Rea Frey is a master at domestic suspense! This one may be the best one yet!
Rebecca Gray has had a time of it. Diagnosed in her twenties with an eye disease that will leave her totally blind, every day she can see a little less. Shadows, outlines, and soon there will be total darkness. To make matters worse, her husband is killed in an accident while she is pregnant with their son, Jackson.
Bec moves to the suburbs alone. In a home meant to be shared with her husband and son. She makes friends with a few other moms but suffers almost debilitating fear and anxiety over her ability to take care of and protect her son. Having lost her husband, she isn’t taking any chances with her only child.
But life in the burbs isn’t as idyllic as it sounds. And Bec finds this out in the most painful of ways. One day at the park she passes out. Her friends bring her to their house and talk to her about getting rest and taking better care of herself. With the aid of a friend’s sleeping pills, she gets some rest and wakes up only to find that the child in her crib is not Jackson.
The police, as well as her friends, think she may be confused and still grieving her husband. Tiny babies all look alike. Except for their mothers. Mothers know their baby’s smell, touch, and every breath. And Bec knows this is not her child.
With help from a past love, she will move mountains to find out who took her child and who is this baby in the crib? And the ending will leave you speechless!
I have to say that as I was reading this I am recovering from my 4th eye surgery, so this was already a scary time for me. Reading this had me jumping at every noise! And my husband wondering if I was ever coming out of the bathtub!
Another Great Job!
NetGalley/ August 11th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Griffin
The gripping true story of a sensational religious forgery and the scandal that engulfed Harvard.
Dr. Karen King, a well-respected professor at Harvard Divinity, announced to the attendees of a scholars conference, steps from the Vatican.
Someone had given her a scrap of an ancient papyrus where Jesus calls Mary Magdalene his wife. As you can imagine, this was huge. I know I followed this in the news because I had an interest in the Gnostic Gospels and what was and wasn’t true. I never saw Mary of Magdala as a prostitute and I never found any corroboration of that.
Imagine if all these years later we find out Jesus had a wife. What? What a shakeup that would be for the Catholic Church especially. If he was married, why celibacy in the priesthood? Why no women in positions of power? There was a powerful uproar and King’s reputation suffered. Was this piece a forgery and if so was King in on it?
Amid all of these questions, journalist Ariel Sabar started digging into the story. Where did the fragment come from? With impeccable research and detective skills, he brings us the story of King and the man who may or may not be a forger.
This was a brilliant look at the rivalries in academia. The hopes of King that there was an alternative to the bible out there that was more inclusive to women. I’ll leave you to enjoy the mystery.
I am still mulling over questions this book brought up. And I’m sure I will be for a long time.
NetGalley/ August 11th, 2020 by Doubleday Books
Key West Food Critic Mystery Series #10
Back in one of my favorite places! Key West and Houseboat Row! With my favorite food critic, Haley Snow. Haley and new hubby, Nathan, are still living with Miss Gloria and the pet menagerie while the renovations plod slowly on the newlyweds very own houseboat, so it’s crowded, to say the least.
With the busy time between Christmas and New Year, the town is packed with unruly tourists, enjoying all of the local food and drink. The police are stretched to their limits and Haley is participating in the Best Key Lime Pie contest, covering the event and tasting all of the entries for the local magazine.
Add into the chaos a surprise last-minute visit from her new mother in law, her parents slammed with their own catering business and deadlines due now!
Haley is hoping to entertain Nathan’s Mom and still get everything done on time. But her nerves are stretched.
Local, self-appointed Key Lime Pie expert, David Sloan persuaded the city to host the event and it looks like the competition is deadly. Especially since the newest pastry chef in town is told in front of everyone that her pie is not a pie and can not be entered.
And you know there is going to be a body. And that isn’t even the most surprising thing. Her mother in law turns out to be nothing like Haley imagined. She has a new partner in crime-solving.
This is one of my favorite series. In this cozy, you’ll be biting your nails and drooling in the same paragraphs! The recipes are delish and her writing is so effortless. The characters are quirky and fun.
NetGalley/ August 11th, 2020 by Crooked Lane Books
A TISH TARRAGON MYSTERY
It’s almost Christmas and the Hobson Glen Holiday Fair is upon us. Tish and crew are serving up delicious food and selling it like crazy. They are also catering the Williamsburg Theatre Group which is performing several shows a day.
Tish is at her finest creating memorable themed dishes. Very clever. To save time, Tish delivers the meals to the actors and ends up meeting a tight crew who have known and worked with each other forever. Well, not all of them have. And of course, that’s the one that Tish finds dead in her trailer.
Jenny Inkpen is not what she seems. Even her name is fake. But the look of fear and horror on her dead face is not fake. Someone hated her and wanted her dead. As Tish digs, politely, of course, she and her motley crew of friends find that everything isn’t as chummy as they claim to be. Secrets are behind every door and now they are seeing a ghost?
Severn House is one of my favorite publishers and their authors are some of my favorite authors. Ms. Meade is one of those and I absolutely love her characters! And this one has an ending that left me in tears and wanting to email her and ask what is up with that?
I’ll have to wait to find out.
NetGalley/ August 4th, 2020 by Severn House Publishers
A rich playboy wakes up in Venice with the worst hangover of his life! And all of a sudden he has a daughter too.
This one had a lot of inconsistencies and I was confused and not amused during the entire book.
This one just needed a lot of pulling together of facts and plots.
NetGalley/August 4th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Griffin
True Crime Podcasts are all the rage at the moment. And Rachel Krall has become an overnight success with hers after helping to set an innocent man free. She receives tons of mail and e-mails begging for her help solving cases and while her voice is distinctive and recognizable, her face is not. Not everyone is a fan and she takes care to keep herself safe.
