What Lies Between Us by |Arc Review

53142315. sx318 sy475

SYNOPSIS

Nina can never forgive Maggie for what she did. And she can never let her leave.

They say every house has its secrets, and the house that Maggie and Nina have shared for so long is no different. Except that these secrets are not buried in the past.

Every other night, Maggie and Nina have dinner together. When they are finished, Nina helps Maggie back to her room in the attic, and into the heavy chain that keeps her there. Because Maggie has done things to Nina that can’t ever be forgiven, and now she is paying the price.

But there are many things about the past that Nina doesn’t know, and Maggie is going to keep it that way—even if it kills her.

Because in this house, the truth is more dangerous than lies. 

UM, HOLY GUACAMOLE, YOU GUYS!

I am currently at a loss for words, because John Marrs has once again rendered me speechless. This is my third John Marrs’ book, and they seriously get better and better. Like, seriously, what did I just read?!

Told through alternating POVs spanning with flashbacks from over the course of two and a half decades to current day. We are introduced to Maggie and Nina’s dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship. John Marrs takes you on a roller coaster ride as we learn why Nina keeps her mother a prisoner in their own home.

This book was completely addictive as it is unhinged and insane. Twists after twists are thrown at you left and right as the story unfolds leaving you shell-shocked. I was at the edge of my seat reading this! Do you ever catch yourself talking to yourself or gasping so loud, the person next to you gives you a weird look? Because I did that with this book. Sometimes I would think I figured something out (YAY ME!), then John Marrs would say “haha, jokes on you. PLOT TWISTS.”

So, without giving anything away- I promise you guys will not be disappointed if you pick this up! With so many thanks to Netgalley, Amazon Publishing UK, and John Marrs for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review!

Book Details

Title: What Lies Between Us
Author: John Marrs
Publication Date: May 15th, 2020

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Do you have an author whom you’ll pretty much read anything by without looking at the synopsis?

I have so many, and I know this will come as a shocker, but John Marrs is one author I’ll read anything by, lol! I’m pretty sure I immediately requested this book as soon as I heard John was releasing a new book. SO- I’d love to hear about the staple authors in your library!

Renegades Trilogy by Marissa Meyer Series Review

Synopis of Renegades [Book #1]

Secret Identities. Extraordinary Powers. She wants vengeance. He wants justice.

The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies — humans with extraordinary abilities — who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone… except the villains they once overthrew.

Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice — and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.

So not to give away any spoilers, we will only provide the synopsis for the first book in the series!

Our Review

“Everyone has a nightmare.”

If you are looking for a trilogy that’ll blow you away, look no further. Renegades is a riveting and fast paced trilogy for any fan of a good superhero/villain story.

This series takes place in Gatlon City, where there is a council of superheros and their prodigies, collectively known as the Renagades. On one hand, we meet Adrian, who is the adopted son of two Renagade members. His power allows him to bring anything he draws to life. On the other hand, we are introduced to Nightmare, who has the power to put anyone to sleep with her touch, and yet she does not sleep. Nightmare, unlike Adrian, was not raised to be a superhero. Instead, the Anarchists, the villain group led by her uncle, Ace Anarchy, took her in after her family was murdered.

As the series progresses, we watch Nightmare go undercover within the Renagades in an attempt to take them down from the inside. Nightmare, now known as Nova to the Renagades, starts to fall for Adrian and battles her own idea of villains versus superheros. What happens in the rest of the series is an action-packed, major character growth, and a complexity of good and evil.

From the outset, this story was attention grasping and never let up. As most series go, the first book tends to start out a bit slow with a bunch of world building elements and doesn’t really pick up until the second half of the book. However, this series does not fall into that category. You are fully immersed into this world and become invested in the characters and their stories from the start.

