Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

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source: purchased
title: Gone Girl
author: Gillian Flynn  / Twitter
genre: crime thriller/mystery/suspense
pages: 422
published: June 2012
first line: When I think of my wife, I always think of her head.
rated: 4 out of 5 stars
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Blurb:

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?

My Thoughts:
Oh Gillian Flynn, how you love to mess with people’s emotions while reading.
Gone Girl is my third Gillian Flynn book and I am eagerly awaiting for her to pen another novel. This author easily became an instant favorite after I read Sharp Objects then Dark Places. I went into this one pretty much blindly, I have not seen the film version and I did not know much about the story-line except that the wife went missing.

While I enjoyed reading Gone Girl overall I did have one qualm. The slow pace from the beginning to the middle of the novel. I kept wanting something to happen. Once the latter half of the book picked up I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. The story is narrated in alternating chapters by married couple Nick and Amy. We get Nick’s side of the story then we get Amy’s diary entries and her side of the story.

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Sister of Mine by Laurie Petrou

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source: review copy courtesy of Meryl Moss Media
title: Sister of Mine
author: Laurie Petrou/ Twitter
pages: 294
genre: psychological thriller
first line: She breaks into a run as soon as she clears the flames.
rated: 4 out of 5
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blurb:
For fans of Sarah Pinborough and Liane Moriarty comes a taut domestic suspense about the lies we tell to hold our lives together.

Sisters, like secrets, are best kept close.

Penny and Hattie, orphaned sisters in a small town, are best friends, bound together to the point of knots. But Penny, at the mercy of her brutal husband, is desperate for a fresh start. Willing to do anything for her older sister, Hattie agrees to help. A match is struck and a fire burns Penny’s marriage to the ground. With her husband gone, Penny is free, and the sisters, it seems, get away with murder. But freedom comes at a cost.

More than a year after the fire, a charming young man comes to town. Hattie and Penny quickly bring him into the fold and into their hearts but their love for him threatens the delicate balance. Soon long-held resentments, sibling rivalry, and debts unpaid boil over, and the bonds of sisterhood begin to snap. As one little lie grows into the next, the sisters’ secrets will unravel, eroding their lives until only a single, horrible truth remains: You owe me.

A compelling novel of suspense from a talented new voice, Sister of Mine asks us to consider the bonds of family, what it takes to commit the unthinkable, and how far you’ll go to protect the ones you love.

my thoughts:

Sister of Mine is a multi layered novel about two sisters, Penny and Hattie, who are tied together by a dark secret. This secret rips them apart as the years go by because of resentments, lies, cover-ups and bad memories.

As the story opens, their mother who raised them died in an accident at home while Penny was away at college. Giving up her dreams of finishing school, Penelope comes back home after the death of her mother to take care of her younger sister Hattie. She gets a steady job and marries a local man who turns out to be an abuser. Terrified of her husband and what he is capable of Penny sees only one way to escape him. When her husband is found dead in a house fire, the two sisters just want to get on with their lives and leave his memory behind.

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Meltdown by GP James

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source: ARC courtesy of Meryl Moss Media
title: Meltdown
author: G.P. James
published: Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing (May 15, 2018)
pages: 393
first line: His hazel eyes grazing the dials and gauges on the sage metal walls through the plate-glass window teleported him back to the seventies, making him feel older than thirty-eight, like he had been on the job for that amount of time and was cusping the turn of his sixth decade.
genre: environmental thriller/suspense/action
rated: 4 out of 5 stars
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blurb:

The Pace of the Bourne Identity
The Technical Depth of Michael Crichton
The Universal Magnitude of Dan Brown

A timely thriller illuminating facts regarding the state of the world’s energy crisis, climate change, and the quandary of nuclear energy–inspired by events in Fukushima, unexpected earthquakes across the planet, and the deterioration of nuclear power plants worldwide.

Bear Mountain Nuclear Energy Center sits one mile outside the active Ramapo fault line, thirty-five miles from the center of New York City. The fault line rocks causing a massive earthquake in the town of Peekskill; power is clipped and control of one of the reactors at Bear Mountain is abruptly lost.

