#CoverReveal The Secret Mother by Shalini Boland @ShaliniBoland @bookouture

Happy hump day everyone! I’m helping to reveal the cover for Shalini Boland’s latest book, The Secret Mother today. 


The Secret Mother by Shalini Boland – out on 9th November. 

‘Are you my mummy?’ the little boy asks.

Tessa Markham comes home to find a child in her kitchen. He thinks she’s his mother. But Tessa doesn’t have any children. 

Not anymore.

She doesn’t know who the little boy is or how he got there.

After contacting the police, Tessa comes under suspicion for snatching the child. She must fight to prove her innocence. But how can she convince everyone she’s not guilty when even those closest to her are questioning the truth? And when Tessa doesn’t even trust herself…

A chilling, unputdownable thriller with a dark twist that will take your breath away and make you wonder if you can ever trust anyone again. Perfect for fans of Gone Girl, Girl on the Train and The Sister.

Oohh doesn’t this sound great?! I can’t wait to read it. You can preorder on Amazon US and Amazon UK.

About the Author 

Shalini lives in Dorset, England with her husband, two sons and Jess their cheeky terrier cross. Before kids, she was signed to Universal Music Publishing as a singer songwriter, but now she spends her days writing suspense thrillers (in between school runs and hanging out endless baskets of laundry).


Blog Tour: The Big Dreams Beach Hotel by Lilly Bartlett @MicheleGormanUK @HarperImpulse

Goodreads|Amazon US|Amazon UK
Release date: August 18, 2017

Publisher: Harper Impulse

Genre: Women’s Fiction 


Wriggle your toes in the sand and feel the warm breeze on your face when you check into the hotel that’s full of dreams…

Three years after ditching her career in New York City, Rosie never thought she’d still be managing the quaint faded Victorian hotel in her seaside hometown.

What’s worse, the hotel’s new owners are turning it into a copy of their Florida properties. Flamingos and all. Cultures are clashing and the hotel’s residents stand in the way of the developers’ plans. The hotel is both their home and their family.

That’s going to make Rory’s job difficult when he arrives to enforce the changes. And Rosie isn’t exactly on his side, even though it’s the chance to finally restart her career. Rory might be charming, but he’s still there to evict her friends.

How can she follow her dreams if it means ending everyone else’s?

I’m delighted to be one of the stops on the blog tour for The Big Dreams Beach Hotel today! 


What a gorgeous read this was, it’s the type of book you should reach for if you want to escape from reality and get caught up in the lives of some highly entertaining, quirky characters. I flew through this one really quickly, mostly because I was so charmed by the storyline, the characters and Bartlett’s adorable, witty writing style. 

Rosie is the kind of heroine that you can’t help but like right away. It’s written in a really casual conversational style so I felt like I was gossiping with a good friend as Rosie told her story. It’s mainly told in the present as the hotel in Scarborough where she works gets bought by some wacky Americans who have eccentric taste, but it also flips back to Rosie’s brief stint in NYC. Both storylines were equally compelling but there was something special about the Scarborough hotel, I think it was the colorful cast of characters, mainly the residents who lived there permanently, they were odd but oh so endearing! 

This had plenty of laughs and loads of charm, the witty banter between Rosie and Rory was sweet and hilarious. This would be ideal to read on vacation, it’s light and fun but also has substance. I really enjoyed my first read by Bartlett and it definitely won’t be my last! 

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the author for my review copy. 

Review: All The Wicked Girls by Chris Whitaker @WhittyAuthor @BonnierZaffre

Release date: August 24, 2017

Publisher: Bonnier Zaffre

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


‘Raine sometimes complains that nothing exciting is ever gonna happen in Grace again. Daddy told her careful what you wish for.’ 

Everyone loves Summer Ryan. A model student and musical prodigy, she’s a ray of light in the struggling small town of Grace, Alabama – especially compared to her troubled sister, Raine. Then Summer goes missing.

