Genre: Mystery


Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Not a Good Addition to the Series: Alone in the Wild by Kelley Armstrong

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Not a Good Addition to the Series: Alone in the Wild by Kelley Armstrong
Alone in the Wild
Kelley Armstrong
Series: Rockton #5
Genre: Adult, Mystery, Survival
Publication date: February 4th, 2020
by Minotaur Books

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In #1 New York Times bestseller Kelley Armstrong's latest thriller, the hidden town of Rockton is about to face a challenge none of them saw coming: a baby.

Every season in Rockton seems to bring a new challenge. At least that's what Detective Casey Duncan has felt since she decided to call this place home. Between all the secretive residents, the sometimes-hostile settlers outside, and the surrounding wilderness, there's always something to worry about.

While on a much needed camping vacation with her boyfriend, Sheriff Eric Dalton, Casey hears a baby crying in the woods. The sound leads them to a tragic scene: a woman buried under the snow, murdered, a baby still alive in her arms.

A town that doesn’t let anyone in under the age of eighteen, Rockton must take care of its youngest resident yet while solving another murder and finding out where the baby came from - and whether she's better off where she is.

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrong again delivers an engaging, tense thriller set in perhaps the most interesting town in all of contemporary crime fiction.
-A copy was provided by Minotaur Books for review-

I’ve been a longtime fan of Kelley Armstrong and in particular love her mysteries. While I didn’t pick up City of the Lost as soon as it came out, when I did, I was unsurprisingly sucked into this new world Armstrong had crafted. Since picking up book 1, I’ve consistently kept up with the series and eagerly anticipated every new installment. So, I was very very excited to dive into Alone in the Wild. There were a lot of exciting things that happened in the Watcher in the Woods and I was looking forward to seeing how Armstrong would deal with those threads. I ended up being pretty disappointed. It isn’t that Alone in the Wild is inherently a bad book on its own but its not a good installment in this series.

We ended book 4 with a lot of speculation on what the council was up to. Alone in the Wild doesn’t focus on any of that at all and instead dismisses most of the theories it was hinting at in the last book. I thought we were headed towards a bigger, darker secret but NOPE. Alone in the Wild is all about babies. Casey is suddenly angsting about whether or not she wants to have babies. Erik is pretty chill and doesn’t seem to care much about anything even though Casey thinks he is all worked up. I did not sign up for a book that is all about babies. Especially in a mystery series!!!!!

Because Erik and Casey spend most of this book out of town, we also don’t get to hang out with any of our fav secondary characters. There were several key introductions that took place in the last installment and I was really hoping we’d actually get to see more of these characters and they’d be further developed but that also did not happen.

The only really noteworthy thing this book does is expand the world a little bit as we get to meet groups of people we haven’t met before. I appreciated that but still really don’t like the way Armstrong talks about the so-called ‘savages.’ 

I honestly don’t remember if this happens as much in the previous books but there was so much repetitive information being shared and I am convinced it’s because I read an unfinished copy. Like 20% of the book is just Armstrong repeating information from the previous books. I appreciated it at first but it became really annoying after a while.

My whole review has been me nitpicking about all the details but I do think that if you’re also a fan of the series, the book is probably worth the read. It’s not the best book in the series by a long shot but Casey (baby stuff aside) is still Casey and Erik is still Erik and together they make a good team. The ‘mystery’ is not as intriguing but it’s fun to follow along with. 

Overall, Alone in the Wild is not really a good addition to the series but of course, like any committed fan, I’ll be back for future installments and hope we find out some NITTY GRITTY SECRETS about the council.

2.5 Stars
2.5 Hot Espressos

Pulls No Punches: Deadly Little Scandals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Pulls No Punches: Deadly Little Scandals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Posted by on 10/24/2019 • 1 Comment

HOLY FUCK THIS BOOK. Omg. What the fuck are words anyway??? This book does not pull any punches whatsoever. There are many many MANY twists and my head is still spinning from trying to figure out what I just read. Jennifer Lynn Barnes is known for her mysteries and her mysteries are why I keep coming back to her. Deadly Little Scandals, in my opinion, is unlike some of her previous stuff in terms of how major plot points unfold and the punches we are thrown. I cannot quite decide if this is a good thing or a bad but it is definitely a thing.