On her way to cover a rape trial in Neapolis, she finds an envelope under her windshield at an out of the way diner. Creepy. But it seems to be just someone going that extra step to ask for help.
In the meantime, she discovers the town is quite divided and secretive. The accused rapist is a swimmer on the way to Olympic greatness with a family who is very shady. The girl, the granddaughter of the former police chief.
Rachel is determined Season Three of her podcast will be a success and is determined to dig in and do her homework before the trial begins. But the mysterious letters keep appearing. In her locked hotel room, her car and Rachel is intrigued.
Hannah Stills is begging for Rachel to help find who killed her 16-year-old sister twenty-five years ago. Officials say she drowned. But there is no police report or autopsy report. Hannah was only ten years old when this happened and her mother died soon after. But she never forgot what she saw and heard. Or the threats.
When Rachel begins to ask questions she is met with silence. But when she uncovers similarities in the old case and the new one, she digs in to find justice for both girls and in the process may not have worry about Season 3!
Small towns have a way of protecting the rich and connected and demonizing anyone different. What these men did was horrific and unforgivable and the sad part is they may get away with it a second time.
Always a thrill ride with Goldin! I absolutely loved it!
NetGalley/ August 4th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Press
From the author of The Winter Sister, comes this psychological thriller that seriously messed with my head!
Fern had an unorthodox upbringing to say the least! There are gaps in her memory and one day watching the news she sees a story about Astrid Sullivan, 34, and missing. But this isn’t the first time she has gone missing. Fern is positive she knows this woman. Scraps of memories bring nightmares that feel real.
Fern’s husband is convinced she is probably just remembering reading the first story as it happened near her childhood home. But Fern isn’t so sure.
When her distant father asks her to come home to help him clear out the house, she should have just hung up the phone!
I really don’t want to say a lot about the story. It is too wickedly twisted and you should have the joy of discovering what I did. And OMG! I just thought my family was screwy!
A great followup to The Winter Sister!
NetGalley/ August 4th, 2020 by Atria Books
Crossings is an unforgettable and explosive genre-bending debut—a novel in three parts, designed to be read in two different directions, spanning a hundred and fifty years and seven lifetimes.
Paris. About to be overrun with Nazis is not the best place for a not only German man but a Jewish one as well. As all-around is chaos and fear, a courier arrives at his bookbinding shop with a manuscript from a Baronness who would like it re-bound in the red leather she sends with it.
Inside are three stories, very unlikely tales. When the Nazis arrive the manuscript is forgotten for a bit and when he retrieves it he keeps it. Later he learns it can be read two ways. Straight through or in a very different way. The fantastical tale is hard to believe and takes us all over the world. The one commonality is Charles Baudelaire. He wrote at least the first one and a lot of this content is about him and a mysterious woman.
That is all I am saying here. This was something I have never seen a writer attempt. The word Epic comes to mind. The planning and detail this took are beyond anything I’ve seen.
Personally, I read it both ways and understood everything just fine. Although at one point I took a few notes to keep everyone straight.
Historical Fiction mixed with fact and fantasy. Well Done!
NetGalley/ St. Martin’s Press July 28,2020
What if you found out that your family isn’t yours at all? How far would you go to protect them? A gripping new psychological thriller from the bestselling author of The Girl Before. . . .
The day Pete Riley answers his front door to find a stranger standing there will lead to a nightmare that any parent would find unbearable.
Miles Lambert is the one giving Pete this news. Turns out Theo, Pete, and Maddies’ son is actually not their son at all. He belongs to the Lambert family and their son is actually Pete and Maddies.
Stunned and shell shocked, Pete and Maddie go along with Miles’ idea to sue the hospital as David, the other child will need life long care. And Miles is one pushy dude. He wants them to all get along and each get to know their own child. Or does he? Why can’t they just swap the children back? What does Miles know that they don’t?
Miles is a gaslighter. He gaslights his own wife, who is terrified of him. When Pete and Maddie begin questioning Miles’s motives, he sues them, threatening to take both boys until someone steps up and does the right thing. No more nice guys here. Now they are going to find out who stole the baby and what horrible things are going on in that house!
Domestic Suspense at it’s best!
NetGalley/ July 28th, 2020 by Ballantine Books
Sara Booth Delaney #21
Spunky southern private investigator Sarah Booth Delaney tackles a thorny murder while away on a girls’ weekend.
Another adventure with Sarah Booth and friends. This time Tinkie is hosting a girls’ weekend with Sarah Booth and CeCe in Lucedale, Mississippi at the posh Bexley B & B.
With Tinkie pregnant it will be a while before they can all get together. Here they can have massages and spa treatments and organic meals. But Tinkie’s wish is to be at the Easter Sunrise Service at the Palestinian Gardens, a miniature of the Holy Land created by Daniel Reynolds. It covers 20 acres and has stirred up a bit of controversy with the town’s savior of all species.
Up at dawn to attend the services, a walk through the garden turns in to a crime scene when they find a body laid out by the Mount of Olives.
The body belonged to one Perry Slay. A man generally not liked. Sneaky and underhanded, he won’t be missed. But when the local pharmacist asks Sarah Booth to find out who the killer is all the girls jump in! It is not looking good for poor Erick when the autopsy says the man was poisoned!
As more bodies turn up in the Holy Land, everyone is looking suspicious and the ladies need to find out who is doing what before they end up in the Holy Land!
These characters are so charming and well done. I love Sarah Booth and all her adventures!
NetGalley/ Minotaur Books