Nancy Drew Vibes Book Club

Nancy Drew Vibes Book Club

Calling all Nancy Drew fans! Or thriller/mystery fans!

For 2023, I’m hosting the Nancy Drew Vibes Book Club on the Fable app, an app for hosting book clubs. We will read books with Nancy Drew vibes – think intrepid girl detective.

Not all books will neccessarily be YA, and we may even do books that crossover into fantasy. You don’t have to have actually read Nancy Drew to participate, as long as you enjoy mysteries and thrillers.

Our first read is The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. We offically start reading on January 4th and wrap up on February 18th.

On the app, there are checkpoint dates, but they are just suggestions. You can read the book as quickly or as slowly as you want. This is just for fun, so you don’t have to read every book the club reads if you don’t want to.

One of the things I love about the Fable app is that you can read books within the app. When you sign up at my link, you also recieve a $5 credit to spend on books.

If you have any questions about how the book club works, don’t hesitate to ask. Also, if you have any suggestions for the club’s next read, let me know in the comments. I’ll take all reccomendations, and we will vote on the next book to read.

Happy Reading!

Advertisement
Book Reviews

Top Ten Reads of 2022

This year it didn’t seem as hard to pick my top ten reads, not because I read a lot of boring or disappointing books, but because these books just really stood out to me.

1. The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse – This was my first really good read of the year! It’s a secluded location thriller, set in a Gothic-y resort that used to be a psyhiatric hospital. This one kept me turning pages late into the night. If you love thrillers, you’ll enoy this one.

2. The Agathas by Katherine Glasgow and Liz Lawson – This is a YA mystery. Two girls who are complete opposites solve the murder of a classmate. Not only was this also a pageturner, but I loved the friendship that formed between the two girls.

3. The Messy Lives of Book People by Phaedra Patrick – This is a general adult fiction book. It follows Liv Green, a maid who wishes to be a writer. She gets her wish, when her famous author boss dies before finishing her book. Liv has to finish the book, but in doing so uncovers secrets, including one that has a surprising connection to herself. I finished this book in one night. It was full of heart, hope, and a dash of mystery, and I kept thinking about it long after I had closed the book.

4. A Comb of Wishes by Lisa Stringfellow – This is a MG fantasy about a girl who gets a wish from a mermaid and has to figure a way out of the exorbitant price the mermaid is demanding in exchange for said wish. This is an excellent book – everything you are looking for is there. It would be great for use in the classroom, but I think any fan of fantasy (no matter their age) would enjoy it.

5. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – I know there are some people who didn’t like this book, and some who avoided it because of some controversy, but this is an excellent story. It has the quality of a classic book, and I have no doubt it will become a modern classic. You do have to understand the style of writing is different from a typical popular book, but that is part of what makes it such a good book. It is a true examination of human nature, both the positve qualities and the negative ones. The movie is excellent as well!

6. The House Across the Lake by Riley Sager – Also a thriller, this one took an unexpected turn from the author’s typical books. I know some people did not like it because of that, but I loved it. It was masterfully done and hooked me in from the first page.

7. The Housemaid by Freida McFadden – Another thriller that hooked me immediately. Also, there is second book coming out in 2023, so as soon as I heard about it, I added it to my TBR list.

8. I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy – A step away from my normal genre, but so good! This is a memoir from one of the child stars from the Nickelodeon show iCarly. So honest and humorous, it was especially great on audio as Jennette reads it herself.

9. The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James – I have enjoyed every book I’ve read by this author, but this one is a bit different than some of her others. It is historical, set in the 1920’s, and is supernatural, but is so well written it was hard to put down.

10. Survive the Night by Riley Sager – I know this is the second book by this author, but what can I say? Riley Sager is king of writing thrillers you just can’t put down.

Have you read any of these? Let me know in the comments!

Reading Challenge

My Reading Challenges for 2022

So, once again I am participating in several reading challenges. Most of them are on Instagram, one is on Litsy, and one is my Goodreads challenge.

First up is the DInsey Reading Challenge:

This challenge is on IG, and it lasts all year. Each of the five movies have five prompts and there is also a bonus prompt:

Next up are the Taylor Swift reading challenges, one for Red, Taylor’s Version, and one for 1989, as we’re all hoping we get Taylor’s Version soon! 🙂 These challenges are hosted by @aliciaclarereads on IG, and last all year.

