Source: St. Martin's Press

#BookReview Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens @ChevyStevens @StMartinsPress @RaincoastBooks #DarkRoads #ChevyStevens #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens @ChevyStevens @StMartinsPress @RaincoastBooks #DarkRoads #ChevyStevens #SMPInfluencers Title: Dark Roads

Author: Chevy Stevens

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Aug. 3, 2021

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 384

Format: Hardcover

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 9/10

The acclaimed and beloved author of Still Missing is back with her most breathtaking thriller yet.

The Cold Creek Highway stretches close to five hundred miles through British Columbia’s rugged wilderness to the west coast. Isolated and vast, it has become a prime hunting ground for predators. For decades, young women traveling the road have gone missing. Motorists and hitchhikers, those passing through or living in one of the small towns scattered along the region, have fallen prey time and again. And no killer or abductor who has stalked the highway has ever been brought to justice.

Hailey McBride calls Cold Creek home. Her father taught her to respect nature, how to live and survive off the land, and to never travel the highway alone. Now he’s gone, leaving her a teenage orphan in the care of her aunt whose police officer husband uses his badge as a means to bully and control Hailey. Overwhelmed by grief and forbidden to work, socialize, or date, Hailey vanishes into the mountainous terrain, hoping everyone will believe she’s left town. Rumors spread that she was taken by the highway killer—who’s claimed another victim over the summer.

One year later, Beth Chevalier arrives in Cold Creek, where her sister Amber lived—and where she was murdered. Estranged from her parents and seeking closure, Beth takes a waitressing job at the local diner, just as Amber did, desperate to understand what happened to her and why. But Beth’s search for answers puts a target on her back—and threatens to reveal the truth behind Hailey’s disappearance…


Review:

Unsettling, twisty, and intricate!

Dark Roads is a tortuous, disturbing mystery that introduces us to Beth Chevalier as she heads to Cold Creek, British Columbia, to investigate the horrific murder of her younger sister, Amber, after her body is found brutalized on the side of Cold Creek Highway, a lonely stretch of road where multiple women have suspiciously disappeared, including local Hailey McBride, over the past several decades.

The writing is brisk and sharp. The characters are tormented, vulnerable, and scarred. And the plot told from alternating POVs and using a back-and-forth style is an eerie whodunit full of twists, turns, lies, deception, familial drama, depravity, violence, and murder.

I can honestly say I have yet to read a novel by Stevens that I didn’t really enjoy, and Dark Roads is no exception. It’s a taut, tense, gripping tale that packs a real punch and is a spine-chilling reminder, especially for those of us who grew up hearing about this real-life crime this tale is loosely based on, that evil can often live comfortably amongst us, merely hidden behind masks of normality.

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press and Raincoast Books for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Chevy Stevens

CHEVY STEVENS lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and daughter. When she isn’t working on her next book, she’s hiking with her two dogs on her favorite mountain trails and spending time with her family. Chevy's current obsessions are vintage Airstreams, Hollywood memoirs, all things mid-century modern, and stand-up comedians--not necessarily in that order. Her books, including Still Missing, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the International Thriller Writers Award for Best First Novel, have been published in more than thirty countries.

 

Photo by Poppy Photography.

#BookReview Shoulder Season by Christina Clancy @christi_clancy @StMartinsPress #ShoulderSeason #ChristinaClancy #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview Shoulder Season by Christina Clancy @christi_clancy @StMartinsPress #ShoulderSeason #ChristinaClancy #SMPInfluencers Title: Shoulder Season

Author: Christina Clancy

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Jul. 6, 2021

Genres: General Fiction, Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 336

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

The small town of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin is an unlikely location for a Playboy Resort, and nineteen-year old Sherri Taylor is an unlikely bunny. Growing up in neighboring East Troy, Sherri plays the organ at the local church and has never felt comfortable in her own skin. But when her parents die in quick succession, she leaves the only home she’s ever known for the chance to be part of a glamorous slice of history. In the winter of 1981, in a costume two sizes too small, her toes pinched by towering stilettos, Sherri joins the daughters of dairy farmers and factory workers for the defining experience of her life.

