Book Reviews

The Invited by Jennifer McMahon #Review @doubledaypub

theinvited

Helen and Nate abandoned their city lives for rural Vermont, where they will build their dream home on their new property, amidst the woods and the nearby bog. Helen, formerly a history teacher, is intrigued when learns about Hattie Breckenridge, a woman who lived and died there nearly a century ago.  Hattie’s tragic story becomes merged with the house when Helen used materials related to Hattie (such as a wooden beam made from the oak tree where she was hanged) to decorate the interior of the house she’s building,  unwittingly inviting Hattie in. Hattie wants something from Helen, and she can’t rest until she gets it.

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Book Reviews

Tots! 50 Tot-ally Awesome Recipes from Totchos to Sweet Po-tot-o Pie by Dan Whalen #Review @workmanpub

tots

I love tator tots, and seeing a book full of tot recipes instantly grabbed my attention. Plain ol’ tots are yummy just as they are, but I’m always looking for new ways to dish up old favorites, and couldn’t wait to see what this cookbook had to offer.

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Books

Top Reads of 2018

tr2018

I read 114 books in 2018, more than doubling my Goodreads Reading Challenge goal of 52. This marks the best year I’ve had since I first started participating in the challenge back in 2015, and I was very pleased to do so well. I chose a lot of great books, and my rating average for the year was 4.3 stars. I read a variety of fictional genres, including historical fiction, dystopia, fantasy, and crime/psychological thrillers. My nonfiction reading focused heavily on history, current events, social issues, and memoirs. I was entertained by the stories, and I gained a great deal of knowledge on various topics, as well. 2018 was definitely a great year for reading!

But which books were the best?

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Book Reviews

Forget You Know Me by Jessica Strawser #Review @StMartinsPress

forgetyouknowme
Author photo by Corrie Schaffeld

Lifelong friends Liza and Molly have grown distant since Liza moved to Chicago. One night, when Molly’s husband Daniel is away on business, they have a video chat in a bid to reconnect. After an awkward start, the conversation is flowing easily when Molly has to go check on one of her children. Liza is horrified when she sees a masked man enter her friend’s house, and panics when the screen goes dark. She calls the police, and then—unable to get Molly to answer her phone—Liza jumps in her car and drives all night to make sure she is okay, only to be turned away by an angry Molly. Confused, hurt, and angry, Liza returns home only to find more heartbreak waiting for her as she tries to figure out what happened that fateful night.

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Book Reviews

The Au Pair by Emma Rous #Review @EJRous @BerkleyPub

theaupair

After the death of her father, Seraphine Mayes is going through his belongings when she comes across a photo taken on the day that she and her twin brother, Danny, were born. The photo shows their older brother, father, and mother, who is holding one baby in her arms and looks happy…. which is odd, because their mother committed suicide the day they were born. And why is there only one baby in the photograph? Which twin is in the photo, and where is the other one? Unable to get answers from her grandmother, Vera, Seraphine is determined to track down the only other person who was there that day—the au pair who disappeared after her mother’s tragic death.

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