The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

This is the most hyped book I’ve read in a long time that has met my expectations fully. I’m still trying to wrap my head around what actually happened in this book.

Like Turn of the Key, I don’t want to go into any spoilers in this blog post because you have to read this book for yourself.

In this story we follow psychotherapist Theo Faber as he tries to get a patient whom hasn’t spoken a word in years to speak again. This patient is Alicia Berensen, who was found in her home zoned out standing next to her husbands dead body. Everyone assumed she killed Gabriel, her husband, because she never spoke up for herself during the trial. That means she’s guilty, right? Did she shoot her husband 6 times in the face or was someone else there that night? Oh you’ll find out. And it won’t be what you expected.

**I would add a trigger warning regarding suicide attempts; specifically wrist cutting. This is mentioned a couple times in the book and could be upsetting to some.**

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware

It has been a while since I’ve read a Ruth Ware book and I don’t know why it has taken me so long to read another one of her books!

We follow Rowen after she accepts a nanny job for a wealthy family who live in a smart home. Shortly after her arrival, weird things start to happen. I don’t want to spoil anything for this one because it was just so good and I want other people to read it for themselves if they haven’t already. I am totally down for an in depth discussion on this one though!

This book was a slow burn with little twists through the entire book until the very end when everything is wrapped up with a neat little bow. You may have heard a lot of people didn’t like that the motive for what happens to one of the children in this story is all summed up in a letter, but I didn’t mind it at all. I thought it tied together nicely with an earlier part of the book that discusses letter writing. I am easy to please when it comes to most books 🤷🏼‍♀️

The Whisper Man by Alex North

Wow, wow, wow! This book might have gotten me back into detective thrillers. Not sure if that’s the right terminology, but I’m sure you know what I’m referring to. This book had the right amount of detective POV vs main character POV. I really enjoyed the main characters. We have Tom and his son Jake. They are moving to a new house after the wife/mother Rebecca passes. Tom and Jake have always had a bit of a strained relationship and I like that Jake was written to sound like a child like he should be. I’ve read a couple books where it seems like they were writing a child that was older than they were actually listed as in the book. Once our main characters move into their new home, they find out that a little boy has recently been kidnapped and murdered by what people are calling the whisper man. The whisper man is a serial killer who killed a bunch of little boys 20 years ago and lured them to him by whispering to them through their windows but he has been in prison ever since he was arrested. So who could have killed this little boy in present time? And when will he strike again?

Ah, there is so much to this book that I can’t put it all into words! So much stuff happens and there are so many twists and turns. And the end is so ambiguous, like, what happened?!

The writing style was amazing and it made the book go so fast! I cannot wait for the authors second book to come out later this year! I will definitely be reading. Stay tuned 😉

The Wives by Tarryn Fisher

What a twisty book. This story follows a woman named Thursday and her husband Seth. Shortly in, we learn he has two other women he is seeing. We don’t know their names yet but the first wife and Seth divorced because she couldn’t have children. Seth meets Thursday and they get married in hopes that Thursday will have his child. Thursday miscarries, so in comes the third wife to hopefully give him the child he wants. Thursday has a lot of insecurities regarding Seth’s other wives and after finding the name of one of the other wives on a slip of paper in Seth’s pocket, she begins discovering who the other two women are.

*SPOILERS*

It gets real twisty as soon as we find out Seth may have beat the third wife, Hannah, whom is pregnant. Thursday of course does not reveal who she is when she goes to find Hannah at her home, but boy she should have and it probably would have saved her a lot of trouble. Although, I am happy at what happens to Seth at the end. Seth ends up finding out about Thursday and Hannah, beating Thursday up a bit, and sending her to a mental institution stating Thursday is making this all up because she is upset Seth broke up with her and she was just a mistress, not his actual wife. So after Thursday gets out of the mental hospital, she decides to find wife #1, Regina. Regina is very bitter about Thursday ruining her marriage by having an affair with Seth and decides to tell Thursday a bunch of white lies about her miscarriage she had when she and Seth were married. Thursday decides to find Hannah (she has been MIA for a bit and Regina finds her new address) and tell her all of this information and to warn her about Seth liking to cause miscarriages by making them drink weird tea (Regina’s lie). A big blow up happens, we find out Regina is a liar, Thursday is truly crazy and was making things up due to her being so mentally broken after her miscarriage, and uh Thursday shoots Seth and paralyzes him. To end it all Thursday winds back up at the mental hospital for a longer stay this time due to her pleading insanity at her trial. The story ends with Regina coming to visit Thursday and Thursday begins bashing regina’s skull into the floor.

It just blew my mind that Thursday really had made a lot of this stuff up in her mind. Some of it was true, but she really was stalking these other women and thinking her (not actual) husband was a polygamist (which does makes sense Thursday may think he was because his father was a polygamist and Seth had a couple mothers). The parts that talked about miscarriages were hard to read. I’ve never experienced one, but my mom has and one of my best friends just had one a few weeks ago. It made me cringe but I still think the book was very well written and I gave it a 5 star rating.