Living in the “bunny hutch”—Playboy’s version of a college dorm, surrounded by a twelve-foot high barbed-wire fence (to keep the men out, and the girls in)—Sherri gets her education in the joys of sisterhood, the thrill of financial independence, the magic of first love, and the heady effects of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. But as spring gives way to summer, Sherri finds herself caught up in a romantic triangle––and the tragedy that ensues will haunt her for the next forty years of her life.

Shoulder Season follows Sherri from her fledgling days as a bunny, when she tries to reinvent herself before she even knows who she is, to the woman she becomes years later. From the Midwestern prairie to the California desert, from Wisconsin lakes to the Pacific Ocean, this is a story of what happens when small town life is sprinkled with stardust, and what we lose—and gain—when we leave home. It’s about the brief but intoxicating experiences of our youth, and how they have the power to shape the rest of our lives. With a heroine to root for and a narrative to get lost in, Shoulder Season is a sexy, evocative tale, drenched in longing and desire, that captures a fleeting moment in American history with nostalgia and heart.


Review:

Engaging, dramatic, and informative!

Shoulder Season is an absorbing, intriguing tale that takes us to East Troy, Wisconsin during the 1980s when The Lake Geneva Playboy Club was the place to be, girls were excited for more than just marriage, and Sherri Taylor would quickly change from a naive, small-town girl to a bunny whose eyes would be opened wide to a world of sex, drugs, fortune, and fame.

The writing is vivid and expressive. The characters are young, impressionable, and impulsive. And the plot takes us from the 1980s to the present day and tells the story of a life filled with loss, love, loneliness, grief, coming-of-age, friendship, discontent, insecurity, and sexual awakening.

Overall, Shoulder Season is a captivating, candid, heartbreaking tale by Clancy that isn’t exceptionally exhilarating but is nevertheless an insightful tale that takes us back to a different era and does a wonderful job of reminding us that everyone who enters our lives, no matter how briefly, impacts, shapes, and defines it.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Christina Clancy

CHRISTINA CLANCY is the author of The Second Home. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Sun Magazine and in various literary journals, including Glimmer Train, Pleiades and Hobart. She holds a PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and lives in Madison, WI with her family.

Photo by James Bartelt.

#BookReview The Insiders by Tijan @TijansBooks @smpromance @StMartinsPress #TheInsiders #Tijan #smpromance #smpinfluencers

#BookReview The Insiders by Tijan @TijansBooks @smpromance @StMartinsPress #TheInsiders #Tijan #smpromance #smpinfluencers Title: The Insiders

Author: Tijan

Series: The Insiders #1

Published by: St. Martin's Griffin on May 4, 2021

Genres: Romantic Suspense, Young Adult

Pages: 384

Format: Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8.5/10

The Insiders is the first in a brand new, page-turning romance trilogy from New York Times bestseller, Tijan!

Bailey is as normal as could be, with a genius IQ and a photographic memory. But still, normal for her. Then, things happen—a guy breaks into her house in the middle of the night to take her hostage. She finds out her father is actually billionaire tech genius Peter Francis, the same guy she’s idolized all her life. She learns all this when she meets dark, mysterious, and electrifying Kashton Colello. He’s an associate of her father’s, and he gives Bailey two choices—go with him and meet her father or survive on her own because those kidnappers are going to try again. It’s a no-brainer.

After this, three things become clear for Bailey:

1. She’s living at her father’s sprawling estate, complete with bodyguards and the best security that money can buy.

2. She’s no longer an only child. She has three siblings and has no idea what to do with them and vice versa.

3. She is being guarded by Kash himself. Personally guarded. And there is a lot of guarding going on there and some of it is going to drive her crazy.

A complete outsider in a world of wealth and decadence, Bailey has to find her way within a family that has more secrets than she could have imagined. One of these secrets could be deadly…


Review:

Fierce, addictive, and action-packed!

The Insiders is a thrilling, suspenseful tale that takes you into the life of Bailey, a highly intelligent, twenty-two-year-old girl whose life is irrevocable turned upside down after a kidnapping attempt draws her into the exceptionally perilous world of her high-tech, biological father, Peter Francis, who she was never aware she was related to, and where unfortunately it seems adultery, lies, sex, secrets, and danger run rampant.

