book review, books, Fiction, Literature

Book Review: Run Away by Harlan Coben

Book Review: Run Away by Harlan Coben

 

 

Run Away

Run Away was on my anticipated spring read list blog post on April 8th. This is a thriller/ suspense book and it does not fall short of the suspense. It was a fast paced thriller that kept you guessing the who, whats and whys. Run Away was the first Harlan Coben book I have read and I enjoyed it so much I will definitely seek out his other popular novels.

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So this story follows parents Simon and Ingrid who appear to have lost their daughter Paige to the dangerous would of drugs. Their family is picture perfect, even to them, however after going to college Pagie changes. She becomes distant and meets an older guy named Aaron who introduces her to drugs. She cuts contact off with everyone including her brother and sister.

Simon gets word that Paige is singing for money in the Strawberry Fields at Central Park. He goes there to try and get her to go to a rehab program. This is against the wishes of Ingrid who seems to wash her hand of her daughters problems. Simon approaches his daughter but her boyfriend Aaron gets in the way and he punches him. Unbeknownst to him someone took a video of this and leaked it to youtube with the caption of rich putting down the poor and it goes viral.

Imagine

Let just point out Harlan incorporates an all too real issue many people face in our social media driven society. Everything and anything we do can and will be recorder. This viral fame Simon receives only doe shim more harm when Aaron is found dead with his throat slash. Since his previous encounter the suspicion falls to him. The story then goes on from there to follow Simon playing private detective to try and find Paige as they fear she is in danger.

The story subplots to follow Ash and DeDe who appear to be hitman. As the story develops we see that these 2 people play a bigger role in the overall plot.

Simon and Ingrid so to Paige’s apartment and get details about their drug dealer. They then go to a sketch warehouse to see if this drug dealer will tell them where he thinks Paige was and bam bam Ingrid gets shot by a random guy–or is he?

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A third sub plot twists in with Simon’s. Elena was hired by a businessman to find his son Henry Thorpe. Elena ends up going to Paige’s apartment just as Simon goes back to look for more clues. It turns out that Henry and Paige had been talking to each other just before they both disappeared. They both come to the conclusion that Paige turned different after she went to college and this correspondence happened when she was at college so it cannot be a coincidence. Simon talked to some ex-roommates and finds out 2 things. One that Paige was really interested in genetics and genealogy and second she may have been raped or sexually assaulted at a college party. When her roommate asked why Paige is acting all weird she blames it on stuff at home.

Elena also finds out that Henry new someone at a tattoo parlor (Damien) and guess what, Ash and DeDe killed him! As we find out more about the backstories of Ash and DeDe we learn that DeDe is part of a cult called Truth Haven. It consists of the leader called Truth and his 2 sons Volunteer and Visitor – the trinity.

5 Disturbing Cults You Can Still Join Today

So here is the huge spoiler alert. The cult leader ‘rapes’ I guess is the best word the females in his cult and his kids with them. If they are males they are entitled to inherit the money the cult had accumulated over time- apparently millions. The ‘prophecy’ states that the 2 oldest sons, not necessarily the 2 prophet sons’ can inherit the money – the Truth is dying. So the sick and twisted plot is that Aaron, Henry and Damien found out they are fathered by the same person through genealogy- enter Paige. Paige puts her DNA sample in too and see that Aaron and her are related on the maternal side. BaBaBa!!!!!!! So starts the crooked relationship of Aaron and Paige – half brother and sister.

At the end of the book Paige comes to see Ingrid in the hospital. Paige goes on to tell Simon that Ingrid put her in a reclusive rehab program she herself went in when she left the cult. This is why Ingrid told Simon not to find Paige. Ingrid could not tell Simon where Paige was without then telling him she was part of a cult before she met him.

I did leave out quite a few details of the book. Harlan has written such an intricate tale that it is best to read the book to get the full weight of the complex tale.