Little White Lies took me a while to get invested in but by the time I was 10% into Deadly Little Scandals, my eyes were…

Hits All the Right Notes: A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh

Hits All the Right Notes: A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh

Posted by on 09/06/2019 • 2 Comments

It’s been a long time since I’ve read anything by Nalini Singh but when I saw she was venturing into the world of suspense, I knew I’d have to pick up A Madness of Sunshine. A Madness of Sunshine is exactly I want from a mystery. It has no flashy red herrings, but is still enticing. In fact, once I hit the 33% mark, I read the book in one sitting. Which, I read books in single sittings all the time, but I’ve been struggling a lot with reading lately and this just… it was what I needed. If you love small town mysteries, where secrets bubble underneath the surface, A Madness of Sunshine is exactly what you need too.

By the 20% mark in this book, I trusted no…

Best of Dogs and Humans: The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Best of Dogs and Humans: The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Posted by on 06/19/2019 • 0 Comments

I truly feel blessed anytime I finish a book by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. Over the past year, she has quickly shot up to one of my favorite authors. Her talent for writing some of the best relationships to grace YA draws me in and I cannot help but finish any book I read by her with my mouth hanging open and desperate for a sequel. If flawed characters, found family, trauma handled well, the best of dogs and a bit of a mystery are your thing, The Lovely and the Lost is the book for you.

Kira does not trust many people except for her family. It took years after Cady rescued her for Kira to learn how to trust again and now she is following in Cady’s footsteps…

Review: Dreaming Darkly by Caitlin Kittredge

Review: Dreaming Darkly by Caitlin Kittredge

Posted by on 04/08/2019 • 1 Comment

Gothic mystery novels are a favorite of mine, and Dreaming Darkly is an eerie novel that, albeit a bit predictable and dramatic at times, was an exciting read overall. 

After the death of Ivy’s mother, she’s sent back to her family’s old manor on a private island off the coast of Maine. When she gets there, she finds that not everything and everyone is at it seems, and strange dreams start feeling a bit too real. I found this story really intriguing from the very first page. Ivy’s life with her mom, her mom’s mysterious past, her family’s history are all really interesting. I found myself flying to the pages to find out every detail I could about this ominous family tree. This mystery aspect is done really well, with…

Review: City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong

Review: City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong

Posted by on 03/04/2019 • 0 Comments

I’ve always been a fan of Kelley Armstrong ever since her Women of the Underworld series. While this one isn’t paranormal, it still has an air of fantasy in it when we’re taken into this secluded town where people go to escape their tragic or criminal past. 

This town is hidden from the world, and as you can guess comes with a side of mystery and even horror. Casey is brought there to try and find out why their people are disappearing and coming up murdered. The whole seclusion aspect makes this story so compelling and eerie. It’s sort of like a post-apocalyptic world where you have limited supplies and every skill is put to good use, and wandering off a bit too far from the edge means you’re likely…

Another Worthy Addition to the Series: Watcher in the Woods by Kelley Armstrong

Another Worthy Addition to the Series: Watcher in the Woods by Kelley Armstrong

Posted by on 02/26/2019 • 0 Comments

I have been reading Kelley Armstrong’s books for over half a decade now so it’s safe to say I am a fan. From her YA to her adult, she never fails to deliver a series of characters I find myself immediately invested in and plots I am eager to watch unfold. Watcher in the Woods is the fourth book in a series and usually, by the fourth book of a series, my interest starts to wane but a fourth book in the hands of Kelley Armstrong??? Watcher in the Woods proves that it can be a very powerful thing.

If you haven’t read this series and are a fan of well-written mystery novels that don’t involve annoying dude detectives, you should probably get on it. If you’re already a…

Some Mystery and Bland Characters: The Lonely Dead by April Henry

Some Mystery and Bland Characters: The Lonely Dead by April Henry

Posted by on 12/14/2018 • 1 Comment

Ugh I don’t even know how to word as I write this review. I’ve written and deleted the first sentence about a 100 times. BUT. I guess. Here is the thing, I read an April Henry novel years ago, liked it, and read a BUNCH by her this year. Just looking at the books in the chronological order they were published, it seems that the books have gotten progressively worse? Which is to say, that her later books have lost that kick a lot of her earlier books had.

If you’ve been a fan for a while and coming to this book because you have come to expect some thrill and some mystery from April Henry, you should stay. If you want anything more than that, like character development and…