Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Friends Reads, Traveling Sisters Reads

The Whisper Man by Alex North @CeladonBooks @alexnorth @about_thethrill

Hot supreme diggity dang! We are busting out a groove here and boogieing to the beat of excitement with this Traveling Friends group read. We all had a such a hard time putting this one down once we started reading it. It’s one fabulosity read.

Brenda’s review

Alex North does some mighty fine footwork here with this creepy, unnerving, and captivating dark, suspenseful thriller.  It has all the elements here to make this a spooky and compelling read for me. There are some supernatural overtones here that send my imagination into overdrive with some unexplainable elements to this story. That dark and twisted thriller mind of mine had me a little unnerved here while reading this story.   It’s a police procedural with a glimpse into a dangerous and broken killer. It has well-layered characters with complicated and compelling relationship between father and son. I loved the dynamics here between the characters.  

Alex North does such a great job here with Jake who stole the show for us.  It’s not easy to pull off a creepy, story with a child character being the centre of it and he nailed it here for us.  We loved the eerie feeling going on here with the whispering but never felt disturbed by it. The story is entertaining and fun yet just enough dark and twisted.  Just the way I love it! 

I highly enjoyed the time I spend with this spooky story and the characters along with my Traveling Friends!!  I highly recommend it. 

Norma’s review

Suspenseful, a little bit spooky, & definitely full of heart!

THE WHISPER MAN by ALEX NORTH is an engrossing, fast-paced, tense, dark, and eerie novel that had me fully immersed in this story right from the very start. What and who “The Whisper Man” is and represents in this tale is downright brilliant, unnerving and definitely has this creepy and spooky vibe resonating throughout this novel. The following rhyme definitely gave me the chills.

If you leave a door half open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken.
If you play outside alone, soon you won’t be going home.
If your window’s left unlatched, you’ll hear him tapping at the glass. 
If you’re lonely, sad, and blue, the Whisper Man will come for you.

Although I wouldn’t necessarily say that this novel creeped me out though or scared me out of my wits but it definitely had an underlying spook factor with the supernatural overtones to the story. I found to be quite absorbing and appealing.

ALEX NORTH delivers an atmospheric, intriguing, well-written and irresistibly unsettling thriller here that thoroughly entertained me. The little boy in this book definitely stole the show for me! He was the shining star and I loved his character so much!! He reminded me so much of the little boy in the movie The Sixth Sense.

The story is told in short chapters from alternating perspectives of Tom Kennedy, Jake (his son), DI Amanda Beck, and DI Pete Willis. I was never confused once and I absolutely loved the short chapters as it definitely helped to keep the pacing high to easily hold your attention. 

Lindsay’s review

Intense. Haunting. Addictive. Engrossing. Chilling.

Seven-year-old Jake and his widowed father, Tom, move to Featherbank. A new town for a new start after the passing of Jake’s mom. Featherbank has a past filled with secrets. Jake seems connected to some of these long buried stories and secrets of the small town. Not long after moving to Featherbank, a young boy goes missing which stirs up old memories of a serial killer who once lived in there.

This was a spine-tingling, heart-pounding, sleep-with-the-lights-on story! I am not one for reading scary stories (I’m a big chicken!), but this was so engrossing that I became addicted to the novel from the very start. I couldn’t put it down once I began this shocking and unforgettable journey. The frightening parts were not gory or over-detailed, but simply created an extreme feeling of tension and nervousness that I couldn’t shake. The characters were fantastic! I was invested in them from the first chapter. The changing narratives was perfectly executed and added multiple layers to this mesmerizing novel. Simply put, the writing was excellent! I look forward to what Alex North comes out with next.