The prose is taut and intense. The characters, including all the supporting characters, are complex, capable, and resourceful. And the plot is an alluring, twisty tale of passion, angst, wrath, loyalty, heartbreak, privilege, familial drama, duty, sizzling tension, and forbidden love.

Overall, The Insiders is an epic tale by Tijan that features an abundance of sexual chemistry, intrigue, action, and adventure. It draws you in from the very start and keeps you invested and engaged the further it goes along.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links. 

          

 

 

Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Tijan

Tijan is a New York Times bestselling author who writes suspenseful and unpredictable novels. Her characters are strong, intense, and gut-wrenchingly real with a little bit of sass on the side. Tijan began writing later in life and once she started, she was hooked. She's written multi-bestsellers including the Carter Reed Series, the Fallen Crest Series, and Ryan's Bed among others. She is currently writing to her heart's content in north Minnesota with an English Cocker Spaniel she adores.

#BookReview The Therapist by B.A. Paris @BAParisAuthor @StMartinsPress @RaincoastBooks #TheTherapist #BAParis #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview The Therapist by B.A. Paris @BAParisAuthor @StMartinsPress @RaincoastBooks #TheTherapist #BAParis #SMPInfluencers Title: The Therapist

Author: B.A. Paris

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Jul. 13, 2021

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 304

Format: Hardcover

Source: Raincoast Books, St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

When Alice and Leo move into a newly renovated house in The Circle, a gated community of exclusive houses, it is everything they’ve dreamed of. But appearances can be deceptive…

As Alice is getting to know her neighbours, she discovers a devastating secret about her new home, and begins to feel a strong connection with Nina, the therapist who lived there before.

Alice becomes obsessed with trying to piece together what happened two years before. But no one wants to talk about it. Her neighbors are keeping secrets and things are not as perfect as they seem…

The multimillion-copy New York Times bestselling author B.A. Paris returns to her heartland of gripping psychological suspense in The Therapist–a powerful tale of a house that holds a shocking secret.


Review:

Brisk, eerie, and intense!

The Therapist is a suspenseful, psychological thriller that introduces us to Alice, a young woman who is excited to move into a new home with her long-distance boyfriend Leo, that is until the murder-suicide of the previous homeowners is learned, the neighbours of this coveted gated community seem distant and unfriendly, a PI appears out of nowhere asking for help in identifying the true killer, and danger seems to be lurking around every corner inside and out.

The writing is edgy and tight. The characters are obsessed, consumed, and flawed. And the plot is an unnerving, suspenseful tale of deception, manipulation, suspicions, revelations, mayhem, violence, and murder.

Overall, The Therapist is a twisty, atmospheric, sinister page-turner that does a wonderful job of highlighting just how easily people can be psychologically and emotionally exploited, and reminds us that even those we think we know so well often have deep, dark secrets they choose to hide.

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to Raincoast Books and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About B.A. Paris

B. A. PARIS is the internationally bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors, The Breakdown, and Bring Me Back. She grew up in England but has spent most of her adult life in France. She has worked both in finance and as a teacher and has five daughters. The Dilemma is her fourth novel.

Photograph by Philippe Matsas.

#BookReview Too Good to Be Real by Melonie Johnson @smpromance @MelonieJohnson @StMartinsPress #TooGoodToBeReal #MelonieJohnson #smpromance #smpinfluencers

#BookReview Too Good to Be Real by Melonie Johnson @smpromance @MelonieJohnson @StMartinsPress #TooGoodToBeReal #MelonieJohnson #smpromance #smpinfluencers Title: Too Good to Be Real

Author: Melonie Johnson

Published by: St. Martin's Griffin on Jul. 6, 2021

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 352

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 7.5/10

She plans to prove there’s a dozen reasons why life isn’t like a romantic comedy, only to discover the one reason it is…

While her friends wish for meet cutes worthy of their favorite rom-coms, Julia is ready to give up on love. Swiping right has replaced getting swept off your feet and good old-fashioned romance has become, well, old-fashioned.