Grace is already simmering, and with this new tragedy the police have their hands full keeping the peace. Only Raine throws herself into the search, supported by a most unlikely ally.

But perhaps there was always more to Summer than met the eye . . .


Last year I was raving about Tall Oaks, a truly special debut that ended up being one of my favorite reads of 2016. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on All The Wicked Girls and I was simultaneously giddy and nervous when I started. I was so enraptured by TO that I worried that maybe I wouldn’t be as crazy about this one but all that worry was totally unnecessary as this was another amazing read that blew me away just as much as TO did. 

I have a hard time reviewing books that truly move me and I think I may have finally found a structure that works for me recently with my review of The Good Daughter. I’m going to try that approach again here and hope that it shows you guys just how much I loved this book. 

Small town America has never been portrayed so brilliantly. 

What does a U.K. based author know about life in small town southern America? If you’re Chris Whitaker, EVERYTHING. ATWG is set in Grace, Alabama in the nineties and he captures the dynamics of a small southern town perfectly. Grace is a town full of despair and oppression, the residents are so tired and defeated, there is an overwhelming feeling of desperation and hopelessness that made me feel stifled and weary. Evoking unexpected emotions is always the hallmark of a gifted storyteller in my opinion. There is such a strong sense of place that imagining this town was effortless. 

His writing is intense and his voice is wholly unique. 

Adding to the amazing setting is the stylized writing used, the Southern expressions and mannerisms were dead on and I instantly found myself reading Whitaker’s prose in a lazy drawl. The weather plays a large role and I was immersed in the atmospheric nature by the extremely well crafted imagery he created. I can so easily imagine this town that I would love to see it as a movie!

His characterization is flawless. 

For everyone that loved Manny in TO you’ll be pleased to know that Whitaker’s ability to create a memorable teenage boy was not a fluke. Noah and Purv are best friends who help Raine search for her sister, Summer and they were both the type of characters that you can picture leaping off the pages and walking down the street, they’re truly larger than life. Chief Black is a man with the weight of the world on his shoulders and Samson may be one of the oddest fictional characters I’ve ever encountered. That’s just a taste of the flawed, raw, astounding cast that features in this book. 

He writes thrillers that make you feel all of the feelings. 

Very few writers can move me to tears, I’m pretty stone cold but I definitely shed a few tears while reading this. Alright fine, it was more than a few tears, Whitaker completely shattered my heart and took my emotions on a roller coaster ride of epic proportions. I also laughed though, there is humor here as well which brings levity to an otherwise dark plot. He also explores dark themes such as domestic violence, drug abuse, poverty, loss and love in such a profoundly poetic way, its breathtakingly beautiful. 

He takes intricate plotting to a new level. 

You know how annoying it can be when you’re always two steps ahead of an author and you can see the plot twists coming a mile away? That doesn’t happen here, Whitaker is constantly leading the reader down one path only to knock you down just when you think you know exactly what’s going on. Nothing is as it seems and everyone has secrets, remember that and you’ll figure it all out. 😜

I’ll stop rambling now but I’ll finish by saying that this book proves that Whitaker is a force to be reckoned with, he is insanely talented and I would be honored to read his to do list. If you haven’t read TO yet, what are you waiting for?! Then when you get done and are desperate for more grab this one. 

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Blog Tour: Dead to Me by Stephen Edger @StephenEdger @bookouture

Goodreads|Amazon US|Amazon UK

Release date: August 17, 2017

Publisher: Bookouture

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


How do you catch a killer who knows your every move?

She drew the curtains and returned to the kitchen where she removed the bottle of vodka from the freezer and reached for the large kitchen knife. If he dared to come back, she’d be ready for him.

When a body is found hanging in the remains of a dock-side warehouse, Detective Kate Matthews is called to the scene. Recently transferred following the death of a colleague, Kate is yet to see a successful prosecution over the line. But this won’t be an easy win…

Someone is watching her: leaving her clues in her home, taunting her to throw the case and threatening the life of her little girl.

