Tag: Murder

Review: Hysteria by Megan Miranda

Posted March 2, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments

Title: Hysteria

Author: Megan Miranda

Publisher: Walker’s Children’s Books

Publication Date: February 2013

Genre: Young Adult

Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone

Synopsis can be found here.
NetGalley review.


Mallory can’t tell what is real and what isn’t, since that faithful night she killed her boyfriend with a knife in the kitchen. Now she sees Brian everywhere, haunting her. And she thinks she is losing her mind. When she is sent off to boarding school, she meets some mean girls who may have more sinister plans for her. And a cute childhood friend who may be the right person to help her find herself again.


I wanted to like this book. I did. I tried really hard, but for me, it was just …. I started skimming halfway through.

Mallory has gone through this traumatic ordeal which would normally make her into a sympathetic character, yet I still found her to be unlikeable. Yes, she can’t really remember what happened that night, yes she is ostracized by her parents, her community. But she is such a weak character, I can’t get behind her.

The other major problem I had with the book were the holes in the plot. I liked how it all made sense at the end, but while reading I thought it was disjointed. The writing was OK, but sometimes I felt like Miranda was trying to imitate The Tell Tale Heart, though not well. The tone of the book was dark and sad, but in a really frustrating way. I don’t even know how to describe it. The story didn’t move as quickly as it should. The three mean girls didn’t have any depth and the attraction between her and Reid, the boy she knew years ago, seemed forced. Even Reid didn’t seem special at all.

The only character I can say I liked was Colleen, Mallory’s best friend. She’s only in the book for a few chapters, but she has life, spunk and attitude. Mallory really blooms in these scenes with Colleen, and it’s easy to see how they got along, before all of this horribleness happened.

Overall, I wasn’t blown away by Hysteria. But I think other readers will like it. Just wasn’t my thing.

Rating 4 Not My Cup Of Tea

Posted March 2, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments

Giveaway and Review: Notes from Ghost Town by Kate Ellison

Posted February 8, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 13 Comments

Title: Notes from Ghost Town

Author: Kate Ellison

Publisher: Egmont

Publication Date: February 2013

Genre: Young Adult Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone

Synopsis can be found here.

I received this book from the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review.


Olivia is away at school when her best friend Lucas Stern dies, in her mother’s arms. The clues point to Olivia’s mom killing Stern, but Olivia doesn’t believe it- not when Stern’s ghost returns to her and tells her it wasn’t her mom, but someone else. And he needs her help to solve it. The murder trial is in days and Olivia must figure out who really did it before she loses her mom forever. And what about Stern, who comes to her like he’s real, like he’s still there, like they still love each other. How can you get over a ghost?

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I read Notes from Ghost Town. Ghost story? Madness? Mental illness? Detective story? It’s all of those things.
Ellison does a great job writing Olivia’s own suspicions of herself and her descent into madness. Olivia is terrified of being like her mother and the illness that engulfs her, but what else is there to suspect when your best friend comes to you as a ghost. This really adds to the uneasy tone of the book. At times, I see Olivia as an unreliable narrator so I constantly cast suspicion on her and her mind. It takes a while for Olivia to figure things out, but this had to do more with self doubt and caution.
And the murderer, villain is pretty extreme. I’m not sure if I buy into the motivations, and the subsequent actions in the last part of the book by the killer, but it’s a twisty ride to get there.

Ellison has some really well written pieces in this book that flow off the page and suspend you in time, a snapshot of a scene or a life. I really those parts, especially because they were so peaceful and lovingly descriptive. The book is tense and dark, much darker than I expected, so these lovely parts serve a great balance as well.

Rating 7 Pretty Cool, Would Recommend

Thank you to Egmont USA for offering these fantastic books for the giveaway and providing me with an ARC!

You could win a Hardcover of Notes from Ghost Town and a paperback copy of The Butterfly Clues, both by Kate Ellison from Egmont USA!

Just fill in the rafflecopter below!
This giveaway is only for my followers and it ends the night of February 13th.
US and Canada only.
Good luck everyone!

Synopsis of The Butterfly Clues is here.
You can follow Kate on her website here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted February 8, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 13 Comments

Review: Winterblaze by Kristen Callihan

Posted February 7, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 1 Comment

Title: Winterblaze

Author: Kristen Callihan

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing Forever

Publication Date: February 2013

Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Three

Synopsis can be found here.
NetGalley review.

Well Kristen Callihan, you’ve done it again.

In the third book of the Darkest London series, we carry on with Poppy Lane. Winston, former inspector, was attacked by a werewolf in the last book and discovered an entire underground and paranormal world that he didn’t know existed. Sad for him, he realized that Poppy did know, and was heavily involved in this world. Winston, hurt and confused, left Poppy and that is where this book picks up.

Winston is such a swoon-worthy character. He’s broken, physically and emotionally, from the last book and is trying to piece himself together again. Poppy, strong and very stubborn, has the weight of the world on her shoulders. her relationships with her sisters is far from stable, and now that her husband has left her, she carries on with a broken heart, alone and with very few people to turn to.