A writer for a popular website, love becomes the last thing on her mind when impending layoffs threaten her job. As Julia searches for the ultimate pitch to impress her boss, she stumbles upon a resort offering guests a chance to live out their romantic comedy dreams. Real life dating is so bleak, who wouldn’t want to spend a week in a fantasy rom-com world with your best friends?

At the resort, Julia literally falls into a not-quite-meet-cute involving an aggressive seagull and an adorably awkward guy named Luke who is also participating in the rom-com experience. Julia hides the fact she is there to do a story, but Luke harbors a few secrets of his own. Among further encounters with thieving seagulls, a gaggle of corgis, kisses in the rain, and even a karaoke serenade, their feelings deepen quickly. But could their love be real when they haven’t been honest about their true identities? Once the fantasy is over, can they have a relationship in the real world?


Review:

Cute, charming, and quirky!

Too Good to Be Real is a heartwarming, comical tale that takes you into the life of website writer Julia Carpenter as she sets off with her two best friends to the Notting Hill Resort to immerse herself in a world of romcoms, forget her lacklustre, somewhat negligible dating life, write a kickass article that will ultimately save her career, and perhaps even experience a perfect meet-cute of her own.

The writing is witty and light. The characters are friendly, sweet, and endearing. And the plot is an amusing blend of life, love, introspection, friendship, family, embarrassing moments, awkward situations, misunderstandings, taking chances, and the ups-and-downs of finding the one.

Overall, Too Good to Be Real is a dreamy, humorous, engaging read by Johnson that will not only make you laugh and smile but also have you hunkering down to indulge in all those old romcoms, like Sixteen Candles and Pretty in Pink, you can never get enough of.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Melonie Johnson

USA Today bestselling author Melonie Johnson—aka #thewritinglush—enjoys sipping cocktails that start with the letter m. Declared a “writer to watch” by Kirkus and a “fizzy, engrossing new voice” by Entertainment Weekly, her smart funny contemporary romances include Too Good to Be Real and her award-winning Sometimes in Love debut series: Getting Hot with the Scot, Smitten by the Brit, and Once Upon a Bad Boy. A former high school English and Theatre teacher, she spends her days in her Star Wars office, dreaming up meet cutes. She lives in Chicagoland with her husband, their two redhead daughters, and one very large dog.

Photo by Heather Stumpf.

#BookReview A Week at the Shore by Barbara Delinsky @BarbaraDelinsky @StMartinsPress #AWeekattheShore #BarbaraDelinsky #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview A Week at the Shore by Barbara Delinsky @BarbaraDelinsky @StMartinsPress #AWeekattheShore #BarbaraDelinsky #SMPInfluencers Title: A Week at the Shore

Author: Barbara Delinsky

Published by: St. Martin's Press on May 19, 2021

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

In her new bestseller, New York Times bestselling Barbara Delinsky explores how lives and relationships are forever changed when three sisters reunite at their family Rhode Island beach house.

One phone call is all it takes to lure real estate photographer Mallory Aldiss back to her family Rhode Island beach home. It’s been twenty years since she’s been gone—running from the scandal that destroyed her parents’ marriage, drove her and her two sisters apart, and crushed her relationship with her first love. But going home is fraught with emotional baggage—memories, mysteries and secrets abound.

Mal’s thirteen-year-old daughter, Joy, has never been to the place where Mal’s life was shaped and is desperate to go. Fatherless, she craves family and especially wants to spend time with the grandfather she barely knows.

In just seven watershed days on the Rhode Island coast three women will test the bonds of sisterhood, friendship and family, and discover the role that love and memory plays in defining their lives.


Review:

Heartwarming, sentimental, and sweet!

A Week at the Shore is an intimate, moving tale that sweeps you away to the beautiful Rhode Island coast in summer and immerses you into the lives of the Aldiss sisters, Mallory, Anne, and Margo, as they confront the past, accept the things they cannot change, take chances, repair fractured relationships, and embrace the future.

The prose is emotive and fluid. The characters are troubled, stubborn, and compassionate. And the plot is a tender tale about life, loss, love, forgiveness, secrets, responsibilities, familial drama, parenthood, friendship, hope, ageing parents, and second-chance romance.

