Mini Reviews January 1-7

The Chalk Man
by C. J. Tudor

I just need everyone to read this book so y’all can talk about it with me. I can’t even talk about the thing that made this so good because it’s THE spoiler for the book, but just trust me when I say it’s good.

It’s a very real terror that haunts this book, full of normal people and their normal decisions that veer off into terrible consequences. It’s about growing up and realizing that adults aren’t always as infallible as we hoped as children. It’s being an adult and realizing you are how you are and that’s that.

Ugh, but it’s wonderfully written, so tightly paced that you almost can’t put the book down. Just… y’all, read it.

The Wife Between Us
by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

I went into this not quite knowing what to expect. I was looking for more of a taut thriller, which this isn’t, but that doesn’t mean it was bad. It’s more of a domestic thriller (the thrills beginning only in the second section of the book as we finally learn some backstory). It has a few different twists for one novel, but the most prominent one is the realization of who’s narrating and when.

Overall, I enjoyed this book, even if at times the character motivations seemed to change between sections. It’s still getting a place on my shelf.

‘Til Death Do Us Part
by Kate White

A better installment of the Bailey Weggins series with a twist that, I admit, I never saw coming until the end. Writing was less plagued by description, although the constant reminder that the 200 pound woman was just so fat was annoying at best (at 190, I wonder what she’d think of me).

Overall, solid story.

Grist Mill Road
by Christopher Yates

Oh, we were doing so well with one character losing his fucking mind and his wife learning more and more about that horrible day in her past, welp guess it’s time to kill the queer character!

You can tell how excited I am by this book. Hard pass, queer friends. Hard pass.

Prime Meridian
by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I can’t talk about how much I love this type of science fiction enough. There’s advanced technology, people can live and farm on Mars, but the real heart of the story is on the people. The technology is background to the lives of the people involved. I’m a bad reviewer because I don’t want to talk about the book because I don’t want to spoil it for you. But just go and pre-order it and read it.

Bad Call
by Stephen Wallenfels

First thing first: this is a young adult novel. That’s not shade, but I didn’t go into it knowing that and it made the novel a little weird to get into. That said, it’s a fun study into our two main characters and extra fun when shit hits the fan in the form of a blizzard and an ax. It’s a solid read that’ll keep you reading till the end to know who makes it out alive.

Before I Let Go
by Marieke Nijkamp

I cried. I cried a fucking lot. It was really ugly. I identified so much with Kyra and the fact that she’s not even there during the story just broke my goddamn heart. Marieke’s writing is quick and easy to read, but packs such a punch. I dare y’all not to cry.

I fucking loved it.

by Tony Hillerman

This is the first Tony Hillerman book I’ve read, which works out because, even though it’s technically the seventh book, it’s the first one where Chee and Leaphorn meet. I like the amount of research he’s clearly done, including a page of things he took liberties in. I’m still not sure how completely accurate he is, but I’ve heard good things and have another book of his to read. I know the TV movies were really good and featured all Native actors, so I’ve got high hopes.

The mystery in this one was very convoluted, but as it started to come together, there was a way to start piecing together who the ultimate bad was. Overall, I enjoyed it, so I’m hoping I’ll enjoy the next book, too.

The End of Temperance Dare
by Wendy Webb

It took me months to finish this book, not necessarily because it was bad, but because it took too long to get to the horror. It started out very “Women’s lit” ish??? Which I know isn’t a bad thing but it’s just not my thing. It took a long time of ooh, will she/won’t she romance to start building into the haunting and once it arrived it was like a firecracker. Impressively loud, but far too brief.

About Fleet Sparrow

Writer, Reader, Critic, Bear.
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