Enter a threat on Winston and his life and Poppy springs into action. She’s going to save the man she loves, whether he wants her to or not.

I love Poppy. Seriously. I know she can be seen as cold and calculated, but I really feel for her. She feels deeply, loves deeply, but has enormous responsibilities on her shoulders and cannot afford the open emotion that her sisters can. She cannot be seen as weak. Her life and other lives depend on it. She is such a great, sympathetic and complicated woman, fighting between what she wants and what she has to do.
The story has lots of fun twists and the reader is shuttled back and forth between the present day and the past. The past when Winston and Poppy are courting, falling in love. They are bittersweet memories that establish Win and Poppy as a loving couple, and it’s super heartbreaking to see where they are in present time and how far they’ve come. It works perfectly to balance the danger and violence surrounding the plot, and it really moves Poppy and Win’s new and fragile relationship forward. I saw where they’ve been and was excited to see where they were going to go.

Love the plot. What a page turner! People are gonna get hurt, folks. Hold on tight.
And the secondary characters are interesting, especially the set up for book four. I won’t give it away, but I cannot wait for that story.

A fantastic addition to the series.

Rating 9 Awesome, like Cookies and Ice Cream

Posted February 7, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 1 Comment

Review: The Dead and Buried by Kim Harrington

Posted January 24, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Title: The Dead and Buried

Author: Kim Harrington

Publisher: Scholastic

Publication Date: January 2013

Genre: Young Adult Ghost Story/Paranormal

Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone

Synopsis can be found here.
NetGalley review:


Jade loves her new house, her big, beautiful and spacious new house. She is excited to start her new school, make new friends. But all of that is wiped away from mysterious things start happening in her new house. When she finds out a girl her age died in her house the year before, Jade has a sneaking suspicion her house may be haunted. And it’s confirmed in the most terrifying way.
Her ghost was killed and wants to know who killed her. Now Jade must do everything she can to find the killer. A killer who goes to her school. A killer who may kill again.

Harrington’s books are always fun for me. Creepy, sending a light shiver up the spine, I usually sit for hours inhaling the stories she writes. This is no exception.

Jade is a typical teenager who finds herself in a very dangerous position. I love her relationship to her half brother. It’s obvious why Jade is fighting for him and why she loves him so much. I really enjoy her relationship to her step mother too. It’s strained to say the least, but with all of Harrington’s characters, there’s more than meets the eye.

Donovan is cute, broody art boy extraordinaire, but sadly, I felt like there was something lacking in his character. He didn’t pull me in and the romance between him and Jade seemed lackluster for me. While Jade is an ok character, I can’t say I liked her. Her and Donovan didn’t really stand out for me on their own or together.

What I really enjoyed was the story. Part ghost story, part mystery, I liked the second guessing. For a while, I had no idea who the killer was and I kept flip flopping back and forth. This book is a fun, fast mystery with a good edge of creepiness.

Rating 7 Pretty Cool, Would Recommend

Posted January 24, 2013 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Review: Mockingbird by Chuck Wendig

Posted October 29, 2012 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 1 Comment

Title: Mockingbird

Author: Chuck Wendig

Publisher: Angry Robot

Publication Date: August 2012

Genre: Adult Urban Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Two

Synopsis can be found here.
NetGalley review.

Miriam Black is back!
I wasn’t shy about my love for Blackbirds, book one of this series and lucky for me, book two does not disappoint.

Miriam is desperately trying to settle down with Louis, but he’s on the road most of the time. And alone and bored, Miriam is not one to hang around waiting for life to happen to her. But one day, Miriam stumbles upon a nightmare she can’t ignore. Someone is killing school girls from the all girls academy.

I love Miriam’s bite. She has one, with sharp teeth and a hard edge. Her wicked sense of humor is in full force in this second novel, brough to a sharp point because of her boredom and her relationship problems. Her and Louis aren’t getting along so well right now, and maybe most of it stems from her being left alone in a trailer park. Or maybe it’s from fighting her urge to leave, explore, be on her own. Either way, Miriam is fighting the good fight, but losing.

I loved the mystery in this book. An all girls’ academy and the missing girls are being murdered? Sign me up! A creepy setting is just one part of this crazy story. The deaths are scary and Miriam’s visions are even scarier. The visions are truly terrifying and they allow the reader to see how this gift really affects Miriam’s personality. The dark humor is abundant and the gore and horror is there. But this story really seems to be about Miriam and fighting her own personal demons. I realized I was holding my breath a lot during this book, eating it up as quickly as I could.

And by the end, Miriam is transformed. For better or worse, you don’t know. Not yet anyway.
Pick up this book, buckle up and set some time aside. You’re going to need it.

I look forward to more adventures with Miriam Black.

Rating: 8 Cookie Worthy!

Posted October 29, 2012 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 1 Comment