What was most enjoyable about this series, for both of us, was the format. If you ask us what type of story we love reading the most, we can guarantee you the answer will always be multiple/dual POVs. With this story being told from both Adrian and Nova/Nightmare’s views, it provided a well rounded, in-depth perspective of both main characters’ thoughts and feelings.

While this story is told from these two POVs, there were a slew of supporting characters that deserve to be mentioned. So many characters that we absolutely fell in love with, and so many that we just loved to hate. This story would not be the same without such a well written supporting cast!

The basis of this series is the nature of power, and as the series progresses, we really get a glimpse into the characters’ growth. We watch as they figure out the grey areas in what seems like a black and white world as characters use and abuse their power and others who do everything thing can because it is the right thing to do.

As the series concludes, what does that mean for Gatlon City and its people? Will they survive Nightmare and Ace’s plans or will Adrian be able to stop them? But then, what does that mean for Adrian and Nova?

Overall, this was a well rounded trilogy, and one that we would highly recommend!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Have you read this trilogy, or any other books by Marissa Meyer? We would love to hear your thoughts down below in the comments!! And as always, thank you for stopping by and supporting our blog!

Pretty Things | Book Review

52217478. sx318 sy475
Pretty Things by Janelle Brown

Synopsis

Two wildly different women–one a grifter, the other an heiress–are brought together by the scam of a lifetime in a page-turner from the New York Times bestselling author of Watch Me Disappear.

Nina once bought into the idea that her fancy liberal arts degree would lead to a fulfilling career. When that dream crashed, she turned to stealing from rich kids in L.A. alongside her wily Irish boyfriend, Lachlan. Nina learned from the best: Her mother was the original con artist, hustling to give her daughter a decent childhood despite their wayward life. But when her mom gets sick, Nina puts everything on the line to help her, even if it means running her most audacious, dangerous scam yet.

Vanessa is a privileged young heiress who wanted to make her mark in the world. Instead she becomes an Instagram influencer–traveling the globe, receiving free clothes and products, and posing for pictures in exotic locales. But behind the covetable façade is a life marked by tragedy. After a broken engagement, Vanessa retreats to her family’s sprawling mountain estate, Stonehaven: A mansion of dark secrets not just from Vanessa’s past, but from that of a lost and troubled girl named Nina.

Nina, Vanessa, and Lachlan’s paths collide here, on the cold shores of Lake Tahoe, where their intertwined lives give way to a winter of aspiration and desire, duplicity and revenge.

This dazzling, twisty, mesmerizing novel showcases acclaimed author Janelle Brown at her best, as two brilliant, damaged women try to survive the greatest game of deceit and destruction they will ever play.

My Review

“Don’t take too much; don’t get greedy. Take only what won’t be missed. And only steal from those who can afford it.”

Firstly, can we all just take a moment to admire the beautiful cover! I’m not going to lie. It was one of the reason that convinced me I needed to have this book. Cover aside, this is my first novel by Janelle Brown and it truly did not disappoint.

Pretty Things is a slow-burner, character-driven novel. At almost 500 pages, there were moments that felt too slow to me and wished it was just a tad bit shorter; however, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was well-written and does keep you intrigued from beginning to ending.

The story is written as alternating POVs from Nina, a con artist, and Vanessa, an Instagram influencer, which will always be a plus for me because it tends to capture my attention more. Nina uses her Instagram primarily as a way to track her targets and learn the ins and outs of their life. She has been tracking Vanessa for quite some time, so when Nina’s mother fall ill and needs a heaping amount of money for treatment, Nina decide it is time to insert herself into Vanessa’s life. What happens next is a story of deception, betrayal, and loyalty.

Now might also be the time for me to tell you that I personally would not classify this book as a psychological thriller. While there are plot twists and tension that will have you turning the page like there is no tomorrow, I think it’s more appropriate to classify it as a literary suspense. The suspenseful moments are woven throughout the story leaving you to try and anticipate the ending. The story plays on more than just the plot of con-artist and social class difference. It is a multi-layered book. You get to see the impact social media has on a person when they broadcast every moment of their lives, it brings awareness to the fact that you don’t need anyone to validate you, and through all the backstabbing and lies, it shows what forgiveness can do for you.