I’m also doing an Agatha Christie challenge hosted by @officialagathachristie on IG. Also a yearly challenge, there is a prompt for each month. I’m starting with Death on the Nile since the movie is coming out soon. 🙂 To get the prompts you have to sign up for their email list.

I’m hosting the #fairytalereading challenge both on Instagram and Litsy. You can read about all the details here.

Next, I’m doing my usual Goodreads Challenge to read 200 books this year:

I’m also reading twelve books recommended by friends on IG. Here are the twelve recommendations I recieved:

And last but not least, I’m doing the #bookspin challenge hosted by @theAromaofBooks on Litsy. Each month, you choose 20-25 books, the host rolls two numbers, #bookspin and #doublespin. You can read one or both, and/or complete the bingo board the host also makes to go along with the books. You can check out all the details on the host’s blog, here. I’m all in, so here’s what my board looks like:

What reading challenges are you doing this year? Let me know in the comments!

Blog tours, Book Reviews

Lies Like Wildfire Blog Tour

Ultimate Tour – Penguin

Lies Like Wildfire by Jennifer Lynn Alvarez

     

Publisher: Penguin

Length: 384 Pages

Publishing: 7th September 2021

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Lies-Like-Wildfire-Jennifer-Alvarez-ebook/dp/B08VFV5FXD

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/55894185

About the Book

An intense high-stakes story about five friends and the deadly secret that could send their lives up in flames, perfect for fans of Karen McManus and E. Lockhart.

In Gap Mountain, California, everyone knows about fire season. And no one is more vigilant than 18-year-old Hannah Warner, the sheriff’s daughter and aspiring FBI agent. That is until this summer. When Hannah and her best friends accidentally spark an enormous and deadly wildfire, their instinct is to lie to the police and the fire investigators.

But as the blaze roars through their rural town and towards Yosemite National Park, Hannah’s friends begin to crack and she finds herself going to extreme lengths to protect their secret. Because sometimes good people do bad things. And if there’s one thing people hate, it’s liars.

My Review

This was a fast paced and well-written read. The suspense kept building and kept the reader hooked. The main characters were realistic, but not all of them were likeable. A couple of them didn’t care about the consequences their actions brought to others, which annoyed me, but they were all fully developed.

This is a pretty intense book with a lot of details about the wildfire and the damage it caused, so fair warning for any possible triggers. I think readers who enjoy fast-paced YA thrillers like Jennifer Lynn Barnes’s The Naturals series as well as the Charlotte Holmes series by Brittany Cavallaro will enjoy this one as well.

About the Author

I received my B.A. in English from the University of California at Berkeley. I’m fascinated by underdogs and power dynamics between groups of people. 

I’m the author of LIES LIKE WILDFIRE, a teen thriller soon-to-be published by Delacorte Press, and two middle grade book series, each published by HarperCollins Children’s Books, THE GUARDIAN HERD (a quartet) and RIDERS OF THE REALM (a trilogy). Before this, I self-published a middle grade fantasy called THE PET WASHER. 

When I’m not writing, you’ll find me galloping my little black mare through the foothills of Sonoma County or teaching free creative writing workshops to kids and adults at various branches of our local library system. 

The Healdsburg Literary Guild selected me as their 2019/2020 Literary Laureate for my work in building literacy in my community. It is an honor I hold dear. I am also the current SCBWI Sonoma County Coordinator and a volunteer on the Sonoma County Library Advisory Board.

I live in Northern California with my husband, three children, and more than my fair share of pets!

Blog tours, Book Reviews

Mirroland Blog Tour

53512eb0-4116-0eb8-0fa4-626d8a529826.gif (1440Ă—810)

I’m thrilled to be part of this blog tour hosted by https://www.thewritereads.com/.

Ultimate Tour – Scribner

Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone

About the Book

Twelve years ago my life began again.

But it was a lie.

With the startling twists of Gone Girl and the haunting emotional power of Room, Mirrorland is the story of twin sisters, the man they both love, and the dark childhood they can’t leave behind.

