#5Books: That time I had book recs…and a strange question

5Books for the week ending 21 October

Have you ever read a book, and found the full name of one character consistently used in full? Like first name and last name every time any character referred to her and yet that never happened to any other character? I thought that would be because she’s the linchpin in the story but she really isn’t. Sure she sets off events, but honestly, that is known from the very first time she appears so it’s not like readers need a consistent reminder of her full name.

So why do it?

Have you ever noticed weirdness like that in a book? Hm. Is there anything that annoys you like that in a book?

Anyhoo, I did have book recs:

When You Find Me

Her husband is missing.

Visiting her family’s South Carolina estate, socialite Gray Godfrey wakes from a night out to an empty bed. Her husband Paul is gone and a thrashing hangover has wiped her memory clean. At first, she’s relieved for the break from her tumultuous marriage; perhaps Paul just needed some space. But when his car is found abandoned on the highway, Gray must face the truth: Paul is gone. And Gray may not want him found.

Her life is unraveling.

When a stranger named Annie calls claiming to know Paul’s whereabouts, Gray reluctantly accepts her help. But this ally is not what she seems: soon Annie is sending frightening messages and revealing disturbing secrets only Gray could know. As Annie’s threats escalate and Gray’s grip on reality begins to slip, the life she thought she had and the dark truth she’s been living begin to merge, leaving an unsettling question: What does Annie want? And what will she do to get it?

A chilling look at marriage, madness, and the lives we think we lead, WHEN YOU FIND ME is a daring debut from a talented new voice in psychological suspense.

Was Paul having an affair with Annie, who is mentally unstable? It seems like too much of an easy guess doesn’t it? But it’s Gray that is most intriguing in this because she may not want him found. Did she do something to Paul and Annie found out? Interesting questions, yes?

Memo from Turner 

What happens when a man of absolute integrity finds himself trapped in a world of absolute corruption?

During a weekend spree in Cape Town a young, rich Afrikaner fatally injures a teenage street girl with his Range Rover but is too drunk to know that he has hit her. His companions – who do know – leave the girl to die.

The driver’s mother, a self-made mining magnate called Margot Le Roux, intends to keep her son in ignorance of his crime. Why should his life be ruined for a nameless girl who was already terminally ill? No one will care and the law is cheap. But by chance the case falls to the relentless Warrant Officer Turner of Cape Town homicide.

When Turner travels to the remote mining town that Margot owns – including the local police and private security force – he finds her determined to protect her son at any cost. As the battle of wills escalates, and the moral contradictions multiply, Turner won’t be bought and won’t be bullied, and when they try to bury him he rediscovers, during a desperate odyssey to the very brink of death, a long-forgotten truth about himself…

By the time Willocks’s tale is finished, fourteen men have died. He shows once again that he is the laureate of the violent thriller.

It’s a very unassuming title isn’t it, even though it’s a striking cover. And violent, given the last line needs to indicate a death count. But, it’s set in South Africa, and the potential in it given the plot, and the divides between the rich and the poor, is what caught my attention. 

The Shadows We Hide

In the highly-anticipated sequel to the national bestseller The Life We Bury, Joe Talbert returns to investigate the murder of the father he never knew, and to reckon with his own family’s past.

Joe Talbert, Jr. has never once met his namesake. Now out of college, a cub reporter for the Associated Press in Minneapolis, he stumbles across a story describing the murder of a man named Joseph Talbert in a small town in southern Minnesota.

Full of curiosity about whether this man might be his father, Joe is shocked to find that none of the town’s residents have much to say about the dead man-other than that his death was long overdue. Joe discovers that the dead man was a loathsome lowlife who cheated his neighbors, threatened his daughter, and squandered his wife’s inheritance after she, too, passed away–an inheritance that may now be Joe’s.

Mired in uncertainty and plagued by his own devastated relationship with his mother, who is seeking to get back into her son’s life, Joe must put together the missing pieces of his family history– before his quest for discovery threatens to put him in a grave of his own.

