Shattered Mirror – Iris Johansen

Shattered Mirror – Iris Johansen

I received this novel as an Advance Reader Copy, in exchange for an objective review.

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Eve Duncan is back in her 23rd novel, as a mysterious gold wrapped box is left on the seat of Joe Quinn’s jeep. After carefully extracting the package and ensuring it’s not explosive, Joe opens the box to find a two faced mirror – with one side intact and the other broken. Beneath the mirror, there is a skull, charred from fire, but with a bullet hole evident. As he explores the property, he finds evidence that someone has been trespassing, and presumably surveilling the area.
As Eve starts to prep the skull for reconstruction, her son Michael, only six years old, but already displaying signs of a sixth sense intuition, suggests that the skull be named Sylvie.

Meanwhile, adopted prodigy Cara is in New York City, getting ready to head to Connecticut for a concert with roommate and best friend Darcy. Although very few know that she is the granddaughter of Sergei Kaskov, Jock Gavin comes back into her life to tell her she’s been shadowed, and he steps in to protect her. When she is attacked, and nearly killed, both she and room mate Darcy head to Atlanta to stay with Eve and Joe.

Meanwhile, Eve has just about completed the reconstruction of the skull, when Michael comes to look at it, and tells her that the eye color is wrong – they should be blue. And when Cara and Darcy arrive, Eve realizes that the skull is an exact duplicate of Darcy – and Darcy has a twin named Sylvia.
And so the next adventure in the Eve Duncan series begins, as Eve, Joe, Cara, Darcy and Jock search for answers in this seemingly complex puzzle, where lives are in danger, no one is safe, and uneasy alliances are made in an effort to save the lives of those they love.

From the lakes of Atlanta, to the bayous of Louisiana, this novel is packed with non-stop action! Much like the first Eve Duncan novel, written 20 years ago, and all the others since, I could NOT put it down!

Look For Me – Lisa Gardner

Look For Me – Lisa Gardner

I received this novel as an Advance Reader Copy, in exchange for an objective review.

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Detective Sergeant DD Warren is back, this time to investigate the slaying of a small family in Boston’s Brighton section. There she finds four family members dead, nothing of value missing, and the oldest child of the family missing, along with the famil’es’ two dogs. Is missing teenaged Roxanne the killer, or running scared?

Enter Flora Dane, a vigilante of sorts, who after surviving a kidnapping and torture of her own, now runs private chat rooms and teaches other victims how to protect themselves and go on living. Her newest rescue is Sara, a young woman who survived the brutal slayings of her roommates after a one night stand goes awry. They approach DD with information of their own as they realize Roxanne has been reaching out to them in their chat room, and DD grudgingly agrees to name her a confidential informant (CI).

As the investigation continues, we learn more about Roxanne and her siblings from Roxanne herself, as she re-lives the horror of she and her siblings being removed from her mother and being placed in foster homes – and we learn through her, that not all foster homes are safe and loving homes, and kids prey upon other kids in the name of survival.

As the action heats up and Roxanne is finally located, more questions than answers arise, until a stunning standoff reveals all is not as it seems, and even the most passive bystander is not quite what they seem to be…

A fabulous new addition to the DD Warren series, and one I read late into the night as it was too good to put down! While based on fictitious events, this book parallels the realities that some children in ‘the system’ face and will leave you wondering about the state of our ‘Child Protective Services’ for a long time to come…

Darkest Night – Tara Thomas

Hello Readers!!

Yet another book to write about – this one is along the lines of mystery/romance/suspense, along the lines of a Harlequin INtrigue. I quite enjoyed it and I hope you will too!!

Darkest Night – Tara Thomas

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The Benedict brothers are the heirs apparent to the large shipping company bequeathed to them by their father. Set in beautiful Charleston, SC, the company is prosperous, the family is Charleston royalty, and the youngest of the three, Keaton Benedict, has graduated from college and is expected to take his place within the company.

Tilly Brock was once a neighbor and close friend of Keaton Benedict, until false accusations of embezzlement left her father in disgrace and her family exiled from Charleston society. Now, with both of her parents gone, Tilly is working in an adult night club, as she puts herself through, school, in hopes of realizing her dream of becoming a teacher.

In an off chance, Keaton visits the night club, and spots Tilly out of the corner of his eye. As he realizes who she is, the past comes rushing back, and they realize they’re getting a second chance at love.

Meanwhile, someone wants to bring the Benedict family down. Known only as the Gentleman, he methodically kills those close to Tilly, with hints of her being the presumed end-game. And a young woman from another well-to-do Charleston family, Elise, has her eyes set on Keaton and his fortune, and will stop at nothing to ensure she becomes his bride.

This book will keep you turning pages as you cheer on Tilly and Keaton! However, there are unanswered questions and mystery abounds as the novel ends, leaving you in anticipation for books 2 & 3!

This is the first book I’ve ever read by author Tara Thomas, but it will not be my last!

The Great Alone – Kristin Hannah

The Great Alone – Kristin Hannah

I received an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an objective review…

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Lenora Allbright is a pre-pubescent ‘tween’ in 1974 when her war veteran father makes an impromptu decision to move the family to Alaska. After losing yet another job, the PTSD ridden Ernt receives a letter from the father of a deceased military buddy offering him his sons’ home and land in the last frontier state. They pack their meager belongings and head to rural Kaneq, AK, where they quickly learn that Alaska is another world all together.

A small town with no electricity and none of the modern conveniences, Kaneq is full of colorful characters who quickly welcome the Allbrights into their midst. There’s Large Marge, who left behind a life as an attorney, and runs the towns market. There’s Mad Earl, the town eccentric, and Thomas Walker, who’s family once founded Kaneq, and whom Ernt rapidly comes to resent, and the lovable Thelma.

As summer gradually gives way to fall and into the long, dark Alaskan winter, Ernt becomes more and more irrational, planning for events that don’t come, and pitting himself against the whole town. He takes out his fears and frustration on wife Cora, while Leni does her best to protect her. However, Leni becomes close to Matthew Walker, Tom’s son, and Ernt refuses to allow the relationship to continue. But continue it does, and Leni finds herself in an impossible position – run away with the man she loves, or remain at home and attempt to protect her mother from an increasingly abusive and volatile situation?

When an attempt to run results in a serious accident that threatens Matthews life, Leni must remain home to safeguard her mother. On a dark winters night, violence flares once again, leaving Leni and Cora having to flee the land they’ve come to call home, and the man that Leni loves …

I LOVED this book, and like most of Kristin Hannah’s novels, it really resonated with me. I don’t believe I’ve ever made it through one of her books without tears – and this one is no different!! A must-read for Hannah fans, and for anyone looking for heartwarming characters, descriptive and colorful writing, and a story you’ll remember long after you put the book down!

Also, Alaska has just moved way up on my ‘bucket list’ of places I need to see!