#5Books: Are you ready? Because it’s not a Christmas book rec list!

#5Books for the week ending 24 December 2018

Well, we made it. It’s Christmas Eve over here and I am on holiday at a beach house hoping for some sun in what has to be the wettest December in ages. By the way, anyone notice how Christmas means family drama increases exponentionally? This year, we’re taking a break from the extended family and having some peace because as much as it’s fun, have 15+ people, not including kids, is just insanity. In a good way, but you get my drift yes?

I am currently reading Gone by Midnight by Candice Fox, which is the third in the Crimson Lake series, and lordy, does this just keep getting better. Review to come later this month around the release date.

I have to say, i am ready to see the back end of 2018. How about you?

Book recs to be seen this year before it becomes next year:

She lies in wait 

Six friends. One killer. Who do you trust? A teen girl goes missing after a night of partying; thirty years later, the discovery of her body reopens a cold case in an absorbing novel featuring a small-town cop determined to finally get to the truth—for fans of Tana French and Kate Atkinson.

On a scorching July night in 1983, a group of teenagers goes camping in the forest. Bright and brilliant, they are destined for great things, and the youngest of the group—Aurora Jackson—is delighted to be allowed to tag along. The evening starts like any other—they drink, they dance, they fight, they kiss. Some of them slip off into the woods in pairs, others are left jealous and heartbroken. But by morning, Aurora has disappeared. Her friends claim that she was safe the last time they saw her, right before she went to sleep. An exhaustive investigation is launched, but no trace of the teenager is ever found.

Thirty years later, Aurora’s body is unearthed in a hideaway that only the six friends knew about, and Jonah Sheens is put in charge of solving the long-cold case. Back in 1983, as a young cop in their small town, he had known the teenagers—including Aurora—personally, even before taking part in the search. Now he’s determined to finally get to the truth of what happened that night. Sheens’s investigation brings the members of the camping party back to the forest, where they will be confronted once again with the events that left one of them dead, and all of them profoundly changed forever.

This searing, psychologically captivating novel marks the arrival of a dazzling new talent, and the start of a new series featuring Detective Chief Inspector Jonah Sheens.

Ah, don’t you just love it when secrets of the past come back to bite you in the ass? I am suspecting this is what happens because there’s no way a searing, psychologically captivating novel is about how the six friends changed after the murder — because I’d worry if they didn’t. Did something happen instead though? As in what happens when teenagers get together? 

I am also intrigued though that the cop who investigated the case is the centre of this and not the six friends — I’ve seen other blurbs similar to this where it’s the friends that are the focus (which means this is a new genre?) and not the cops. Perhaps an outside view makes the secrets easier to get to? 

Out of time 

‘When your past calls – Don’t answer, it has nothing to say’. Unless your name is Sean McMillan – in which case you had better answer and listen carefully. Out of Time is the first in a series of books that introduce the reader to Sean McMillan ‘The Dream Traveler’. McMillan is a detective assigned to a cold-case squad, but he is no ordinary detective. With a unique ability to travel back in time through the medium of his dreams – finding evidence and solving a long forgotten murder should be a foregone conclusion. However, Sean soon discovers that changes to the past to influence the future can have unexpected and deadly consequences. The past is not the past, the future is not set and nothing in life is certain. Open your mind and join the ‘Dream Traveler’ on his journey back to the past.

This has got to be one of the most unique time travel blurbs, involving a cop and a mystery. I just want to see how this all comes together.

The Perfect  Fraud

In this propulsive debut thriller, two women with their own dangerous secrets are thrown together by a chance meeting that plunges both their lives into chaos, with a sick little girl’s fate hanging in the balance.

Claire comes from a family of professional psychics. Her talented mother predicts futures for clients from around the globe. But Claire hides a shocking truth the great psychic herself doesn’t know: Claire may carry on the family business, but she doesn’t really have “the gift” and hasn’t for a long time. In fact, she’s a fraud.

Her path will soon intersect with Rena’s, a divorced mother and avid mommy blogger anxious to help her sick four-year-old daughter, Stephanie, who is plagued by a mysterious stomach ailment. No matter how many specialists they’ve seen, the doctors can’t seem to cure Stephanie. Growing increasingly desperate, Rena pack ups and moves across the country to find Stephanie the help she needs. Getting settled in their new place, she meets Louis, who may—or may not—be the answer to all her prayers.

An encounter on an airplane throws both Rena’s and Claire’s carefully constructed lives into a tailspin.  Can these two very different women help each other? And what will become of Stephanie?

I honestly did not expect this blurb to end the way it did, because the beginning is so far from that and I just want to see how it all comes together because nothing about this is what I expected. 

Girl in the Rearview Mirror

The young nanny for a prominent political family gets drawn into a web of deadly lies—including her own—in this stunning debut thriller with the menacing twists of Megan Abbott and the exquisite suspense of Laura Lippman.

They are Phoenix’s First Family: handsome Philip Martin, son of the sitting Senator, an ex-football player who carries himself with an easy grace and appears destined to step into his father’s seat when the time is right; his wife Marina, the stylish and elegant director of Phoenix’s fine arts museum; and their four-year-old daughter Amabel, beautiful and precocious and beloved.

Finn Hunt is working a dull office job to pay off her college debt when she meets Philip and charms Amabel. She eagerly agrees to nanny, thinking she’s lucked into the job of a lifetime. Though the glamour of the Martins’ lifestyle undeniably dazzles Finn, her real pleasure comes from being part of the family: sharing quick jokes with Philip in the kitchen before he leaves for work; staying late when Marina needs a last-minute sitter; and spending long days with Amabel, who is often treated more like a photo op than a child.

But behind every façade lurks a less attractive truth. When a young woman approaches Finn, claiming a connection with Philip and asking Finn to pass on a message, Finn becomes caught up in a web of deceit with the senate seat at its center. And Finn isn’t exactly innocent herself: she too has a background she has kept hidden, and under the hot Phoenix sun, everything is about to be laid bare. . . .

Oh hello, someone’s been a bad Senator, and a young nanny gets caught in the middle. I would have been happy with that, but then, how do her secrets work into this whole thing? Another unexpected ending!

That’s it from me! I hope everyone is having a wonderful Christmas Eve and Christmas tomorrow!

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