Posted in Reviews, Traveling Sisters Reads

Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson @WmMorrowBooks @HarperCollinsCa @about_thethrill #neverhaveiever #travelingsistersread

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Happy Pub Day to Never Have I Ever * by one of my favorite author Joshilyn Jackson!!!

Brenda’s review

Never Have I Ever starts off with my kind of evening, a book club meeting, wine and friends. What could go wrong? Soon things take a turn when a new neighbour changes the pace to a game of Never Have I Ever. Along with a little too much drink, things take a very intriguing turn and secrets start to come out or threaten to come out. I was hooked and couldn’t wait to find out more. The pace slows down a bit as the characters are developed and I began to get a little impatient and wanted things to move along a bit faster.

A game of cat and mouse takes off between our main characters and the pace picked up along with the tension between the characters. I was intrigued and loved the dynamics between the characters.   I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to get to that explosive ending. Things turned a little darker than I expected from Jackson. Normally I think my feathers might have got a bit rumpled by how things wrapped up if it wasn’t Jackson who wrote this one.  In the end, I decided Jackson can do no wrong and still remains on the top of my list of favourite authors. 

This was a Traveling Sister group read with my blogging sister Kim @ Its All About the Thrill.

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Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

A Stranger on the Beach by Michele Campbell @MCampbellBooks @StMartinsPress @about_thethrill #travelingsistersread #astrangeronthebeach

Happy Pub Day to A Stranger on the Beach by Michele Campbell !!! YAHOO!!! We are so excited about this one!!!

Norma’s Review

Holy Shooty Balls!!! Gripping, highly compulsive, & spine-tingling suspense!A STRANGER ON THE BEACH by MICHELE CAMPBELL is an engrossing, chilling, suspenseful, fun, easy, brisk, and mind-bending psychological thriller that was absolutely unputdownable. I was immediately sucked into the narrative and devoured every single page of this highly entertaining and deceptive book. Once I started reading it I was hooked and so absorbed in the storyline that I lost all sense of time. My nose was definitely lost in this book and nothing was going to distract me until I finished reading it.

MICHELE CAMPBELL delivers quite the impressive, clever, complex, tension-filled and well-written read here that was extremely well-plotted, well-layered and well-played. The story was deliciously told from the perspectives of both Caroline and Aidan. And let me tell you I absolutely loved the manipulative and obsessive nature of both of their perspectives. It was extremely fun trying to figure out who the unreliable character was here. Both perspectives fed right into each other perfectly.

Brenda’s review

Michele Campbell has restored my faith in thrillers with this exciting, entertaining, uniquely written story that had me fascinated with our main characters from the very start right to that exciting ending that I did see coming.

A Stranger on the Beach is one of this summers highly anticipated reads and there has been quite a bit of hype built-up for this one. I was going to let that hype train pass on by for fear of all those hyped-up “Never Saw it coming ending” Well, well did I ever underestimate this one and I am so glad that I didn’t let this one pass on by the sister coulee. This one is definitely a summer hit for me and for a few of our Traveling Sisters including my blogging sister Kim It’s All About The Thrill who read this one with us.

Michele Campbell writes a well-layered story here that was all about the way the story was told for me. I was so engrossed and entertained and loved every minute of this story. Michele Campbell does such a great job here creating unreliable interesting some unlikable and likable characters here. Through our main character POV, we are left guessing just who to trust. The clues are so well-layered here and little clues are left along the way for us to pick up on and others that comes together so well in the end. My excitement grew with every chapter and I was slowly inching closer to the edge of my seat as I was piecing this story together until I reached the ending that left me flying out of my chair yelling YAHOO!!! I highly recommend

Thank you to St Martin Press for our copies!!!!

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Love the boldness, dark, and ominous beach setting. 
Title: Appealing, suspenseful, intriguing and such a notable and worthy representation to storyline.
Writing/Prose: Well-written, engrossing, smart, compelling, and compulsively readable. 
Plot: Clever, intriguing, manipulative, puzzling, twisty, intense, suspenseful, riveting, fast-paced, absorbing, enjoyable and entertaining. An absolutely fabulous and juicy storyline!!!! 
Ending: Intense, flabbergasting, exciting, & wholly satisfying!
Armchair Detective Skills: Okay, I had my suspicions early on with the who but never would have guessed the why, what or reasoning behind the motivations that was driving these characters.
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!!! Would definitely recommend!

