The Hunting Party

Lucy Foley is an author that checks out very well at my library and her books receive good reviews, but I’ve never had the chance to read one of her books, so I was excited when a book club I was leading chose “The Hunting Party” as their latest pick to discuss.  The premise to this book was simple: 9 friends gather on New Year’s for their annual vacation and by the end of the weekend, one of them winds up dead.  Who among them is the killer? This is a classic locked room mystery that doesn’t change the genre in anyway, but I liked it and there were enough twists and turns to keep me guessing. This was an enjoyable read that I think most mystery fans will like.

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Dear Child

Woo boy was this book a roller coaster.  My family and friends know that I scare easily which is one of the reasons I don’t like horror movies.  It’s also one of the reasons I sometimes have to stop reading a book when the sun sets and the shadows start to look like creepy things haha!  This was one of those books.  As much as I loved it and wanted to keep reading, I had to put it down at night and switch to something more light hearted to ensure I would be able to sleep at night.  Part mystery, part psychological thriller, this book kept me guessing until the very end and I highly recommend it for fans of chilling suspense novels.

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Leave the World Behind

While reading this book, I kept thinking, “did Rumaan Alam think his book would be so timely when he was writing it?”  The topics of race, class, and family would have been enough to make this a very 2020 book but how could anyone have known that a book that discussed those topics AND a global catastrophe would be written pre-2020, only to be released at the end of what feels like the longest year ever?  As much as I loved this book, I would hesitate to recommend it right now, solely based on the content, knowing that some people might not want to read about the beginning of the end of the world while we are still dealing with a pandemic. However, if you feel like you can handle this topic right now, this book is one that you will be hearing about a lot over the next few months (Netflix bought the rights before the book was even released and Julia Roberts and Denzel Washington are already set to star in the adaptation,) and I really enjoyed this one, as much as you can enjoy a sad, semi-apocalyptic book.

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Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead

I host a virtual book club for my library and while there is no specific theme to the club, we have somewhat settled on reading mysteries.  There are so many mystery subgenres that I have been trying to pick a different one each month to give us some variety.  This book was my pick for private investigator but it was unique in ways I didn’t expect and did not read like a typical PI story.  I ended up liking it more than I thought I would and would continue the series.

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The Dime

During pride month, I was working on a list of mysteries and thrillers with LGBTQ+ protagonists for my library. I was pleased to find that more and more authors are choosing to tell stories with diverse characters but there is still a lack of mysteries with gay characters. While I meant to read this book in June, I’m glad I decided to give it a try as I ended up liking it and I am looking forward to reading the second in the series.

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The Silent Patient

The Silent Patient was THE mystery thriller of 2019, with numerous friends and library patrons telling me I had to read it.  I don’t know why it took me so long to pick this one up but I am glad I read it because I was hooked from the first page.  I would highly recommend this book, especially if you like stories with a lot of twists and turns.

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A Dog About Town

A prompt in one of the reading challenges I am working on this year was: “a book in which an animal or inanimate object is a point of view character.”  Having already read the great “The Art of Racing in the Rain,” I could not think of another book that would apply to this prompt. Thanks to a Goodreads group, I found “A Dog About Town” which had an interesting enough premise for me to want to read it.    While the book was entertaining enough, I didn’t find the mystery to be that compelling or enough to keep me interested in whodunit.

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My Lovely Wife

This book was a roller coaster of emotions.   I wanted to read it based on the “Dexter meets Mr. and Mrs. Smith” description I was seeing everywhere but I have to say that it didn’t feel like either of those to me.  While there is murder and a husband and wife dynamic, this book felt like a MUCH, MUCH, darker “Gone Girl.”  I am going to recommend this to people with a caveat…you need to be comfortable with reading a book about horrible people who commit murder for no other reason than the thrill of it.

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1st To Die

This was my first time reading a James Patterson book and I chose the first in the Women’s Murder Club series because I had heard good things about it and Patterson actually wrote this book himself.   (He is notorious for only writing a fraction of his books and writing outlines he gives to his co-authors to write the rest:  https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/james-patterson-doesnt-write-his-books-and-his-newest-readers-dont-read/2016/06/06/88e7d3c0-28c2-11e6-ae4a-3cdd5fe74204_story.html?utm_term=.65688512e329)

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