Twisted by Steve Cavanagh #BookReview

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1. The police are looking to charge me with murder.
2. No one knows who I am. Or how I did it.
3. If you think you’ve found me. I’m coming for you next.

After you’ve read this book, you’ll know: the truth is far more twisted…

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Soooo many people told me how much they enjoyed reading Steve Cavanagh’s novels. I really can’t think of any (good) excuse that explains what kept me so long from picking up one of his novels. When I heard Twisted was a brave new standalone though, one with such an intriguing blurb (the shorter is sometimes really the better), I finally caved, so now I don’t have to feel FOMO any more, yay! And I’m truly happy I finally FINALLYYYY discovered Cavanagh’s unbridled talent of writing plot twists.

I can’t think of any other title for this novel that would be more perfect, because the story is indeed Twisted with capital T. I believed I knew how the story was going to go down but I was so wrong about my ideas. The story is totally unpredictable because there are some big game changers along the line. When you read this then don’t underestimate any of the characters in this novel, they all try to be the most clever one and take a run for the money (literally). There can only be one of course and I was eager to find out who would come out on top of the game. Cavanagh was able to reshuffle the cards throughout the novel a few times to keep the reader on their toes. The only constant is the danger for life :-).

The reason I didn’t give this one the full points in the end is that I did not really like any of the characters more than the others. At some point or other I liked and also disliked every one of them, so there were a few moments that I didn’t know who to root for anymore, if any. None of them are really good people, Maria, Paul and Daryl are all deceitful and oh so very greedy (as if there’s nothing else to live for)… oh and then there’s dirty secrets, lies and deceit involved as well of course, everything you want from a great novel really ;-).

I can’t say any more about the plot in case I talk too much, but I also noticed that I hadn’t written anything down about the story when reading. This makes it abundendly clear the whole story was so absorbing I didn’t even think of it. I loved the twists and that the novel’s about an author whose identity is a mystery. You’re constantly searching if you’re reading about a fictional character called JT Lebeau or about the author talking about himself. I’m sure the lines blurred occasionally :-). All in all, this was a very surprising novel and it’s definitely not the last novel I will read by Steve Cavanagh! Highly recommended!

I bought a paperback copy of this book. This is my honest opinion.


New BFF: Zooloo’s Book Diary


Hello there! It’s been a while since I had a new blog friend (since May actually) but my wonderful friend Zoé who lives near the White Cliffs of Dover and blogs at Zooloo’s Book Diary helped me out here and was so kind to answer my bookish questions. If you don’t know Zoé yet, you should really do something about that ;-). She’s listed as a Nominee for Best Book Blog 2019 in the Blogger Bash for a reason you know. You can also find her on Twitter under @zooloo2008 if you want to give her a follow there.

If you enjoy horror novels you might want to take a trip down memory lane with Zoé and her friend Steph in her tab NostalgiAAARGH series. In case you’re interested, her first pick is Slumber Party by Christopher Pike!

Zoé is a busy bee, she participates in several bookish challenges, does buddy reads and you can also follow her Positivity Wave posts on Friday!

There’s plenty more to discover but I’ll let Zoé tell you herself in this next round of questions and answers:


Name: Zoé-Lee O’Farrell (but just call me Zoé)

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Me and mum going to footy

Age: 36

Birthday: April 1st (I fully expect jokes!)

Zoé Birthday

What did you study or do you study now / what is your current job? I am currently an assistant finance manager for an arts charity. I have been here for 2 years as I relocated when we moved to Dover.

Do you have any other hobbies? When I am not reading, I love watching movies (a bit of a geek), gaming, sewing and I watch a LOT of sport! I have a season ticket for Watford football club as that is where I was born. And of course, spending time with my mini-me.

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Your favourite color? Red is my power colour but blue is also my favourite.

red and blue

Do you collect anything (besides books)?  Sewings! I have way too many to do and like books, I want more lol

What’s the name of the book that you’ve had the longest? Have you read it? I really can’t remember, I had a huge purge a few years ago, in which I got rid of most of my books for my Kindle (let’s not go there, not my choice). I have loads of books from when I was a teenager at my mum’s, and I brought one home recently to read to Alicia, The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy. So until I can think otherwise I am sticking with that! lol

Have you ever regretted a book you purchased? A book that sounded so promising but you wished you’d have spent your money on another book after reading it? Going to be unpopular but Bram Stoker Dracula! It took me 5 months to read it before I started blogging and my god, I was pulling teeth. I do not like to be defeated by a book. I was gutted as I remembered really liking it before.


