RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “I KNOW YOU KNOW”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent acquisition:  I Know You Know, by Gilly Macmillan, is a chilling and twisty mystery about two shocking murder cases twenty years apart, and the threads that bind them.

 

 

Intro:  The weather is raw.  Horizontal rain spatters Fletcher’s glasses and slaps his cheeks.

He saw the pit from the motorway.  He had a bird’s-eye view from the overpass and another glimpse from a meaner angle as the car came down the exit ramp.  The wipers were going like the clappers.  He saw the backs of the gathered construction workers.  The pit was a muddy gash in the car park in front of them, and the sticky clay soil inside it a dull dirty orange.  Fletcher and Danny parked near the entrance to the superstore, at the end of a line of cars in disorderly formation.

***

Teaser:  Fletcher stopped packing the car.  He detected a hint of possibility in his wife’s eye as she described how she had a new love and how they planned to build a new life together.  Listening to her, he was seized by a feeling of disorientation and loss, as if he was being left behind  in life’s gloaming. (p.  56).

***

Synopsis:  Twenty years ago, eleven-year-olds Charlie Paige and Scott Ashby were murdered in the city of Bristol, their bodies dumped near a dog racing track. A man was convicted of the brutal crime, but decades later, questions still linger.

For his whole life, filmmaker Cody Swift has been haunted by the deaths of his childhood best friends. The loose ends of the police investigation consume him so much that he decides to return to Bristol in search of answers. Hoping to uncover new evidence, and to encourage those who may be keeping long-buried secrets to speak up, Cody starts a podcast to record his findings. But there are many people who don’t want the case—along with old wounds—reopened so many years after the tragedy, especially Charlie’s mother, Jess, who decides to take matters into her own hands.

When a long-dead body is found in the same location the boys were left decades before, the disturbing discovery launches another murder investigation. Now Detective John Fletcher, the investigator on the original case, must reopen his dusty files and decide if the two murders are linked. With his career at risk, the clock is ticking and lives are in jeopardy…

***

Do the excerpts grab you?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “A YEAR OF EXTRAORDINARY MOMENTS”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a NetGalley ARC that will be released on October 16:  A Year of Extraordinary Moments, by Bette Lee Crosby, a heartwarming novel about letting go of the past to make way for a brighter future.

 

 

Intro:  (Alice DeLuca)

I’m an old woman now and not long for this world, but I’m not afraid of dying.  What I am afraid of is leaving behind a grandson who will follow in his mama’s footsteps.  I’d like to believe that in the years she’s been gone my Dorothy has straightened herself out, but inside my heart, I fear this may be little more than wishful thinking.

There is an old adage that says a child’s ways can be formed by either nature or nurture.  In Dorothy’s case, it was a bit of both….

***

Teaser:  The Appointment

Alice heard the rooster crow but remained in bed.  The pain in her back was excruciating, and her legs felt as if they were weighted with something too heavy to move.  Between the slats in the blinds, she could see the first rays of dawn creeping into the sky. (56%).

***

Synopsis:  Tracy Briggs has finally gotten her act together. She’s focusing on her own life and helping her hearing-impaired son learn to talk. With her sister married and exploring a new career, Tracy has begun to run the family’s magazine business and feels her life is pretty much perfect. That is, until her son’s deadbeat dad shows up in Magnolia Grove asking for a second chance.

Now that her son is getting the help he needs and a promising new romance with his teacher is in bloom, Tracy wants to keep her life just as it is. But her ex isn’t taking no for an answer. And when a spirited elderly woman enters Tracy’s life in an unexpected way, she’ll have to work harder than ever to keep her new life on track.

Torn between the past she knows and the uncertain future, Tracy must decide what is best for both her and her son, learning along the way that ordinary choices can bring extraordinary possibilities.

***

Do the excerpts draw you in?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “THE LIES WE TOLD”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a NetGalley ARC for a book to be released on October 9:  The Lies We Told, by Camilla Way, the highly acclaimed author of Watching Edie, who returns with a new novel of dark psychological suspense that explores how those closest to us have the most to hide…

 

 

 

Intro:  (Cambridgeshire, 1986)

At first I mistook the severed head for something else.