We read this one along with our Traveling Sister Kim! Check out her review here

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: An eye-catching, relevant, eerie, sinister, brilliant, intriguing, suspenseful, and extremely fitting representation to storyline. This cover definitely caught my attention and I love it! 
Title: Appealing, creepy, suspenseful, significant, intriguing and absolutely love how the title plays so fittingly and meaningfully into storyline. 
Writing/Prose: Well-written, vivid, suspenseful, engaging, captivating, and fluid. I thoroughly enjoyed the writing! 
Plot: Chilling, sinister, suspenseful, unsettling, moving, riveting, fast-paced, clever, absorbing, enjoyable and extremely entertaining. 
Ending: Spine-tingling, rewarding, and thoroughly satisfying!
Overall: An excellent read that had me thoroughly engrossed and immersed in this tale from start to finish! And learning that this story was inspired by the author’s own son who told him he was playing with “the boy in the floor” was quite clever and in itself frightening. I highly recommend!

Thank you so much to Celadon Books for gifting us and our Traveling Sisters a copy of this book. It was an absolute pleasure reading and discussing this book in our group.

#travelingsistersread #travelingfriendsread

Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware @SimonSchusterCA @RuthWareWriter #travelingsistersread #BookReview

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware was a highly anticipated book for The Traveling Sisters and was one of our more lengthy group reads we have had.  Some of us couldn’t wait to get their hands on this one and start reading it right away while others took a bit before diving in. This lead to such a fun discussion as we all added in our thoughts as we read it.  So did it live up to our anticipation? YES!! We highly recommend!!!

Norma’s Review

Creepy, suspenseful, & mysterious!

THE TURN OF THE KEY by RUTH WARE is a compelling, dark, twisted, and haunting mystery thriller that immediately sucked me in and had me totally absorbed within this tale.

Right from the very start there is this intense sense of foreboding that definitely makes this quite the gripping book to read…..it is a slow-burn and the intensity level slowly increases as the story progresses. I absolutely loved the creepy modern gothic vibe going on here and RUTH WARE definitely knows how to deliver an atmospheric, vivid, and hair-raising suspenseful novel that I found to be quite appealing, enjoyable and entertaining.

My only real gripe here that I have though is that I don’t always feel that she follows through with some aspects to the storyline. Not sure if she knowingly doesn’t follow through with some things or if it is part of her signature technique to be a little bit vague. I’ve noticed this style of writing in almost all of her books and sometimes it has bothered me and others not so much. This one it didn’t bother me as much.

I absolutely loved the format of this novel which was written in an epistolary format (letters).  The tone was set right at the very beginning and I thought it followed through right to the very end.  I also thought RUTH WARE did a fabulous job with the creepy sounds and the ominous atmosphere with the setting of Heatherbrae House.  I was a little bit freaked out and scared which definitely left me a little on edge while I was reading certain scenes. 

Brenda’s review

Yey Happy!  Tell me a story!!

I am sure I have already told you!!

Unlock Happy, turn the key, isolate yourself and let this creepy and smart house entertain you for for a few hours. Happy the home app that families can’t live without creates a unique setting here with an isolated Gothic estate turned luxury smart house.

Ruth Ware creates quite the entertaining gripping page-turner while building suspense and weaving in some dark history to the estate with modern conveniences. She kept us on our toes, trying to figure out if new technology was good or evil here. Something sinister was going on for sure and I enjoyed this one from start to finish.

Lindsay’s review

Gothic and suspenseful.  Atmospheric and addictive.  Twisty and mesmerizing.

A nanny hired to watch over four children in the remote countryside in Scotland.   An old mansion house upgraded with all the latest technology. Unexplainable happenings.  Unmanageable children. Add all of these together and you get the perfect formula for a brilliantly spellbinding gothic mystery thriller – that’s exactly what this novel was!

Rowan is a nanny who is hired by the Elincourt family.   I loved every part of Rowan’s flawed character. There were so many layers to her background and personality – I enjoyed following her through this eerie and mysterious journey.

I have read and enjoyed all of Ruth Ware’s books.  Her writing always pulls me into a trance of feeling as though I am right there with the characters.  I loved the haunting and engrossing atmosphere throughout this story. The pace and flow were perfect – kept me intrigued and curious from start to finish.

