REVIEW: In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

REVIEW: In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

Hello, lovelies!

I hope you’re having a lovely weekend! This week has been a busy one for me, so I haven’t had as much time to dedicate to blogging as I would have liked. I turned 24 on Wednesday so I’ve been celebrating with friends and family (and lots of amazing food!)

Its back to business this week starting with this short review of Ruth Ware’s best-selling thriller In a Dark, Dark Wood.

 

GoodReads Synopsis:

Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since Nora walked out of school one day and never went back.

There was a dark, dark house

Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen do arrives. Is this a chance for Nora to finally put her past behind her?

And in the dark, dark house there was a dark, dark room

But something goes wrong. Very wrong.

And in the dark, dark room….

Some things can’t stay secret for ever.

 

My Thoughts:

Unfortunately, this book was as clichéd as it sounds. I don’t like writing negative reviews and I want to stress before I go any further that reviews are subjective, I have read other books by Ruth Ware in the past and enjoyed them and I don’t doubt that I’ll read more of her work in the future but this one was just not for me.

I really tried to enjoy this book, but I found that it was often overly dramatic and unrealistic. The pacing was good and the twists and turns of the plot line did keep me reading but I wasn’t invested in the story or characters. There were a lot of characters who all had their own back stories and problems which Ware used to keep the reader on their toes, but I think this added unnecessary complications to the plot. I didn’t particularly like or care about any of the characters, particularly the protagonist Nora who was so useless and dull.

I don’t want this review to be all negative, so I’ll finish with this. One thing I did like about this book was Ware’s writing style and how she switched back from present to past tense throughout. I think this worked well to build the suspense leading up to the big reveal and it kept me interested despite the problems I had with the characters and plot twists.

If you’re a fan of thrillers or Ruth Ware’s writing, then you should definitely consider reading this book. It might not have been one of my favourites but hopefully, you’ll enjoy it more!

Thanks for reading! Have you read this book? If so, let me know what you thought in the comments below!

Blog Tour: The Stranger Upstairs by Melanie Raabe

Blog Tour: The Stranger Upstairs by Melanie Raabe

Hello, Lovelies,

I usually post my book reviews on a Sunday but as I’m (belatedly) taking part in the Blog Tour for The Stranger Upstairs by Melanie Raabe, you’re getting an extra review this week!

Unfortunately, I am a few days late with this post due to unforeseen work commitments so my stop on this Blog Tour was supposed to be on the 13TH September but better late than never!

I would like to thank Pan Macmillan, for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

 

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GoodReads Synopsis:

“Several years ago, your husband, and the father of your young son, disappeared. Since then, you’ve dreamed of his return; railed against him for leaving you alone; grieved for your marriage; and, finally, vowed to move on.

One morning, the phone rings. When you answer, a voice at the other end tells you your husband’s on a plane bound for home, and that you’ll see him tomorrow.

You’ve imagined this reunion countless times. Of course you have. But nothing has prepared you for the reality. For you realize you don’t know this man.

Because he isn’t your husband, he’s a complete stranger – and he’s coming home with you.

Even worse, he seems to know about something very bad you once did, something no one else could possibly know about . . . Could they?”

 

My Thoughts:

If you are a big fan of thrillers with a twist, then this is definitely the book for you.

The Stranger Upstairs may sound like a standard thriller from the synopsis, but it will surprise you like it did to me. Raabe stays faithful to the expected structure of a gripping thriller throughout the majority of the book but towards the end, the story started to transition into more of a romance. I don’t want to give too much away as the big reveal is definitely one you don’t see coming but Raabe brings something unique to the genre in this dramatic story.

The pacing of this story was quite slow which may put some people off, but I think it worked in Raabe’s favour in this case. The story takes place over the space of a few days so you are getting every action and emotion that Sarah goes through in minute detail. We think we know what’s going on the whole way through the book as we are getting both Sarah and the Strangers side of the story the entire time which is why when the plot twist is revealed, the reader is left so shocked. The one thing that let this novel down for me was the writing. This may have been down to the translation as this sometimes means that you lose an aspect of how the story is told.