How did all of you feel reading the book. I had mixed feelings. I was kind of angry at Paige. Her family loves her so much and she put them through hell. However this brings up the question what would you do for the ones you loved? Please feel free to leave comments below! I would love to hear from you!!!!!!

Happy Reading!

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books, Fiction, Literature, top 5

Top 5: My Favourite Series

Top 5: My Favourite Series

I have been wanting to write a top 5 fav book series for a long time. I am a huge fan of reading a series. Getting to know the characters so deeply over 3,4,5 books is a thrill! I love investing in the worlds and all the side plots. Now this list is actually way longer than just 5 but these are the top series that have imprinted on my reading soul. If you have any series you have been enchanted by I would love to hear about them and as always grow my every daunting TBR list! So without any further adieu here we go!

  1. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

Yes those books are as worn and used as they appear, hence why there are my #1! These were the very first books I read while transitioning into adult ’reading’. A brief reading history: my grandmother was an avid reader and passed down the reading bug to me. This was the first set of books she ever bought me. I have read this series 3 times in total and a few individual books a couple of times more. Reminiscing I have a hankering to reread this series over the summer…LOL . Very short summary for those who are not familiar with Anne and her shenanigans. This series follows the orphan Anne Shirley who is sent to live with a brother and sister by mistake, they wanted a boy to help around their house in Avonlea. It takes us on adventure after adventure with the spunky Anne to adulthood. I don’t want to give any spoilers but this series is full of hilarity, love and has its own hints of sadness. Avonlea and Anne will always have a special place in my heart. I hope to one day fuel the reading fire in my own children with this series the way my grandmother did for me!

2. The Finoavar Tapestry by Guy Gavriel Kay

 

 

This is a new read for me as of 2018 and instantly went straight to the top of list. The author is Canadian, a little bias here and the beginning is actually set in at the University of Toronto. Not for long though as this trilogy quickly sweeps us for the majestic and regal UOT to the fantasy world of Finoavar. This is a high fantasy book for the LOTR lovers, which I also am.(see #3 lol). It follows 5 main characters on their quests throughout this series and with the war against evil. The writing style of Kay is so divine. The inter-connectivity is simply breathtaking and pulls you in. We find near the end of this series how all the side plots are connected with one another and it is done in such a manner that cohesive makes sense. Not everyone can have 50 billion stories all intertwined – embellishment made on the numbers. Kay intertwines Celtic, Welsh, Norse, First Nations, and many other mythologies so it has a something everyone recognizes!

3. The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkein

 

 

As per the spoiler above here is another high fantasy series that has made my top list. Really though, who does not like LOTR – if you don’t that completely acceptable I have just met more people who loved it than hate it. The LOTR is a celebrated classic trilogy that has also been made into the classic movies as well – in breathtaking New Zealand. I love the way Tolkien is so descriptive in his storytelling. They way he describes middle earth and the characters makes it easy to feel transported to these places. LOTR is the epic battle of good against evil and someone who you do not think could change the world stands up with so much courage and proves everyone wrong. The one ring to rule them all!!!

 

 

 

 

4. Millennium Series by Stieg Larsson

 

So the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo was one of my first larger reads and I was super intimidated by it. While reading I couldn’t help fall in love with Lisbeth Salander. What a punk ass girl who does not take crap from anyone especially when life throws her so many shit balls. This initially drew me in and kept me reading book to book. The back story of how Stieg Larsson died only added to the mystery and pull of the books. He worked in politics and real life journalist.  He did research into the right-wing extremists. Due to the type of research he did he had to keep his address hidden, this is why some say he did not marry Eva. Was his death foul play or just his lifestyle catch up with him?

Millennium Series Complete Collection 1-5 by Steig Larsson and David Lagercrantz

5. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling —duhh

 

 

A top series list wouldn’t be complete without the good old H.P. listed somewhere. I fondly remember reading this series and anticipating when each new book was to be released. This was a turning point for YA and readers everywhere. It made all little kids imagine that an owl would show up to their house and invite them to Hogwarts and unveil that they are really magic! To be able to read this series to my future children who do not know what happens to the kid with the lightning bolt scar is a gift from Rowling.