Overall, I found Pretty Things to be a gripping story with many twists and turns. I did have some minor questions and though I do wished it was a tad bit shorter, I absolutely enjoyed this story and the emotional yet suspenseful roller-coaster it took me on. I am so ecstatic that Nicole Kidman will be starring and producing Pretty Things.

“When you’re documenting everything that you do, you stop living life for yourself and start living it as a performance for others.”

Book Details:

Title: Pretty Things
Author: Janelle Brown
Publication Date: April 21, 2020
Goodreads: Pretty Things

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Have you read Pretty Things yet? If so, have you started thinking about some cast members? Drop your guesses in the comments!

Stacking the shelves [05.16.20]

Happy Saturday, friends! Thank you for joining us as always! This is our blog’s first Saturday post and we are pretty excited because we came across this Saturday meme, Stacking the Shelves! It is co-hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and Reading Reality.

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical stores or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks! We are choosing to dedicate Saturdays to this meme, but you can post this whenever it works for you.

If I’m going to be honest, it’ll take me like 20 posts a week just to show you my weekly book hauls. I buy way too much and am definitely not reading them fast enough, lol. So, to make this easier- I just picked the top seven books I received within the last two weeks that I am most excited for!

Thi’s Small Book Haul

Book stash Titles

Hidden Valley Road by Robert Kolker
Pandemic 1918 by Catherine Arnold
Postscript by Ceclia Ahern
The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi
The Silent Treatment by Abbie Greaves
Hot Dog Girl by Jennifer Dugan
The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler

Have you read any of these or have you added any new books (any format) to your library? If so, drop your thoughts in the comments and let’s chat! 🙂

#WWW Wednesday

May 13, 2020

Happy Wednesday friends!! Even though I have been stuck in the house for two months, somehow these weeks seem to be flying by! I only have two more weeks before my husband and I move into our first house!! That is something to be excited for, but more importantly, I have actually remembered to make a WWW Wednesday post three weeks in a row!

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Sam on Taking on a World of Words. If you want to join in on the fun, be sure to tag the original post in the link above. Or feel free to answer the questions in the comment section below! And please feel free to leave your link in the comments as well.

What are the three Ws:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading

I know that Supernova was on my currently reading last week and technically speaking, I had read the first chapter :-P; however, I have had a little bit more time and have actually gotten a bit further into this series finale. I am really loving this series and happy that we decided to buddy read it. I really need to pick up my pace though, so Thi doesn’t leave me behind!

Speaking of buddy reading, I am also trudging right along on my Harry Potter reread that I am reading with another book friend! We are on Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Something about this book in particular is just even better than the movie. I believe all the books are superior to the movies, but this one just takes it even one step further.

Recently Finished

Escaping from Houdini has been my favorite book in this series so far. Although, all of the books have been very beautifully written. They hold your attention from start to finish and the characters are so well done. I cannot get enough of Audrey Rose and Mr. Thomas Creswell! I can’t wait to finish out this series next month, though I am a little sad for it to be over.

A Million Junes was a buddy read for a Facebook group read and I am so happy this was the book that was chosen. I thoroughly enjoyed the magic realism in this story and felt that it was done extremely well. Sometimes magic realism takes over a story and it detracts from the overall feel of the plot- this is not one of those books. This book is such a beautifully written whimsical story that I would definitely recommend!

What’s next

So if you all recall, In Five Years was also on my WWW Wednesday post last week and I had planned on starting it next, but I was a little slow on my other reads. So this one will hopefully be started before next Wednesday, but I make no promises!