It wasn’t until I was very close that I realized it was Lucy’s.  To begin with, I thought the splash of yellow against the white of my pillow was a discarded sock, a balled-up handkerchief, perhaps.  It was only when I drew nearer and saw the delicate crest of feathers, the tiny, silent beak, that I fully understood.  And suddenly I understood so much more:  everything in the moment became absolutely clear.

***

Teaser:  (Cambridgeshire, 1997)

I’d kept the newspaper cuttings.  I don’t know why.  Doug had no idea, of course—he’d have been livid if he’d ever found them.  We were supposed to forget all about it, pretend we’d played no part in the whole horrible tragedy. (62%).

***

Synopsis:  A daughter
Beth has always known there was something strange about her daughter, Hannah. The lack of emotion, the disturbing behavior, the apparent delight in hurting others…Sometimes Beth is scared of her and what she could be capable of.

A son
Luke comes from the perfect family, with the perfect parents. But one day, he disappears without a trace, and his girlfriend, Clara, is desperate to discover what has happened to him.

A life built on lies
As Clara digs into the past, she realizes that no family is truly perfect, and uncovers a link between Luke’s long-lost sister and a strange girl named Hannah. Now Luke’s life is in danger because of the lies once told and the secrets once kept. Can Clara find him before it’s too late?

***

What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “HUNGRY HEART”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s release is a book I’ve had since 2016!  Hungry Heart:  Adventures in Life, Love, and Writing, by Jennifer Weiner:  Finalist for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay * Nominated for “Best Memoir & Autobiography” by Goodreads Choice Awards 2016 * Named a “Best Book of the Year” by New York Post

“You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll want to read it again.” —TheSkimm

 

 

 

Intro:  The other day, I was walking from the hair salon to pick up my eight-year-old after school.  It was a beautiful February afternoon, unseasonably sunny and springlike, with a sweet breeze rummaging in the tree branches that were just starting to bud.

Also, my hair looked spectacular.

I was feeling really good.  I’d put in a solid morning writing; then I’d done a spinning class, where, according to the computerized rankings that I obsessively checked, I hadn’t finished last.  I was wearing my favorite jeans, which are dark-rinsed, straight-legged, stretchy and forgiving, and the Eileen Fisher cashmere sweater that I’d snagged for 70 percent off at the cash-only sale.  With my UGG boots on my feet and my purse, with its furry purse-charm, slung over my shoulder, I strode confidently down Lombard Street, feeling like I was on top of things, like this was a day when I had it all figured out.

And then I fell.

***

Teaser:  Hungry women are easy to lead and easy to fool and extremely easy to sell stuff to.  Diets are the tool of the patriarchy.  Also the devil.  And they don’t work. (61%).

***

Synopsis:  Jennifer Weiner is many things: a bestselling author, a Twitter phenomenon, and an “unlikely feminist enforcer” (The New Yorker). She’s also a mom, a daughter, and a sister, a clumsy yogini, and a reality-TV devotee. In this “unflinching look at her own experiences” (Entertainment Weekly), Jennifer fashions tales of modern-day womanhood as uproariously funny and moving as the best of Nora Ephron and Tina Fey.

No subject is off-limits in these intimate and honest essays: sex, weight, envy, money, her mother’s coming out of the closet, her estranged father’s death. From lonely adolescence to hearing her six-year-old daughter say the F word—fat—for the first time, Jen dives into the heart of female experience, with the wit and candor that have endeared her to readers all over the world.

***

What do you think?  Do the snippets grab you?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “THEY ALL FALL DOWN”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  They All Fall Down, by Tammy Cohen. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest meets Orange is the New Black in this new psychological thriller, where a new patient suspects that women at her high-risk psychiatric clinic are being stalked by a serial killer . . .

 

 

 

Intro:  (Hannah)

Charlie cut her wrists last week with a shard of caramelized sugar.

We’d made the sugar sheets together in the clinic’s kitchen earlier in the day, under Joni’s beady-eyed supervision.

‘Yours are thick enough to do yourself an injury,’ I’d said to Charlie, as a joke.

***

Teaser Tuesday:  It had been such a relief when Hannah announced they were giving up on the whole idea.  And then she’d got pregnant naturally.  It had seemed like a miracle. (p. 60).

***

Synopsis:  Hannah had a perfect life in London—a loving husband, a great job—until she did something shocking. Something that she doesn’t quite understand herself; and now she has landed herself in a high-risk psychiatric unit.