Posted in Reviews, Traveling Sisters Reads

Bethlehem by Karen Kelly @StMartinsPress #travelingsistersread

Bethlehem by Karen Kelly is now available!

Brenda’s Review

Bethlehem is a carefully written, touching and moving family saga that takes a different approach here to those buried family secrets. The story explores temptation, regret, cost of carrying those secrets and how it changes the people who do.

Things start off slow here or better described as quietly as we see the relationships between the characters develop and get a strong sense of how they care for each other.  It takes some patience here and comes at risk here for reviewers as we are often rushed to get to the long list of titles we have. However, my Traveling Sisters warned me and I waited to start this one when I could give it the focus it needs.  

What seems as a simple story develops into a complex story and there is a lot of depth to this one.  Once the layers are placed the pace starts to pick up and the story becomes quite interesting. There are two timelines and stories going on here with our main characters and I found one to be much stronger than the other and at times the weaker one added some weight to the story.  However, I really enjoyed how it all came together and thought it was brilliantly done. There is a lot to think about and discuss with this one and it really lead to a great discussion among the Traveling Sisters who read this one. I highly recommend for group reads especially when they are read over a longer period of time and some focus can be given to it.

Thank you to NetGalley and St Martin Press for my copy to read and review.


Posted in Reviews, Traveling Sisters Reads

Never Look Back by Alison Gaylin @HarperCollinsCa @WmMorrowBooks #neverlookback #travelingsistersread @about_thethrill

Never Look Back by Alison Gaylin is now available!

Brenda’s Review

I loved If I Die Tonight by Alison Gaylin and was really excited when I got my hands on this one!  There might have been some dancing going on. After reading Never Look Back there was definitely some dancing going on with my Traveling Sister Kim who read this one with me. We both really enjoyed this one. 

Never Look Back is a fast-paced, fun twisty and action-packed story that had me on the edge of my seat trying to piece together how everyone was connected to our teenage couple serial killers here in this story. 

Alison Gaylin delivers quite the fun entertaining read here with each twist to the story as she delves into each character’s psyche. The story does have a predictable feel to it right from the start however Alison Gaylin has a way with those well-plotted twists that kept it feeling exciting. Each twist kept me guessing and doubting everything right up to the very end. I highly recommend for a tension-filled, entertaining read with some unsettling dark to it to keep you on edge. I highly recommend.

Thank you to William Morrow Books and HarperCollins Canada for my copy!

From Kim’s review

Wow! Just flipping wow! This book captivated me from the very first page and never let up. Sometimes a book starts out with a bang and you think that surely the author will not be able to keep up that type of  intensity all the way through the book, well this one does. This book was not on my radar and yet it is one of the best I have read so far this year! For Kim’s full review


Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

Call Your Daughter Home by Deb Spera @DebSpera @parkrowbooks @HarlequinBooks @HarperCollinsCa #travelingsistersread

Lindsay’s review

This book has earned top spot on my 2019 Favourites List – I loved every single thing about it!

Gertrude, Retta and Annie are three women from very different backgrounds. Their lives’ intertwine and connect throughout this mesmerizing story set on a plantation in South Carolina in 1924. Each woman has a background filled with family tradition, expectations and secrets. Told in alternating perspectives, the novel shifts seamlessly between each character adding layers of detail and intrigue. Racism, poverty, hunger, sexual assault are just a few of the heavy topics covered within this unforgettable tale. It packs a heavy punch and is executed with the force of exceptional, spellbinding writing.

The characters were so well developed and undeniably endearing that I actually miss them now that I have finished the novel. They stole my heart. They were charming, determined, vulnerable, strong and flawed females who each faced their own struggles and challenges. During a time when women were not respected as worthy or independent, these three face their challenges head on.

As I read this story, I continually felt a sense of astonishment that this is a debut novel. The writing is stunning and exquisite. The words flowed off the page effortlessly and landed snuggly inside my heart. The author, Deb Spera, has set the bar high for a spectacular debut novel.