Do you listen to audio books? Yes absolutely love them! Listen in the car on my drive to and from work and when I drive home. I have so many favourite narrators now, I love them as they can bring a book to life.

Do you have a favorite genre? Horror is my fav, but I do love a good thriller for sure and you have to have a bit of fluff to mix it up.

What is the book highest on your wishlist right now? I think because I am listening to the series now on Audible it has to be Capturing the Devil by Kerri Maniscalco. It is the last in the stalking Jack the ripper series – going to be a sad day.

Stalking Jack The Ripper Fandom Wiki page: Kerri Maniscalco was born in Newburgh, New York, United States, and grew up in a semi-haunted house outside New York City, where her fascination with gothic settings began. In her spare time she reads everything she can get her hands on, cooks all kinds of food with her family and friends, and drinks entirely too much tea while discussing life’s finer points with her cats. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling novels Stalking Jack the Ripper and Hunting Prince Dracula.

How is your library organized? At the moment, alphabetically by author surname. Bar my Flame Tree Press shelf which has one by itself.

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Do you read more ebooks or physical books? I read a mixture of both, I have a lot more ebooks though.

Do you have a favorite book? Wow, that is a tough one to think. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe definitely and I have discovered so many amazing books lately. I think, mainly due to my fangirling, Jonathan Janz The Siren and the Spectre is up there. My list would not be complete without mentioning The Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit and the Witches by Ronald Dahl, they hold so many memories for me.

What’s the cover in your collection that you’re most proud of? Oh god, I don’t know I have so many book covers that I love! I am a book cover hoe, so I generally have to fall in love with cover first – eek sorry!

Do you have any idea how many books you own? <100, >100, >200, >300 …? I am in the 1000s with my ebooks, probably hundred ish with print copies.

What’s the title of the last book you purchased? I brought Doug Johnstone Faultlines and Breakers today and my last audiobook was The Murderer’s Son by Joy Ellis (because Rae and Eva told me to lol)

Twenty years ago: a farmer and his wife are cut to pieces by a ruthless serial killer.

Now: a woman is viciously stabbed to death in the upmarket kitchen of her beautiful house on the edge of the marshes.

Then a man called Daniel Kinder walks into Saltern police station and confesses to the murder.

But DI Rowan Jackman and DS Marie Evans of the Fenland police soon discover that there is a lot more to Daniel than meets the eye. He has no memory of the first five years of his life and is obsessed with who his real mother is.

With no evidence to hold him, Jackman and Evans are forced to let him go, and in a matter of days the lonely Lincolnshire Fens become the stage for more killings and Daniel has disappeared.

In a breathtaking finale, the truth about Daniel’s mother comes to light and DI Jackman and DS Evans race against time to stop more lives being destroyed.

What was your favorite author when you were a child? Well, I was reading adult books when I was a teenager so it was Richard Laymon and Stephen King and all the point horror books (see the Nostalgiaaah feature mentioned above) which was various authors. Other than that, it was any horror book I could get my hand on.

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From which author do you have most books? Depending on where I am looking !! I have Laurell Hamilton Meredith Gentry series, all the Harry Potters and I have about 7/8 Jonathan Janz books. On my kindle well……all James Patterson/Stephen King books’, Wilbur Smith,  Kathy Reichs, Patricia Cornwell and Karin Slaughter….it’s never-ending. I could go on and on but I won’t!

Are there books you’ve read 2 or 3 times? I don’t generally have the time, but because I have been reading books to my little lady, we have read Matilda and The Twits by Ronald Dahl and will start on the Harry Potter ones soon.

How many books are there on your Goodreads challenge this year and how many have you read already? I went for 120 this year and apparently I am on 106 so far……………

Can you spell your name with the first letters of titles in your book case?