As more bodies begin to surface and Kate’s stalker closes in, her instincts tell her that there is a link hidden among the victims’ missing pieces. This is a killer with a message and Kate must race against the clock to solve his twisted riddle.

But at the end of this impossible puzzle lies an impossible choice…

A dark and compulsive cat-and-mouse thriller that will keep you guessing to the very last page. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Sarah Hilary and Patricia Gibney.

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Dead to Me!


This is the first book in a new series following Kate Matthews and I found it to be a really solid opening and one that made me eager to see where Edger will take things next. There was A LOT going on here, there were several cases running simultaneously and he managed to keep things tightly plotted and intense throughout.

The start of a new series is always interesting as I see if I’ll gel with the new cast. I didn’t really take to Kate quickly but by the end, I was a fan. She’s a complicated woman with some skeletons in her closest and while I may not agree with the choices she made, I can respect her. The rest of her team were also a finicky bunch and I really only warmed to Laura. Everyone was prickly and hard to like, but I think that’s because there was a ton of inter office politics at play, everyone is out for themselves and seems to have their own agenda. Their workplace had a very tense atmosphere making it hard to see their true disposition but I’m curious to see where everyone is at in the next book.

This has a steady pace that kept me reading and wanting to know more, the chapters were brief and to the point making me do that whole, just one more chapter thing. There was a creepiness lurking as someone is messing with Kate beyond the job while she’s at home that added some menace as well. This had a tricky plot with plenty of misdirection and the conclusion was surprising and unforeseen. Kate’s a strong lead and will carry this series easily, I can’t wait to see the premise for book two!

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

About the Author:

Stephen Edger is a British crime writer, who has been writing since 2010. In that time he has written and published eleven novels, and five short stories. He writes mysteries and thrillers focused on crime.

Stephen was born in the north-east of England, grew up in London, but has lived in Southampton since attending university in the year 2000. Stephen works in the financial industry, and uses his insider knowledge to create the plots of his books. He also has a law degree, which gives him a good understanding of the inner workings of the UK justice system.

Stephen is married, and has two children, and two dogs. He is passionate about reading and writing, and cites Simon Kernick and John Grisham as major influences on his writing style.


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #imwayr

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly post to share what you recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this week. It’s hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate.

What I Read Last Week: 

The Awkward Path to Getting Lucky was an awesome read!

I loved Unraveling Oliver it was so unique.

I enjoyed The Queen of New Beginnings and it’s companion The Queen of Blogging.

The Goddesses had a great premise but it fell flat for me.

My TBT pick was Dark Matter and I was blown away!

Buried Secrets was a good thriller.

The Other Girl was a super entertaining read. 

The Cosy Canal Boat Dream was a fantastic book!
Currently Reading 

Up Next: 

I’m not sure what else I’ll read this week, I’m heading out to a girls wine trip over the weekend and won’t be reading much! Things may be quiet here for a few days but I do have a couple of posts scheduled in my absence.

How was your week? 

Blog Tour: Lie to Me by J. T. Ellison @thrillerchick

Release date: September 5, 2017

Publisher: MIRA

Genre: Psychological Thriller 


Domestic noir at its best. Readers will devour this stunning page-turner about the disintegration of a marriage as grief, jealousy, betrayal and murder destroy the facade of the perfect literary couple. New York Times bestselling author J.T. Ellison takes her exceptional writing to a new level with this breakout novel. 

They built a life on lies 

Sutton and Ethan Montclair’s idyllic life is not as it appears. They seem made for each other, but the truth is ugly. Consumed by professional and personal betrayals and financial woes, the two both love and hate each other. As tensions mount, Sutton disappears, leaving behind a note saying not to look for her.