Yes, this is book two in a series, and here’s book 1, which sounds incredible in and of itself. But back to this one — so Joe Talbert has a complicated life to say the least. Imagine finding out your dad could be this guy? And how does a family story become a threat to his life?

The Stranger Upstairs

From Melanie Raabe, the author of The TrapThe StrangerUpstairs is another dazzling, dizzying psychological thriller guaranteed to keep you guessing until the very last page.

Several years ago, your husband, and the father of your young son, disappeared. Since then, you’ve dreamed of his return; railed against him for leaving you alone; grieved for your marriage; and, finally, vowed to move on.

One morning, the phone rings. When you answer, a voice at the other end tells you your husband’s on a plane bound for home, and that you’ll see him tomorrow.

You’ve imagined this reunion countless times. Of course you have. But nothing has prepared you for the reality. For you realize you don’t know this man.

Because he isn’t your husband, he’s a complete stranger – and he’s coming home with you.

Even worse, he seems to know about something very bad you once did, something no one else could possibly know about . . . Could they?

Whew. So who is this guy? And why or how he is coming home with the woman? And how on earth does he know a secret that no on else could know?

One Fatal Mistake

The author of Killer Choice, a thriller “full of shocks and twists you won’t see coming” (Lee Child), delivers a nail-biting novel about a hit and run, and a lie that goes horribly wrong…

Her son accidentally kills a man.

They cover it up.

Then everything goes wrong.

When eighteen-year-old Joshua Mayo takes a man’s life in a horrible accident, he leaves the scene without reporting the crime to the police. He hopes to put the awful night behind him and move on with his life. But, of course, he ends up telling his mother, Karen, what happened.

Karen has raised Joshua on her own in Cedar Rapids, Iowa–and she’d thought they’d finally made it. He was doing well in school and was only months from starting college. After hearing his dark confession, she is forced to make a choice no parent should have to make, one that draws them both into a web of deceit that will change their lives forever–if they make it out alive….

Sooo, same deal as Memo From Turner, is seems, but oceans between their plots. It’s such an understandable reaction to have considering this is her son she’s trying to protect, but how does a web of deceit borne out of protecting her son become something that threatens their lives?

Inquiring minds want to know!


  • Melody says:

    Hmm…I don’t think I’ve come across a book having a character’s name mentioned in full throughout the book. I think it’d be annoying if there’s no significant reason behind it.

    The books you listed sound very intriguing! Will have to check them out!

  • I would think that full name thing would be super annoying! I don’t know that I’ve ever run into something like that. So The Stranger Upstairs and One Fatal Mistake sound like books I need to check out.

  • Jen Mullen says:

    I’ve read a couple of books that used the same exact phrase more than once and each time it came up, it would disrupt my attention to the plot in an annoying way.

    I read The Stranger Upstairs under The Stranger and all remember is the tension at first when the man who arrives at the airport is not her husband and she can’t bring herself to say anything. The initial suspense was palpable, but then it didn’t really make an impression because I couldn’t suspend my disbelief. 🙁

  • Lark says:

    All these sound good, but especially The Stranger Upstairs!

  • Angela says:

    I dislike when characters have weird nicknames, like it’s just trying to show that the character is cool, or hipster, or whatever. I don’t think I’ve ever come across the full name thing before, though!

  • Sam@wlabb says:

    You are an endless source of thriller-suspense/mystery books. They all sound pretty intense.

  • Ooh One Fatal Mistake sounds pretty dang intense! Thanks for sharing.

  • J.R. Ward doesn’t end like about 90% her questions with a question mark. It’s odd.

    I thought the same thing when I read the blurb for When You Find Me: Annie have an affair with the husband?

    The Stranger Upstairs sounds good. I couldn’t read One Fatal Mistake. I don’t like having a horrible truth hanging over the entire story when you just know it’ll come out eventually.

  • It’s a pet hate of mine when you get a main character being called their full name all the time by the author. I find that so annoying and it makes them sound more impersonal and more like a stranger than our hero!

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