything in the book is a lie, but her parents will never discuss it.

When her father passes away, Maggie is shocked to learn that her father still owned the house, and she is now the owner of Baneberry Hall. Determined to understand what really happened during their stay in the home, Maggie moves in.

She is adamant that the ghost stories, snakes, and gruesome history were all a figment of her father’s imagination to create a best-selling book. When she arrives though, the things from her father’s book begin to seem less like a story and more like a foretelling of things to come.

How I Felt:

This is my first Riley Sager book! I know, I know. I’m so behind the times! But – I am with you all now, he is an amazing author, and I now need to read everything he has written!

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Winter of the Wolf by Martha Hunt Handler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What I Loved:

Wow! Winter of the Wolf was such an emotional read. I get so invested in a story that has a mystery element but also draws me in emotionally. It was beautiful to read!

My Synopsis:

Sam Hanes has died from suicide by hanging in his bedroom. His sister, Bean, is absolutely distraught over losing him. Everyone around her is saying that Sam committed suicide. As Bean relives the event through her memories, she just can’t believe that he would do that. She knows her brother in a way that others do not and is determined to uncover what really happened to him.

While Bean is working to figure out what has actually happened to her brother, she is also learning to manage her own grief as well as the grief of her family. Winter of the Wolf blends mystery, grief management, forgiveness, and spirituality, to create a beautiful, touching story.

How I Felt:

I just need to give a quick shout out to this fabulous cover! It caught my attention immediately and I knew I wanted to read it!

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