Ethan finds himself the target of vicious gossip as friends, family and the media speculate on what really happened to Sutton Montclair. As the police investigate, the lies the couple have been spinning for years quickly unravel. Is Ethan a killer? Is he being set up? Did Sutton hate him enough to kill the child she never wanted and then herself? The path to the answers is full of twists that will leave the reader breathless.

I’m so excited to be kicking off the excerpt tour for Lie to Me! This tour will have excerpts in consecutive order, the entire schedule will be at the end of the post if you want to follow along. 


Something’s Missing

Franklin, Tennessee


Ethan found the note ten minutes after he rolled out of bed that Tuesday, the Tuesday that would change everything. He came downstairs yawning, scratching his chest, to…nothing. Empty space, devoid of wife.

Sutton always began her morning at the table with a bowl of cereal, a piece of fruit, and a cup of tea and read the paper, scoffing at the innumerable typos—the paper was going under, paying for decent copyediting was the least of their worries. A bowl full of cereal, a glass of milk and a spoon would be laid out for him, the sports page folded neatly by his seat. Always. Always.

But this morning, there was no evidence Sutton had been in the kitchen. No newspaper, no bowl. No wife.

He called for her. There was no answer. He searched through the house. Her bag was in her office, her cellphone, her laptop. Her license was stashed in her small wallet, all her credit cards present and accounted for, a twenty folded in half shoved behind them.

She must have gone for a run.

He felt a spark of pleasure at the thought. Sutton, once, had been a health nut. She’d run or walked or done yoga every day, something physical, something to keep her body moving and in shape. And what a shape—the woman was a knockout, willowy and lithe, strong legs and delicate ankles, tendons tight and gleaming like a thoroughbred. A body she sculpted to match his own, to fit with him.

Ethan Montclair couldn’t have a dog for a wife, no. He needed someone he could trot out at cocktail parties who looked smashing in a little black dress. And not only looked good, but sounded good. He needed a partner on all levels—physical and intellectual. Maybe it was shallow of him, but he was a good looking man, drew a lot of attention, and not only did he want his wife to be stunning, he wanted her to be smart, too. And Sutton fit the bill.

He knew they made a powerful, attractive couple. Looks and brains and success, so much success. That was their thing.

After Dashiell, she’d bounced back into shape like the champion racehorse she was, though later, when their world collapsed, she’d become tired and bloated and swollen with medications and depression, and she no longer took any interest in being beautiful and fit.

That she’d decided to start running again gave him hope. So much hope.

Spirits lifted, he went back to the sunny, happy kitchen and got his own bowl, his own milk. Made a pot of tea, whistling. Went for the stevia—no sugar for the health-conscious Montclairs, no, never.

That was when he saw it. Small. White. Lined. Torn from a spiral bound notebook, a Clairefontaine, Sutton’s favorite for the smooth, lovely paper.

This…thing…was incongruous with the rest of their spotless kitchen. Sutton was above all things a pathological neatnik. She’d never just leave something lying about.

All the happiness fled. He knew. He just knew. He’d been all wrong. She hadn’t gone running.

He picked up the note.


Dear Ethan,

I’m sorry to do this to you, but I need some time away. I’ve been unhappy, you know that. This shouldn’t come as a big surprise. Forgive me for being a coward. Forgive me, for so many things.

Don’t look for me.



She was gone.

He felt something squeezing in his chest, a pain of sorts, and realized that his heart had just broken. He’d always thought that a stupid, silly term, but now he knew. It could happen, it was happening. He was being torn in two, torn to shreds. No wonder there were rites warning against this—What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

God was ripping him apart in punishment, and he deserved it. He deserved it all.

He didn’t cry. There were no tears left for either of them to shed.

He put the note down carefully, as if it were a bomb that might go off with the wrong touch. Went to their bedroom. Nothing seemed out of place. Her brush, her makeup case, her toothbrush, all lined up carefully on the marble. Her suitcase was in the closet.

He went back downstairs to her office, at the back of the house. Doubled checked.