Thoughts from some of our Traveling Sisters

I tell you what, there is no way I would have spent numerous nights in this house like Rowan did. I was completely creep out as nightfall hit each evening. Things were happening and they appeared to be supernatural. Given the history of this home, there is no doubt that is what would be running through my mind if I were staying there. Add to it this “smart house” with all the amazing, yet creepy features. That would drive me mad in itself. If I were Rowan I would be concerned that my employers were watching my every move, meaning that someone else could be too. For Kim’s full review on her blog

I loved the Gothic elements and the spooky atmosphere of Heatherbrae House, which got my heart racing and made me jump every time a branch brushed the side of the house in the wind whilst I snuggled up under the covers reading. Remote, isolated location – tick! Spooky old mansion – tick! Unreliable narrator – tick! Slight supernatural elements that give it some extra creep factor – tick! It’s all there for the taking, which makes this one of my favourite reads by the author yet – although I think I said that with the last few books as well. Ware is a masterful creator of the perfect setting for a spooky mystery: be it a boat, an old beach house, and English manor house or a house in a dark wood. A few paragraphs, and she has teleported me right into the story, which makes her one of my favourite authors today. I recommend that you read it and judge for yourself! Heidi

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Intriguing, ghostly, suspenseful, ominous and an extremely fitting representation to storyline. I have an absolute love for Ruth Ware cover designs!
Title: I was immediately intrigued by the title of this book and definitely enticed me to read this book. 
Writing/Prose: Haunting, engaging, vividly descriptive, and readable.
Plot: Suspenseful, appealing, eerie, menacing, gripping, perfectly-paced, absorbing, ominous, enjoyable and entertaining.
Ending: A cryptic and satisfying resolution. 
Overall: I was immediately interested in this tale and thoroughly enjoyed the unraveling of the mystery, the characters and the storyline. Would recommend!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day!

Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

The Passengers by John Marrs @BerkleyPub @johnmarrs1 #travelingsistersread #BookBloggers #thepassengers

The Passengers by John Marrs is now available and it’s one not to miss!!! The Traveling Sisters were all left cheering for this one once we finished. There might of been some dancing going on!! So…..

Brenda’s review

Readers start your thrill ride and let the best passenger win.  Try to stay calm and strap yourself in. Its techno-thriller time!

John Marrs takes us on an entertaining, chilling action-packed, fast track ride to the unthinkable where technology and humans collide in more ways than one. This is one ride where the fear of death is more than the thrill and no one wants to finish this course.  

It’s all about the entertainment here and John Marrs knows how to rev up the tension here by adding quite the cinematic action.  The premise is brilliant and he creates some interesting moral dilemmas here. From the very first page, I was completing drawn into the premise of the story but was a little disturbed by our hacker’s intentions.  After a few chapters, I was intriguingly entertained and played along as I was reading. I couldn’t turn those pages fast enough to that explosive conclusion for the passengers.  

The Passengers is a fun read for group reads and it made for an entertaining, exciting discussion for The Traveling Sisters.  I highly recommend! 

Norma’s Review

Holy Shooty Balls!!! Gripping, chilling, & absolutely unputdownable!

THE PASSENGERS by JOHN MARRS is an engrossing, chilling, suspenseful, dark, disturbing, fun, easy, brisk, and highly compulsively readable psychological thriller that was another rapid-raced read for me. I was immediately sucked into the narrative and devoured every single page of this highly entertaining and thrilling book. Once I started reading it I was immediately hooked and so absorbed in the storyline that I finished it in less than a day. 

The idea of driverless vehicles is a little bit scary as well as a little bit appealing to me. I’m not exactly sure if I would wholeheartedly be for it or inclined to actually get into one though as I love being a driver and find it quite relaxing. Although I guess I would be able to read if I was just a passenger though. But the idea of my vehicle being hacked would forever be on my mind though so I say nope…..let me drive!

I couldn’t stop thinking, holding, smelling, and reading this book. I even did something that I haven’t done in quite a while…..I peeked at the ending because I just couldn’t handle the suspense anymore or get to the ending fast enough…..and I thought I was reading it pretty darn fast as it was. Luckily my impatience of peeking at the ending didn’t spoil the fun or pacing for me!

