Friday 11 June 2021

Review | Local Woman Missing by Mary Kubica

Published by HQ on June 10, 2021

Mary Kubica’s thrillers never disappoint and Local Woman Missing was exactly the tense and haunting kind of book I have come to expect from this author. With two missing women and a child returning from being held captive for several years, the suspenseful prose and mystery-filled chapters had me completely hooked and this was another excellent read from the author - one I would strongly recommend.

Local Woman Missing starts in a really intriguing way with the teaser of a prologue followed by part one of the book, where we meet Delilah and see the danger she is in. The opening scene with Delilah was truly shocking and unsettling to read. Whilst I was fascinated to begin with and interested to see the links between the very different opening two parts, as a reader who generally loves short and fast-paced chapters, I did struggle to get into the book straight away as the first part is all told in one chapter, with no breaks, and according to my Kindle was nearly 15% of the book. However, I’m a big fan of Mary Kubica’s books and so I knew the best was yet to come and the rest of the book certainly lived up to my expectations with a hugely compelling and expertly plotted tale full of chilling twists and turns.

The story is set over two main timelines. The present day, where Delilah shockingly returns to the place she disappeared from when she was just six years old, and eleven years previous, around about the time Delilah and her mum vanish. The main part of the book is told from the perspective of three different characters in alternating chapters: Leo, who is Delilah’s younger brother; Meredith, who is the second woman to go missing; and Kate, local vet and neighbour to the two missing women.

Each character had a fresh take on the mysteries within this novel and all three perspectives were different and equally captivating. I could not get enough of part two of this book – it was highly engaging and I raced through every suspenseful chapter none the wiser of what had happened to the missing women but so desperate to find out the truth. There were so many twisted layers to the story that it was impossible to guess every outcome and there were times when I just had to stop reading so I could take in the secret that had just been revealed and I seriously love it when a book catches me off guard like this one did several times.

I loved reading this book. It was genuinely addictive and towards the end had me reading on the edge of my seat, so invested in all the characters and eager to get to the truth. The storytelling here was uneasy and pulsating all at the same time. I would love to go back and re-read Local Woman Missing now I know the truth and be reminded of how cleverly written the book was with the clues and hints that were well-hidden but had me reading with a sense of foreboding. Another difficult to put down, menacing thriller by Mary Kubica.

Review copy provided by the publisher - this was my honest review.   

Monday 7 June 2021

Review | The Lucky Escape by Laura Jane Williams

Published by Avon on June 10, 2021

I was looking for a book to escape into and the sunny cover for The Lucky Escape by Laura Jane Williams caught my eye and grabbed my attention and let me tell you, the book inside is just as bright and uplifting as the cover. This book was proper feel-good fiction with real heart to it. Yes it made me smile throughout but it also made me think, and I do enjoy a book that does both these things. It was the perfect book to escape into.

In The Lucky Escape, we meet Annie on the morning of her wedding to Alexander. If there’s one thing Annie is certain of, it’s that her future is with this guy. So when he jilts her on her wedding day, she is at a complete loss. When her friends and her now ex mother-in-law persuade her to go on her honeymoon anyway, Annie ends up giving her spare ticket to a guy she has literally only just met again for the first time in a long time – Patrick Hummingbird. Going on honeymoon with a man you barely remember – it could be the beginning to a thriller but thankfully here it is not. Instead this is a warm and wonderful tale of self-discovery and new beginnings.

My absolute favourite part of this book was the honeymoon. I loved travelling to Australia through the author’s words. There was great description and I was able to see every part of the honeymoon play out in front of me as the author paints a lovely, vivid picture of every scene. However, the best bit of the honeymoon, for me, was by far the chemistry between Annie and Patrick which leapt off the page. I loved the two of them. They made me smile and laugh-out-loud so many times and honestly, whether they were feeling the love or not, I certainly was. I was rooting for them all the way and really enjoyed getting to know both of them.

Annie is the character we need. She is kind and caring and has everything going for her but as this is now a world where everyone has to voice their own opinions, however unwelcome, and are happy to judge people without having a clue about them, Annie has a whole bag of self-esteem issues to deal with. She is insecure, and let’s face it, being jilted at the altar doesn’t really help her there.

I felt for Annie throughout. She tries to put a brave face on things but I seriously wanted her to know it was ok to not be ok. Patrick helps her there, and I loved him for it. I get why some people might find Annie quite frustrating but I actually found her so easy to relate to. She knows she has her issues and she tries to work through them. Naturally, she has setbacks but no matter how much she may not have wanted to, she always got back up and I really warmed to her character so easily.

Truthfully there so was so much I loved about this book. From Annie’s friends and sister, to Patrick’s own personal story, to the positive messages this book delivers about living in the moment and taking time to heal, Laura Jane Williams writes perceptively and with a warmth and humour that really had me hooked. The Lucky Escape is insightful and uplifting – the perfect book to read this summer.

Review copy provided by the publisher - this was my honest review.    

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