Her laptop was on her desk.

Her cellphone was in the charger.

Her purse was on the floor next to her chair.

Her wallet inside, the smiling DMV photo that made her look like a model.

Like a zombie, he moved back to the kitchen. He opened the refrigerator and got out the milk. Poured cereal in the bowl. Dropped the stevia into his tea. Sat at the empty table, stared at the spot where his wife’s head should have been.

What was he supposed to do now? Where could she be? He ran through the possibilities, the places she loved, discarding one after another. Surely he was wrong in his thinking. Surely she’d simply run away, to one of her friends. That’s where she’d gone. Should he call Ivy and see if Sutton was camped in her kitchen, instead of his? Should he give her some time, and space, like she asked?

She left without her things, Ethan. Sutton’s lifelines are her laptop and phone. It’s her office, her world.

A dawning realization. Sutton hadn’t shaken the depression, not completely. She was still prone to fits of melancholy. She might have done something stupid, crazy. She’d tried once before, after…Oh, God. Her words. Perhaps she was telling him exactly what she’d done.

I’m a coward. Forgive me. Don’t look for me.

He threw the bowl of cereal across the room.

“Bloody fucking hell. You selfish, heartless bitch.”

Ahh doesn’t that pique your interest?! I’ll have a review when it’s my turn on that portion of the tour in a few weeks. 

About the Author: 

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author J.T. Ellison writes standalone domestic noir and psychological thriller series, the latter starring Nashville Homicide Lt. Taylor Jackson and medical examiner Dr. Samantha Owens, and pens the international thriller series “A Brit in the FBI” with #1 New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter. Cohost of the Emmy Award-winning show, A Word on Words, Ellison lives in Nashville with her husband.

Here’s the excerpt schedule: 

Monday, August 21st: Novel Gossip

Tuesday, August 22nd: Jathan and Heather

Wednesday, August 23rd: The Book Diva’s Reads

Thursday, August 24th: Broken Teepee

Friday, August 25th: No More Grumpy Bookseller

Monday, August 28th: Books and Spoons

Tuesday, August 29th: Lesa’s Book Critiques

Wednesday, August 30th: Bewitched Bookworms

Thursday, August 31st: Books a la Mode

Friday, September 1st: Moonlight Rendezvous

Thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours for having me! 

Review: The Cosy Canal Boat Dream by Christie Barlow @ChristieJBarlow @HarperImpulse

Goodreads|Amazon|Author Website
Release date: August 22, 2017

Publisher: Harper Impulse 

Genre: Romatic Comedy


Welcome to the Little Rock marina – where hearts are healed and dreams are made…

For the last two years Nell Andrews has been struggling to stay afloat. As her life tumbled down around her, the only safety net has been her cosy canal boat, The Nollie. Tucked away inside, Nell has found a place to heal her broken heart. And now she’s ready to move on and follow her dream…

Gorgeous Guy Cornish, with his easy Irish charm, makes him an instant hit with everyone at the marina, and the perfect person to help Nell with her project. But Guy has his own reasons for being at the marina, and a past that threatens to sink Nell’s dream…


When I pick up a Christie Barlow book I feel like I’m getting a warm hug from an old friend. They’re always warm and cozy, this one even has cozy in the title! So I already knew I was in for a treat when I started this one but I wasn’t aware that I was about to read my new favorite Barlow book. 

Nell was the type of character that I liked right away, she has an incredibly painful past, somehow I was teary eyed in the first chapter?! But she was a woman who I immediately felt a connection with, I was invested in her from the first page. She has a best friend named Bea and their friendship was so sweet and genuine. Bea’s family was also adorable and so supportive of Nell which she desperately needed. The entire cast of characters were lovely and had their own distinctive personalities that made up a great community, I would love to live in a place like Little Rock Marina! 