Thank you again to Pan Macmillan for sending me a copy of this book and for Melanie Raabe for writing this interesting story. The Stranger Upstairs is out now and can be purchased here.

Thanks for reading! Do you like the sound of this book? Let me know in the comments below!

ARC REVIEW: Jane Doe by Victoria Helen Stone

ARC REVIEW: Jane Doe by Victoria Helen Stone

Hey, lovelies!

I would like to start by saying thanks to NetGalley for providing the Kindle version of this book in exchange for an honest review. Somehow my amazing luck with ARCs continuous as this is another positive review!

GoodReads Synopsis:

‘Jane’s days at a Midwest insurance company are perfectly ordinary. She blends in well, unremarkably pretty in her floral-print dresses and extra efficient at her low-level job. She’s just the kind of woman middle manager Steven Hepsworth likes—meek, insecure, and willing to defer to a man. No one has any idea who Jane really is. Least of all Steven.

But plain Jane is hiding something. And Steven’s bringing out the worst in her.

Nothing can distract Jane from going straight for his heart: allowing herself to be seduced into Steven’s bed, to insinuate herself into his career and his family, and to expose all his dirty secrets. It’s time for Jane to dig out everything that matters to Steven. So she can take it all away.

Just as he did to her.’

 

My Thoughts:

I want to start by saying that thrillers are not one of my favourite genres of books however, I had been in a bit of a reading slump and a fast-paced thriller is the perfect cure for that and Jane Doe did not disappoint.

This is probably the only thriller that I have ever read that hasn’t left me feeling slightly disappointed. I always devour thrillers as I can’t wait to find out what happens in the end and then when I get there I almost feel deflated. However, the ending of Jane Doe was brilliant. It perfectly wrapped up the story and was that satisfying kind of ending that you never saw coming.

Another reason I don’t usually love thrillers is that the protagonist is always insufferable. They are usually female and suffering from alcohol addiction, mental health issues or with some dark secret from there past which makes them unstable and unreliable. Jane, on the other hand, was such an interesting character. She is a self-diagnosed sociopath incapable of understanding or feeling emotions in the way that others do which makes her such a multi-dimensional character. She also had all the power in this story. We learn quite early on in the book why Jane is set on ruining Steven’s life, but we don’t know how she will do it which is why I think this book works so well. We’re not trying to figure out the whodunnit, we are trying to figure out how far Jane is willing to go.

I also found myself laughing out loud at times when reading this book which is definitely not my usual response to reading a thriller. Stone’s writing is brilliant and extremely witty in parts. I read this book on my Kindle and I found myself highlighting so many quotes so I thought I would include some of them in this post just to give you a taste of Jane’s voice:

“Frankly, fictional people appeal far more to me than real people do. In fiction, the choices have to make sense. The timeline proceeds rationally.”

“Erections and guilt can’t exist in the same place”

“After all, everyone knows that women are responsible for how men behave. If we’re not careful, they might decide to take what they want. They can’t help it. But somehow I’m the one with the psychological impairment.”

“Their penises are God’s divining rods, searching out evil.”

The whole book is narrated from her perspective which works brilliantly. Stone invites us into the mind of a sociopath, but she is a sociopath that the reader ends up rooting for. I would even go as far as to say I liked Jane. Stone set’s Steven up as such a vile character that I almost wished I could join Jane in making his life hell but deeper than this was that Steven is a character that far too many women are very familiar with in real life.  This makes his demise all the more satisfying.

This book is available to buy now and I would definitely recommend this book if you’re into thrillers (or even if you’re not as it was such an interesting read). I really hope Stone considers making this into a series so we get to read more about Jane!

 

Thank you for reading! Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments below!