JOHN MARRS delivers quite the impressive, clever, creative, exhilarating, thought-provoking, intense and well-written read here that was brilliantly executed. I am absolutely in awe of how creative and ingenious this story was. As each character is introduced and their secrets are revealed it is quite shocking and ratcheted up the intensity level tenfold. I was shocked more than once while reading this one which left me on the edge of my seat in anticipation. This was so darn good!!

Thoughts from some of our Traveling Sisters

Kim OMG this book is absolutely brilliant! How have I not read a John Marrs book before this? Where has this author been all my life?!  Seriously this book had me at the edge of my seat the entire wild ride. For Kim’s full review on her blog

Stephanie Reading John Marrs’ newest book The Passengers was like watching a blockbuster Hollywood movie: you’re on the edge of your seat the entire time with suspense “watching” the brilliant action scenes unfold (because Marrs’ writing is so realistic you feel as if you’re right there), experiencing the unexpected disasters and jaw dropping cliffhanger chapters―then that surprising ending! This would make an excellent film! As you can probably tell, I freaking loved this book, which I have to admit surprised me a bit because I’m not a techno-thriller/sci-fi thriller kinda girl, at all and almost didn’t pick this one up… oh, would that have been a mistake, my friends, since I binged this book in a serious way! For Stephanie’s full review on her blog

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Dizzying, fearful, futuristic, scary, deranged, intriguing, suspenseful and an extremely fitting representation to storyline. 
Title: Appealing, suspenseful, intriguing and such a powerful, fitting, and effective representation to storyline that definitely packed quite a punch.
Writing/Prose: Well-written, engrossing, intelligent, masterly, absorbing, compelling, and compulsively readable. 
Plot: Clever, intriguing, creative, shocking, intense, thought-provoking, suspenseful, riveting, brisk, absorbing, fun, enjoyable and entertaining.
Ending: Intense, shocking, flabbergasting, exciting, & wholly satisfying!
Overall: It was such an irresistibly fun and entertaining book and another winner added to my favourite reads shelf. I thoroughly enjoyed the reading experience!!! Everyone needs to read this book!!

Thank you so much to Elisha at Berkley Publishing for our advance copies. It was an absolute pleasure reading this highly irresistible and fun novel!!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day!

Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Friends Reads

Summer of ‘69 by Elin Hilderbrand #travelingfriendsread #BookReview

Summer of ’69 by Elin Hilderbrand

Brenda’s review

Summer of ‘69 is my first book I read by Elin Hilderbrand and I have to say it was the perfect one to start with.  It’s already coming up to the end of summer and we haven’t had any summer weather and I really enjoyed being swept away to the sun in Nantucket.  The cover alone took me to my happy summer place. 

Elin Hilderbrand weaves a historical fiction, family drama  with a beach read that was the perfect summer read for me. She vividly creates the iconic american summer of ‘69 while capturing each of the characters’ own conflicts that represents a theme of that era.   The writing flows so quietly as Hilderbrand explores a lot of themes here. 

I was immediately drawn into the family dynamics here with their misunderstanding, secrets, headache and worry.  Their relationships are complicated however the dynamics between them is easy and light while still capturing their emotional depth and growth.

I enjoyed every minute of this story and it all came together so well.  I highly recommend! I look forward to diving into one of the many other books by Elin Hilderbrand I own! 

Norma’s review

Evocative, entrancing, & absorbing!

I have been meaning to read one of ELIN HILDERBRAND books for quite a while now and I am so glad that I finally followed through and read my very first book by her. This is some fine storytelling here. I totally loved the dynamics between the characters, was full-heartedly entranced by the setting, enraptured by the premise, and had a deep fondness for the whole story in general. 