Cat lives in Los Angeles, about as far away as she can get from her estranged twin sister El and No. 36 Westeryk Road, the imposing gothic house in Edinburgh where they grew up. As girls, they invented Mirrorland, a dark, imaginary place under the pantry stairs full of pirates, witches, and clowns. These days Cat rarely thinks about their childhood home, or the fact that El now lives there with her husband Ross.

But when El mysteriously disappears after going out on her sailboat, Cat is forced to return to the grand old house, which has scarcely changed in twenty years. No. 36 Westeryk Road is still full of shadowy, hidden corners, and at every turn Cat finds herself stumbling on long-held secrets and terrifying ghosts from the past. Because someone—El?—has left Cat clues all over the house: a treasure hunt that leads right back to Mirrorland, where she knows the truth lies crouched and waiting…

A sharply crafted mystery about love and betrayal, redemption and revenge, Mirrorland is a propulsive, page-turning debut about the power of imagination and the price of freedom. Perfect for fans of Gillian Flynn, Ruth Ware, and Daphne du Maurier.

My Review

Wow! This book had me on the edge of my seat, and I read it in two sittings. I enjoyed the writing style, and the suspense built at the story progressed, keeping me invested in what was happening.

I really liked the main character, Catriona. I found her relatable, especially with the back and forth relationship between her and her sister. I think anyone who has siblings can probably relate to that on some level. I liked how they created their own fantasy world as children, something that me and my siblings also did when we were young. I loved how the author weaved the fairytales and fantasies into the story and I loved all the references to classic literature.

The twists just kept coming, even up to the very end, and some of them I didn’t see which is unusual for me as I typically have the story figured out before the end. Also, I have to say that ending was very satisfying – something that is not always the case for some books like this. If you enjoy fast-paced, twisty psychological thrillers, you’ll enjoy this one – if you liked Gone Girl, you’ll like this one as well.

About the Author

Carole Johnstone is an award-winning writer from Scotland, whose short stories have been published all over the world. Mirrorland, a psychological suspense with a gothic twist, is her debut novel.

Having grown up in Lanarkshire, she now lives in the beautiful Argyll & Bute, and is currently working on her second novel: a very unusual murder-mystery, set in the equally beautiful Outer Hebrides. You can visit her at  https://carolejohnstone.com/about/.

Readathons, Reading Challenge

October is Readathon Month!

Every year in October, I participate in #scarathlon, a Halloween-themed challenge on Litsy. (If you haven’t heard about Litsy, you can read more about it here. There are two teams, and you receive points for reading books, watching tv shows and movies, and for time spent reading during readathons. And there are a lot of readathons in October. I’ve chosen a few of them to participate in.

  1. #Whodunitathon – Hosted by @whodunitathon on Twitter, this is a month long challenge that you work through in stages:

I have completed Stage 1 – The Premise. My setting is Manhattan (book read: The Midwife Murders by James Patterson). My detective is the police inspector (book read: The Birthday Girl by Melissa De La Cruz). And my sidekick is the unflappable butler (book read: Atomic Habits by James Clear).

2. #Anunfortunatereadathon – Hosted by the @readyreaders on Instagram, this challenge has a bingo board to complete.

So far, I’ve completed Sunny Baudelaire – Monsterstreet: The Halloweeners by JH Richards, Count Olaf – The Midwife Murders by James Patterson, Aunt Josephine – Too Much and Never Enough by Mary L. Trump, and The Reptile Room – Very Scary Halloween by Eve Bunting.

3. #trickortreatathon hosted by @samanthashares and @heyatlascreative on Instagram.

I’ve chosen the trick path to start with and have read Mike Meyers: The Midwife Murders by James Patterson and Richard DiLallo, and The Sanderson Sisters: The Halloween Queen by Joan Holub.

4. #Thrilloweenreadathon hosted by @readwithalison on Instagram.

So far I’ve read #3 witches – The Halloween Queen by Joan Holub, #5 haunted house – At the Old Haunted House by Helen Ketteman, and #10 thriller book from library – Monsterstreet: The Halloweeners by J.H. Reynolds.

What about you? Are you doing any readathons this month? Let me know in the comments.