Since Hannah has been admitted, two women have died, including Charlie, one of her closest friends in the institution. It’s a high-risk unit, the authorities say. Deaths happen. But Hannah knows Charlie wouldn’t have killed herself. She is convinced there’s a serial killer picking off the patients one by one, passing their deaths off as suicides. But why? And who will believe her?

Corinne, Hannah’s mother, is worried sick about her eldest daughter. She hates that she’s ended up in the unit, though she knows it’s the best place for her to get the treatment she needs. At first, Corinne assumes Hannah’s outlandish claims about a killer in the unit are just another manifestation of her psychological condition, but as she starts to uncover strange inconsistencies surrounding the unit’s charismatic director, Dr. Roberts, she begins to wonder if her daughter might have stumbled upon the truth.

But who can Corinne trust, when she doesn’t even trust her own daughter?

***

Do the snippets grab you?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “THREE DAYS MISSING”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download.  Three Days Missing, by Kimberly Belle:  When a child goes missing, two mothers’ lives collide in a shocking way in this suspenseful novel from the bestselling author of The Marriage Lie.

 

 

Intro:  KAT

My phone is already buzzing with work email as I rush Ethan through his morning routine.  Get up.  Get dressed.  For the love of God, brush your teeth and hair.  In none of his eight short years has my son ever been a morning person, and I’ve never been the most patient of mothers, not even when I didn’t have a boss clocking the second I step off the elevator.

***

Teaser:  My blood tingles with equal parts anger and disappointment.  What kind of rinky-dink journalist is this guy? (68%).

***

Synopsis:  It’s every parent’s worst nightmare: the call that comes in the middle of the night. When Kat Jenkins awakens to the police on her doorstep, her greatest fear is realized. Her nine-year-old son, Ethan, is missing–vanished from the cabin where he’d been on an overnight class trip. Shocked and distraught, Kat rushes to the campground, but she’s too late; the authorities have returned from their search empty-handed after losing Ethan’s trail in the mountain forest.

Another mother from the school, Stef Huntington, seems like she has it all: money, prominence in the community, a popular son and a loving husband. She hardly knows Kat, except for the vicious gossip that swirls around Kat’s traumatic past. But as the police investigation unfolds, Ethan’s disappearance has earth-shattering consequences for Stef, as her path crosses with Kat. As the two mothers race against the clock, their desperate search for answers reveals how the greatest dangers lie behind the everyday smiles of those they trust the most.

***

What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “THE DATE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  The Date, by Louise Jensen, a gripping page-turner that will keep you awake until the early hours. Perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train and Before I Go To Sleep.

 

Intro:  Something isn’t right.

I know that as soon as I wake from a thick, muddy sleep.  I know that even before I am aware of the throbbing at my temples.  It’s not the stab of disappointment I get every morning when I realize I’m not in bed with Matt, that I’m no longer living, or welcome, in my own home.  It’s something else.  My head is pounding, thoughts cloudy, and the whole room feels as thought it’s spinning.

Something is wrong.

***

Teaser:  Ben rings me from his car on the way to Edinburgh, the crackle and hiss from his hands-free system making him hard to understand.  I reassure him I am fine, although we both know I’m not, and I promise to call him if I need him (p. 60).

***

Synopsis:  One night can change everything.

‘I know it as soon as I wake up and open my eyes… Something is wrong.’

Her Saturday night started normally. Recently separated from her husband, Ali has been persuaded by her friends to go on a date with a new man. She is ready, she is nervous, she is excited. She is about to take a step into her new future. By Sunday morning, Ali’s life is unrecognisable. She wakes, and she knows that something is wrong. She is home, she is alone, she is hurt and she has no memory of what happened to her.

Worse still, when she looks in the mirror, Ali doesn’t recognise the face staring back at her…

***

I’ve been eager to read this book for a while.  What do you think?  Do you want to know more?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “OUR HOUSE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a NetGalley review book to be released on 8/7:  Our House, by Louise Candlish, a disturbing and addictive novel of domestic suspense where secrets kept hidden from spouses cause shocking surprises that hit home…

 

 

 

Intro:  Friday, January 13, 2017

London, 12:30 p.m.

She must be mistaken, but it looks exactly as if someone is moving into her house.