Zero by Marc Elsberg
On my life by Angela Clarke
Electric Woman by Tessa Fontaine
Little Sibera by Antti Tuomainen
Elemental Claim by Miranda Grant
Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine by Gail Honeymen

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In case you missed it, here are the 5 last BFF’s (Blog Friends Forever) I posted about. You can find the tab with links to these and the previous posts on my home page.

Chloé – Review by Chloe
Alex – Alexandra Wolfe
Kelly – FromBelgiumWithBookLove
Deborah – The Reading Chick
Jonetta – Blue Mood Café

I would really really love more friends in my BFF club so give me a shout if you want to be featured! I’m especially thinking of all newbie bloggers here who we don’t know very well yet!

Endgame by Daniel Cole #BookReview

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A locked room. A dead body. A secret that went to the grave.

When retired police officer Finlay Shaw is found dead in a locked room, everyone thinks it’s suicide. But disgraced detective William ‘Wolf’ Fawkes isn’t so sure.

Together with his former partner Detective Emily Baxter and private detective Edmunds, Wolf’s team begin to dig into Shaw’s early days on the beat. Was Shaw as innocent as he seemed? Or is there more to his past than he’d ever let on?

But not everyone wants Wolf back – and as his investigation draws him ever deeper into police corruption, it will not only be his career on the line – but the lives of those he holds closest as well…

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star three and a half

My rating might come as a surprise to you and I can tell you, I wasn’t expecting to give anything lower than a 5 star rating myself because my god, I loved the first and second novel in this trilogy SO MUCH. But, yeah here it is.. my opinion of this novel is colored by a few small details that made such a mark on my reading experience that it became too difficult to see past it.

You see, I have the feeling that the main thing I will remember about Endgame in a few months time will be my frustration and struggle at the start of the novel and which lasted way longer than I wanted. The author made it clear that he doesn’t want to rehash what happened in book 1 and 2 and that you really need to read the series in order, but guess what, I did read the first two novels (it’s been 2 years since I read about Wolf though) and I was STILL at a loss about the characters, about what happened in the past and the relationships among the members of the team, as there really isn’t any reference point to before. I didn’t like this feeling that it’s on the tip of your tongue but just out of reach. Why was Baxter so mad at Wolf? It didn’t feel it was merited. I vaguely remembered how book 1 ended but that didn’t ring a bell at all. And was Christian a character from the first novel too because I didn’t remember him? The only one who I really had no trouble remembering was good ‘ol Edmunds. So yes, this irritation overshadowed my reading pleasure quite a bit. What didn’t help either was that my ecopy had some poor formatting because there weren’t any paragraphs dividing the scenes, there wasn’t any blank space. One minute someone’s handing over a coat. A brief fullstop and two words later someone’s smiling in a camera in a very different scene. That constant change without any warning at all took lots of energy to follow the story. I’m sure the finished copy won’t have this though so you don’t have to take this into account, but it’s where I’m coming from ;-).

As for the storyline itself, the suspected non-suicide of Finlay formed the base of an entertaining mystery, especially since he was found in a locked room. It’s clear that the answer must have something to do with one night a lot of years ago but it takes a while to get to the crux. In this story finding out the suspected murderer of Finlay didn’t form the biggest thrill for me, no it was actually seeing how Wolf would find a way to prove it. The last part of the novel, with a sublime twist, was therefore definitely the best part.

Overall, this was a good read but it didn’t match the first two novels (except for that amazing twist). It’s also fairly different reading experience compared to the previous novels where lots of people are targeted and plenty of grisly murders, where the focus here is on Finlay (there’s definitely no big cinematic show here). If you’re going to read this, then I certainly advise you to read the three novels around the same time, I’m sure this will be a whole other experience then!

I received a free ecopy of this novel via Netgalley from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

One Year Later by Sanjida Kay #BlogTour #Extract @SanjidaKay @CorvusBooks @annecater #RandomThingsTours

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Welcome to my stop for One Year Later by Sanjida Kay. Thanks so much to Corvus and Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for the invitation to join this blog tour! I absolutely enjoyed  The Stolen Child in the past and this novel is definitely on my readlist too. You’ll have to be a bit patient but it’s a delight that I can already share an extract today. But before you read it, check out how wonderful this novel sounds first:


Since Amy’s daughter, Ruby-May, died in a terrible accident, her family have been beset by grief. One year later, the family decide to go on holiday to mend their wounds. An idyllic island in Italy seems the perfect place for them to heal and repair their relationships with one another.

