Posted in Book Review, mystery, netgalley, Thriller

ARC Review : The Widower’s Wife by Cate Holahan

So you know how life sometimes just grabs you and you don’t finish a book. No matter how hard you try it you can’t get to the ending?

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Well this time that was not me!

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28256372.jpgTitle: The Widower’s Wife
Author: Cate Holahan
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Pages: 304
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Adult Fiction, Contemporary , Women’s Fiction, Mystery & Thrillers
Rating: 3

Plot:

Ana Bacon, a young housewife, tumbles off a cruise ship into the dark and deadly waters, but did she take her secrets with her?

Investigator Ryan Monahan is a numbers man. So when his company sends him the Bacon case, which could net a ten million dollar payout, Monahan doubts that her death is just a tragic accident. But the husband has a substantial alibi and a number of witnesses claim to have seen Ana fall. So the official ruling seems to be substantiated.

Still, the more Monahan uncovers about Ana’s life, the more he realizes how many people would kill to keep her secrets hidden. And the closer he gets to the truth, the greater the odds grow that he, too, will take a fatal fall.

Cate Holahan looks at the dark underbelly of a marriage from the perspectives of the detective and the victim in her tense and enthralling page-turner, The Widower’s Wife.

It took me 3 weeks to finish this book and it became a challenge. I would not give up, no matter what. I made this decision.

We fought we lied we sneak we climbed we did what we had to, to survive. But finished we did.

My Experience:

You are seated in a Gone Girl type narration. That person’s turn then the other person’s turn. Which side are you on? Decide!

A retired FBI agent now an insurance policy investigator (much more exciting than it sounds) is called in for a case. A wife and mother Ana fell overboard while on a cruise ship. Apparently, people don’t just fall from cruise ships, though. The odds of it is astronomical and our investigator here is all about the odds being fair.

My usual metaphor (I do this almost with each review so now it has become a label) :

It starts off a bit uncertain. Kind of like a new kid arriving at high school and you are not sure what group this kid will fall in. Will I like them, will they annoy me, will they make my heart beat, are they part dragon, will they like my phoenix feather collection, you know normal questions. Then a bit of time goes by and you learn where they fit in. Nobody is being bullied. No mean girls are picking on them no vampires are trying to eat them whilst pretending to be dating them. So you kind of just go oh, okay. However initially you started  to talk to the person so now you have a relationship and you feel obligated to finish the conversation.

What I liked:

I liked how it was subtle and kept you guessing until the end. You didn’t know where you were standing with the book.

What I did not like:

There was potential for more. I feel like the story could have gone deeper and more cut through. There was still a lot of development left to happen. I feel like the investigator stays the same throughout the story he ponders a lot and he makes good points. Drama happens around him left and right that should lead to some big character development but it doesn’t.

I didn’t like the lack of conclusions throughout the story.

Rating

*  * *

3 snowflakes.

Sincerely

Snow

Posted in 5 stars, Comics & Manga, Snow ramblings

When you realise you don’t have a book review.

When you realise it’s Wednesday and you don’t have a review for a book.

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However, then you are Snow and you realize you have a comic review!

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So  this is going to be in a very random format. No rules. No boundaries. Let’s do this.

How did I get my hands on this comic?

Simple. I requested it on Edelweiss and typed out please 50 times. I think my message looked something like this:

“Please , please , please , please , please , please , please , please. I need this. Today is my birthday [It actually was. Don’t judge me.] can I please read this. When I was a child all the girls around me played doll or other games. I was pretending to be a ninja turtle with my brothers yelling kalabunga.”

Now dragons , elves ,trolls , humans , cats and other beings. It is time to reveal.

What made me this desperate to read?

Enthusiastic Drumrole.

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The comic was:

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Name : Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vol. 1

Author : James Tynion

Pages: 176 beautiful pages.

TMNT meets Batman!?!?!?!?!??!?!

Honestly, who does not get excited about this.