I feel I should give warning that there are some highly disturbing topics covered throughout this book that deal with child abuse. Though these scenes are uncomfortable to read, they are handled in a very mature and respectful manner without getting into extreme detail which I appreciated.

Thank you to HarperCollins Canada for sending me a physical ARC to read and review! 

Brenda’s Review

I almost missed reading Call Your Daughter Home in my book chaos and if it wasn’t for Lindsay I just might have. Set in 1924 South Carolina after infamous boll weevil infestation that devastated the land and the economy Debra Spera brings us an unforgettable story that is not to be missed by historical fiction lovers. I sure am glad I didn’t.

Call Your Daughter Home is an impressive, compelling and engaging story that explores the lives of three equally unforgettable, strong southern women who come together through place in desperate times.   The story is told through each of their distinctive voices and we see each of their own conflicts surrounding their relationships with their daughters and husbands.   

Deb Spera does such an amazing job here creating such well-developed characters that caught my heart and I was immediately drawn into their lives by the emotional depth to each.  I was captivated by the sense of place and could feel the danger lurking for each woman like I could feel the danger from the creatures of the swamp. I loved how Deb Spera weaved the lives of these women together and formed a bond between them allowing each woman to become stronger as they faced their own conflicts and in the end came together to stand up for justice.  I highly recommend!

I received a complimentary copy from Edelweiss.


Posted in Reviews, The Sisters Recommend, Traveling Sisters Reads

Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle @HarperCollinsCa @KimberlySBelle @parkrowbooks @HarlequinBooks #travelingsistersread

Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle is available today! After reading this one there were a few excited and happy Traveling Sisters expressing just how much we loved it! We all highly recommend!

Norma’s Review ~ Favourite Thriller 2019

Holy Shooty Balls!!! Thrilling, highly compulsive, & mind-blowing stuff!

Oh my goodness what did I just read? An absolutely fabulous thriller that’s what! This book was incredible and I am so thrilled to say that this book is my new favourite!!! 

DEAR WIFE by KIMBERLY BELLE is a gripping, suspenseful, dark, brisk, and twisty thriller that was absolutely unputdownable. I was immediately sucked in and devoured every single page of this spellbinding entertaining book. Once I started reading it I was hooked and so absorbed in the storyline that I was flipping those pages as fast as I possibly could. 

KIMBERLY BELLE delivers quite the impressive, clever, intriguing, tension-filled and well-written read here that was extremely well-plotted and flowed effortlessly. I was feeling every emotion possible while I was reading this book. These characters were brilliantly written and those subtle clues were perfectly interspersed to make this such a satisfying and fulfilling read

Thank you so much to HarperCollins Canada / Park Row Books and Kimberly Belle for my complimentary copy. It was an absolute pleasure reading this novel!!


Brenda’s Review

Kimberly Belle nails it here with this intense thriller. Dear Wife is one exciting thriller that is not to be missed. The most exciting thing here is how Kimberly Belle takes a story that really isn’t a new story line and turns into an exciting, entertaining and compelling thriller. She introduces us to the characters through their different POV and kept us guessing on how they are connected by layering clues along the way, with those multiple plot twists. She reveals what we need to know right at the perfect time and skillfully keeps it feeling new without it ever feeling predictable making it entertaining yet plausible.

The link between our characters is the biggest surprise here with just how Kimberly Belle is able to create that high suspense and tension keeping that excitement going right up to that explosive ending that had me on the edge of my seat. I highly recommend!

I received my copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Norma’s Stats:
Cover: Love this simplistic and classy cover. It is such a fabulous and fitting representation to storyline. 
Title: Appealing, clever, suspenseful, intriguing and absolutely loved how the title played so brilliantly into storyline. I might have squealed a little bit when the meaning behind the title was revealed to us. 
Writing/Prose: Well-written, engaging, enthralling, fluid, efficient and effortless. 
Plot: Clever, intriguing, dark, twisty, intense, suspenseful, riveting, fast-paced, absorbing, enjoyable and entertaining. An absolutely fabulous storyline!!!! 
Ending: An explosive ending that left me feeling totally fulfilled and satisfied! Fabulous!!
Overall: It was such an irresistible, enjoyable, fun and thrilling book to read. I thoroughly enjoyed the reading experience!!! Would definitely recommend