Plant supervisor Trace Crane fights to save the reactor while his wife Avi searches for their daughter in the destroyed Northeast. As the condition of the reactor plummets and radiation is released into the environment, Trace is left to choose between saving the nuclear plant, the East Coast, and the twenty million residents of the NYC metro area or finding his family and saving himself.

my thoughts:
Meltdown by G.P. James was a tense thrill ride that posed many “what if” scenarios. Trace Crane works as an engineer at the Bear Mountain Nuclear Energy Center in upstate NY. He is married to Avi and they have a young daughter named Brooklyn. As the book takes off, Trace is on vacation mode as he is only working half day on this Friday before he heads to Connecticut for the weekend to relax with his family. This morning however the active Ramapo fault line rocks and sets off an earthquake. As a result, the poorly maintained Bear Mountain nuclear plant is now leaking nuclear waste into the environment. Houses are damaged, people are killed and mayhem ensues in the surrounding areas of New York and New Jersey. In a race against time, things go from bad to worse as Trace struggles with trying to do his job and keeping everyone safe or running off to find his family and evacuating.

“No one ever imagined a quake of that magnitude striking the East Coast, except, clearly, the scientists. Seismologists knew something everyone else didn’t-the Ramapo fault zone was a seething leviathan that could explode at any moment. Now it had. Trace experienced the chilling realization that their operating licence shouldn’t have been extended twenty years past the reactor’s design life.”
p.26, Meltdown by GP James

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Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

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source: free review copy via the publisher
title: Pretty Girls
author: Karin Slaughter/ Twitter
pages: 573
genre: crime fiction/mystery/thriller/suspense
published: 2015
first line: When you first disappeared, your mother warned me that finding out exactly what happened to you would be worse than never knowing.
rated: 5 out of 5 for a thrill ride with twists and turns that had me on the edge of my seat
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blurb:
Sisters. Strangers. Survivors.

More than twenty years ago, Claire and Lydia’s teenaged sister Julia vanished without a trace. The two women have not spoken since, and now their lives could not be more different. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother, dates an ex-con and struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the horror and heartbreak of their shared loss—a devastating wound that’s cruelly ripped open when Claire’s husband is killed.

The disappearance of a teenage girl and the murder of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: what could connect them? Forming a wary truce, the surviving sisters look to the past to find the truth, unearthing the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago . . . and uncovering the possibility of redemption, and revenge, where they least expect it.

my thoughts:
Oh my goodness, this book! It has had me on the edge of my seat since last week. I could not read it fast enough, and when I did read it, I didn’t want to stop.

If there is a book that might make you faint while reading, it’s Pretty Girls. It was a thrill ride of emotions, truly. I finished reading it last night and at 573 pages there was not a dull moment.

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The Dead Zone by Stephen King

deadzone

source: purchased
title: The Dead Zone
author: Stephen King
genre: horror/thriller
published: 1979
pages: 402
first line: By the time he graduated from college, John Smith had forgotten all about the bad fall he took on the ice that January day in 1953.
rated: 3 out of 5 stars
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blurb:
Stephen King’s #1 New York Times bestseller about a reluctant clairvoyant who must weigh his options when he suddenly sees the terrible future awaiting mankind.

“There was only blackness and that universal emptiness… Cold limbo. Johnny Smith stayed there a long, long time.”

When Johnny Smith was six-years-old, head trauma caused by a bad ice-skating accident left him with a nasty bruise on his forehead and, from time to time, those hunches…infrequent but accurate snippets of things to come. But it isn’t until Johnny’s a grown man—now having survived a horrifying auto injury that plunged him into a coma lasting four-and-a-half years—that his special abilities really push to the fore. Johnny Smith comes back from the void with an extraordinary gift that becomes his life’s curse…presenting visions of what was and what will be for the innocent and guilty alike. But when he encounters a ruthlessly ambitious and amoral man who promises a terrifying fate for all humanity, Johnny must find a way to prevent a harrowing predestination from becoming reality.

my thoughts:
I randomly decided to re-read The Dead Zone not too long ago. I just plucked it from my bookshelves one morning before heading off to work after I finished reading a Neil Gaiman book the night before.

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