The Unwilling is a stand-alone YA fantasy!! You read that correctly, an actual YA fantasy that is not a series!! This book was chosen for my local book club and I have to fit it in before next Thursday for our Zoom meeting. I am looking forward to starting it this weekend and see how they managed to do this without five thousand other books 😛

As always, thank you all so much for stopping by our blog! We truly appreciate all the love and support! Have you read any of these books? What are you currently reading? Let’s have a little chat down in the comments!

The Peculiar Fate of Holly Banks by Julie Valerie [cover reveal]

With many thanks to Julie and Amazon Publishing/Lake Union for welcoming Christie and me back to the Village of Primm. We are so excited to visit our good friend, Holly Banks! If you’ve read Holly Banks Full of Angst, welcome back to Primm Village! If you haven’t, we are so excited to have you join us on November 24, 2020.

Synopsis:

The Peculiar Fate of Holly Banks is the second installment in the Village of Primm series and is designed as a standalone novel, so readers do not need to read Book One to enjoy and understand the story told in Book Two.

Ideally, readers would start with Book One, but it’s not necessary. If you are a series reader, enjoy the series beginning with Book One, Holly Banks Full of Angst. If you do not want to commit to reading more than one book, you can enjoy any book in the Village of Primm series in isolation, as the main storyline of every novel begins and ends within that particular book.

While every novel in this series is/will be a standalone, we absolutely recommend reading all the books! Holly Banks will have you laughing from beginning to end. We found her to be such a relatable character and it is such a delightful and witty read. This series is the perfect escape from reality, so while we wait for book 2, hurry over to Amazon to purchase the physical copy or you can get it on KU, if you have a subscription, and read book 1. Hip Hip!

Pre-order your copy on Amazon today:
https://www.amazon.com/Peculiar-Holly-Banks-Village-Primm/dp/1542007992/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

About the Author: Julie Valerie


Julie Valerie is the founder of the 85K Writing Challenge and serves on the board of directors of James River Writers. Julie earned an editing certificate from the University of Chicago Graham School and has a master’s degree in education, a bachelor of fine arts in fashion, and certification in wilderness first aid.

She enjoys books, the study of wine, hikes on the Appalachian Trail, and travel. Julie married her college sweetheart, and they live in Virginia with their four children and two English labradors. Holly Banks Full of Angst is her debut novel.

Connect with Julie

Follow Julie Valerie’s Amazon author page, and be the first to learn of new releases and author updates.
Newsletter: julievalerie.com
Instagram: JulieValerieauthor
Twitter: Julie_Valerie
Facebook: JulieValerieAuthor
Goodreads: JulieValerie

Sundays in bed with…

Okay, so does it really count if I’m not really in bed? I picked up a shift today because that’ll give me a four-day weekend, so I definitely couldn’t turn it down! Last we spoke, my reading was completely erratic. I generally read about fifteen books a month. Last month, I think I wrapped up with about six books and even that was hard for me.

While my reading is becoming a bit more regular, I’m not pushing it. I’m alternating between books and Netflix. Speaking of, what are some new shows I can add on my list? I just finished BlackAF and am transitioning into The Last Kingdom, major Vikings vibe, and Kingdom, a Korean zombie series. Both seem to have potential.

Anyway, I strayed off topic a bit, lol. What are we reading this week?

Christie and I are looking to wrap up the Renagades series this month.

42771754

Supernova by Marissa Meyer

I don’t know about you great people, but I have the worst committment-phobia, so series reads always stress me out and take me a million years to finish; therefore, I am ECSTATIC to finish up this series (BUT ALSO SAD, BECAUSE I’M REALLY ENJOYING THIS SERIES). I think this is the first series I’ll be done with in a very long time!

Synopsis:

All’s fair in love and anarchy…

The epic conclusion to Marissa Meyer’s thrilling Renegades Trilogy finds Nova and Adrian fighting to keep their identities secret. While the battle rages on between their alter egos and their allies, there is a darker threat shrouding Gatlon City.