Guy is Nell’s love interest and there was a bit of a mystery surrounding his past and there was also an additional mystery that threw me for a loop. You basically get a little bit of everything here, there’s romance, humor, warmth, family secrets and a lovely setting that serves as a backdrop. This was such a delightful read, I enjoyed every single page and it reminded me why Barlow is one of my favorite women’s fiction writers.

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Review: The Other Girl by Erica Spindler

Goodreads|Amazon|Author Website
Release date: August 22, 2017

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press 

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


From the NYT bestselling author comes a chilling new thriller about a ritualistic murder of a college professor that sends a small town cop back into the trauma she thought she’d put behind her.

Officer Miranda Rader of the Hammond PD in Louisiana is known for her honesty, integrity, and steady hand in a crisis—but that wasn’t always so. Miranda comes from Jasper, just south of Hammond, a place about the size of a good spit on a hot day, and her side of the tracks was the wrong one. She’s worked hard to leave the girl she used to be behind and earn respect in her position as an officer.

However, when Miranda and her partner are called to investigate the murder of one of the town’s most beloved college professors, they’re unprepared for the gruesomeness of the scene. This murder is unlike any they’ve ever investigated, and just when Miranda thinks she’s seen the worst of it, she finds a piece of evidence that chills her to the core: a faded newspaper clipping about a terrible night from her long-buried past. Then another man turns up dead, this one a retired cop, and not just any cop—Clint Wheeler, the cop who took her statement that night. Two murders, two very different men, two killings that on the surface had nothing in common—except Miranda. 14 years ago.

And when her fingerprints turn up at the scene of the first murder, Miranda once again finds herself under the microscope, her honesty and integrity doubted, her motivations questioned. Alone again, the trust of her colleagues shattered, Miranda must try to trust the instincts she’s pushed down for so long, and decide what’s right—before it’s too late. 


Somehow Erica Spindler has stayed off my radar before now and looking at her back catalogue I’m not quite sure how?! She writes the exact type of books that pull me in and the premise of The Other Girl has many of the elements I love, I’ll definitely be reading more of her work in the future. 

I totally devoured this book, I would’ve easily read it in one sitting but had to force myself to put it down because it was so late when I started it. It was one of those effortless reads where the pages just keep flying by and before you know it you’ve finished! There are some flashbacks to 2002 and a night where Miranda had a terrible ordeal but the bulk is told in the present. The pacing was spot on, things move quickly and I was so eager to find out what had happened previously and what would happen next. Here’s what’s weird, at least for me. I predicted like ninety nine percent of the twists and instead of being annoyed and disappointed like I usually would be I wasn’t bothered in the slightest. This was so entertaining that I just kind of brushed it off and patted myself on the back and kept reading. So bizarre but I think it just speaks to what a fantastic storyteller Spindler is. 

This was a tense, addictive and suspenseful read that kept my attention, I was pretty glued to my Kindle throughout.  Miranda had an interesting and heartbreaking backstory and I was rooting for her the whole time. She was a well drawn character and the secondary characters were also multidimensional, I especially liked her partner Jake. I didn’t totally predict the ending and I was satisfied by how things came together, again Spindler has a new fan in me and I’ll be adding some of her earlier work to my TBT list! 

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Blog Tour: Buried Secrets by T. J. Brearton @BreartonTJ @bookouture

Goodreads|Amazon US|Amazon UK
Release date: August 18, 2017

Publisher: Bookouture 

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


What if your dream home became your worst nightmare?

Newlyweds Brett and Emily Larson have just moved into a new home deep in the countryside, and are overjoyed when Emily finds out she’s pregnant. 

Then they discover human bones in their garden.

As the police start to investigate, three things become clear:

The bones are recent.

They are not here by accident.

They are a message.

When the police put three photographs of known criminals on the Larsons’ kitchen table, the couple realize the danger may be closer to home than they think. 

As the situation escalates, can Brett and Emily keep one step ahead to protect themselves – and their unborn child?

