Hey guys! I absolutely smashed it again this month. Don’t ask me how but I managed to read 10 books and 1 comic. I never read this many books in one month but lately I have been flying through my TBR! All the books I read were crime thrillers which were all vastly different from one another. I seem to be in a crime mood lately and I’m loving it! Here’s what I read in April:
The Puppet Show by M.W. Craven: This is the first book in a series and I don’t think I will be reading the second one. My favourite thing about this was the gruesome plot. It was absolutely horrifying as people were literally being burned alive at a stake and to make it even more chilling, it was all happening in prehistoric stone circles. Talk about unsettling! Sadly what let this book down was the characters. They were not likeable at all and they didn’t feel fully fleshed out. It felt like they were all missing something but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was. I also didn’t like the writing that much — it just wasn’t pulling me. I didn’t find the story engaging at all; I could have easily put the book down and not picked it back up. After hearing everyone raving about this I was sadly left feeling disappointed.
Lies by T.M. Logan: T.M. Logan has easily shot to the top of my list for authors to watch out for. We’ve all made split-second decisions and not really considered the consequences because usually it pays off. But what if it didn’t? What if your decision actually had dire consequences and your life is thrown into crisis? This is the situation Joe finds himself in after defending his wife from a family friend. From this moment on, his life will never be the same and he is forced to question whether he can really trust those closest to him. I loved this book so much! It was such a creepy and unsettling thriller, full of so many jaw-dropping twists! I was on the edge of my seat throughout and I didn’t see the ending coming at all.
How I Lost You by Jenny Blackhurst: This was my second least favourite read this month. What drew me to this book was the plot, I thought it sounded really interesting and I had very high hopes for it. Unfortunately I ended up being massively disappointed and there was a few times I nearly DNF’ed it. It’s about a mother who believes she murdered her baby after suffering from postnatal depression. But her world is turned upside down when a recent photograph of her son is pushed through her letterbox and she questions whether her son is still alive after all. I really wanted to like this book but it was such a struggle since I didn’t find any of the characters particularly likeable. I also thought the plot was really ridiculous and over the top — as if someone would get away with kidnapping a baby and faking his death? I felt embarrassed for the police even though they were fictional. The whole thing felt very messy and rushed. I was so relieved when I finally finished it.
Vox by Christina Dalcher: I thought this started off really strong. I was intrigued and horrified by the plot. I couldn’t believe how easily women were silenced and how it pretty much happened overnight. It was genuinely disturbing and I couldn’t stop turning page after page; I was hooked for the majority of it. However, towards the end I was completely lost. It was like a propeller spinning wildly out of control; any sense this story had just got flung off into the distance. It turned incredibly science-y with labs and chemicals or something like that. I didn’t have a clue what relevance this had to the story because the author just didn’t bother to explain anything. Science was not one of my strong points when I was in school and I don’t mind admitting that I don’t understand science at all. So I was really disappointed with the author for her lack of explanation and unfortunately this made the plot incredibly difficult to follow. I didn’t have a clue what was happening for the last 100 pages or so. Sadly it went from a 4 star rating to 3 stars.
Shades of Magic Volume 1: The Steel Prince by V.E. Schwab: I’m really excited we get another series set in the Shades of Magic world but I’m kind of disappointed it’s a comic. I liked this first volume but it was all so rushed and the art was really confusing at times. I found it to follow what was happening and I confused a couple of the characters at times! Comics probably aren’t for me.
An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen: Another book that left me feeling disappointed! This is a slow burner, which, if done right can actually be really exciting and gripping but in this case, I found An Anonymous Girl too slow. I was incredibly bored for the majority of it and it never seemed to pick up. There was no mystery, no twists, no interesting characters and the ending was disappointing. I don’t really have anything else to add.
Watching Edie by Camilla Way: I’m not sure why it took me so long to read this because it was actually a really shocking psychological thriller! I thoroughly enjoyed it and I loved how it dealt with so many sensitive topics. It flips between the past and the present and builds up to an event that destroyed the inseparable friendship of Edie and Heather. It had so many interesting twists but I was left feeling disappointed by the ending. It left me with a few unanswered questions but apart from that it was a really gripping read.
Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh: Apparently this isn’t the strongest book Clare Mackintosh has written and now I’m really intrigued to read her other books because I really enjoyed Let Me Lie. If she can do better than that jaw-dropping twist, I want in! The police believe Anna’s parents both committed suicide but Anna believes they were murdered. The truth is far, far darker and I was honestly completely shocked by the ending. How didn’t I see that coming??? Alongside Anna’s story we also have Murray’s personal story and dealing with his wife’s illness. I did not expect this story to focus on mental health and I thought Clare did a great job. It ended up being a really emotional part of the story and it actually made me cry at the end. I will definitely be reading her other books soon.
Cross Her Heart by Sarah Pinborough: This was my least favourite read this month. I’ve heard many great things about Sarah’s writing but this was just… shockingly bad. I’m going to be really critical here but I thought the plot was absolutely ridiculous. Two 11 year olds make a pact and when one of them breaks it, the other can’t move on and bides her time, determined to get revenge. She literally waits until they are adults to get her revenge. Seriously? Just forget about it and move on. I couldn’t stand either of them, both as children and as adults. I’ve lost count of how many times I nearly DNF’ed this and honestly I probably should have because the ending wasn’t worth it.
29 Seconds by T.M. Logan: Another great book by T.M. Logan! This was an incredibly disturbing story about a woman who is relentlessly pursued and tormented by her boss who is a sexual predator. She is denied a permanent job unless she sleeps with him and his power and popularity render him untouchable. She is backed into a corner and powerless to stop him until one day she is offered a once-in-a-lifetime deal. All she has to do is give a name and that person will disappear. You can guess which name she gives already! I was completely hooked on this story and I sympathised with Sarah throughout. I can’t even begin to imagine how I would react if I found myself in a similar situation. It’s a dark and chilling thriller that will take you on a rollercoaster ride. Packed with many exciting twists and turns, it really is unputdownable.
Warlock Holmes: My Grave Ritual by G.S. Denning: This is the third book in the Warlock Holmes series. I really enjoyed the first two and thought they were hugely entertaining. This one, however, fell short of my expectations. The author has crammed 8 short stories into 420 pages and the result is a bit of a mess. Each story felt very rushed and it was definitely lacking the humour and witty language the first two had. In fact, the writing was very repetitious with the same phrases being repeated over and over. The characters didn’t feel the same to me either and I found Watson intolerable at times. Needless to say I was disappointed. I’m still going to read the fourth book but perhaps I’ll lower my expectations.
So quite a mixed bag this month for ratings. I enjoyed most of them but I didn’t rate any five stars. What books did you manage to read in April? Feel free to leave a comment below! I hope you enjoyed this post and thank you so much for reading!