The Renegades’ worst enemy is back among them, threatening to reclaim Gatlon City. Nova and Adrian must brave lies and betrayal to protect those they love. Their greatest fears are about to come to life, and unless they can bridge the divide between heroes and villains, they stand to lose everything. Including each other.

Intrigue and action will leave readers on edge until the final, shocking secrets are revealed. 

53025903. sx318 sy475

Book Of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate

I pre-ordered this book as soon as I learned about it. This is one of my highly anticipated reads after reading Before We Were Yours. I’m about five chapters in, so it is still a bit slow as Wingate is laying out the story.

Synopsis:

A new novel inspired by historical events: a story of three young women on a journey in search of family amidst the destruction of the post-Civil War South, and of a modern-day teacher who rediscovers their story and its connection to her own students’ lives.

Lisa Wingate brings to life stories from actual “Lost Friends” advertisements that appeared in Southern newspapers after the Civil War, as freed slaves desperately searched for loved ones who had been sold off.

Louisiana, 1875 In the tumultuous aftermath of Reconstruction, three young women set off as unwilling companions on a perilous quest: Lavinia, the pampered heir to a now-destitute plantation; Juneau Jane, her illegitimate free-born Creole half-sister; and Hannie, Lavinia’s former slave. Each carries private wounds and powerful secrets as they head for Texas, following dangerous roads rife with ruthless vigilantes and soldiers still fighting a war lost a decade before. For Lavinia and Juneau Jane, the journey is one of inheritance and financial desperation, but for Hannie, torn from her mother and eight siblings before slavery’s end, the pilgrimage westward reignites an agonizing question: Could her long-lost family still be out there? Beyond the swamps lie the seemingly limitless frontiers of Texas and, improbably, hope.

Louisiana, 1987 For first-year teacher Benedetta Silva, a subsidized job at a poor rural school seems like the ticket to canceling her hefty student debt–until she lands in a tiny, out-of-step Mississippi River town. Augustine, Louisiana, seems suspicious of new ideas and new people, and Benny can scarcely comprehend the lives of her poverty-stricken students. But amid the gnarled oaks and run-down plantation homes lies the century-old history of three young women, a long-ago journey, and a hidden book that could change everything.

I am also wrapping up a couple of arcs, so the goal is to type up a review for them the next time I make a post! ALSO, Thank you for all your kind words and encouragement in the last couple of weeks when I was struggling keeping up with my books. I appreciate you all so much. As always, thank you for spending your Sunday morning with Christie and me. Hope you all are staying healthy and safe!

#WWW Wednesday


May 6, 2020

Here we are at another Wednesday. Nowadays I can barely recall what day it is. They all seem to just blend together after awhile. However, I do think this is the first time I have done a back to back WWW Wednesday without forgetting, so cheers to small miracles!

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Sam on Taking on a World of Words. If you want to join in on the fun, be sure to tag the original post in the link above. Or feel free to answer the questions in the comment section below! And please feel free to leave your link in the comments as well.

What are the three Ws:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading

I am almost through with the audiobook for Ink in the Blood, but I am having a hard time connecting to any of the characters and am hoping the ending will maybe redeem this book for me.

I have read the first chapter of Beach Read so I am just starting this journey. This book has been recommended by a lot of people, so I have high hopes!

Supernova is the third book in the Renegades trilogy and I am doing a buddy read with Thi. I have read the first page, so I think that technically still counts as a current read 😉

Recently Finished

I finished out my rom com mood with Would Like to Meet and I thoroughly enjoyed it! It is always hard to find a rom com with both a likeable female and male lead, and this one nailed it. I would highly recommend 🙂

Darling Rose Gold on the other hand was a definite disappointment for me. This was such a highly anticipated release for me, and the cover is just gorgeous. However, both of the main characters in this book are HIGHLY unlikable. I had figured out what was happening fairly early on in the book and had a hard time caring about what happened to any of the characters.