The van is parked halfway down Trinity Avenue, its square mouth agape, a large piece of furniture sliding down the ribbed metal tongue.  Fi watches, squinting into the buttery sunlight—rare for the time of year, a gift—as the object is borne shoulder high by two men through the gate and down the path.

My gate.  My path.

***

Teaser Tuesday:  “That’s why we called you,” Merle tells the officers.  “This house fraud and Bram’s disappearance are clearly linked.  We’re worried he might be the victim of professional criminals.”

***

Synopsis:  When Fiona Lawson comes home to find strangers moving into her house, she’s sure there’s been a mistake. She and her estranged husband, Bram, have a modern co-parenting arrangement: bird’s nest custody, where each parent spends a few nights a week with their two sons at the prized family home to maintain stability for their children. But the system built to protect their family ends up putting them in terrible jeopardy. In a domino effect of crimes and misdemeanors, the nest comes tumbling down.

Now Bram has disappeared and so have Fiona’s children. As events spiral well beyond her control, Fiona will discover just how many lies her husband was weaving and how little they truly knew each other. But Bram’s not the only one with things to hide, and some secrets are best kept to oneself, safe as houses.

***

What do you think?  Do the snippets intrigue you?  Do you want to keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “LEFT: A LOVE STORY”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  Left (e-book), by Mary Hogan, an unforgettable tale about life’s aching uncertainties—and a woman who discovers that somewhere between hope and reality, an unexpected future will find its way forward.

 

 

 

Intro:  I never meant for it to happen.  Though, isn’t that what they all say?  My heart was at the wheel; my mind and body were buckled, helpless, in the backseat?  Lola was along for the ride, of course.  Best friends like her appear only once or twice or maybe three times in a lifetime.

Lola—leggy, striking, indifferent—was standing a few feet back when love broadsided me.  More precisely, when lust hit in a T-bone collision.  Because that’s what it was.  Blind and combustible want.  A longing so fiery I felt like a flushed teenager.  As if I would incinerate if we didn’t connect.

***

Teaser:  I waited for feelings of love to creep back in like a fog.  The way they always did after a fight.  Always had, before my husband of two decades became a man I didn’t recognize (p. 58).

***

Synopsis:  It started as a dream vacation in Spain, with Fay and Paul Agarra enjoying all the delights of a European holiday. A respected New York City judge, Paul has always been the man Fay can rely on, no matter what. When he inexplicably disappears from a Barcelona street corner, Fay knows something is terribly wrong. Once reunited, Paul shrugs off the episode as a simple misunderstanding—but Fay suspects her almost perfect life has taken a dark and sudden turn.

Soon there are more signs that Paul is beginning to change. Bouts of forgetfulness lead to mistakes in the courtroom. Simple tasks cause unexplainable outbursts of anger. Fay’s worst suspicions are realized when she learns her husband—her rock, her love, her everything—is succumbing to the ravages of dementia.

As her husband transforms before her very eyes, Fay copes with her fears by retreating into a fantasy life filled with promise instead of pain. In Fay’s invented world, she imagines herself living a glamorous life free from heartache, with a handsome neighbor she barely knows rescuing her from a future she can’t accept.

***

What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

***

RAINY DAY EXCERPTS: “MY (NOT SO) PERFECT LIFE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a library book from a delightful author:  My (Not So) Perfect Life, by Sophie Kinsella,  a witty critique of the false judgments we make in a social-media-obsessed world.

 

 

 

Intro:  First:  It could be worse.  As commutes go, it could be a lot worse, and I must keep remembering this.  Second:  It’s worth it.  I want to live in London; I want to do this; and commuting is part of the deal.  It’s part of the London experience, like Tate Modern.

(Actually, it’s not much like Tate Modern.  Bad example.)

***

Teaser:  To be fair, I did have some good nights out with the girls at my previous job.  But all we really did was drink prosecco and bitch, and after then I had such a scare with my overdraft, I swore off going out for a bit.  And at Cooper Clemmow, no one seems to socialize at all.  Unless you count working late as “socializing.” (p. 64)

***

Synopsis:  Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie’s life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle—from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she’s trying to negotiate. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she’s desperate to make her dad proud.

Then, just as she’s finding her feet—not to mention a possible new romance—the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family’s farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away—until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie’s future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.

***

I’m eager to keep reading.  What do you think?

***