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I hope all of you enjoyed my fav series. If you have any top series I have not listed I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments below.

 

 

Happy Reading!!!!

 

books, Fiction, Literature, top 5

Top 5: Spring Reads 2019

Top 5: Spring Reading Lists 2019

So spring is finally here, thank god because here in Ontario Canada it was one rough winter.

 

So to go along with our new, warmer mood I thought I would accompany it with the books I am most looking forward to reading this spring !! There are so many out there so if I have missed one you are looking forward to I am sorry but I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment with your most anticipated spring read !! Expand my TBR !!

1. Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James

Release date February 5, 2019

So this is the first book in the new Dark Star trilogy written by Marlon James. He is also the author of A Brief History of Seven Killings. After reading multiple synopsis this is a fantasy book seems to be about a hunter who is hired to find a missing child. The setting is an african style mythology. This hunter called Tracker must work with a bunch of unusual characters that seem to have their own, maybe sinister, agenda of finding this kid. Reading the reviews is has been compared to an African Game of Thrones esk type story. I am really fascinated with this story perception and cannot wait to see where this fantasy takes us.

 

 

2. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Release date February 7, 2019

This is Alex’s debut novel and what a novel to kick off his career. The basis of this book is around Alicia who is a painter. On the outside her and her husband have the perfect life. who shoots her husband 5 times then never talks again. The story follows her to the psychiatric facility. Insert Theo a criminal psychologist who tried to get her to talk. The book has murder, mystery and psychosis! I wanted to read this so I bought it!

 

 

 

3. Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi

Release Date March 5, 2019

Gingerbread: A Novel by [Oyeyemi, Helen]

 

Helen Oyeyemi is also the author of the highly popular Boy, Bird, Snow (2013) and What is not your is not yours (2015). Its is a modern-day twist on Hansel and Gretel. It does not take the real fairytale perception. It is more of a family passing down the recipe for the famous gingerbread with a twisted angle. It is set in Britain and follows a mother Harriet Lee and daughter Perdita Lee duo. On the outside they may appear to be a normal family but there are glimpses of  more oddities than normalities. They live in a weird place and no one seems to know where their hometown is which is where their gingerbread is said to be famous. The story follows Perdita trying to track down her mother’s childhood friend Gretel. I am loving the new takes on fairy tales!!! -Lunar Chronicles are along the same fairytale plot changes,

4. Run Away By Harlan Coben

Release Date March 19, 2019

 

Harlan Coben is also the author of Tell No One (20001) and Six Years (2013). Run Away appears to be a thriller that follows the viewpoint of a parent. All the synopsis are very vague. The parent finds their troubles drug addicted daughter in Central Park and she runs – hint to the title. The novel follows this parent into a dark underworld which I assume is the drug world. I don’t know why this book catches my attention so much but I am looking forward to finding out what is wrong with the daughter and if she is in this world by her own doing or maybe because of something/someone more sinister.

 

 

5. Stepsister by Jinnifer Donnelly

Release Date May 14

Stepsister by [Donnelly, Jennifer]

 

Jennifer Donnelly is the author of the popular historical fiction novel A Northern Light and the Waterfire Saga. You may tell I am a huge fairytale retelling fan. Is is the untold story of the original Cinderella tale where one of the ugly stepsister Isabelle cuts off her toes to fit into the glass slipper,. PS Loving the cover! Sick and Twisted Lovers unit!! So she Prince finds out the truth that Isabelle is not the girl who lost the slipper, well duh her toes are missing! The tale follows Isabelle as she is banned from the kingdom and she is on a quest for redemption and inner beauty!!!!

 

If anyone else has a different anticipated read please leave a comment below!!