The phases I went through:

  1. 1. This is not real life this is not real.

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2. I am reading about the turtles and batman. I’m reading about the turtles and batman. NOBODY PANICK. NOBODY PANICK!!!!!!!!

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3. This is so perfect how will I ever get over this.

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My actual review:

Oh my crud.

I loved every single frame and every single second while this lasted.

I will quote Don to express how I feel about this comic.

“Is this what love feels like because I think this is what love feels like.” – Donatello

This was just perfection. There was suspense, twists, and character development. I never thought that I would see the day that Raph cared so much about somebody other than his family(Baphael for life). The fanboy Mikey was around batman is the fangirl I was throughout the duration this comic lasted(Maybe an hour). I will be looking out to buy this comic I need to have this on my shelf and show every single person even those who do not like comics.
Baphael bromance merchandise needs to be made now.

This was like swimming in nostalgia and like reuniting with old friends. It was perfect. It felt right. It felt like I was home.

5 Snowflakes. Obviously.

*  * * * *

Sincerely

Snow

Posted in Book Review, YA

The Reflections of Queen Snow White by David Meredith

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Title: The Reflections of Queen Snow White
Author: David Meredith
Publisher: David Meredith
Pages: 155
Source: Author
Genre: Young Adult
Rating: 3.5

The plot:

Snow White has become old and her hair is gray. She is now queen and her own daughter is ready to be married soon. Snow White has fallen into a deep darkness and she can not see the light not even when she hears the birds singing joyfully for the upcoming wedding.

Snow White comes across a mirror, an old mirror that her stepmother used to be quite obsessed with.

Snow White will have to face her truest reflection and journey through what she never wanted to admit nor face if she ever wishes to find peace again.

My experience:

I love fairytales. In all shapes, sizes, and forms.

When a fairytale is being used as a foundation for a new story it needs to show me something I have not seen before. It needs to add a twist but still pay tribute and respect to the original fairytale.

I loved how the author kept to the character that is Snow White. Her features were highlighted throughout the novel and it showed how you expected the original Snow White to have aged after all these years.

I was ready to be extremely critical and nitpicky when I started reading it. But after the first few paragraphs, I was won over by the poetic magical way of writing and I just wanted to cuddle up with my blanket and read.

It is a steady pace and the flow is natural. I liked how you were in the present but at the same time had the chance to see flashbacks and look back into Snow White’s life and experience it with her. It gives the book a unique edge to have the character experience the story as the reader is experiencing it.

What I liked:

I loved the way the buildings were described, nature and animals. It felt peaceful to read about it. The first paragraph with the two birds flying made quite the impact on me. It was beautiful.

What I did not like:

I felt that the night of Snow and Charming’s wedding was an uncharacteristic attribute of the book. The chapter felt a bit forced and uncomfortable next to the others. For this style and the story that had been told so far, I would have preferred a more subtle description of the events that occurred on their wedding night. That’s why I penalized the overall rating.

Quotes:

I could not even dream because every one of them was a nightmare. In everyone, she was waiting for me!

Recommendation:

This book is for the fairytale lover such as myself. It is also a lovely romance and story. Some sexual scenes and dark themes.

Rating:

3 and a half snowflakes that lived happily ever after.

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Sincerely

Snow

 

Posted in 5 stars, Book Review, interview, YA

Review + Interview ! Inside out by Terry Trueman.

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Title: Inside Out
Author: Terry Trueman
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 117
Source: Kindle
Rating: 5

I adore books that start like this.

Bam! In the middle of a busy action scene. You don’t know where you are, what you are doing or why you are there, all you know is that you like this. You like this a lot.

(Grabs popcorn and overly charged soda.)

I had already laughed out loud 5 times and I had barely reached the second page.

Plot:

In a busy coffee shop, a robbery goes wrong. Two gunmen hold seven hostages, including teenager Zach Wahhsted. What nobody realizes at first is that Zach is anything but ordinary and his troubled mind is more dangerous than any weapon.

