Title: Where I Left Her Author: Amber Garza Genre: Thriller Publisher: Mira Books Source: Publisher via NetGalley Format: Ebook Release Date: August 24, 2021 Rating: ★★★★★
From the author of When I Was You comes a spine-tingling new thriller about a mother’s worst nightmare come true, when her teenage daughter goes to a sleepover and doesn’t come back.
Whitney had some misgivings when she dropped her increasingly moody teenage daughter, Amelia, off at Lauren’s house. She’d never met the parents, and usually she’d go in, but Amelia clearly wasn’t going to let something so humiliating happen, so instead Whitney waved to her daughter before pulling away from the little house with the roses in front.
But when she goes back the next day, an elderly couple answers the door—Amelia and Lauren aren’t there, and this couple swears they never were, that she’s at the wrong house. As Whitney searches for Amelia, she uncovers a trail of lies her daughter has told her—from the Finsta account to rumors of a secret relationship. Does she really even know this girl she’s raised? And Amelia’s not the only one with secrets. Could Whitney’s own demons have something to do with her daughter’s disappearance, and can Whitney find her before it’s too late?
Whitney dropped off her sixteen-year-old daughter, Amelia, at a friend’s house for a sleepover. She didn’t meet the friend’s parents or walk her inside, despite feeling protective of her daughter, because she knew it would humiliate Amelia. When Whitney returned the next morning to pick up her daughter, an elderly couple answered the door. They’d never heard of Amelia and didn’t see her the night before. Whitney has to search for her daughter, which brings back some dark secrets from her past.
This story didn’t waste anytime getting right into the drama. I loved this premise. Even though I new it was coming, I still found it creepy when Whitney went to her daughter’s friend’s house and she wasn’t there. There were twists and cliffhangers at the end of the chapters that kept me turning the pages.
I thought I had the ending all figured out, but I was completely wrong. Twice I was certain I knew what had happened but I was wrong both times. Though my predictions were wrong, the ending made sense.
Where I Left Her is a suspenseful thriller!
Thank you HarperCollins for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
What to read next:
When I Was You by Amber Garza
The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave
About the author:
Amber Garza has had a passion for the written word since she was a child making books out of notebook paper and staples. Her hobbies include reading and singing. Coffee and wine are her drinks of choice (not necessarily in that order). She writes while blaring music, and talks about her characters like they’re real people. She lives with her husband and two kids in Folsom, California.
Have you read Where I Left Her? What did you think of it?
This blog meme is hosted by Book Date. It is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organize yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment, and er… add to that ever growing TBR pile!
What I just finished:
This weekend I finished Where I Left Her by Amber Garza.
What I’m currently reading:
I’m currently reading Hunting Prince Dracula by kerri Maniscalco.
What I’m reading next:
Next I will be reading The Bennet Women by Eden Appiah-Kubi.
What are you guys reading this week? Have you read any of these books?
The meme that dares to ask what book has been in your bed this morning? Come share what book you’ve spent time curled up reading in bed, or which book you wish you had time to read today! This meme is hosted by Midnight Book Girl.
This Sunday I’m reading Hunting Prince Dracula (Stalking Jack the Ripper #2) by Kerri Maniscalco.
Following the grief and horror of her discovery of Jack the Ripper’s true identity, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has no choice but to flee London and its memories. Together with the arrogant yet charming Thomas Cresswell, she journeys to the dark heart of Romania, home to one of Europe’s best schools of forensic medicine… and to another notorious killer, Vlad the Impaler, whose thirst for blood became legend.
But her life’s dream is soon tainted by blood-soaked discoveries in the halls of the school’s forbidding castle, and Audrey Rose is compelled to investigate the strangely familiar murders. What she finds brings all her terrifying fears to life once again.
In this New York Times bestselling sequel to Kerri Maniscalco’s haunting #1 debut Stalking Jack the Ripper, bizarre murders are discovered in the castle of Prince Vlad the Impaler, otherwise known as Dracula. Could it be a copycat killer…or has the depraved prince been brought back to life?
Title: Sunny Days Author: Deborah Kerbel, Miki Sato Genre: Children’s, Picture Book Publisher: Pajama Press Source: Publisher Format: Hardcover Release Date: May 4, 2021 Rating: ★★★★★
Morning sun, golden skies Softly waking sleepy eyes
For preschoolers, sunny days are full of possibility. A sunbeam on the floor is the perfect place to curl up with a furry friend, and warming weather means seeds in the garden, mud pies in the yard, adventures at the beach, and ice cream in the shade. Evening brings the silly fun of watching little shadows stretch out long, and there’s nothing so cozy as watching the sun set as a family.
In Sunny Days, author Deborah Kerbel once again weaves a spell of early childhood magic with couplets as bright as a summer afternoon. Illustrator Miki Sato’s textural collage art nearly rises from the page with fascinating features made from paper, felt, and embroidery silk.
This picture book is about all the different things that you can do in the sun, from morning to night. When you wake up, there’s a golden sky. Then, throughout the day you can garden or swim. In the evening, the sky turns a rosy pink to say goodbye to that day. Each page had short rhyming lines that went along with the pictures.