Overall, I found A Week at the Shore to be another heartwarming, uplifting, nostalgic tale by Delinsky, complete with strong female characters, a heartfelt storyline, and an insightful look into the complex, unbreakable ties that bind us as family. 

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Barbara Delinsky

Barbara Delinsky is the author of such New York Times bestselling books as Before and Again and Sweet Salt Air. She has been published in twenty-eight languages worldwide. A lifelong New Englander, Delinsky earned a B.A. in psychology at Tufts University and an M.A. in sociology at Boston College. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband, more books than she'll ever be able to read, two tennis racquets, and enough electronic devices to keep in close touch with her children and their families.

Photo by Kerry Brett.

#BookReview The Newcomer by Mary Kay Andrews @mkayandrews @StMartinsPress #TheNewcomer #MaryKayAndrews #StMartinsPress

#BookReview The Newcomer by Mary Kay Andrews @mkayandrews @StMartinsPress #TheNewcomer #MaryKayAndrews #StMartinsPress Title: The Newcomer

Author: Mary Kay Andrews

Published by: St. Martin's Press on May 4, 2021

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 448

Format: Hardcover

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

In trouble and on the run…

After she discovers her sister Tanya dead on the floor of her fashionable New York City townhouse, Letty Carnahan is certain she knows who did it: Tanya’s ex; sleazy real estate entrepreneur Evan Wingfield. Even in the grip of grief and panic Letty heeds her late sister’s warnings: “If anything bad happens to me–it’s Evan. Promise me you’ll take Maya and run. Promise me.”

With a trunkful of emotional baggage…

So Letty grabs her sister’s Mercedes and hits the road with her wailing four-year-old niece Maya. Letty is determined to out-run Evan and the law, but run to where? Tanya, a woman with a past shrouded in secrets, left behind a “go-bag” of cash and a big honking diamond ring–but only one clue: a faded magazine story about a sleepy mom-and-pop motel in a Florida beach town with the improbable name of Treasure Island. She sheds her old life and checks into an uncertain future at The Murmuring Surf Motel.

The No Vacancy sign is flashing & the sharks are circling…

And that’s the good news. Because The Surf, as the regulars call it, is the winter home of a close-knit flock of retirees and snowbirds who regard this odd-duck newcomer with suspicion and down-right hostility. As Letty settles into the motel’s former storage room, she tries to heal Maya’s heartache and unravel the key to her sister’s shady past, all while dodging the attention of the owner’s dangerously attractive son Joe, who just happens to be a local police detective. Can Letty find romance as well as a room at the inn–or will Joe betray her secrets and put her behind bars? With danger closing in, it’s a race to find the truth and right the wrongs of the past.


Review:

Heartwarming, mysterious, and colourful!

The Newcomer is an offbeat, intriguing tale that takes us into the life of thirty-three-year-old Letty Carnahan, who after discovering her sister Tanya’s murdered body and a magazine clipping featuring the Murmuring Surf Motel, flees with her four-year-old niece from NY to the west coast of Florida, where unbeknownst to her Tanya’s past unsavoury friendships, secrets, behaviour, and acquaintances will finally come to light.

The prose is amusing and light. The characters are multilayered, quirky, and endearing. And the plot is an engaging tale of familial drama, loss, grief, deception, theft, murder, kindness, suspicious personalities, taking chances, community, happiness, and love.

Overall, The Newcomer is a humorous, action-packed, entertaining tale by Andrews, and even though it’s not my favourite novel by this author, I still think it’s a satisfying, enjoyable pick for any summer day you’re planning to spend at the beach.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

 

           

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Mary Kay Andrews

Mary Kay Andrews is the pen name of American writer Kathy Hogan Trocheck, based in Atlanta, who has authored a number of best-selling books under the Andrews pen name since 2002.

Trochek graduated from the University of Georgia with a journalism degree in 1976. She worked as a reporter at a number of papers, and spent 11 years as a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution before leaving to write fiction full-time in 1991. She published ten mystery novels under her own name between 1992 and 2000, and switched to the Andrews pen name in 2002 to author Savannah Blues, which marked a change in her style to more Southern-flavored themes.

