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Want To Play? – By T.J. Tracy – Book Review #26

Want To Play?


I’ve been reading a book a week, sometimes more than one a week, since the start of the year. I pledged to read a book a week for my Goodreads challenge and I’d been doing really well until I started this book.This book took me three weeks to finish. I hasten to add that it wasn’t because the book wasn’t good. It was excellent and I really enjoyed. The reason it took me so long is that I’ve been so busy these last few weeks.

Want To Play? by T.J. Tracy took me three weeks to finish. I hasten to add that it wasn’t because the book wasn’t good. It was excellent and I really enjoyed. The reason it took me so long is that I’ve been so busy these last few weeks.

What with all the garden updates, working on the blog and family stuff, I just haven’t had time to sit and read.
I gave myself some time off over the weekend just so that I could finally get the book finished!


Want To Play? has also been published with the title, Monkeewrench and is the first book in the series. The story centres around a group of people who own a business called, funnily enough, Monkeewrench and a detective called Leo Magozzi.

Monkeewrench is a computer game design company. Grace McBride is working on a new serial killer game in which there are 20 murders and you have to find the clues to each murder before moving on to the next one. It’s been released online but only for testing and as such, not all of the levels have been released.

Meanwhile, actual people start getting murdered in the same way and same sequence as in the game. Grace notices this and calls the police. Detective Magozzi is the lead on the case and through his investigation, we soon find out that the people from Monkeewrench aren’t all they seem. There’s something in their past that could be connected to the murders.

All through the book, I was kept wondering who the killer was. Every time I had to put it down, I got annoyed because I just wanted to keep on reading!

I’ve bought some of the others in the series but I was very disappointed to find that I haven’t yet bought book 2! I now have to wait until a copy of Live Bait comes into the charity shop so I can carry on with the series!

Want to play? P.J. Tracy

Goodreads challenge 25 books read



The Wonder By Emma Donoghue – Book Review #25

The Wonder


It’s been a while since I read my first novel by Emma Donoghue. It was called Room and I finished it in a day because I just couldn’t put it down.
I saw The Wonder in the book shop while we were on holiday. The cover design jumped out at me and when I when I saw it was by Emma, I had to buy it!

The Wonder by Emma Donoghue

It’s set in Ireland in 1850-something and tells the story of an eleven-year-old girl, Anna, who is said to have not eaten for four months. Despite this, she’s still in very good health.

Lib Wright is a nurse who worked under Florence Nightingale in the Crimean war. She goes to Ireland to observe Anna and make sure no one is secretly feeding her. She works in shifts with another nurse who is a nun.

The start of the book was good. I really enjoyed the end of the book. The middle of the book, though, seemed to take forever to get through.
I even mentioned to the husband that I’d been reading for hours and the pages left to read didn’t seem to be getting less!n Goodreads. I think I’ll always pick up an Emma Donoghue book if I see a new one out. I just won’t be expecting the same pull that happened with Room.

On Goodreads, I gave it 4 stars. I’ll always pick up an Emma Donoghue book if I see a new one out. I just won’t be expecting the same pull that happened with Room.


Goodreads challenge - 24 books read


Tell No One – Harlan Coben – Book Review #24

Tell No One

I think it was last year when I watched The Five on TV. It was based on a Harlan Coben book and I really enjoyed it.

While we were on holiday we went to every charity shop we passed to see what books they had. I bought a couple of Harlan Coben novels and the first I read was Tell No One.
It was excellent. It had twists and turns and unanswered questions throughout that kept me reading. I found it hard to put down, in fact.

The story of Dr David Beck and his wife, Elizabeth is a wonderful love story. Until she’s murdered by a serial killer on their wedding anniversary.
Eight years on, he receives an email that points to his wife being alive.

This starts a chain of events that sends David down a dangerous path.

I don’t want to say too much because of spoiling it so I’ll leave it there but I heartily recommend it to fans of this genre. I can’t wait to read my HC novel. I’ve bought a few more since we’ve been back from our holiday and now I can’t decide which one to read next!