The God Game by Danny Tobey

It has been quite a while since I have read a book that didn’t really wow me much. This book was The God Game by Danny Tobey. I gave it 3 stars but my rating is probably 2.5-2.75. There were some pros to this book, but when I was listing what I did and did not like about the book, there were a lot more cons. 

Con: there are a lot of characters thrown at us in the first couple chapters of the book. I had to make a list on my phone of character names and their significance. I did eventually learn all the characters and who they were but I don’t like to be overwhelmed by the amount of characters the minute I start reading a book. 

Con/Pro: I didn’t really like any of the characters. This could be a good thing or a bad thing. I liked the main character but I didn’t care about anyone else. The semi-main female character pissed me off the most and to put it nice, she was just terrible. I hated reading her parts because I hated her as a person and that brought down my rating. Maybe this is a YA book and I didn’t know it (I never read YA). If so, maybe since the characters were high schoolers and I don’t relate to that age anymore, this affected my experience. 

Con: the language. This book (which I should have guessed) was heavy in theology, science, and technology language and most of it went completely over my head. This was the biggest turn off of all. If I, a 27 year old college graduate who reads adult books, could not follow the language, there is something wrong (especially if this was meant to be YA). There is one chapter where they discuss coding and trying to hack the game. I had to skip that entire part because I had no clue what they were talking about. No explanation, the author must assume the reader knows all about coding and computers. I asked in my buddy read group what they thought of the language and they all agreed that the language was bad and they were reading to just get done with it. Had the language been different, I bet this book would have been shorter too.

Con: THE ENDING! **SPOLIERS** OMFG they let Peter live after Charlie threw his crazy ass off the roof. I was livid. I get the game works in mysterious ways but that was absolute crap. My rating may have been higher had that not happened. 

Pro: the use of modern technology to play the game. I loved the VR aspect of the game and how they used that with their phones to navigate the game within the real world. This book would have been completely different had this been just a computer game or just a phone app with no VR experience. It made the game modern and pretty damn creepy. 

It took me about a month total to finish this book. I tend to only read on my lunch break at work so about 30-40 mins 3 or so days a week. I may not have even finished it had it not been for the buddy read I was leading. This book was my pick and I feel bad because no one really liked it. I wouldn’t recommend this book unless the language I mentioned above sounds like something you’re knowledgeable in and would like to read about.

The Sundown Motel by Simone St. James

I don’t think I have ever read a book that was truly spooky. This one however, was. This book was so well written that I actually could vividly see he scenes happening in my head as I was reading. This doesn’t happen for me too often. Not sure if that is normal or not haha. I highly recommend this book if you’re in need of a good ghost story.

This story is told from two perspectives. The first follows Vivian Delaney. We find out in the first chapter she disappears in November 1982. After, we go back to the beginning of her story and continue to the night she disappears. Our second perspective is of Carly Kirk, the niece of Viv. She leaves college and decides to go to the town where her aunt disappeared from and see if she can figure out what happened to her aunt. We meet many more characters, some good and some bad.

I loved how everything ties together in this book and all of our questions are answered. The ghost scenes were creepy and this is a book I will definitely hold on to and may read again some day. This is my favorite book I have read so far in 2020.

The Other People by CJ Tudor

“It’s an “eye-for-an-eye”, “tooth-for-a-tooth” kinda thing”… If you could get revenge for a loved one, would you? There is a place on the dark web where The Other People are. You can share your story and someone there might agree to help you right the wrong that was done, but at a price. You must be willing, able and ready to help The Other People if they ever need you. It could be something small, or it could be something worse. 

​This book had me on the edge of my seat the entire time. So much so I went and bought the author’s other two books. 

​Our main character, Gabe, is driving home one night and thinks he sees his daughter in the back seat of car in front of him. He then receives a call that his wife and daughter ae dead and his world falls apart. Was that really his daughter, Izzy, in the car that fateful night? Gabe spends 3 years driving up and down the interstate passing out missing flyers, hoping someone knows what happened to his little girl. 

​While Gabe continues his search for Izzy, we meet Fran & Alice. They are on the run hopping from place to place, but whom or what are they running from? There are so many questions and for a while, we get more questions and not many answers until Fran leaves Alice with her grandma to take care of some business. Alice runs away from her grandma and then the story gets even more interesting. 

​A couple times throughout the story we get our third perspective. It is a girl in a coma and her caregiver, Miriam.

I am so happy with how well this book was wrapped up in the end! All questions were answered and I can’t wait to read more by this author!

Sadie by Courtney Summers

I finished reading Sadie by Courtney Summers last week. After hearing that a lot of people liked it and it was still sitting on my shelf from a year ago, I decided now is the time to read it. Plus, a book club I just joined is discussing the book in February and since I am a slow reader, I thought I would read it in advance so I can be sure to join in on the conversation. 