#BookReview The Secret Bridesmaid by Katy Birchall @smpromance @KatyBirchall @StMartinsPress #TheSecretBridesmaid #KatyBirchall #smpromance

#BookReview The Secret Bridesmaid by Katy Birchall @smpromance @KatyBirchall @StMartinsPress #TheSecretBridesmaid #KatyBirchall #smpromance Title: The Secret Bridesmaid

Author: Katy Birchall

Published by: St. Martin's Griffin on May 4, 021

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 400

Format: Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Matrimony meets mayhem in a modern British romcom about a young woman charged with pulling off the biggest aristocratic wedding of the year––and the misadventures that ensue.

Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she’s made it her full-time job.

As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by London brides to be their right-hand woman, posing as a friend but working behind the scenes to help plan the perfect wedding and ensure their big day goes off without a hitch. When she’s hired by Lady Victoria Swann––a former model and “It Girl” of 1970’s London; now the Marchioness of Meade––for the society wedding of the year, it should be a chance for Sophie to prove just how talented she is.

Of course, it’s not ideal that the bride, Lady Victoria’s daughter, Cordelia, is an absolute diva and determined to make Sophie’s life a nightmare. It’s also a bit inconvenient that Sophie finds herself drawn to Cordelia’s posh older brother, who is absolutely off-limits. But when a rival society wedding is announced for the very same day, things start to get…well, complicated.

Can Sophie pull off the biggest challenge of her career––execute a high-profile gala for four hundred and fifty guests in record time, win over a reluctant bride, and catch the eye of handsome Lord Swann––all while keeping her true identity a secret, and her dignity intact?

Heartwarming and hilarious, The Secret Bridesmaid celebrates the joys (and foibles) of weddings, the nuances of female friendship, and the redeeming power of love in its many unexpected forms.


Review:

Charming, flirty, and comical!

The Secret Bridesmaid is a heartwarming, amusing tale that takes you to London, England and into the life of the patient, committed Sophie Breeze as she juggles a demanding career, a famous yet difficult bride, and a growing attraction for a man who, unfortunately, doesn’t even know her real name.

The prose is smooth and light. The characters, including all the supporting characters, are feisty, fun-loving, and intriguing. And the plot is a heartfelt, flirty blend of tricky situations, tender moments, humorous hijinks, self-discovery, friendship, family, happiness, romance, and all the complex ins and outs of planning the perfect wedding.

Overall, The Secret Bridesmaid is a humorous, enjoyable, highly entertaining treat that’s a fantastic adult debut by Birchall that, in my opinion, is the perfect rom-com for any day spent at the beach.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Katy Birchall

Katy is the author of several young adult novels including The It Girl series, the Hotel Royale series and Morgan Charmley: Teen Witch. She is the co-author of the middle grade Lightning Girl series and Star Switch with Alesha Dixon, and the Find the Girl teen series with YouTube stars Lucy and Lydia Connell. Katy was proud to be the author of a retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma for the Awesomely Austen series, a collection of Austen’s novels retold for younger readers. She has also written a non-fiction book, How to be a Princess: Real-Life Fairy Tales for Modern Heroines.

Katy lives in London with her partner, Ben, and her rescue dog, Bono.

Photo by Imogen Forte.

#BookReview Too Good to Be True by Carola Lovering @StMartinsPress #TooGoodtoBeTrue #CarolaLovering #StMartinsPress

#BookReview Too Good to Be True by Carola Lovering @StMartinsPress #TooGoodtoBeTrue #CarolaLovering #StMartinsPress Title: Too Good to Be True

Author: Carola Lovering

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Mar. 2, 2021

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 352

Format: Hardcover

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8.5/10

ONE LOVE STORY. TWO MARRIAGES. THREE VERSIONS OF THE TRUTH.

Skye Starling is overjoyed when her boyfriend, Burke Michaels, proposes after a whirlwind courtship. Though Skye seems to have the world at her fingertips―she’s smart, beautiful, and from a well-off family―she’s also battled crippling OCD ever since her mother’s death when she was eleven, and her romantic relationships have suffered as a result.