My experience:

Wow. Wow. Wow.

What an experience. If you have not read this book do yourself a favour and get your hands on it. This is such a powerful read.

This book deals with important issues juvenile crime, prejudice, but most importantly, mental illness.

Meet our main character, Zach. Zach is a bit different. His mind works a bit different from the way other people’s minds work, well that’s what his doctors and his mom say. So it’s probably true.

Zach finds himself in the middle of a bank robbery. He supposes he should be scared but he doesn’t think he is scared. Maybe he is?

This book is so hard to describe. So I will use a metaphor as I often do when I can’t express in words how this book made me feel experiencing the story through Zach’s eyes. The metaphor might be confusing but it’s the best way I can explain my journey with this book.

It felt like I was skating on a frozen ice pond. I felt like I could lose control anytime and slip and fall. But It was such a graceful journey I had no fear. It was a bit dark around, so all I could feel was the sense of skating and deciding whether I liked to skate or not. Then the light starts to grow brighter and I get to see my reflection. Yet it’s not the reflection I expected. It is someone vague sad and alone. I skate along feeling an urgency to help the reflection but the sensation of skating is so liberating and so I don’t feel too bad for the reflection. Then I start noticing people around me pointing at me. Some are laughing some are looking at me in utter disgust. The question in their faces is crystal clear.

Why is this person skating.?

Why is this person allowed outside the house?

 I can feel my stomach turning, I’m becoming upset. But then I realise, I am still having fun. They are strangers. I don’t need them to understand skating to have fun and glide. I then start seeing the cracks in the ice.  I start sensing the danger of this pond. There is no way to know how thick the ice really is nor how long I will be able to keep skating. As I start making my way to the edge. I feel the ice crack and I am plunged into the icy frozen water.

It’s hard to explain this story. It’s important to keep it hidden so you can discover it yourself.  Because only by digging and going through the effort of getting to know Zach will you understand the treasure buried in this book.

Quotes:

“I look around at everybody else in this place, and they all look scared, so I’m trying to look scared too.”

What I liked:

I love the character, Zach. How he is introduced to the reader and how comfortable you are reading from his point of view.

What I did not like:

I would have liked to know a bit more about the robbers and their reaction to how it all turned out in the end.

Rating for the book:

It’s the kind of book you want to have on your shelf. The kind of book you need to read and want to read again. The kind of book you have to give 5 stars to.

5 very powerful snowflakes.

*****

Interview with Terry Trueman

1. What inspired you to write about such a difficult topic?

 I have a Masters degree in Psychology and so studied this subject before working as a therapist for some years at a mental health center, but the big inspiration was losing my beloved stepson to suicide about a year after he’d been diagnosed with schizophrenia.
I have a Masters degree in Psychology and so studied this subject before working as a therapist for some years at a mental health center, but the big inspiration was losing my beloved stepson to suicide about a year after he’d been diagnosed with schizophrenia.

2. What was the most important goal you wanted to achieve with your story?

 I wanted to make a story in which a protagonist had schizophrenia but was a heroic and lovable character, to give a positive view of people with mental illness and lower the stigma with which they live.

3. What are some the most touching or important comments that you have received from people that have read Inside out?

The book was published in 2003, 13 years ago and is still available and has recently ben optioned for a possible TV movie on Starz network. I got lots of warm reviews and many personal emails thanking me for the book, but much of that happened a decade ago. I hope the movie project comes together and gives the book a boost.

4. Did Zach teach you anything while you were writing his story? If so what?

Honestly, Zach was an amalgam of myself and my stepson Eric to whom the book is dedicated and probably a few other friends/former clients with schizophrenia from years ago.. I honestly can’t say Zach “taught me” things; when I write I try to stay in pretty tight control of what’s going on, so Zach was an ongoing creation. On second thought though, trying to make his character sympathetic, despite his confusing condition, likely taught me how difficult life must be for people who suffer from mental illness.

 

Sincerely

Snow