This is a beautiful children’s book. I love the style of art, with layers of paper creating a picture. Each picture was made with pieces of coloured paper layered on top of one another. Some of the illustrations also had thread woven to make small lines and add texture to the pictures.
At the back of the book, there was a list of activities to do in the sun. These include, leaving objects on construction paper in the sun to create patterns, and tracing a puddle after the rain with sidewalk chalk to see how the sun shrinks it. These are fun and simple activities that kids can do after reading this book.
Sunny Days is a beautiful children’s book!
Thank you Pajama Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
What to read next:
Snow Days by Deborah Kerbel, Miki Sato
Sun Dog by Deborah Kerbel, Suzanne Del Rizzo
Have you read Sunny Days? What did you think of it?
Title: The Hiddenseek Author: Nate Cernosek Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers Source: Publisher via NetGalley Format: Ebook Release Date: August 24, 2021 Rating: ★★★★★
In this spine-chilling middle grade debut–perfect for fans of Small Spaces and the Goosebumps series–a brother and sister are transported to a cursed world based on the game hide-and-seek, where they are pursued by a shape-shifting witch, the game never ends, and the only way to get home is to win.
“You hid. But you were not found. You thought you were playing a harmless game. You were wrong.”
After Holly and Hector Thorn are left behind during a simple game of hide-and-seek, they find themselves transported to a gloomy, magical world seemingly trapped in time–the Hiddenseek. There, It, a witch with the ability to transform into a raven and a wolf, stalks children day and night, turning any she can lay hands on into statues, frozen forever in their final moments of terror.
Together with the other lost children they encounter, Holly and Hector will have to unravel the mysterious origins of the Hiddenseek and find a way to put a stop to the curse once and for all, before they get stuck there forever . . . Because in this twisted game of hide-and-seek, they are playing for their lives.
The only thing worse than being found while playing hide and seek is not being found at all. When Holly was playing hide and seek with her brother, Hector, and his friends, she wasn’t found. She came out of her hiding spot and saw a man, named Oliver, who told her he must take her to a place called The Hiddenseek since she lost the game. Hector also wasn’t found, so he was sent to The Hiddenseek with Holly. Now, they’re in an even more dangerous game, being chased by It, a witch who can turn them to stone if she catches them. Holly and Hector have to win the game to save their lives.
Most kids play hide and seek, but usually the stakes are not as high as they are in The Hiddenseek. It’s not fun to not be found, because, though it could mean that you found a great hiding place, it could also mean that the other players forgot about you. Holly and Hector, along with the other kids they meet, were all tricked while playing hide and seek and not found. This was the ultimate worst ending to a game of hide and seek.
This was a spooky story. The kids were transported to a forest with a deep history. They had to figure out why they had been brought there before they could find their way home. I would have loved this spooky horror story when I was a kid!
The Hiddenseek is a creepy middle grade story!
Thank you Penguin Teen for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
What to read next:
Hush-A-Bye by Jody Lee Mott
Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia
Have you read The Hiddenseek? What did you think of it?
Title: From Blood and Ash (Blood and Ash #1) Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout Genre: Fantasy, Romance Publisher: Blue Box Press Source: Purchased Format: Paperback Release Date: March 30, 2020 Rating: ★★★★★
Chosen from birth to usher in a new era, Poppy’s life has never been her own. The life of the Maiden is solitary. Never to be touched. Never to be looked upon. Never to be spoken to. Never to experience pleasure. Waiting for the day of her Ascension, she would rather be with the guards, fighting back the evil that took her family, than preparing to be found worthy by the gods. But the choice has never been hers.
The entire kingdom’s future rests on Poppy’s shoulders, something she’s not even quite sure she wants for herself. Because a Maiden has a heart. And a soul. And longing. And when Hawke, a golden-eyed guard honor bound to ensure her Ascension, enters her life, destiny and duty become tangled with desire and need. He incites her anger, makes her question everything she believes in, and tempts her with the forbidden.
Forsaken by the gods and feared by mortals, a fallen kingdom is rising once more, determined to take back what they believe is theirs through violence and vengeance. And as the shadow of those cursed draws closer, the line between what is forbidden and what is right becomes blurred. Poppy is not only on the verge of losing her heart and being found unworthy by the gods, but also her life when every blood-soaked thread that holds her world together begins to unravel.
Poppy was chosen at birth to be the Maiden, never to be looked at or spoken to, waiting for her Ascension when she would be blessed by the gods. The kingdom is protecting her, by keeping her isolated and abused. However, they don’t expect Poppy to fight back. When one of her personal guards is killed in front of her, Poppy is assigned a brand new guard named Hawke. Poppy and Hawke have already had a secret romantic encounter, which would ruin Poppy if anyone found out about her rebellion. Poppy has to deal with all of these issues while also opening up to new love.
I’ve seen this book everywhere for the last year, and I knew I would love it before I read it. This story didn’t disappoint. It was incredibly detailed, but didn’t feel tedious. It followed every moment of these important days of Poppy’s life.
I felt like there was going to be a twist at the end, but it still shocked me. It was actually similar to a twist that I have in the book I’m currently writing, so I just loved it. This story was worth all the hype!
From Blood and Ash is an exciting romantic fantasy!
What to read next:
Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Other books in the series:
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire
The Crown of Gilded Bones
Have you read From Blood and Ash? What did you think of it?