Tell No One Harlan Coben

Find it on Goodreads

Goodreads 23 books read


Big Little Lies By Liane Moriarty – Book Review #22

Big Little Lies

I saw a preview for a TV show called Big Little Lies. I knew it was the kind of show I’d enjoy. Before I watched the show, I wanted to read the book.

A few days later I got an email from NetGalley, offering me a free download in return for a review so here are!

It took me longer to read than usual but only because I’ve been so busy. If I’d have had the time, I’d have read it in a day or two. I hated having to keep putting it down!

The thing I loved most was the fact that you didn’t know who the victim was all the way through the book. I found myself hoping it wouldn’t be certain characters.

The friendship between Jane, Madeline and Celeste was lovely. It made you want to be in their circle, going through the ups and downs of life with them by your side.

It’s rare to find a book about a murder where the actual victim isn’t revealed until the end of the book. I liked that it kept me guessing.

It was very funny in parts, not so in others. I really can’t wait to see how it translated to the screen.

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Goodreads 21 books completed


The Twins by Saskia Sarginson – Book Review #21

The Twins


This was yet another charity shop find! It was my first time reading Saskia Sarginson and I wasn’t disappointed.

Isolte and Viola are the twins of the title.
Their mother had lived in a hippy commune. She decided to move with the twins to a cabin in the woods. She pretty much left Issy and Viola to their own devices for most of the time.

They spent a lot of time in the woods and met another set of twins while they were out playing. Michael and John were around the same age and the four of them became friends.
It goes on to tell of an accident that happened which involved the four children and led to their future being turned upside down.

I liked the suspense throughout the book. It was kept at a nice pace and didn’t frustrate me, as lots of books tend to do.

Here’s the blurb from Goodreads:

They were inseparable until an innocent mistake tore them apart.
Growing up, Viola and Issy clung to each other in the wake of their mother’s eccentricity, as she dragged them from a commune to a tiny Welsh village. They thought the three of them would be together forever.
But an innocent mistake one summer set them on drastically different paths. Now in their twenties, Issy is trying to hold together a life as a magazine art director, while Viola is slowly destroying herself, consumed with guilt over the events they unknowingly set into motion as children.
When it seems that Viola might never recover, Issy returns to the town they haven’t seen in a decade, to face her own demons and see what answers, if any, she can find.

Goodreads 20 books completed


The Night Book – Book Review #20

The Night Book


I saw this book while I was volunteering in the charity shop. I’ve never considered reading a book by Richard Madeley but after reading some posts on the Richard and Judy book club website, I decided to give it a go.

A beautiful radio presenter/agony aunt, Meriel Kidd, is trapped in a marriage to a vile, older man.
Cameron is a control freak who just views his wife as arm candy. They’ve had their own rooms for months. To help her cope with his behaviour, Meriel started writing a kind of diary.

She called it The Night Book and in it, she wrote quite graphic ways of killing her husband.

Meriel stays with Cameron because of her career. She would be the first to tell a woman to leave her husband if he treated her the way Cameron treats Meriel. Her persona depicts a happy home life in 1976 with her millionaire husband in the Lake District.

I’ve often been told stories about the intense heat in 1976, which happens to be the year I was born. My dad took my mum walking up and down the hills in July because I was overdue!

The heatwave is causing problems with the lakes and there are a higher than the average number of people drowning.

Meriel uses this to her advantage when it comes to Cameron but I won’t say more as I don’t want to spoil it.
I will say I found myself really liking Meriel and I was happy with the ending.

I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads and I’ll be picking up his other books when they come into the charity shop 🙂

Goodreads challenge book 19 The Night Book


The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time – Book Review #18

The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time


I really loved The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time. I read it in 3 days and when I was done, I wished it had been longer!

It’s written from the point of view of Christopher. He’s a 15-year-old boy with Aspergers. He finds his neighbour’s dog dead in her front garden. Someone had killed it using a garden fork.

Christopher wanted to find out who had killed the dog, Wellington, so he decided to do some detecting. His teacher told him it would good for him to write a book so he wrote about his detective work.
At the start of the book, we find that Christopher lives with just his dad as his mum had died of a heart attack.

He doesn’t like to be touched by anyone so when his dad wants to hug him, he holds up his right hand and spreads his fingers out in a fan. Christopher does the same with his left hand and they touch fingers and thumbs.
I thought this was really sweet.