But no sooner have they arrived than they discover nothing on this remote island is quite as it seems. And with the anniversary of the little girl’s death looming, it becomes clear that at least one person in the family is hiding a shocking secret. As things start to go rapidly wrong, Amy begins to question whether everyone will make it home…


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Sanjida Key Author Picture

Sanjida Kay is a writer and broadcaster. She lives in Somerset with her daughter and husband. She has written three previous psychological thrillers, Bone by Bone, The Stolen Child and My Mother’s Secret to critical acclaim.



He stands on the edge of the cliff and stares at the drop below. It’s early, around 5 a.m., and he’s only had two hours’ sleep.

He blinks, rubs his eyes. The wind, skimmed straight from the sea, is cold, and he can taste the salt on his tongue. There’s a pale-blue line where the ocean meets the sky: the first sign of the approaching dawn. He has a torch in his pocket, but it’s of little use, faced with the dark expanse of beach below him. He shifts slightly and feels the earth give way beneath one foot.

He doesn’t have long.

The tide is almost fully in, and the man who’d phoned him had said she was at one end of the beach. The caller was drunk; he said he was on his way home from the festival, although that in itself was suspicious, because no one lives at this end of the island, save for the Donati family and the people staying in the holiday house below their farm. The man was slurring his words – fear, combined with the alcohol, making him barely comprehensible. He didn’t say which end of the beach. Martelli had driven here as fast as he could, radioing for the ambulance from the car. He offers a silent prayer: that she is above the tideline, that he can find her in time, that she’s still alive. The clouds shift; the line of light over the water turns to buttermilk, and he thinks he can see her. Could be rocks or flotsam. Or a body. If it is the English girl, she’s lying stretched out on the sand below the headland, where this spit of land joins il cavalluccio marino.

He clicks the torch on and starts down the cliff path. It’s treacherous in daylight, never mind at night: narrow, twisting and steep, stones breaking through the soil. He slips, thinks he’s going to lose his footing. He can’t see how far it is to the bottom. He slides, collapses back against the side of the cliff, grabbing handfuls of vegetation to stop himself from falling the rest of the way. Loose grit and pebbles slide from beneath his boots, and he can smell the sweet, sharp scent of thyme and wild marjoram where he’s crushed the plants in his fists. It’s momentarily comforting: his grandma puts them in her rigatoni campagnolo. But then his torch hits a rock on the shore and the bulb smashes. He’s in darkness, his breath ragged in his throat. He pushes himself half-upright and scrambles the rest of the way down. His ankle throbs where he’s grazed it. The paramedics are not going to be able to carry her up here on a stretcher, he thinks, and the tide is approaching so fast, he’s not sure if they’ll make it round the headland, either.

If she’s still alive.

He runs across the sand, through crisp, dried seaweed and a ragged line of plastic bottles, Coke cans scoured clean, baling twine and polystyrene chips. The tourists can’t reach this beach, so no one clears away the rubbish. She’s on her side, one arm flung out, her legs at a disjointed angle. Has she fallen from the cliff? The rocks surrounding her are sharp as needles, erupting through the sand like prehistoric teeth. The foam-tipped edge of a wave creeps across the toes of her right foot. She’s missing one sandal. Her white summer dress is rucked up, exposing her thighs, revealing part of one breast. He throws himself onto his knees next to her. Her dark hair is wet and covers her face, so he can’t see what she looks like – if she is the missing girl. But he can see the blood: an uneven pool staining the sand, spreading out from the back of her head.

Where the hell is the ambulance?

His radio crackles, but there’s no word from the paramedics. He gently touches her with the tips of his fingers, and she’s cold, so cold.

Mio Dio.

He’s never seen a dead body before and his stomach clenches into a tight fist. Briefly he brushes the crucifix hidden under his shirt and then slides his hand beneath her hair, feeling for a pulse.