After I made it through my rom com mood, I landed hard in a mystery/thriller mood. I started with The Wives since it came recommended from Thi. She didn’t let me down with this recommendation! I really enjoyed the way this one was written and that ending!!!

The Guest List was quite a bit different from The Wives, but just as enjoyable, if not more. The setting of this story was so well describe. It made you feel like you were really there. This story is told from multiple POVs and is done very well and made the story even more interesting.

What’s Next

In Five Years will be my next buddy read with Thi. I have heard a few mixed reviews on this book, but I am excited to read it and decide for myself!

A Million Junes is a group read I am doing in a Facebook book group. I have actually not read the synopsis yet, so I am going in blind on this one!

As always, thank you all so much for stopping by our blog! We appreciate all the support and reading our thoughts! Have you read any of these books? What are your current reads? Let’s have a chat down in the comments!!

#WWW Wednesday

April 29, 2020

We have made it to the last Wednesday of April!! This month has flown by and I have been all over the place even though I haven’t left my house 😉 I missed WWW Wednesday last week as I my husband and I have been dealing with trying to buy a house! But I am really going to do my best to make a routine!

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Sam on Taking on a World of Words. If you want to join in on the fun, be sure to tag the original post in the link above. Or feel free to answer the questions in the comment section below! And please feel free to leave your link in the comments as well.

What are the three Ws:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading

I just started the audiobook for The Library of Lost and Found yesterday and I am now about halfway through. It was recommended to me by a friend when I said I was looking for a book about books!

Lately I have been on a real rom com kick and decided I would try to squeeze one more in. So I decided on Would Like to Meet and I am really enjoying it so far!!

Darling Rose Gold is a buddy read I am doing with Thi. We have actually done quite a few buddy reads this month, and it has been fun having someone to discuss with along the way.

Recently Finished

I absolutely adored Meet Cute. It came recommended from a few of my friends and with my recent obsession of rom coms, it was just what I needed!

I continued the story of Audrey Rose in Hunting Prince Dracula. I think I enjoyed the first book in the series a little more, but this one was still very interesting and makes me want to start the next book very soon!

Archenemies was a buddy read with Thi and it was fantastic. An excellent continuation of the series. If you are looking for a good superhero/villian series, I cannot recommend this one more!

Best Laid Plans was yet another buddy read with Thi 😛 This is definitely a YA contemporary romance and I found at times part of it was a little immature. However, I think the overall story was really well done and I would definitely recommend.

Lastly, Eleanor & Park was recommended to me by Thi and I shall never forgive her for not warning me about certain parts. She states that she had no warning, so I was to go in blind as well..

What’s Next

I am not planning much of my reading for the month of May. I have a busy month ahead with getting back into work, as well as, packing and moving into our first home!

These are the only two books I have made plans to read next month, as they are going to be buddy reads with…. you guessed it, THI!

As always, thank you all so much for stopping by our blog! We appreciate all the support and reading our thoughts! Have you read any of these books? What are your current reads? Let’s have a chat down in the comments!!

First line friday

Hello, fellow book friends! Hope you are all doing well! Today is FRI-YAY and you know what that means!!! It’s #firstlinefriday, a weekly meme hosted by Hoarding Books. I always get excited about this prompt, because I get to search through my library and see which sentence captures my attention the most. This week I am featuring They Went Left by Monica Hesse.

They went left by monica hesse

52701968. sx318 sy475

First Line:

The last time I saw Abek:
Barbed wire, rusty metal knots.


Christie sent me the synopsis for this book a few months ago, and I knew I had to get my hands on it! So, being the self-control person I am, I went to preorder it! Now that I’ve read the first sentence- I’m ready to dive into this book sooner rather than later!

Alright- it’s your turn! Drop a comment with the first line of your favorite book, a book close to you, or a book on your TBR! 🙂 and as always, stay safe and happy, friends!

XOXO,
Thi