I’ve not had much real-life experience with Aspergers so I don’t know how realistic it is. A lady commented who said she’s a mum of a boy with autism and it was a bit hard for her to read sometimes as some of it rang true but she also thought it was very funny.

I’ve had the book for months, maybe even a year and I’ve been putting off reading it. I went and read the reviews on Goodreads last week and there were some quite negative ones.
After the disaster that was 77 Shadow Street, I nearly decided not to read this book at all because of the reviews. I’m so glad I ignored them!

Goodreads reading challenge 2017


77 Shadow Street by Dean Koontz – Book Review Week 17

77 Shadow Street

I gave 77 Shadow Street a 1-star rating on Goodreads. I think that should be enough to tell you how much I didn’t like this book!

It was my first Dean Koontz book. I really wanted it to be as scary as the cover and the blurb made it out to be. Unfortunately, I really didn’t enjoy it right from the start.
I know I should have given up because as I’ve said before, life’s too short to read a boring book. I just wanted all the reviews to be wrong because it sounded really good!

The Pendleton is a luxurious apartment building. It was originally built in the 19th century for a wealthy family. Every 38 years horrible things happen at The Pendleton; suicide and mass murder to name a couple.

As it’s an apartment building, there are a lot of characters and Koontz jumps between them through the whole book. It’s annoying.
I found myself not really caring about what happens to any of them except, of course, the children, because, well, they’re children!

As much as I disliked this book, I will give Dean Koontz another go. I’m going to try one of his older books. This time, I’ll take note of the reviews on Goodreads and pick one that lots of people like!

77 Shadow Street Goodreads challenge 17 books read

Challenge so far


Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey – Book Review Week 16

Elizabeth is Missing

From the start of the book, Elizabeth is Missing, I was very impressed with the writing. Emma Healey gave me an idea of what it’s like to get older and lose your memory.

The book is written from the point of view of one person, Maud but over 2 timelines, today and the 1940s.
Today, Maud is in her 80s and is suffering from some kind of dementia. She lives alone but has daily carers and a daughter who look after her.

Maud forgets things very easily and her past memories get confused with her present day life. She thinks her friend, Elizabeth, is missing.

In the 1940s, Maud is a young girl with another missing person in her life, her married sister, Sukie. She lives with her mum and dad and their lodger, Douglas.
Douglas has a soft spot for Sukie and does everything he can think of to find her. He believes her husband, Frank has something to do with her disappearance. Douglas never trusted him and thinks Sukie was wrong to marry him.

These two mysteries intermingle causing much confusion to elderly Maud. There wasn’t a twist at the end which disappointed me a little. For some reason, I expected one but I wonder if that’s because of the recent books I’ve been reading!

You can read the blurb and more reviews on Goodreads.

I like Emma Healey’s writing style and think that for a debut novel, it was very, very good.

Elizabeth Is Missing


Dark Places By Gillian Flynn – Book Review Week 15

Dark Places

This is my favourite Gillian Flynn novel so far. I spent nearly a whole Sunday reading it while the kids were out playing with friends. I couldn’t put it down!

This story takes place over two timelines. Today we meet Libby Day, the youngest of the Day children and the only one of the girls to have survived when her mother and two sisters were massacred. Her brother is currently in prison for their murders and Libby’s testimony, when she was a child, helped put him there.

I enjoyed the jump between now and 1985, each time learning just a bit more. The suspense was kept up right through the book and not in an annoying way that sometimes happens.

Here’s the blurb from Goodreads:

Libby Day was just seven years old when her evidence put her fifteen-year-old brother behind bars.

Since then, she has been drifting. But when she is contacted by a group who are convinced of Ben’s innocence, Libby starts to ask questions she never dared to before. Was the voice she heard her borther’s? Ben was a misfit in their small town, but was he capable of murder? Are there secrets to uncover at the family farm or is Libby deluding herself because she wants her brother back?

She begins to realise that everyone in her family had something to hide that day… especially Ben. Now, twenty-four years later, the truth is going to be even harder to find.

Who did massacre the Day family?

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Goodreads reading challenge 2017 15 books completed



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