*** Don’t forget to check out the rest of the tour ***

One Year Later BT Poster

The Daughter in Law by Nina Manning #BlogTour #Extract @ninamanning78 @BoldwoodBooks

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Welcome to my stop for debut novel The Daughter in Law by Nina Manning. Thanks so much to publisher Boldwood Books for the invitation to join their very first blog tour! I have an extract (the first chapter!) to share with you today but first check out how wonderful this novel sounds. When I read the blurb I immediately felt this was my kind of novel!


No one is good enough for her son…

As a single mother, Annie has an especially close relationship with her son, Ben. They have always been together. Just the two of them. So, when Ben brings home his mysterious beautiful new wife, Daisy, immediately Annie doesn’t trust her. Who is this woman who has taken her son away from her? And what is she hiding?

She’ll protect him with her life…

When Ben disappears, suddenly Annie and Daisy are all the other one has. Alone in Annie’s big, remote house, just the two of them, the tension is rising. And like any protective mother, Annie will stop at nothing to expose her new daughter in law, and the secrets she is hiding…

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Nina Manning

Nina Manning studied psychology and was a restaurant-owner and private chef (including to members of the royal family). She is the founder and co-host of Sniffing The Pages, a book review podcast. The Daughter in Law is her debut psychological thriller, and will be published in August 2019. She lives in Dorset.


Twitter : ninamanning78

fB : ninamanningauthor1

Author’s website :

Nina’s author profile :



My favourite room is the spare bedroom at the front of the house. It gets all the light in the morning and looks so inviting. I’ve done it up like a picture I saw in a lifestyle magazine: a checked throw across the end of the bed, floral sheets and hooked back curtains, a little wicker chair in the corner with a few well-read paperbacks stacked on top of it, and a white vase on the bedside table. It really is the most comforting place to be. Of course, no one ever uses it. I like to keep the house looking nice. But it was only ever going to be me and my son.

Getting out of bed was particularly hard this morning. It has been every morning since Ben left. I keep thinking, what is the point? I’ve been feeling that empty hopelessness for several months now. Since Ben deserted me.

For her.

I’d heard all about empty nest syndrome but I never imagined for a moment it would happen to me. I never actually thought he would leave. I thought we would just keep existing together. Forever.

He kept so much of his stuff here initially, that I felt sure he would return – but just last month, he came and took the lot.

It’s so quiet here now. It was quiet anyway, that’s why I took the house. It’s the house I grew up alone in with my father, but fled from as soon as I was able to support myself.

How do you define an unhappy childhood? In those days it was unheard of to make an allegation about your relative. I accepted the violence – it was, after all, part of him and all I had ever known. Throughout my motherless upbringing, the beach house provided a sanctuary for me with plenty of places to hide. I got stealthier as I grew and with my legs pulled up tightly into my chest and my head pressed to my knees, I would squeeze myself into an alcove, the airing cupboard or the shed with the ringing sound of my father’s threats in my ear. Later on, I would sneak out and find my way back to my bedroom past my father’s drunken snores. The next day he wouldn’t remember a thing. Had I not been able to escape down to the shore to skim pebbles or poke about in rock pools, then I would have run away sooner. The sea kept me safe. But as soon as I turned sixteen I took myself hundreds of miles away. I never heard a whisper from my father, who had told me daily I reminded him too much of my brazen excuse of a mother. Then he was dead and the beach house was mine. I left it sitting empty for a while, too scared to return, too busy trying to salvage my own marriage. Then Ben arrived and I knew it was time.

When I returned here all those years later with my son, it was fairly run down and rotting in places I couldn’t get to, much like my father for all those years. The brown weatherworn cladding needed a sand down and varnish and the white framed windows were peeling, but overall the exterior wasn’t so bad. I did the best I could with it and I could overlook most of the natural decay when I scanned the vast horizon and breathed in the fresh sea air.

It’s a remote spot, perched right on the edge of the peninsular before it slopes round into the sea. Standing in the garden or looking out of the window, you would be forgiven for thinking there were no houses for miles, but there is one around along the shore and to the left and then they begin to scatter more frequently as they feed towards the village. People rarely walk this far down as the shore is a little more rustic with huge pieces of driftwood and great mounds of seaweed washing up daily. Besides, the stretch of beach at the end of the garden and over the low battered wall essentially belongs to me. We are protected a little from the wind by a few surrounding trees, but it does get a little breezy here at times. But when it’s still and the sea looks like a flat piece of mirror you could walk across, that’s when I love it the most. Of course, I love the waves too, especially the ferocious ones that thrust themselves towards the wall. I like to watch those waves and feel my own fury in them.