But now Burke―handsome, older, and more emotionally mature than any man she’s met before―says he wants her. Forever. Except, Burke isn’t who he claims to be. And interspersed letters to his therapist reveal the truth: he’s happily married, and using Skye for his own, deceptive ends.

In a third perspective, set thirty years earlier, a scrappy seventeen-year-old named Heather is determined to end things with Burke, a local bad boy, and make a better life for herself in New York City. But can her adolescent love stay firmly in her past―or will he find his way into her future?

On a collision course she doesn’t see coming, Skye throws herself into wedding planning, as Burke’s scheme grows ever more twisted. But of course, even the best laid plans can go astray. And just when you think you know where this story is going, you’ll discover that there’s more than one way to spin the truth.


Review:

Intricate, creepy, and twisty!

Too Good to Be True is a sinister, psychological thriller that introduces us to three main characters. Skye Starline a young woman with looks, money, and a great career but unlucky in love, until recently, due to her often debilitating OCD, Burke Michaels, a handsome, mature father of three who seems to be the perfect fiancé except for the fact he’s broke and actually already married, and Heather, a middle-aged wife with a past littered with heartbreak and loss and a compulsive desire to have all the good things in life.

The prose is taut and intense. The characters are suspicious, secretive, and vulnerable. And the plot using a mix of narration, diary entries, and flashbacks, and told from multiple POVs, intertwines and unravels effortlessly into a machiavellian tale of deception, lies, manipulation, jealousy, secrets, revelations, and mind-blowing mayhem.

Overall, Too Good to Be True is an unpredictable, tight, satisfying thrill ride by Lovering that had just the right amount of twists, turns, and surprises to keep me thoroughly engrossed from start to finish.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

           

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Carola Lovering

Carola Lovering is the author of TELL ME LIES (Atria Books) and TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE (St. Martin's Press). She attended Colorado College, and her writing has appeared in W Magazine, National Geographic, Outside, and Yoga Journal, among other publications. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and son.

Photo courtesy of Author's Goodreads Page.

#BookReview The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth @SallyHepworth @StMartinsPress #TheGoodSister #SallyHepworth #StMartinsPress

#BookReview The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth @SallyHepworth @StMartinsPress #TheGoodSister #SallyHepworth #StMartinsPress Title: The Good Sister

Author: Sally Hepworth

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Apr. 13, 2021

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 320

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 9/10

From the outside, everyone might think Fern and Rose are as close as twin sisters can be: Rose is the responsible one and Fern is the quirky one. But the sisters are devoted to one another and Rose has always been Fern’s protector from the time they were small.

Fern needed protecting because their mother was a true sociopath who hid her true nature from the world, and only Rose could see it. Fern always saw the good in everyone. Years ago, Fern did something very, very bad. And Rose has never told a soul. When Fern decides to help her sister achieve her heart’s desire of having a baby, Rose realizes with growing horror that Fern might make choices that can only have a terrible outcome. What Rose doesn’t realize is that Fern is growing more and more aware of the secrets Rose, herself, is keeping. And that their mother might have the last word after all.


Review:

Simmering, pacey, and brilliantly clever!

The Good Sister is an intricate, character-driven, domestic thriller that takes you into the lives of two sisters, Rose, a hardworking wife who longs for a child, and Fern a quirky, librarian who struggles daily to navigate a world bursting with sensory overload.

The prose is crisp and intense. The characters are devious, cunning, and scarred. And the plot told from differing perspectives unfolds rapidly into an exhilarating tale full of twists, turns, surprises, familial drama, tragedy, greed, lies, and deception.

Overall, The Good Sister is another gripping, twisty, suspenseful tale by Hepworth that does a wonderful job of delving into all the complex, dysfunctional dynamics that can exist between family members and reminds us just how parasitic and toxic some of those relationships can truly be.

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                 

 

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Sally Hepworth

Sally Hepworth has lived around the world, spending extended periods in Singapore, the United Kingdom and Canada. She is the author of The Secrets of Midwives, The Things We Keep, The Mother's Promise, The Family Next Door and The Mother-in-Law. Sally now lives in Melbourne with her husband, three children, and one adorable dog.

Photo by Mrs. Smart Photography.

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