SUMMER OF ‘69 by ELIN HILDERBRAND is a nostalgic, fun, touching, moving, and breezy domestic tale that totally enchanted me. I was immediately hooked and fully absorbed within this storyline. Being born in 1966, I absolutely loved being transported back to a place in time and era that totally came alive for me. It was extremely easy to visualize and experience place and time perfectly through the words expressed here. Loved that! 

ELIN HILDERBRAND delivers an intriguing, vivid, atmospheric, beautifully written and retrospective tale here that has woven together some historical moments perfectly into an easy-breezy summer read with heart. I really loved the tone and flow of this novel. It was like sitting down with a good friend on a relaxing summery day while they relayed to me their story. 

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: A feel-good, happy, summery, and lively cover that depicts this time period and storyline perfectly.
Title: Intriguing, appealing, emotive, relevant, and a simply beautiful representation to storyline.
Writing/Prose: Compulsively readable, expressive, prolific, engaging, and dramatic. 
Plot: Dynamic, steadily-paced, fun, captivating, nostalgic, heartfelt, relevant, and entertaining.
Ending: A beautiful and heartfelt ending that left me feeling totally satiated.
Overall: I thought this was the perfect summer read and absolutely loved reading the authors note in the end where I found out where the inspiration behind the story came from. That just brought in an extra feeling of respect, meaning and warmth for the novel for me. Would highly recommend!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day!

Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

The Arrangement by Robyn Harding @SimonSchusterCA @rhardingwriter @about_thethrill #travelingsistersread #BookReview

The Arrangement by Robyn Harding

We read The Arrangement with a few of our Traveling Sisters and after reading this one we need to know more about Sugar Bowls. Robyn Harding will be our first author in our new group Behind The Pages with The Traveling Friends to answer a few spoiler-free questions about The Arrangement. She will be popping into the group to see any positive comments our friends might have for her and joining us on Sunday, 10:00-11:00 am PST August 11 to answer a few questions I just need to know the answers too. To share the love for The Arrangement and ask Robyn question or see what she has to say you can find the group here. Or join the group.

https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/1003230-behind-the-pages-with-the-traveling-friends

Brenda’s review

Candy Bar and Jelly Beans!! Yipee! I might be on a Tootsie Roll here with another winning thriller for me! My groove is back.

Are you ready to rumble here in this sugar bowl? Wondering what a sugar bowl is or curious to take a look into one. Well, Robyn Harding has got you covered here with her intriguing, entertaining yet unsettling fast, easy-paced story that left me wanting to talk about it. 

Things are not so sweet as sugar here between this arrangement with our main characters and Robyn Harding delivers a unique take here with the premise to the story and adds some twists and turns that had me totally entertained from start to finish. I highly recommend!

Norma’s Review

Seductive, alluring, and wickedly entertaining!

A modern day and sinister version of Pretty Woman right here folks! I didn’t even realize that this was a thing, what’s a Sugar Baby & Sugar Daddy? Well I know now and I definitely fell for this hook, line, and sinker. 

THE ARRANGEMENT by ROBYN HARDING is a fascinating, dark, twisted, and gritty tale that was such an irresistible, entertaining and fun book to read. I was immediately pulled into the story, totally intrigued by the premise, and fully absorbed in this suspenseful page-turner.

Thoughts from our Traveling Sisters and blogging Sister Its All About The Thrill

Wow! The author certainly knocked it out of the park with this one! Five flipping scandalous stars from me. This book will leave you with your mouth hanging open. I loved it! I was submersed into a world that I had no idea that existed until a recent news segment and of course this book! Up until this point sugar babies were just a candy I had enjoyed as a child. For Kim’s full review

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Arresting, intriguing, eye-catching, electrifying, and a fitting representation to storyline. I definitely love the cover art and find it aesthetically pleasing. 
Title: A perfectly perfect, suspenseful, intriguing and fitting representation to storyline. I absolutely love how the title played so perfectly into storyline. 
Writing/Prose: Compulsively readable, well-written, entertaining, engaging, and suspenseful. 
Plot: Fascinating, suspenseful, gritty, unique, riveting, brisk, engrossing, dark, thrilling, seductive, sinister, captivating, twisty, and entertaining.
Ending: Well that was an extremely satisfying end that I absolutely loved! So good!! A neat ending that wraps things up smoothly & perfectly. 
Overall: I absolutely loved this one and devoured every single page of this dark, sexy, sinister, and thrilling tale! Would highly recommend! 