A house on the seafront, much like a savannah plain, is the perfect spot to see when enemies are approaching. And anyone who tries to come between me and my son, I consider an enemy.

But despite the weather and the waves, I know the house is empty. And although I try to fill my days with mundane daily tasks, I too feel empty. I need to feel fulfilled again. I need my son back. Back where he belongs.

There’s no one downstairs humming a tuneless song whilst they make their breakfast. There are no dirty trainers in the hallway, or piles of washing in the laundry basket. There are no toast crumbs on the kitchen side, or butter streaks in the marmite. The house is so eerily quiet. I have never experienced this. Not since having Ben. I forced all the bad memories away from the time I lived here as a child and made it all about me and Ben. It’s our sanctuary; our hub. Our place away from the world.

Now he’s gone. He hardly texts or rings. She has him wrapped around her little finger. Calling all the shots no doubt.

It was a real shock when Ben told me he had met someone. It was more of a shock when he told me he had gone and gotten himself married. He had been spending a lot of time at her house, that I knew. But I had no idea things had evolved so quickly. And to have done it without telling me, his own mother, first. We used to be so close. I am not coping so well.

I did the right thing, of course. I invited them over for something to eat – mostly because I needed to get a good look at the woman who thinks she has replaced me.

But I know it’s only temporary. I can’t be replaced. My son can’t live without me.

*** Don’t forget to check out the rest of the tour ***

Blog Tour Nina Manning


Push that button: The Escape Room by Megan Goldin #BlogTour #BookReview @megangoldin @Tr4cyF3nt0n

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Today I’m thrilled to share my review of The Escape Room by Megan Goldin. Many thanks to Tracy Fenton of Compulsive Readers for my invite onto the tour and the publisher Orion Books, for the free ecopy via Netgalley.


Welcome to the escape room. Your goal is simple. Get out alive.

In the lucrative world of Wall Street finance, Vincent, Jules, Sylvie and Sam are the ultimate high-flyers. Ruthlessly ambitious, they make billion-dollar deals and live lives of outrageous luxury. Getting rich is all that matters, and they’ll do anything to get ahead.

When the four of them become trapped in an elevator escape room, things start to go horribly wrong. They have to put aside their fierce office rivalries and work together to solve the clues that will release them. But in the confines of the elevator the dark secrets of their team are laid bare. They are made to answer for profiting from a workplace where deception, intimidation and sexual harassment thrive.

Tempers fray and the escape room’s clues turn more and more ominous, leaving the four of them dangling on the precipice of disaster. If they want to survive, they’ll have to solve one more final puzzle: which one of them is a killer?

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What a revelation this novel turned out to be! The Escape Room was an amazing read because it has great characters and also: 1. a corporate setting that is more than fascinating, and 2. an intense and claustrofobic locked room mystery in an elevator. Despite it being such a tiny room, there was lots to discover and it really never got boring. There was a perfect balance between both scenes and just when the heat gets on in the elevator with nicely timed hints, it switches to the past where you learn a little more about the people trapped in that small space.

The people in the elevator all share Stanhope and Sons unofficial but very truthful mottofake it till you make it‘. The firm has over 9000 applicants each year and only 30ish are chosen for an induction week, where they are pampered and spoilt extravagently. Sara Hall is a girl with an MBA who tries to get a place as a financial analyst at the prestigeous New York firm. It is through her eyes that we get a sense of the place. The author provides such a clear imagine of the corporate mentality that even for all the money in the world, I wouldn’t want to work there.

At the same time 4 high-rolling employees of Stanhope are sent to the 87th floor of a builing for an urgent team building assignment. They never reach the floor though and it appears the elevator itself is set up as an escape room. The prologue gives the reader a taste of what’s waiting at the end of the story and you’re left wondering for the next few hours who’ll get out of that elevator alive and who’ll die. If that doesn’t get you hooked immediately, I don’t know what is.