Fast-paced, compelling and full of twists, this heart-pounding thriller will keep you turning the pages until the very end. Perfect for fans of Rachel Abbott, Robert Dugoni and Linwood Barclay.

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Buried Secrets!


Oohh this book ended up being different than what I had expected but I mean that in a good way. I had assumed it would focus on either a cop narrating the story or have a killer as the focus but it was actually told in two separate narratives and not from a cop OR a killer. The first is Brett and Emily a young, newlywed couple who have just moved into a new home. When they decide to start a garden they find human bones and their lives take an unexpected turn. The second follows Jimmy Russo, a man who finds himself in jail when his portion begins due to a past transgression he thought he escaped. I kept trying to figure out how these storylines would merge and I definitely didn’t predict exactly how, or when they would. 

The first half of Buried Secrets starts out on the slower side as Russo tries to figure out how to get himself out of jail and back with his wife and baby daughter while Emily and Brett deal with the aftermath of the bones being unearthed. While I found both storylines interesting and engaging, I was more drawn to Russo, both his character and his specific story. There was just something endearing about this rough around the edges man that got under my skin and captured my attention. 

By the last quarter of this book I was well and truly hooked as the storylines converged in unexpected ways. It became tense and very action packed as crazy things started to happen and they didn’t stop until the very end. It’s so strange how the discovery of human bones set off a series of events that I never saw coming, this one kept me on my toes. If you’re looking for a different type of thriller told from a unusual perspective, you may like this one.

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

About the Author: 






T.J. Brearton is the author of eight published novels of crime fiction, including detective thrillers, police procedurals, psychological suspense, and one paranormal crime story. His eBooks have been best-sellers on the Amazon kindle fiction Top 100 list. He lives in the Adirondacks with his wife and three children where he writes full time.


#ThrowbackThursday Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

Release date: July 26, 2016

Publisher: Crown

Genre: Science Fiction, Thriller


“Are you happy with your life?” 

Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious. 

Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits. 

Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.” 

In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.

Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.

From the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy, Dark Matter is a brilliantly plotted tale that is at once sweeping and intimate, mind-bendingly strange and profoundly human—a relentlessly surprising science-fiction thriller about choices, paths not taken, and how far we’ll go to claim the lives we dream of.


I’m joining in again with Throwback Thursday which was created by my good friend Renee at It’s Book Talk. She started this weekly feature as a way to highlight old favorites and read books that have already been published. I have so many older books on my TBR that get ignored in favor of review copies and I figure participating in Throwback Thursday will help me to read at a least one older title a week!

Dark Matter is a book way outside of my usual preference and one that I’ve had sitting on my Netgalley shelf for far too long. I originally requested it last year because everyone I knew was raving about it and I have a serious case of fear of missing out. I finally decided to grab it this week and I’m completely blown away. I am SO glad that I took a chance on a book that’s outside of my comfort zone, it paid off in a big way. 

This book was like nothing I’ve ever read before and that may be because it’s not my go to genre but I don’t think so. I still firmly believe that DM is highly original and insanely creative even within it’s genre. It defied all of my expectations and then some and has such an insane premise that I’m not even going to attempt to speak to it because I know I wouldn’t be able to discuss it in the manner that it deserves. Just think mind bending matrix/inception type of stuff, it’s actually best not to think too hard about the details anyway. 

The biggest surprise for me here was how deeply and intricately complex this book was. Yes, it’s highly intelligent and deals with topics that are beyond my normal level of comprehension but Crouch details scientific methods in a way that even a dummy like me could understand. This was a surprisingly emotional read for me, no one warned me that it would make me cry! It was so thought provoking and touched something right at my core, I’m just mind blown by how much I loved this book. 

If you’re like me and have been on the fence about this one, give it a try. I don’t think anyone will be disappointed, it’s intense, profound, smart and extremely well written. I can’t say enough good things about how this book made me feel and that’s one of the main reasons I love to read in the first place, to feel something outside of my everyday life. 

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.