Thank you so much to Simon & Schuster Canada and Robyn Harding for our copies.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day!

Posted in Reviews, Sister Reads, The Sisters Recommend

Never Tell by Lisa Gardner @DuttonBooks @LisaGardnerBks #travelingsistersread #BookReview

Never Tell by Lisa Gardner

LISA GARDNER has done it again with her latest installment to the Detective D.D. Warren series with Book # 10. She is an author we can always count on that never disappoints and always delivers such fantastic thrillers that are gripping, action-packed and packed full of nail-biting suspense. We are huge fans and have read all of her books to date. We highly recommend her books!

Norma’s Review

Captivating, edgy & wholly satisfying!

NEVER TELL by LISA GARDNER (Detective D.D. Warren #10) is a dark, suspenseful, emotional and intense thriller with absolutely wonderful and captivating characters. The story is told between the alternating perspectives from three fascinating and exceptionally well-developed characters. LISA GARDNER creates such compelling, fabulous and dynamic characters that you can’t help but love and be fully invested in. I absolutely love D.D. Warren and Flora Dane! There was another character that popped in to help D.D. with her investigation and I was pleasantly surprised and loved the appearance. 

The storyline’s are always intense but I thought this one was a little more complex than her previous novels which slowed down the pacing a tiny bit for me. Even though I had to pay a little more attention to the details while I was reading it, all those carefully hidden clues still stumped me until closer to the end.

Brenda’s Review

D.D. Warren is back with Flora Dane in another nail-biting installment that had me on the edge of my seat, turning the pages as fast as I could.  I love D.D. Warren and she has been a favorite character of mine right from the very first installment with Alone. 

When D.D. Warren arrives at her new case she sees a woman from a case from the past and then soon realizes the victim has ties to Flora’s kidnapper.  Secrets start to unravel and through the well written layers we start to piece together the ties from the past to the new cases. 

When I first met Flora Dane in Find Her, Book # 8, I loved her character and she is now becoming my favorite character.  I love how kidnapped survivor Flora now turned vigilantly becomes DD’s unofficial informant and I love the dynamics between them.  SSA Kimberly Quincy makes an appearance here as well and enjoyed the dynamics between the three of them and I was reminded just how much Lisa Gardner brings humor to the character’s dynamics allowing me to love them even more. There is also another character I hope to see back in future installments. 

In this installment Flora allows herself to revisit her dark past and remember the monster who kidnapped her Jacob Ness.  Her chapters became my favorite part of the story and enjoyed learning more about her and how her past is connected to DD’s new case.

Lisa Garner knows just when to reveal those well layered twists, one right after another and wrapping up this story almost perfectly for me.  She did push it a bit there in the end and I began to question some things but in the end she is another author who can do no wrong by me and will always be a favorite of mine.  We have history!!  

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Hauntingly beautiful and fitting representation to storyline. (Paperback version which releases on August 6, 2019.)
Title: A fabulous representation that definitely depicts the storyline perfectly with all of its secrets and lies it withholds until that explosive and perfectly timed ending.
Writing/Prose: Compulsively readable, notable, strong, impressive, well-written, entertaining, engrossing, and prolific. 
Plot: Suspenseful, raw, complex, riveting, fast-paced, dark, thrilling, captivating, taut, twisty, and entertaining.
Ending: An action-packed, surprising, thrilling, and explosive ending!
Overall: Another stellar read from the Queen of Thrillers that had me immediately hooked and completely riveted in this tangled crime thriller. Would highly recommend! 

Thank you so much to NetGalley, Dutton and Lisa Gardner for the opportunity to read an advance digital copy of this book.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. That means I may receive a very small commission, at no cost to you, if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day!