This book follows our main character, Sadie, of course. She has a sister, Mattie, a mother whom is an addict and is MIA, Claire, and a surrogate grandmother, May Beth, whom the girls are watched over by. Mattie is found dead in a field after being seen getting into a truck with a man and Sadie loses it. Sadie raised Mattie all by herself and all Mattie wanted was their mother. Sadie thinks she knows who killed Mattie and vows to find him and kill him. Sadie goes town to town following leads about the whereabouts of this man. This man dated Claire, the girl’s mom, for about a year when the girls were younger and you find out that he had been sexually assaulting Sadie off and on the entire time he lived with them.

This book was fairly fast paced and really picks up in the last 100 pages or so.

*SPOILER*

I am iffy on the ending of this book. I am not sure if it was meant to be a cliffhanger for a sequel or not. If it is not meant to be a cliffhanger, I am disappointed that the author wraps up what happened to Mattie and to “Keith” but Sadie just disappears. I kinda wish she would have told us they ended up finding Sadie dead in the woods behind “Keith’s” girlfriend’s house. It just seemed a little unfinished unless they do plan a sequel to follow up with Sadie after she had her encounter with “Keith”…which I would totally read.

I put “Keith” in quotes because he has many aliases in the book, but Sadie knew him as Keith.

Reading Stats from 2019

Happy almost New Year everyone! Here are my reading stats from 2019. In my 2017 stats, I listed the “key” to what the symbols mean when we get to the Books Read part. The symbols are whether I received the book from netgalley or the library or if I had the book myself. I also have symbols to represent if the book was print, e-book, or audiobook.

My goodreads goal this year was 7 books and I was able to complete my goal! I want to increase my goal for 2020 but don’t want to stress myself out, so I think I might go with 10 books. We shall see. I started a couple of other books this year but lost interest and started something else (one of the books I ended up completing). I don’t list these books as DNF because it’s not because I didn’t like the book, I just feel like I have a short attention span with starting books so if it doesn’t grab me right away, after I put it down the first time, I am not likely to pick it back up and pick something else. I usually do end up reading those books, but not right away.

Here are how many days I read in 2019 (continued in the next image). I started a new job Jan 7th and was working there until the end of May so I didn’t have much time at all to read. It was a shitty and stressful job so when I came home at night, reading was the last thing on my mind. After that, my reading picked up some but we had a pretty busy summer so I still didn’t read as much as I wanted to. I tend to read more in the fall and it shows in the month of September and the beginning of October. My reading slowed way down again the end of October to mid November because of anxiety problems due to me not working. Beginning of November my boyfriend and I decided to move in together so mid November to mid December was all packing and holiday business. We moved into our place on the 13th of December and with Christmas being over, we are finally settled in (which prompted me to read some Nancy Drew). I start a new job Jan 2nd, so I need to make an effort for reading or my beginning months of 2020 will look like 2019.

I managed to read 7 books in 2019. One from NetGalley, four that I owned, and two from the library. One was an e-book, four were physical print books, and 3 were audiobooks. The math is a little weird because I listened to The Woman in the Window and followed along in my physical copy of the book at times. The Woman in the Window was the longest book at 429 pages and the audiobook was the longest I listened to at 9 hrs 37 mins. The shortest book was The Grownup by Gillian Flynn at 64 pages and the audiobook version I listened to was 1 hr 18 mins.

I did not DNF any books in 2019. I read a total of 7 books which totaled 1,972 pages with a overall reading time of 37 hrs 49 mins. Most of my reads I gave 4 stars to, and two books got 5 stars. Those were Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero and The Woman in the Window by AJ Finn. I enjoyed all the books I read this year and am surprised I gave no books 3 stars.

Can’t wait to see what books I end up reading in 2020!

The Secret of Shady Glen by Carolyn Keene

Happy Holidays everyone! I was in the mood for a quick read so I grabbed a good old Nancy Drew book I hadn’t read yet off my shelf. I loved these books when I was younger and have been a fan of mysteries from a young age because of Miss Drew.

This Nancy Drew story mainly revolves around Nancy and Bess. Nancy and Bess go to babysit Josh, the son of Joanna Williams. She is off to her night class early to do a presentation and Nancy receives a call from Joanna shortly later, stating she forgot her notecards and needs Nancy to find them and recite to her what was on them. Nancy looks for them in the desk Joanna says they are in and Nancy discovers a hidden drawer with a piece of paper with strange symbols on it. Nancy finds the notecards and when Joanna arrives home after class, Nancy and Bess tell Joanna what they have found. Joanna tells them about the lady who left the house to her and her son and about the hidden gold mentioned in the will, but Joanna had found no clues about the gold until now. Joanna asks if Nancy will take the case and of course she does.

While Nancy begins investigating, there are a string of robberies that occur, one happening at Bess’ house. Bess hires Nancy to figure out who robbed her house and while investigating both cases, Nancy’s house is robbed too!

The remainder of the story follows Nancy as she tries to decipher the strange symbols on the piece of paper, following robbers, and trying to stay away from the local bullies whom you meet in the story.

This book was just what I needed and had some pretty good twists and turns. I rated it 4 stars on Goodreads and Bookly.