 

Happy Reading !!

books, Fiction, inspiration, Literature

Best Places to Read

Hello All

Lets talk about some of our favourite places to read.  Sometimes the choice of our reading location is just as important as the choice of book we make.   The ambiance of our reading environment sets the mood for our entire reading experience.  I find that I read faster and I am able to imagine the world in which I enter while I am reading more vividly if I am in a comfortable place.  The following are just some of my recommendations for reading nooks that I enjoy and find enhance my adventure.

  1. My go-to reading spot is my couch accompanied by a blanket/pillow and my most valuable reading accessory , my cat  !  Who couldn’t snuggle with this little one !

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2. Another comfortable spot that a blanket and pillow complement is my bed.  I try and make it a habit to read for at least 30 minutes to a hour before bed.  This cuts down on my screen time and helps me fall asleepbeverage-bible-book-64775

3. One of the best spots to read if you prefer a quite scene that does not have the distracts of home is your local library.  I know the one close to my house has great couches that are super comfy.  Not having the distracts of endless to do list at home makes it a whole lot easier to get into my book.

4.The Bus or local transit may be how you get around in your city.  Depending on the length of your ride this may be the prefect time to delve into your current read.   I find that loosing myself in my book is a great way to make the transit time go by so fast.  However I have been known to miss my stop on occasion 🙂

5.  What would be better than to curl up at the waterfront/ park with a blanket and picnic basket? The answer is probably nothing.  Being out in nature is refreshing and what better way to enjoy it than with a book?

6. The beach is where I spend most of my time on vacation.  I love pulling up a beach chair, umbrella and book while i build ‘sand castles’ with my toes.  Listing to the waves in the background while soaking up the rays has to be one of the most relaxing ways I think I can of to escort my reading mind

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7. A coffee shop kills 2 birds with one stone.  You get to enjoy a great cup of java and enjoy a great book!

8. The gym is a great place to listen to a book for those who love audio books.   Popping in my headphones and listening to some Stephen King or Ann Rice is a great way to make your workout fly by!

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These are my favourite places to read but I would love to heard from you guys!  What are your favourite places to pull up a book and unwind?

Happy Reading!!!!!

book review, Books, fiction, Literature

Review: Then she was gone by Lisa Jewell

Hello All

 

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I know it has been a very long time since I posted my last blog.  I am back on tract now and oh what a book to be my first review of 2019.

I read Then she was gone in 2 days.   It was a super fast, easy and page gripping book.   It is not for those who are faint of heart.  It does not have any extremely violent scenes but is more of a sick and twisted psychological thriller.

First off the point that left me the must unsettled was the way in which Ellie died.   After giving birth to Poppy she was just forgotten in the basement to wither and waste away.  For me this would be worse than being murdered.   All those countless hours with no interaction, not knowing what is to come next is psychological torture.   I would rather be shot or stabbed as this would end my suffering faster.  It is heart wrenching to think that not only did Ellie physically suffer what the psychological aspect of being ‘forgotten’ is appalling.

The second aspect that made me a bit sick to my stomach was when Laurel figured out that Ellie was in Noelle’s basement and she walked right past her daughter without knowing she was suffering.  Everyone talks about the link between a mother and a child.  In a lot of novels this link eventually leads the mother to the child and all is well with a happy ending.  This is not real life.  Real life unfortunately is more sinister.  By having Laurel walk past  Ellie Lisa made this book more realistic for the reader.

The way in which Lisa wrote this book made the event of a child being lost/ kidnapped more practical in real life.  The fact that she portrayed Laurel in the beginning as a ‘bitch’  to her family and withdrawn is probably more factual than the whole family coming together.   Everyone deals with loss and stress in different ways.   Not all tragic events bring people together.  The fact that Laurel can’t stand the way her ex husband Paul deals with Ellie’s loss is more practical and relatable.