As the story progresses I found out so much about this foursome. They seem to work well together but secretly there were jealous of each other and tried to undermine one another whenever they got a chance. They’re unlikeable characters but very interesting to read more about so they were absolutely the right kind of unlikeable. I was trying to suss out who was the baddest devil of them all but they all quite rival each other. Not to worry though, you have Sara to root for, for most part of the novel. It’s kind of a mystery why she isn’t in that elevator with them. Did she leave the team, turn her back on that money? It seemed very unlikely. My eyebrows almost touched my hairline when I found out why that was, no kidding.

Without giving away anything more about the plot, The Escape Room had me racing through this novel, it was a thrill of a read and I can’t recommend it enough. This novel is a real gem and definitely one of my favorite reads this year.

I can hardly believe this spectacular read is a debut novel and all I know is I can’t wait to read the next Megan Goldin novel!

*** Don’t forget to check the rest of the tour…
first one up tomorrow is Over The Rainbow Book Blog ***

The Escape Room blog tour



Lock Every Door by Riley Sager #BookReview

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You’ve been offered a luxury apartment, rent free. The catch: you may not live long enough to enjoy it…

No visitors. No nights spent away from the apartment. No disturbing the other residents.
These are the only rules for Jules Larson’s new job as apartment sitter for an elusive resident of the Bartholomew, one of Manhattan’s most high-profile private buildings and home to the super rich and famous.

Recently heartbroken and practically homeless, Jules accepts the terms, ready to leave her past life behind.

Out of place among the extremely wealthy, Jules finds herself pulled toward other apartment sitter Ingrid. But Ingrid confides that the Bartholomew is not what it seems and the dark history hidden beneath its gleaming facade is starting to frighten her. Jules brushes it off as a harmless ghost story – but the next day, her new friend has vanished. And then Jules discovers that Ingrid is not the first temporary resident to go missing…

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Sometimes it’s not only an author’s reputation and his previous books that create high expectations, sometimes it’s the book itself that raises the bar high from the opening chapter, which is exactly what happened when I started reading Lock Every Door. This novel is bound to convince his loyal fans and new-time readers.

I loved Riley Sager’s two previous novels, they were both very atmospheric (one includes a dark and frightening forest, the other a summer camp on the grounds of an old asylum) so I already started this novel – given the rather scary title Lock Every Door – with some trepidation. It didn’t help either that as soon as I opened the novel I was introduced to Jules who was brought into the hospital. She had blood on her and scratches on her arms and body which already raised questions but above all that she BEGS the doctor not to send her back to the Bartholomew. He hooked me right from the start with this! I had to know what had happened to her to make her feel so scared of that building since she set foot in it, which was – hold on cos you’re not going to believe this – only 6 DAYS EARLIER.

What can happen in 6 days, right? Jules Larsden is a very likeable character who had her share of hardships in life even if she’s in her early twenties. She’s quite down to earth and even laughs away all those creepy stories about the building being cursed. The gargoyles even have a charm for her that escapes me entirely. They don’t look like gothic protectors to me at all but little horrifying monsters. If she’s definitely not the type to get scared easily then what on earth unnerved her so much that it made her run out on the street and make her forfait the first paycheck as an apartment sitter?

It’s a slow burn at first but as the days progress, the tension mounts. You know that something is going to happen and the Bartholew felt off all right but I really couldn’t put my finger on it what it was. I could feel the danger around Jules but didn’t know where it was going to come from and I wrecked my brain to explain the disappearances, I came up with a few theories even, but the truth was a real shocker! If you want a novel to surprise you, then you’re always safe reading a Riley Sager novel. There are a number of twists in this novel of course but two that are quite sensational, and I loved that there was much much more to discover after what you think is ‘the big reveal’, I even think I liked the second big twist more than the first!

Now even though I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel, it was atmospheric, eerie and daintily unsettling, I think I still prefer the woodsy areas of his first two novels a tiny bit more :-). I was also a teensy bit disappointed that a small subplot in the novel involving Jules’ family which intrigued me quite a bit, didn’t really give me all I wanted. I can’t help it that I always like everything neatly tied up and solved. This is only a minor detail though so certainly don’t pass up the opportunity to read this very engaging novel!

I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher via Netgalley. This is still my honest opinion.