The one aspect of this book that I could have done without was the character Blue, Laurel’s son’s girlfriend.   I found that as the reader my suspicion of Floyd was growing enough without the use of psych and aura seeing.   I found that her ‘warning’ Floyd was hiding something was tacky and not needed – my opinion only.   Lisa could have had Laurel increase her suspicion another way.

As characters go I really liked Poppy.   She started off as an annoying single child syndrome character, whom I did not like in the beginning.   As the story progressed her character grew and she went from being a daddy’s needy girl to a girl who wanted larger family interaction.   She was a nice relief from the other intense characters of Laurel and Floyd.   I also liked Noelle was the ‘villain’.   She was someone you loved to hate.   I went from loathing her selfish craziness to feeling sorry for her when we learned of Floyd playing her for his sexual satisfaction.   As for Floyd I have mixed feeling about him.  My views change depending on who is narrating.   In the end though I did feel sorry for him and almost didn’t want him to blow his brains out.

All in all what a slimy sick thriller that kept me glued to the pages.   I will definitely be reading more from Lisa Jewell as I feel we all need to experience the uneasiness that Then she was gone dishes out!! As always feel free to leave any comments and/ or Lisa Jewell recommendations below.

 

Happy Reading!!!

Books, fiction, Literature

How to get cheap books!

Hello  all

I thought today I would go over a few resources that I have found to feed my book addiction for cheap.  I hate spending full price for books.  Reading can become a very expensive hobbie.  Hopefully these resources can help ease the pocket book but still allow you to enjoy your craving for reading

  1. Libraries– so the obvious first choice is to support your local library. They are a great source of all type of reading options whether it be physical books, ebooks or audio books.   The only downfall is the timeline they give you for new releases – which generally have to be back to the library much sooner than other books you sign out.  Another option your library may offer is through the app called overdrive.  You just download this app and sign in with your library number and you can sign out ebooks and audiobooks right onto your ereader.  Libraries often have books sales as well so you can get used books for pretty cheap.untitled.png
  2. Thrift stores/ second hand books stores- thrift stores offer a great price on used books.  I do understand though that some of the books they offer are quite old and they do not often have new releases.  The thrift store is somewhere you can go if you are looking for books that are not main stream and usually really good finds.  Also local second hand books stores are a gem for decently prices gently used books.  The store owners often can get in books you are looking for and are a great resource for book suggestions.  If you are in the Hamilton\ Burlington area in Ontario may I suggest a book store called J.H. Gordons in Hamilton.  The owners are amazing and are able to pretty much find any book you may be interested in. 81d09f3ac600b68b7a43b852c99b623b
  3. Bookoutlet- I know a lot of book tubers have suggested this site and I must admit I have found a lot of great book deals on new and older releases.   Sometimes the only catch with this website is the amount they charge for shipping.  Sometimes when you include the shipping fee the book is just as expensive as in store.  You just have to be careful and when figuring out the price always include the shipping price as part of the book price.

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4. Paperbackswap- this is a new website for me and one that I have not used a lot.  The premise is that you sign up, post a book that you would like to swap for.  You pay the shipping fee to the person requesting the book from you.  Then you go back onto the website and pick a book that will be shipped to you for free- in the same manner.  This is a pretty smart idea and a good way for bookies to connect with one another.

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5. Boobbub- this is a website I probably use the most.   It is for ebooks only so for those who do not like ebooks this is probably not an option for you.   You make an account and then select the genres that you are interested in reading.  The website then sends you daily deals for books that are within the genres you have selected.  Some of these books are for  FREE and some are insanely cheap.  Also not a website to use for new releases but has some amazingly good finds on other books. This website has expanding my reading repertoire and I have found some of my favourite reads on this site.

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I hope these resources  may help you guys in saving some money but allow you to still enjoy a good read.  If anyone has any other suggestions or have any comments on the sites I have listed please feel free to leave a comment.   Happy Reading !!!